Do I need to have a kid to understand Antichrist properly? I'm not sure. But I don't think procreation is a topic that should be solely restricted to those who happen to have done it. I may not understand the desire to have my own kid, but I do understand the human need to look after someone, believe it or not. If I move somewhere bigger than a shared one-bed flat (soon), I hope in a while (if I pass the tests) to be in a position to foster whoever could use it. No doubt I've been corrupted by the abstractions of my discipline or am monstrous, or something, but I can see no good reason to have one's own child if there are other children already existing in the world who need looking after. I'm not even talking about adoption, where so often it seems that parents, perhaps understandably, often seek to replicate the genetic-parent newborn situation as closely as possible - I'm talking about helping, as realistically as possible, and with as few illusions as possible, existing, troubled, human beings out for a period of time, the kind of child people don't generally want much to do with, older, unwell or troubled. I've no doubt that in its own way this is just as ideological as having your own kid, but it just makes so much more sense to me. If you care about humanity at all - and in a convoluted combination of intuition and rationalism I most definitely do - then why not do this, given that it's a situation that exists for lots of kids. There simply aren't enough people there to look after people that are already in the world. Couldn't we, as best as we could, sort this out, well, first?
Jenny Turner is off-message. Here.
Adrienne Rich was never more prophetic than when she wrote, in 1977, that for her, pregnancy was like being "a traveller in an airport where her plane is several hours delayed, who leafs through magazines she would never normally read, surveys shops whose contents do not interest her"
Sara Megilbow, a literary agent in Boulder, is not. Here.
“The blessing isn’t that I was willing to help,” Sara says. “The blessing is that they’re getting their genetic child. Details be darned, they wanted this child.”