An unfiltered fire hose of flaming condemnation

Armstrongs are American, too

So the world is just a piece of crap and this war continues to make no sense and families are being destroyed as Dan Rather sits smugly from the safety of his make-up chair. The fucking dog across the street will not stop barking, and I really can’t blame him because I’d bark all day long if my owner locked me inside a 3 foot by 3 foot cage 24 hours a day. The fucking inhumanity.

Today I’m seriously wondering whether or not I should bring a child into all of this mess, because that’s a decision my husband and I face as we near the moment his insurance kicks in. While I understand that there’s never a right time to have a baby — who can really say? — and that I’ll never really be 100% prepared for motherhood, I know that I’ve never been more sure about a decision in my life. I’ve wanted children with my husband since our first date, and now that we finally have insurance to cover any unexpected problems, I really can’t think about anything else.

But on days like today I can’t help but wonder why I’d ever want to inflict life on any child. War aside, our children are going to have enough inherited uphill battles: depression, anxiety, bushy monobrows, gangly arms and legs, a distinct lack of athletic ability, a crippling battle with insomnia and exhaustion, an extended family who will want to convert them to Mormonism, high blood pressure, big noses, afros, gigantic feet, flat asses, pointy chins, and a long life of booblessness.

Throw in war and my children may as well just crawl back into the womb. I’d like to say that I’m glad my children will be born into a community that respects personal freedom and choice, that my children will enjoy most of the privileges I enjoyed as a resident of a mostly-functioning democracy. But I’m really scared about the future, about the future of this country, the future of personal freedom, the future my kids will have to live and make choices in, if they are allowed to make choices at all. Maybe I’m being a bit fatalistic here, but already I can’t speak up against this war without being labeled a “traitor” or “anti-American,” and that fucking scares the shit out of me. Since when did this country become the Fascist States of America?

Regardless of these fears my husband and I will be trying for a family soon, and I intend to teach them tolerance and compassion. Above all I intend to teach them the value of an open mind. I just hope they live in a world where they are allowed to use it.

  • another traitor

    The idea is to increase the ratio of intelligent, thoughtful, critical-thinking people to evil fascist bastards. Good luck and godspeed.

    Number one! Unless someone beat me to it.

  • Just remember that this war, just like every other war, will pass.

    Sounds like a good time to re-read MLK’s I have a dream speach cause isn’t that what it’s all about? He was right you know…someday…

    Who’s gonna change this world? If it’s you, then don’t you want your kid to live in it? If it’s not you, don’t you want your kid to make that difference?

    You sure as hell don’t want Dubyas grandkids doing it for ya. itellyouwhat

  • Tremorr

    Your kids will remember, and will be more influenced by, the love in your house than the bombs on TV. Good luck! Now get to work procreatin’!!

  • Zak

    Although I’m not at the point you are, I’ve also thought about that; you’re not alone, both about the child-birthing and the rise of Fascism in this country. I fear for the future a lot, but I’m a helluva lot more frightened by how things are moving right now… and once I figure out how to make things better, I’ll tell you all.

  • i totally know what you mean.

    but i’ll have babies too.
    anyway. in spite of everything.

    if i can, that is.

    i’m happy for you though.

    having that kind of certainty about your love for jon – ESPECIALLY in such uncertain times – is truly a gift.

    and one that i fear that most people on this screwed-up planet will ever get.

    and that scares me far more than war and the size of ever-growing american asses.

  • I’m with the first commenter.

    Plus, I have a 13-month-old son and it’s just… wicked pissah! Seeing my boy smile and making him laugh are just a huge high. He’s also into giving spontaneous hugs. It’s indescribably cool. I’m hoping smart people will procreate with abandon. It’s time we improved the curve. Best of luck.

  • the media

    at least we live in a country where one can get arrested for drugging and sodomizing a thirteen year old and still win the academy awards. maybe i’m wrong, maybe the 13 year old was asking for it. you know how 13 years old can get.

    in any case, about the war. you know the last time someone used a preemptive strike to start a war was a nazi. and the world made it illegal to do that after ww2. but then we are americans, we’re always right. how can the world not like us.

  • Question: what do the Academy Awards have to do with real life? What he did was f*ed up, but last time I looked, the Oscars weren’t the Department of Corrections.

    Sorry, Dooce, just annoyed at the last comment. I totally feel you, and don’t worry about the booblessness. My sis and I each have triple the boobs of any other woman in the family, who knows why. So there is hope for world peace!

