Friday, October 23, 2009

Only Perfect People Should Have Children


I hope you know that the title of this post is sarcastic.

A reader wrote to us and asked if we'd address the issue of whether people with bipolar disorder should have children:

"I have been asked how I could have had children knowing I had bipolar and the person asking would never have known I had bipolar if i did not told them."

I enjoyed thinking about this, but I'm punting. I really don't like the idea of putting a value judgment on who should or shouldn't have children. Truly, there are a lot of people out there who shouldn't have babies (because they can't take care of them), but do, and a lot of wonderful people who've been born to people who maybe shouldn't have had babies, but did, and we're all glad they got born anyway. There are no guarantees in life, and I've never heard anyone put out a blanket statement that people with psychiatric disorders shouldn't have children.

Thoughts?