It’s 10:10pm and Singapore Talking be airing soon at 10:30pm. And the hot topic? Singapore’s record low Total Fertility Rate of 1.16. What else?
I had wanted to watch the programme to hear what Singaporeans have to say about this topic. Then it hit me. What was I hoping to hear or discover that I have not already heard? Year after year, there have been numerous articles about having babies. And for a balanced view, arguments for and against are presented. At the same time, we have seen the TFR consistently falling. And now, more interviews, reports and articles. Will the views and mindsets change? I think not. The reasons for not having babies or more babies are all the same …
“Children cost a lot of money. We can’t afford it.”
“We travel a lot in our work so that wouldn’t be good if we had any children.”
“I am very busy. If we had children, there would be no more time for myself.”
“We want the best for our children so one or two is enough.”
“I don’t have the patience to be a good parent.”
And the list goes on, and on, and on, and on. They may be worded differently but the bottomline is the same … children are an intrusion and a burden*. They are not worth having at all because they disrupt our lives and careers. Not to mention financial resources and personal freedom. Of course, the debate would not be complete without the ‘gender equality’ issues … why should the woman be made to sacrifice her career? … if men would agree to change more diapers, the women would be more open to having babies.
I really can’t bear to read another article on the baby issue in Singapore (or around the world). Yet, admittedly, I am sometimes tempted to know if there might a new point that I might have missed. And so I glance the article. Sad to say, I’m often disappointed. Yep, same ol’ justifications …
It’s 10:38pm … nope, I will not switch on the TV to watch Singapore Talking …
*Read Serene’s Post: What It Boils Down To