  • galt

    i think it’s too bad that the people who would make the best parents are too often the same people that come to the conclusion that this world is just too hopeless and hard for another child.

    one way to make things better is to bring kids into the world that will be loved and encouraged and taught about tolerance and compassion.

    but I’m biased cuz I just think that the possibility of seeing your photos of a toddler playing with the former congressman is too dang cute.

  • Right the f**k on with the first comment. All you smart people, get to knockin’ boots! We got smart babies to make!

  • The world has always been a terrible place. Babies make it a wonderful place. My wife and I just got back from our 8 week ultrasound (he/she will be our second), and I’m so excited I wonder how long I’ll be able to sit at my desk before I just sneak the hell out of cubie land for the day.

  • Angelique

    personally, my sweetie and i have been trying to procreate with abandon (to quote woodge -cheers!-) and we are having similar issues. wild scizphrenia and bad teeth run in his family, and short, stumpy italian drug addicts run in mine. after loosing my 20 year old brother to drug addiction and seeing my mother suffer through it for years, it really made us look at the fact that even though we have been and continue to heavily therap-ize ourselves, there are things far out of our control. very scary. personally, i don’t want to loose another little boy to addiction, and i may have little choice over it. the only thing we can control is how we react to the unknown when it comes screaming at us. it may not be comforting, dear, but it’s the truth. bon chance to you both. and you are right, if you keep waiting for the right time, it will never come. you have to make it a right time.(and when you do concieve, there is a fabulous magazine that i subscribe to called “fit pregnancy”. it’s very good.)
    best of luck you two.

  • Angelique

    …. lets just hope they inherit their father’s spelling abilities….

  • Lex

    You go, Dooce. Having kids is too important to be left to the stupid and/or humor-impaired.

  • another traitor is right on! That’s the problem with our society — all the wrong people are procreating with abandon and all the intelligent, progressive, open-minded people are too busy learning, working, or protesting to get it on and make a couple babies.

  • Unfortunately the saddest thing about deciding whether to have a child or not, is when your insurance covers it. You talk about a sad state of affairs. Soon you’ll have to put a down payment on your child, which could be repossessed if you fail to pay the premium. Have a kid now, before they tax it or make it illegal.

  • i could list all the charming attributes my kids would inherit, but i shall refrain. at any rate, i am far too selfish to have children and my husband and i will be living our lives childfree. your kids, heather, are going to be GORGEOUS! 🙂

  • brrd

    Regarding “already I can’t speak up against this war without being labeled a ‘traitor’ or ‘anti-American,’ and that fucking scares the shit out of me,” Dooce, _please_ know that there are lots of people in the world who are happy to find similar viewpoints. I’m overjoined to hear that you have opinions against the war (even if I don’t get to hear them in detail). I’ve been extremely upset to find that so many of the other bloggers I’ve been following for years or months are turning out to have viewpoints that I never would have expected from their otherwise seemingly-liberal writings — viewpoints that are so against mine that I can’t even manage to continue reading their blogs for fear that I’ll see another “rah rah go lil’bush kill them sumsovbitches” entry. Anyway, know that there are lots of people out there that appreciate dissenting opinions and do not view you as anti-American. It was enough to get this long-time reader to comment for the first time (well, second technically, I emailed you begging for your secret location when you shut down after getting fired ;] ).
    And good luck with your procreating *heheh* the world needs more kids with sane parents.

  • i think these days our country falls into three communities: the against war at all costs crowd, the support your government at all costs crowd, and the let’s talk about this war thing with an open mind crowd.

    unfortunately, while the vast majority falls into the latter group, we mostly rush to put every opinion into either of the extremes. we seem to not recognize that there is much more common ground in this country than we’re willing to admit.

  • Myopic Joe

    Isn’t it funny, that those who don’t make good parents, don’t usually think about whether they should have kids or not? They just have them and fill the world with more lost, wounded souls. And it’s the people who make good parents who often debate having kids.

    As bad as the world can be, just remember that during their young lives, you are their world, and as long as you can give them what they need (spoiling, discipline, self-esteem, guidance, examples of how to live live, etc.) then they’ll have a better chance in this world than most.

    As parents, all we can do is give them a good foundation to face the world with. They may navigate life well, they may flounder, but at least they’ve had the opportunity to try.

