The following was syndicated from Quora for The Fatherly Forum, a community of parents and influencers with insights about work, family, and life. If you’d like to join the Forum, drop us a line at [email protected].
How can I convince my wonderful friends to procreate?
First, and I mean this very respectfully, mind your own business. Unless you are an equal partner in this marriage or you are their doctor (and even then, I’m not sure it’s appropriate), you have no reason to insert yourself so deeply into their very personal affairs.
There are a lot of factors that go into the decision to not have your own biological baby, and there’s no way of telling which (if any) of these factors may or may not be part of your friends’ lives.
One or the other (or both) may have been diagnosed with infertility. Some types of infertility can be fixed (surgically or medically), other types of infertility can not be fixed. But with one in 8 people being affected by infertility in the US alone, infertility is definitely one of the possibilities on the table.
Second, this couple may have found out that one or the other (or both) Is carrying a gene (or genes) incompatible with life for the fetus, lethal to the baby right after birth, or genes that lead to serious health problems for a potential child that the parents do not wish to pass along.
There is no guarantee that their biological children will be great and wonderful contributors to this world.
Perhaps they are open to the idea of adoption. You don’t know what their personal experiences and philosophies are when it comes to building families, populating the earth or even simply wanting to give a local child who is “in the system” a loving home. Or perhaps they see themselves in the future as foster parents; the kind of people who can and want to provide a steady and loving place for these frightened and sad kids as they prepare the children for their uncertain future.
Who knows, really, why they don’t want to have biological children? And why is it anyone else’s business how and why they choose how to build their family?
One other thing to consider is this: even having biological children is a crapshoot. A lot of the time, sure, little Johnny has mom’s eyes and dad’s temper … But there is no guarantee that their biological children will be great and wonderful contributors to this world — in ways that have nothing to do with parenting.
You obviously care about these people or you wouldn’t raise the question. And you love and respect them, as evidenced by the statements that you think they’re wonderful and would bring wonderful children into the world.
Now, all you need to do is continue to love them and respect their choices and decisions without butting in. If they are the type of people who will raise wonderful biological children, then they are the type of people who will raise wonderful adopted children.
Erika Tabke is the owner and Editor-in-Chief of IVFConnections.com, a news, education, discussion and advocacy community for people who are affected by infertility. You can read more Quora posts here:
- What are some of the crazy first-time-parent things you’ve done for your first born that you did not subsequently do for the next one(s)?