I'm really worried about climate change and the role it will play in my own future. Meanwhile, all my friends are popping out babies right and left, seemingly unconcerned about what their kids might have to live through. I feel like we're living on different planets. I also feel like I really need to censor myself in front of them, lest I say anything that makes them feel guilty for procreating (which isn't my intent). Do I just avoid the topic altogether, forever?
Eco-Worrier (female, 32)
Over the ages, plenty of threats to human existence should have caused people to ponder procreation: saber-toothed tigers, drought, famine, poverty, racism, war — the list could go on for days. But people have just kept on making more people. That's how we wound up in this mess and, more than likely, how it's going to be until we finally do wreck everything.
It seems like there's no stopping the climate change train, but I don't want to be a total Debbie Downer. I sincerely hope that, if we all do our part, maybe we can keep this planet habitable. As environmental activist David Suzuki said: "In a world of more than seven billion people, each of us is a drop in the bucket. But with enough drops, we can fill any bucket."
You definitely don't want to make your fertile friends feel guilty about having kids, but you shouldn't censor yourself, because the topic is too important to ignore. When it comes up, focus on educating your pals about changes they can make to help combat the climate crisis. Their new bouncing bundles of joy should give them a reason to step up and join the fight.
Good luck and God bless,