May 22, 2009

Is second child necessary?

I am back (a little bit drunk) from a party. Our department chief has resigned and the party was for his farewell. But they changed it into a combined 'big' party, adding welcome to the new department chief and new staffs who joined our department this (financial) year, in the same party.

Normally, only the people from the related department gather in such parties but as department chief was leaving, the GM himself and other big stakeholders too were present.

I looked for one of the farthest seats from the GM, it is always dangerous to sit near the 'big' boss:) It was same in University parties too, everybody wanted to be as far from the professor as possible.

But I was late, all the 'best' seats were already occupied and I was near the boss. It still wasn't the most 'dangerous' as there were two vacant seats between me and the boss, waiting for two 'unfortunate' guys:)

As the party started, I saw it was Banno San (Mr. Banno) next to me. I meet him almost every afternoon but we have very brief talks each time. He is around 55 (my guess).

"I heard you have a child. How old?" After getting little bit drunk, Banno San started talking about family.
"3 years." I replied.
"It's the most lovely age--"
"But it's also the most difficult age to care--"
"Boy or girl?"
"Then it's even more lovely--"
"Is that so---?"
We shared another round of drink here.

"What about second child? Any plans--?" Banno san was back again a after a few minutes.
"It's difficult to say. One is enough to make us tired to hell. And there are many other things too to think about---"
"Don't say like that. It's better to give your daughter a friend in your home too." Banno San got serious "It is my experience too. I have two daughters. I think any parents should have at least two children---"
"-------------" I couldn't reply to Banno San here.

It's not only Banno San. My Professor's wife always says to us the same thing every time we meet them. Other intimate friends also say the same.

In weekends and holidays, Aryaa seems suffocated to stay indoors. We take her to children parks as much as we can but it is not possible to be outside the whole day and everyday. So sometimes we too think that a sibling would sure bring her more happiness.

But life is not so easy and 'linear'. There are many things to think about before planning another child.

I sometimes think this problem will not seem so big once we are back to Nepal. We still have a semi-joint family and even if we get separated, we will be living near to each other and children will always have intimate playmates inside the 'family' too.

Personally, after seeing Sobita going through all the pain during pregnancy and delivery, I don't want that to repeat again. I think the right to decide whether to have children or not and when to have belongs to the females only as they are the one who have to bear all the burden.

Hidden beneath all the fun and laughing, this party for me became "Is second child necessary?".

Image Source:CartoonStock


Dilip Acharya said...

Ha..ha.. ha.. (let me laugh out loud, this is serious matter, though)

Well, now coming to the point, I'm laughing because this very question has been asked to me also, numerous times. (by known and unknown persons too:)

Now a days, I've started taking it lightly... very lightly. Because after examining few peoples attitude, I found that people ask this just for 'substitution' of 'how do you do'.

Yes!, specially if your first child is female, the chance of getting this 'interrogation' gets 500 times higher than that of having male child.

Well, jokes are apart, but if I have to answer this question honestly, my answer will always be NO.

Anonymous said...

Hahhhahaa!! So..Basantji..You are experiencing what others (who have a single child) experience. Good, no? Once the single child has grown up, then people regret why they donot have another one. Your article reminds me those who ask me whether they can have another child after 9-10 years of having the first one.
Basant ji think and think ..and think before you feel too late. All the best!!!
By the way, from your article - my conclusion is - All the parties are not enjoyable.. can produce stress too. Hahahaha!!!

Neeti Aryal Khanal said...

I respect your belief about your wife deciding whether she wants second child or not. Everyone think women are natural mothers and its their ultimate fulfillment. But rarely people think about how much difficult it is physically and emotionally. Shubham turned 3 too. he also asks for me to get bahini. Sometimes he says, 'lets buy bahini from supermarket' only if it was that easy

Basanta said...

Thank you all!

Dilip dai, our experiences are similar.
I think the answer can not be confined in plain "Yes" or "No". Many grown up single children say that they always longed for a sibling. In case of a close-knit family, cousin sisters/brothers can become good friends and they may not feel the need of a sibling.

Sushamajee, we are thinking and thinking---. I hope we will be able to decide before it's too late.
And yes, some parties go beyond the next morning's headache by creating such extra stress:)

Neetijee, ha ha ha! Shubham is a cute boy! That is a very lovely stage of a childhood. The problem is that grown up people too think that way and don't care about the woman's pain.

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