If you had it to do over again, would you have had children?
My children and husband do not know that I am agnostic. The fact that they may one day come to the same realization pains me very much. The emptiness that I now feel makes me wish that I had not brought children into the world. I so hope they do not follow in my steps and face the truth that life was a tease..
Life is not a "tease". Life is a wonderful adventure, if you allow it to be.
Life is still exactly the same as it was before you accepted the reality that no gods exist.
Besides, your children might surprise you and tell you they feel the same way.
I'm sorry you're feeling "empty". I think you've come to the right place.
Take advantage of the this community. I'm sure there are members who can help you
see that your life has even MORE meaning now that you chosen to live rationally.
We are ALL born atheists, pryan. It is our natural default position.
I get the feeling that something has happened to have made you shed your beliefs.
Perhaps seeing a mental health professional will help you cope with whatever that was.
It's okay to not believe, and it's okay to be honest about that.
Please engage with the community as much as you're comfortable with.
There are an awful lot of wonderful people here. You are not alone.
Why do you feel empty? I don't feel anything different. I feel freed from the fairytale and understand that I'm in charge of my own destiny not an invisible man that never did anything for me to begin with. My children are happy and healthy without religion.
Let's unpack this.
I don't have children. Did not want them. Do not want them (and, at this point in proceedings, it ain't gonna happen).
I'm not quite sure how your agnosticism links to your feeing of emptiness vis a vis having children.
As a non parent, I know two things about bringing up children. 1) Jack; 2) Shit - and Jack just left town.
So, I'm no expert. It's like asking me to captain a space mission. Because that is not going to go well.
But I will say - from my observations - children are, amazingly, small human beings. They are plastic and elastic. They learn. Treat them well, my dear, and they will be fine.
My son is grown and engaged and now I happily have two kids. We 'out' and discuss openly together, support one another, help eachother grow.
Is it possible that what your missing with your family is bonding through sharing? Maybe your emptiness is due to not sharing your authentic you? If I were you, I'd start opening that door gently and slowly...let them learn who you are and what you're about. In time, maybe they will come to accept you and maybe in time they will come to admire you. But the truth is, opening that door to them will help you learn to accept yourself and overcome that emptiness. HUGS, life is hard, taking an honest look at ourselves harder still.
I am atheist, as are my children.Life is awesome. It is just so amazing,the odds against us being here are astronomical, yet we are, and we get to enjoy all this.
Life is brief, but that is how it is. We need to savour every second, a life lived this way is fulfilling and when it is finished it is complete. Nothing before, nothing after.
Only that which dies can bring forth life.
I think it is a selfish thing; choosing to bring children into the world. We don't know if this future consciousness will be happy or not. Some live happy lives, some choose suicide.
And since we cannot ask a future planned consciousness if they want to live or not, and since no one can see the future, we make the choice for them, and this choice is all about our wants.
Choosing to have children, especially in this world, cannot ever be anything other than a selfish choice.
This is one of - if not the - most interesting questions I've come across on Agnostic.com - it sure beats "pizza or tacos". I came to the realization quite some time ago that life is a cruel sick fk'n joke - but that hasn't made me regret my kids or having them. My son is an awesome young man - a far better man than I could ever be and my daughter - who just recently became a mother - is rejoicing in her role of being a mom and I love being a witness to it. I know that in terms of the human experiment that these memories or experiences don't really matter once we die - it's not like our consciousness exist after the body dies - but it matters to the living and my kids are doing great and despite my views - I would do it all over again.
If I knew then what I know now - no, I wouldnt.
Given I didnt, I would.
Interesting thing : I have twin daughters, 39. Both have thanked me for being the only one who didn't bullshit them about things....but also told me they knew I gave up a lot to raise them.
Life isn't a "tease."
We are co-creators of our own universe..making our own reality-
“Consciousness is fundamental and matter is derived from consciousness." – Max Planck, theoretical physicist who originated quantum theory, 1918 Nobel Prize in Physics
While I couldn't imagine my life without my kids, I also don't know what it would be like not to have had them, so I really don't have an answer for you.
I am sorry that you are feeling so much emptiness. It looks like there's been some good advice given on what you could do to help get you over this in this post, and hope you will find a way.
I was never sold on the idea of 'a baby.' Perhaps when I was much younger, I wanted to go there, but as I settled into a relationship with my (now ex) partner, it was something that I completely lost interest in. Not least because with her stress and depression made me think it wasn't the right environment to raise a child. And I was proven right on that one.
She wasn't interested for years either, then one day (as Men Behaving Badly so eloquently put it) her body clock started ticking so loud that you had to cover her in cushions just to hear the television. We went through six months of almost every other word out of her mouth being 'baby.' I resisted at first, but eventually gave in. She always got her own way in the end.
I remained indifferent until the moment I saw the first ultrasound image. And at that point, my whole outlook changed. He became a person rather than a concept.
Do I have regrets? Sometimes.
Would I hit the rewind button and take a different path without him in it? No.
But put myself in the position I was in 15 years ago, with no guarantee that the resulting offspring would be the son I have now. Would I want 'a baby'? No.
Would I ever have another child? No.
The only options for that would be surrogacy or adoption at this point, anyway.
I reckon having kids is the best thing and the worst thing you can do with your life, all rolled into one. The rewards are indescribable, but the sacrifices (mostly financial and personal freedom) are severe and sometimes difficult to deal with.