Taking Notes and Doing it Right

Bey is pregnant...

She was married first....

Apparently this is precisely how all women should carry about their business, and those who do it differently do it wrong.

I suspect that if doing it in that manner were easy or even plausible for all women, maybe we'd see more of it. But somehow women are supposed to successfully date, marry and get pregnant with no onus being placed on men. The same men who are told by our society (whether they act on this or not) that they are inherently better than women and therefore entitled to whatever they please, especially where women are concerned.

A woman who wants a child but doesn't want to deal with the things that often come up for heterosexual women who choose to involve themselves with men in long term and serious relationships is at a loss, I suppose, as we've determined that the only way to do this is to date, marry and then get pregnant.

A woman who makes her best effort to use protection, but is failed, as no form of contraception is 100%, is losing and should have an abortion -- but wait, no, no -- don't have an abortion as that too is a terrible thing for her to do.

A woman who thinks she's met the man she wants to be with forever and gets pregnant only to find that he's unable or unwilling to be a father (or maybe even get married) is hella screwed, I suppose.

Or what about the woman who just doesn't want to be married? So she can be with this guy for her whole life, she just can't have a baby? Oh. Ok.

And I've been very clear on this very blog about my feelings about having 2 parents who raise a child. I think that a child should have both their parents in their life if it's possible. I think a child should have the regular (practically every day) influence of both a male and a female, whether the male and female are biologically the parents and whether or not both the male and female live in the home. Period.

But those are the ideal settings and I say all of this as the child of a single parent who worked her ass off to make sure I had what I needed and I actually had all types of male figures in my life, but I still am painfully aware of the chasms that my father's absence created in my emotional landscape. It's not pretty and working through them has been everything but exciting, fun or easy. I see what it's like for folks like me who had even slightly lesser situations.

And then my final issue is WHERE IS THE ONUS ON THE MEN? I'm not sure how women are supposed to date, marry and then get pregnant when so many men want to do everything BUT marry you and are more than ready to impregnate you. We may not have a shortage of eligible men, but I sometimes feel like we have a shortage of eligible marrying-minded men. Ironic too since most of the commentary I've seen on this has been from men and women who are already married (and have even said that if they had to date today, they're not sure how they'd make it).

You know, the other thought I had when I first saw a comment on Beyonce doing it the right way was of her sister. Both of them were born into the same household (though it's a well known-fact among anyone who studies family inner-workings that the family dynamics for one child is never the same for the other) and she got pregnant then got married and then got divorced... She did it wrong, too, I suppose, but it appears, to someone who doesn't know her or him, that her son is doing just fine.

We treat marriage like the panacea that it isn't. Marriage doesn't fix problems just like having children doesn't fix problems. If a woman plans to bring a life into this world and then raise it, the only thing she MUST do is put forth her best effort to provide the best life for her child -- giving them the most opportunities she can, to excel. If she can do that alongside a life partner, that's all to the good and I'd argue for most women preferred, but if she can't it's certainly not our job to police her womb and tell her no kids. We don't have any place in a womb that's not ours.


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