About this Blog

After banging my head in frustration over the obsession everyone around me had with procreation, I went online to find a community of people who were more like me. I have met some fascinating people along the way, but I have also found that many in the childfree community are quite hostile toward Christianity and a Christian world view. I understand that, unfortunately, many of my Christian sisters and brothers have given them a lot of ammunition (undoubtedly, I have been guilty of this at times too). Not wanting to be perceived as "trolling" for expressing my Christian perspective on other people's forums and blogs, I use my own blog to share my musings on childfree life while at the same time expressing my faith.

My intention is to show support to childfree people, both Christian and non-Christian, but from my own Christian perspective. Questions and constructive comments are welcome; negativity and intolerance are not.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Bingo! (Or, Doesn’t Anyone Have an Original Thought Anymore?)

Before I started participating in online forums, I had not heard the term “bingo” before in reference to someone making an insensitive comment about another person’s choices or beliefs. As I began reading the stories of people all over the world who were being bingoed for their childfree choice, I realized several things. 1) It wasn’t just me being overly sensitive. 2) Apparently I was not doing anything wrong or doing anything that inadvertently triggered people into bingoing me. 3) People across the globe are completely unoriginal, but they seem to think they have just made some comment of such astounding enlightenment that it will most certainly change the childfree person’s mind.

Interestingly, I have received very few bingos from my fellow Christians, and the ones I have received have been no different from the rest of the bingos that come from the rest of the world. The first (and only, now that I think about it) “religious” bingo came from a girlfriend at church who protested, “But God said to be fruitful and multiply.” I was quick to point out that this statement was made only to Adam & Eve and then later to Noah and his family, and at a time when there were no other people on the earth. With the billions we had now, that directive had been fulfilled. This stopped my friend dead in her tracks. (I have since learned that some scholars recognize this as a blessing and not a command.)

In case any of you are unfamiliar with these bingos, some clever people have put together “bingo cards” that you can use to track all of the clichés that people might hand you.
Here’s one.
And another.
(Because it appears on the cards above, I do feel compelled to clarify that in childfree circles, some folks use the term “breeder” as a derogatory term for bad or ignorant parents. In general, they do not use it for thoughtful parents who are working hard to raise good children. I personally avoid the word altogether, except in the comfort of my own home where my husband and I sometimes jokingly use the term in its most literal sense to refer to -- very neutrally -- “one who breeds.”)
The Childfree Life even has t-shirts, mugs, bags, etc., to display your bingo card. Sit back, have a chuckle at the cards, and reflect in amazement with me at how so many people can say the same things over and over with nary an original thought.

What’s your favorite bingo? Or your favorite “religious” bingo? More importantly, what is your best, Christ-honoring response to a bingo?

6 comments:

  1. My parents used to tell me, "you're future children up in Heaven are looking down at you, saying 'my mom doesn't want me.'" I don't know where that one came from.

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  2. Wow, I haven't heard that one before! Personally, I have no recollection of looking down from heaven before I was conceived. And if I had been, I would have begged God, "Please don't send me down there with all those lunatics!" :D

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  3. I've never heard anyone say that childbirth is a woman's greatest achievement... probably because I have a reputation for being a genius and a scholar, and nobody has the guts to claim having a child would top all the stuff I've done/could do. But seriously, that was the most offensive thing I've heard all day.

    I *have* heard quite a few of them, however. I get the 'people like you should have kids!' one a lot. I've even once gotten 'you have the baby, I'll raise it for you.' Um... weird?

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  4. ~Q, love your comments. The "you have the baby and I'll raise it for you" was a new one to me.

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  5. Favorite bingo: "People who don't want children are selfish!"
    Favorite religious bingo: "Why don't you want to follow God's plan?"

    The latter irks me the most. Whose to say what God designs for my life? I feel a calling towards Agricultural Engineering research that could improve the numbers of starving individuals AND families in this world. Next to this calling, having children seems far more selfish to me.

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  6. Being different will always be harder than being like most average people. So when you chose going a different direction than where most people go, you will have times where you will feel immensely alone.

    But who said life and everything in it would always be easy for us? Even Jesus said to His disciples that following Him wouldn't always be easy, as the world when hating Him would also hate us. We have to only keep on walking in God's plan for us, no matter if everyone else might disagree with it.

    I do like that t-shirt saying; "No, I don't want kids. And that affects you ... how?" And my husband would fit having this t-shirt; "Children limit beer time." ;-) Funny ones! :-)

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