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on August 7, 2002
Sadly, the author of this book presents herself as an authority in the baby-decision making realm. And in some ways, she may be, having been a family therpist for over 35 years.
However, this single woman tells us in the introduction that she made a decision *not* to have a baby after asking herself the questions she asks of the reader in her book. So she does not possess the authority and insight of one who's been not only through the decision-making process, but also ultimately baby-bearing process.
What does comes across is her belief that almost no-one is capable of being a good parent, especially if one were to follow her guidelines. For example, in order to be a good parent, in this author's opinion, one must have enough money not just for clothing and food, but also for summer camp, vacations, dance lessons, and private school. This, in addition to being an unrealistic expectation, is simply classist and highly inappropriate.
Don't waste your time trying to work with this book.
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on March 14, 2004
My husband won't do ANYTHING unless it can be researched, compared, validated, etc. He was also on the fence about having kids seven years ago when I was pretty sure I was ready to roll. I started looking for books on how to make this enormous decision and was scandalized to find NONE available anywhere. Then thankfully, in 1998 a fresh search turned up "The Parenthood Decision." I read it, loved it, and presented it to my husband--who by this time was utterly convinced he did not want children. However, he graciously went through it chapter by chapter. On a beautifully sunny summer afternoon he greeted me in the garden with the finished book and his announcement that he was not only ready, but that this book had convinced him that he actually WANTED TO HAVE CHILDREN. Sadly, infertility has foiled our plans. After some devastating failed attempts we may choose now to remain childfree--an option we never would have considered acceptable before reading this book. Thank you so much Beverly. Your book has graced our lives.
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on April 4, 2000
I think this is fantastic book, best for single women before getting pregnancy. Because there is several issues that singles never think about the child development itself. For example, the similar question in the book stated how do we react to the child's questions or their ages' behaviors. Because it is impossible to see the child's future and mind. The child's life will be nearly total different from parent's life when the child grows. I think all (singles, lesbians, gay, unmarried) should READ before forwarding any decision. I am GLAD that I haven't started to have a baby of my own yet. But one negative is that I am a bit disappointed because myself deaf, and not say anything about other deaf women who attempt or experinced this way. I really enjoyed reading and gave me to "think" ahead of time.
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on August 2, 2002
I found this book to be very one-sided. While it does bring up some very important issues to think about before deciding whether or not to have children, it focuses on all of the hardships and none of the positives. Maybe it's due to the fact that the writer does not have children of her own. The writer also makes it seem as though you have to have everything in your life completely figured out and thoroughly organized before you begin to have children. Well, I'm sorry, but life usually doesn't work that way. I was very discouraged after reading this book and would only recommend it to people who are looking for validation on remaining childless.
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on September 10, 2001
This book points out basic and obvious questions we should all ask ourselves before taking on the enormous task of parenthood. Unfortunately, virtually no one asks these questions of themselves or their friends and loved ones. When I have voiced my ambivalence about having children, I am often told "you're never ready, you just have to do it." Well, maybe some people aren't meant to have children and have another purpose!
High school curriculum should include a course on parenting and this book should be part of it.
Makes a great wedding present!
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on February 2, 2002
The decision of whether or not to have children has got to be one of the biggest, most irreversible choices in life! This book has been incredibly helpful to me as I struggle to make this decision for myself. I scanned the book quickly when I first got it, and have recently re-read the book more thoroughly; the exercises really help the reader explore their feelings. By using a journal along with this book, and with the help of a good therapist, I feel confident that I will make this decision and live well with it for the rest of my life.
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on June 16, 2002
Thin, vapid pop psychology that does not even mention such concerns as global overpopulation and the ensuing ecological collapse of our planet. The decision whether or not to have a child is the biggest decision most of us will ever make, and it requires the thoughtful person to consider factors other than their own small life. This book won't help you with the bigger issues. Very superficial. Check out Bill McKibben's Maybe One or the Society for Voluntary Human Extinction for more provocative, subversive food for thought.
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on February 24, 2000
This book was excellent! I recommend it to everyone. I know I do not want children but my husband is wavering. I bought the book and highlighted passages for him to read and think about. I have loaned the book out and got great response on it as well. I always recommend this book to those who have the slightest question as to having kids. For me it even more confirmed my chosen childfree life. This book will help you decide if you are ready for kids now, in the future or ever.
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on April 24, 2002
I did like the book, however I felt that it stressed only the hard work of parenting and NONE of the rewards. I think it is important that prospective parents think about all the topics that the author mentions. I hope it isn't necessary to have yourself totally figured out before starting a family or else I won't ever have any children. I thought the book was more on the side of "Unless you are a perfect human being, DON'T be a parent". I personally felt discouraged.
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on July 24, 2000
In 1998, my husband and I tried for a baby, but I could not conceive. We decided to be childfree. Now, in 2000, he is scheduled for a vasectomy and I suddenly got cold feet - what if I really SHOULD be a mother! Upon reading this book with him, we realized how scared we both were that becoming parents would damage our relationship. We have now decided that we are definitely childfree. This book was NON-biased, very clear and helpful, and I am so very grateful for it!
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