“You don’t have kids, so you wouldn’t understand.”
Being a father now, I told myself I would never unleash this phrase on any person I was having a conversation with.
I have pretty thick skin as a general rule, but when people used to tell me this prior to having children, I pretty much wanted to light them on fire. Those words are as insensitive and volatile as they come. Especially for someone like me who wanted to have a child more than anything, but it just wasn’t happening. Those words just felt like a dig more than anything else. Not cool.
It was basically a way of discrediting any opinion I had because I wasn’t a parent. Or those same people would say “your opinion will change once you have a child.” Ok, what if it doesn’t?
For the record, I am not that fickle in what I believe in.
It is used as a way to one-up someone and discredit any conversation. I honestly put it in the same category as someone saying my opinion doesn’t count because of white privilege.
Anyone who uses kill shots like this in conversation, it helps me deal with it by assuming these idiots’ heads whistle in a crosswind.
It is used as a form of justification for opinions. Quite frankly you don’t have to be a parent to be an intelligent individual. It doesn’t automatically make you smarter than your friends and peers because you brought a human in the world. I know plenty of intelligent people who don’t have any children. On the flip side, I know plenty of ignorant people who have children.
My favorite part about the phrase is it usually came on the forefront of some sort societal issue or political discussion. Right, because I am going to start leaning to another side of the spectrum because I am now a dad.
Without name dropping, I recall one specific instance where there was a discussion about high school students sleeping with their teachers. Naturally, everyone in the room was outraged by the 20-something year old teacher sleeping with the almost 17-year-old student. They were ranting about the teacher when I decided to step into the conversation and throw my two cents in.
I made the argument that these situations have been happening for years but because of social media and 24/7 news coverage, they are just coming more to the limelight. I also said and I still believe this (even though I have a child, surprise!) that if both parties were punished for this, it could potentially cut it down significantly. Not saying it would, but it could.
I am not talking about cases of rape. I am talking about cases of consensual sex between two people.
For those who say 16 is too young to consent, you clearly were asleep in high school. I had people having sex in my bathroom in high school. I caught people having sex in my bed at parties. Hell, I found a damn condom on my floor before. But yeah, being 16 is totally innocent.
That is where I have the problem. We treat the students like victims. That is hardly the case. Many high school students are having sex, doing drugs and acting like idiots. I had my fair share of dumb decisions. Hell, many go to popular night clubs. Plenty of clubs are crawling with 15 and 16 year olds…so innocent.
Are teachers supposed to be the responsible ones? Absolutely, they are the authority figure. But if we are going to nitpick age, I made the point that people constantly cheer for student/teacher relationships to work in tv shows such as Pretty Little Liars, but then we’re outraged by it in real life. Hell, I know people who married their high school teachers in real life (again, not name dropping).
Age is just a number. You love who you love. You like what you like. As long as it is consensual, whatevs.
I made the argument that both parties should have something to lose in situations like this. The teacher should lose their license (which they usually do) and never teach again, however, I think jail time as well as the sex offender list is a bit much for consensual sex.
First off, my tax dollars go toward that teacher sitting in jail for consensual sex. Let’s use those dollars for real criminals. I love getting a notification in my mailbox about a sex offender and then I read “sex with underage person in 1986.” Oh ok…seems like a real asshole.
Anyway, if a child can go to jail for selling or buying a bag of weed, why isn’t it the same when they consensually agree to sex with a teacher? Why is it only the teacher is at fault here? I just think that is silly. Punish both parties was the argument I made. We would punish both if drugs or alcohol were involved.
Guess what the response was? “You don’t have kids, you don’t get it.”
Instead of engaging in an intellectual conversation and hashing out our two sides, I was completely discredited because I didn’t have a child yet. Here I am, with a child, still holding that opinion. Explain what I don’t get now. I would love to hear the explanation to that ridiculous argument.
What happens if I was never able to have children due to complications like many people face? Would I never be able to have a legitimate opinion in your eyes? If you are this type of person, then I stand by my comment that you have a room temperature IQ.
If you have kids of your own, don’t ever use that phrase to prevent someone from having a voice or opinion. Otherwise, you sound like a stuck up asshole.