Hello All. Seems like I have a little bit of catch up work to do, so here goes.
Human beings of both genders are born with a mechanism -- both halves of a device used to propagate our species. We experience completely natural desires to pair with the opposite gender to engage this mechanism, and to reproduce offspring to succeed us once we have left this realm.
While the mechanism's primary purpose is reproduction, over time we began enjoying simply the process itself, without intending to reach the natural result. Some call this sinful and irresponsible. But since that process happens to feel as good as a roller-coaster ride, followed by a belly-flop into a giant vat of ice cream, this "unauthorized" use of the mechanism has continued for millennia.
This "unauthorized" engagement led to the development of contraceptive devices designed to reduce the likelihood of unintended results. Despite these advances, and their clear successes, none of them are 100% effective.
Despite what some may tell you, it's really NOT ALWAYS a blessing, or a surprise, or a welcome event to hear that an unintended pregnancy has occurred. While there are parents who really are able to make that adjustment, marry each other for the child, they don't represent everyone in the same situation. And yes, sometimes this type of thing happens with people who are already committed to each other, or have already set a wedding date. If both parents are ready to meet that challenge, adapt to it, and put a child's interests ahead of their own, more power to them. BUT THAT'S NOT ALWAYS THE WAY IT IS. If some people suck as parents even if they've done it "the right way," what makes you think people don't suck if they do it this way instead?
When this subject is broached, everyone is ready for a good old-fashioned abortion debate. A battle of the sexes. Science against religion. Does life begin at conception, or at birth? I'm a woman, who has the right to tell me what to do with my body? It's not just your body, it's a baby's body, who gave you the right to kill it? On and on, back and forth, etc. etc., gettin' stale.
Believe it or not, this really is an issue that starts and ends with us gentlemen more than it does with women. It is our portion of the mechanism that starts the ball rolling, so to speak. I am no feminist, and I'm loathe to blame men for every "mistake," but it is we who usually commence this process to begin with.
So let me head off that whole abortion debate at the pass:
(1) Sometimes it's really OK to not engage the mechanism to begin with. Our friends, the alpholes, will try to convince us otherwise, as they brag about putting up Gene Simmons numbers, and flaunt how "manly" they truly are by doing so. They aren't.
I'm not saying you should embrace celibacy. But I am saying that there are times it's just not a good idea to go for it. And if you know it's not the right time, there's no shame in admitting it. The fact that you can say no when you want to say no makes you much more of a man than these followers trying to be something they're not. If our friends, the feminists, use such slogans as "No Means No" and "My Body, My Choice" to cheers and accolades, what's to prevent us from adopting the same concepts?
(2) If you actually do feel that the time is right, then be smart, and be responsible. Every year or so, go for a check up and make sure there are no latent diseases seeping through your bloodstream, just for peace of mind. And once you feel you are ready to engage the mechanism, make sure that both parties use protection at the same time. No explanation needed.
(3) As stated before, next time a woman politely turns you down, thank her. If she was smart enough to see that it wouldn't work before you did, she may or may not have saved you from a most undesirable existence.
The notion of diving into marriage with someone that was never meant for you, for the sake of an unintended pregnancy, is terrible. People will tell you that it's responsible to jettison your former life to embrace fatherhood. I say that it's even more responsible to not even let it happen in the first place. Be aware enough of yourself and your surroundings.
Enjoy President's Day tomorrow!
DISCLAIMER: The above post is not intended to pass judgment on those who have started families in unconventional ways. It is your life and your choice, and none of my business. But I am aiming this at those who may have different choices, and asking them to choose wisely.