    And use your kids as a motivation to get involved in your community, your country, your planet. Maybe after having your own kids, and if you have the resources and strength for it, perhaps you can adopt a child who has nothing in this world. Or you don’t even have to go that far. Volunteer at an organization for disadvantaged youths. Take stock of your talents/stengths and find a way to make the world just a little bit better for other kids and your own.

    I’m a pessimist and often I wonder whether having two daughters will bring me joy or grief (probably both). But it’s an arrogant person who thinks they are so omnipotent that they know there’s no hope left in the world. Oddly, not knowing what the future holds is both the source of hopelessness and hope.

    If God exists, s/he/it has a twisted sense of humor :_)

  • We’re all just infidels anyway. (in that slow grey sort of way)

  • Little Known Fact: Dan Rather did not graduate high school.

    So if you decide to go ahead and have children, which I think you should, not that you asked me, you can rest assured that even if they drop out of high school, we live in such a society that they won’t have to flip burgers forever if they really don’t wanna.

  • My husband and I debated having kids for the same reasons. Those worries disappear when you first lay eyes on your new baby. There is nothing in the world more awesome than having a child. Your life will take on an indescribable new meaning.

    Your writing is wonderfully entertaining. Still working through your archives.

    a new reader,


  • Valkyrie9

    Thanks for the laugh about the dog feet, Dooce. I really needed it. And good luck with the baby-making. You’re doing the right thing, as Another Traitor and all the others have already mentioned.

  • i’ve been lurking for a while, but this posting pierced me.

    i know that i’m fully called to have children, but i too am afraid of what i’ll be dropping them into.
    hanging out with a mother and a baby always appeases that, though. i see her breastfeed the baby, and how he is utterly soothed by her presence and touch and voice. that is beauty.

  • Joy

    Bless your heart Slackjaw. Well put.

  • EC

    You can fix the nose, you can fix the boobs. But what if Baby Armstrong is the Nobel Prize winning Doctor who finally finds a cure for Cancer or AIDs and s/he was never born? We debated back and forth about to have or not to have a baby and I think I finally decided to have one because I thought I was too selfish and nothing fixes that faster than having an even more selfish being in the house.

  • JC

    in the words of nike, just do it. you obviously want kids, and like you said, there will never be a “perfect” time to have them. and if you could find one, by the time he was ready to pop his head out, the perfect moment will have passed and the world will be shit again. so i’d say do it now, and nine months from now, things might actually be peachy.

  • booblessness as a bad thing? think about the disadvantages of large boobs: sagging, back pain, can’t wear halter tops, the need for sports bras to just walk around… I’ll take my small boobs instead quite happily

  • xiolagrl

    right on. i could agree more.

    blind patriotism is a scary thing.

  • Ditto what the others have said. I’d also like to add that your sons will thank you for the booblessness.

  • It would be unpatriotic for you and the scrumptious bearded one NOT to have children. C’mon now. We have been trying for a while now, and all I can say it that it feels right despite the bigboobedness, anxiety, chess playing, and clumsyness the wee one will inherit. Best wishes to the lovely Dooceyblurbs.

  • dvl

    as I look at my office walls adorned with artwork my 3 year old has made me, I can tell you with certainty to not let the current state of the world sway you to deprive yourself of the joy that a child will bring you and your husband.

  • Irk

    It’s all about what makes you two happy.

  • Thank god you’ve decided to go for it. I worry that the better, more thoughtful, kind and decent people I know in this world are choosing to NOT have kids.

    Good, loving emotionally articulate people raising good loving emotionally intelligent children is how we change the world.

    We need more free happy people in this world, no matter what the government looks like.

  • Hank

    Kids…gotta have ’em.

  • Keith

    Growing up with Morman relatives can’t be worse than growing up with Swedish-Lutheran-Republican relatives on my side and the Moral Majority on my wife’s side. We had a child during the Reagan Administration. She’ll be attending UC Santa Cruz in the Fall and a vote for the left in July. I have hope for her and your blog gives me hope for tolerance and compassion.

  • Here’s to increasing the gene pool in favour of the more intelligent and humane-thinking among us rather than the right-wing fascists and fundamentalist Christian zealots that now seem to rule our country. You go!

