I'm 23 and a grad student, not in the place financially or professionally to feel ok making new humans yet, but I'm starting to think about my future and what it might entail and the topic of kids is sort of a stumbling block where that's concerned.
I have always maintained several very good reasons for not wanting children. They grow inside of people, are expensive financially and in terms of the time sacrificed to take care of them and so on and etc. and I'm a woman and I'm very aware that much of that would fall on me. My dad left and I have seen how difficult being a single mother is. I never want that for myself, ever.
I have also always been absolutely terrified that I will turn into my mother. She is emotionally abusive, and was occasionally physically abusive until we stopped being scared of her. That took too long, in my opinion, and should never have been the case. I can't talk to her about it because she is of the opinion that because she LOVES us, everything she has ever and will ever do for us is for the best and beyond question. We have a difficult relationship and dealing with those issues is very difficult.
Now, this is still a valid fear. I am constantly afraid of turning into my mother. However I have also come to the realisation that I adore children. All the scary financial and responsibility and personal issues stuff aside, I do.
However I'm trying to reconcile the fact that I want so many things for myself and I'm afraid I'll be too selfish to properly raise a child, but then I'm also afraid that that's my mother hyper-controlling cloying and needy style of parenting kicking in. Basically I have no idea what a healthy parental relationship looks like in order to be able to assess whether or not I would ever be capable of that.
Is there therapy available for this sort of thing? I'm not even sure what vocabulary to use. Basically I'd like to know I can be a healthy and non-abusive parent long before I consider becoming one.