I am directing this conversation-let’s call it “the talk”, shall we?-toward childless women. Through “the talk”, I hope to save you from the embarrassment of referring to your pets as “your children”, and I hope to keep you from insulting those of us who actually DO have kids by equating them with a lower life form that you found in a kennel, or, perhaps, purchased through the Internet.
I hope to show younger women that, no, pets are not a legitimate substitute for human children, because they are…wait for it!—-ANIMALS, and that it’s not too late for them to start real families filled with bipedal humanoids. In short, I hope to bring everyone to the realization that, however much you may have hoped that escaping motherhood your whole life would bring you some form of happiness in the “Looking for Mr. Goodbar/Sex in the City” type of vein, and keep your washboard abdomen intact well into your 50’s, at the end of the day, you’re going to leave the world without any legacy whatsoever if you don’t procreate with an actual man, or at least a test tube, because believe me, when you die, no one will remember who took care of Buster and Molly, nor will anyone care who the progeny of that canine union are, let alone who their master was, but, if you’d had children, your name, your genes, and your family would live on forever.
Now, none of this is to disparage the many couples out there who have tried to have families, and, for biological reasons, simply cannot. These situations are rare, but, nevertheless, my heart goes out to all of you, and certainly I don’t direct my comments toward any of those unfortunates (although I will point out that it is possible to adopt and/or seek some kind of fertility medication).
No, my comments are directed at the militantly childless crowd who insist that being motherless is a noble goal, and that parenting can be easily equated with opening a can of dog food and pouring it into a bowl, but here I must tell you, like an adult scolding a child, it clearly isn’t, because, at the end of the day, dogs may be cute, they may be cuddly, they may protect you and love you, they may need to be fed, and bathed, and groomed, and pampered, and medicated, and fussed over, just like children, but there’s no way your pet, no matter how cute and fluffy it is, will ever produce someone as beautiful, and original, and HUMAN, as you, and it’s a real shame you couldn’t find the love in your heart to bring that life into the world, but you didn’t, and now it’s too late, so I get the need for you to explain it all away by saying, “Oh, look! I have puppies instead!”, because you need to fill the emptiness that you know is growing in your life as you age and realize that the end is getting closer, and I’ve no doubt you do love those cats and dogs, sweetheart, BUT-they’re not the same as children.
It’s sad that I need to have this conversation with you, dear, but I do, because it’s clear you have no idea what it means to bring a life into the world, or else you wouldn’t equate it with acquiring an animal. When you say, “My dogs are my children”, you’re really insulting every woman on earth who went through the pain of childbearing, and every man who committed himself to that woman. You take the joy of motherhood, of seeing a human being look into your eyes with an innocence and love that even God finds beyond reproach, that the greatest poets on earth have been unable to fully capture, that transcends the veil that separates humanity from the merely material-and you reduce it to a simple human affinity for dogs and cats.
But it’s more than that. You spit on the memory of your own kind, because, in effect, you are saying to your mother and father, I hate you. I hate you so much that I don’t want to give you the gift of being grandparents. Moreover, I don’t think your seed is worth preserving, and so I am willing to watch it die, and for what? So that I could enjoy a life free from the burden of children, so that I would have no obstacle to my career goals, so that I could live in relative luxury because after all, children are expensive, nest c’pas? And for these baubles, these consumerist goals, these momentary trysts, these Narcissistic urges, these vain and fruitless lifestyle choices, I was willing to give up on the Gift of Life.
To say that men make these same choices is absolutely true, and for the same egotistical reasons, but, in so much as they are incapable themselves of bearing children, whatever a man does or doesn’t do in this vein pales in comparison to a woman’s choice, and, while he is equally reprehensible in his behavior and guttural desires, at least I can say that I have never once heard a man refer to his dogs as his children.
This may seem harsh to you, dear, but I’m afraid I don’t care. You have been extremely selfish. You have taken the greatest gift ever bestowed on women-the gift of motherhood-and you have likened it to the mere possession of animals. I get that you don’t want to come clean about your motives, because they are so very, very ugly indeed. But at least, be honest about it, will you, and dispense with the notion that somehow your pets are your children, because it’s a pathetic pretense, and it is a laughably absurd notion to those of us who know better, and who did the hard work to raise a family so that society, such as we know it, will continue on, and so that mankind will be regenerated with the blood of a new generation.