  • Just be careful that the baby snatchers (read: cops) don’t get your kid if you go to a rally. I’m extremely thankful for the cops in SF, especially this week, but I heard a nasty one the other day. Apparently some guy had a baby up on his shoulders while he was resisting arrest and the cop yanked the kid off the guy by the leg like it was a rubber chicken or something. Pandemonium people. Pande-fucking-monium.

  • Heather,

    I too am scared shitless about bringing children into this world — but the bottom line is: if more people like us don’t bring human beings into the world who will hopefully make a difference, people like them will continue to breed little idiots who will only make more war and no difference in the long run.

    Get yourself knocked up, girl! I’ll be behind you shortly!

  • I just think it’s so sad that having/not having insurance has to come into play when you want to have kids. Have a kid? covered! Don’t make much money (when not much can be a perfectly liveable middle-class income)? Government will top that up, thanks. Canada rocks! Patriotic one-up-manship aside, have a kid, teach them right, they’ll help change the world too. We need more progressive people for the next generation.

  • I love hearing you bitch and whine…and there will be whining for 9 months to come I predict…insane inhumane whining!

  • Don’t worry about the booblessness. Just think Catherine Zeta Jones. Look at what pregnancy did for hers!

  • OK… I feel a medley comin’ on, with tunes from “Fiddler On The Roof”. It starts out with the tune to “If I Were A Rich Man” and melds into “Tradition” (stay with me here…).
    If I were an Armstrong, ya ba diby diby diby diby diby diby dum
    All day long I’d bidy bidy boink, if I were an Armstrong now.
    PRO-CREATION! Procreation!
    PRO-CREATION! Procreation!
    Ok… its time for the lithium now. Make babies, Dooce. What everyeone else hs said about the good people making more is true. Make marvelous people, please.

  • Kids GOOD
    War BAD
    Bush IDIOT
    Life “The best fucking thing in the universe!!!!!!!”

    I know the current situ makes no sense?

    Hell I wish it made some.

    But I was born in ’67, in the time of chaos, and I am GREAT, well no I suck actually, but I am still GREAT.

    War is what war is

    It is not our choice, hell there was no election for WAR.

    Little Georegy B did it him self.
    In the name of DAD or OIL or WHAT THE FUCK EVER, well really it was probably cowboyhood. But so what??????

    You Rock and So will any offspring you bear.
    You owe no apology to your child, they owe you one.
    The world will be in a good place in 5 years, REALLY it will!

    Trust me?

    Would I lie to you?


    PS Oakland Reprisent!!

    go back into the husbands archives

    find it

    it’s BubbRubb and Little Siss

    Trust on this


  • Myopic Joe

    OMG that was funny Chuck Cheese. I think you’re right, we’ll get the best out of Heather during her pregnancy and the year after dilvery. Complaints about not being able to sleep on her stomach. Lots of husband bashing. Lack of sleep. She’s gonna have to double the size of her website to accomidate all the “How to Annoy Me” entries. I’m drooling so much, I can’t wait! Hurry up Jon, we’re cracking the whip!
    If you can’t tell, us veteran parents take sadistic pleasure from watching new parents writhe in misery, _ESPECIALLY_ when our own children become parents. It’s the main perk of being a grandparent. It’s called “Payback” and the biggest “I told you so.”

  • Irk

    Xanthan: I am embarassed to admit that I was too tickled by that. Heh.

  • Have you talked this over with Chuck? He might get jealous! I’m kidding (sorta). I don’t blame you for worrying about the future of our country but I think you and the Bearded One will make great parents and a stable family life is all that matters, right? And think of all the fun you’ll have TRYING! hehe. Good luck!

  • All important things are scary. Love is scary. That doesn’t make it any less wonderful and right. Any children you and Jon raise know will be so loved, and so amazing, and frankly, people as cool as you guys owe it to the rest of us to breed.

  • Read this and ponder for a while

    Having children modifies your life in a way I can’t describe. Beware- there is no turning back!

    Read this somewhere and it is so perfect –

    “I was a mess — tears everywhere, throat closing up, hiccups. I could hardly breathe. I was so proud of him, so relieved, so drenched with emotion, that I thought I would suffocate. Through the blur, I wondered if I was alone or if other parents felt the same way I did — that everything involving our children was painful in some way. The emotions, whether they were joy, sorrow, love, or pride, were so deep and sharp that in the end they left you raw, exposed and, yes, in pain. The human heart was not designed to beat outside the human body and yet, each child represented just that — a parent’s heart bared, beating forever outside its chest.”

    -Author Unknown

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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