Springfield author Joe Sindoni spells out, from A to Z,
the things to consider before starting a family in "50 Reasons Not to Have
Joe Sindoni wants to qualify himself: he loves his kids. They're grown and doing
After raising his two sons from "colic to college" by himself, this original
Mr. Mom answers the question, "Would you do it all over again?" with an emphatic
The 50-year-old Springfield resident's advice, insights and observations on child
rearing are all in his newly released book "50 Reasons Not to Have Kids." It's a
dose of honesty and reality on raising children in an increasingly complicated society.
"Parenting the way our parents did isn't working very well," he says.
"Today a family plan is just as important as a business plan."
Sindoni offers no restraint of tongue or pen.
"There is certainly a lot of good and a lot of responsibility in raising children
but the trials and tribulations outweigh the good," says Sindoni. "It's so much
more challenging than running a small business. I'm much more sympathetic to women who
stay home to raise children."
The self-taught family guy found himself divorced in 1982 when his wife was diagnosed
with serious mental disorders. An anomaly over 20 years ago, Sindoni was awarded full
custody of two toddler boys.
From the terrible twos to the troublesome teen years, Sindoni single-handedly raised
his two sons Joseph, now 26 and Justin, 27. He cut back on hours running his own business
and took a financial hit along with an emotional one.
He discovered that raising children was as John Lennon said, "A responsibility
which most of us, including me, avoid most of the time because it's too hard."
Sindoni was there for PTA meetings, karate classes, Little League and school trips. In
some ways, he's still old school in his approach to child rearing.
"My kids were the first day care generation," Sindoni says. "Today,
parents are throwing their kids in day care en masse, as young as six months old. It's not
a good thing."
In his book, Sindoni answers such parenting questions as: Can having a baby save your
marriage? Who is easier to raise: boys or girls? Can you afford to have children? Does day
care do more harm or good to your child?
With typical brutal honesty, Sindoni questions some parents' ability to have and raise
children at all. "Some people aren't qualified to have a pet, no less children,"
he says. "Family planning is more than just planning the number of children. It's
planning whether to have children at all."
Sindoni credits his parental skills to on-the-job training, parenting classes and
therapy sessions. He even turned to "stand-up comedy over Prozac" to keep his
sanity. He's performed in Delaware County clubs, with his whole act centered around the
yin and yang of family life.
His summers are spent at Wildwood Crest where he works as a lifeguard. The stay-at-home
experience awakened another muse in Sindoni, the parent. He became Joe Sindoni, the
"I collected my thoughts, ideas and experiences by writing them down,"
Sindoni says. "Being a single dad, I had a lot to write about."
Sindoni's essays on parenting have been published in the Philadelphia Inquirer and the
In his book, Sindoni advises parents and parents-to-be how to avoid what he calls
"parental bear traps." His controversial statements are sure to raise eyebrows
and voices - just what Sindoni wants.
"Making a baby is not a sacred event, raising a child is,' he says. "Today
we're too busy with our own lives to raise our own children."
Sindoni challenges the system, both educational and social. On prescribing drugs for
kids: "Some kids just don't learn well in classrooms," he says.
"To me, ADD means Alert, Determined and Decisive kids. The first drug most kids
are introduced to is Ritalin."
Sindoni isn't anti-family. He's more pro-parent choice.
"I see my friends live life child-free. They're economically better off and their
lives are much more stress-free. I'm just offering people a dose of honesty."
To find out more, visit: www.50reasons.com.