A question for those who say they would never give up your animals. I understand the attachment you can have, as I've had my own pets I've adored. But, if your child was diagnosed with severe allergies or asthma and you were told they couldn't be around your cat/dog/other pet of choice would you give up the animal? If so, what makes giving up a pet for a child's health different from giving it up for an SO's health? I'm just curious if there was anything that would make you feel like giving up your pet is something you should do.
I think that giving up a pet for a child is similar to giving up a pet for an SO you've been with for awhile. It's one thing to put the welfare of an existing family member over a pet, and quite another to give up a pet for a new relationship
that may or may not work out. There is also the fact that children are completely dependent upon their parents, while SOs are not. Any adult can choose to leave a relationship
, no matter how wrenching it might be. Children must stay, at least until they are 18. In addition, adults can state their allergies/preferences before getting involved in a relationship
. Children born with allergies can't do this.
I am one of the people for whom the issue of pets can be a deal-breaker. I treat that particular preference in the same way that I treat wanting to have children or not. I would never be happy with a man who didn't want children. I would also never be happy with a man who couldn't stand dogs (I am largely indifferent to cats - I don't like them, but I also don't hate them if they're nice to me). If I was just starting a relationship
, and the guy told me he couldn't stand dogs, I might test that theory first. But if he really couldn't stand dogs, I would not be inclined to continue the relationship
. There is a particular way I want to live my life, and particular things I am not willing to compromise on. I see no problem whatsoever in making that clear from the start, and only pursuing relationships
that allow me to live my life that way.
For me, the deal with allergies is this: I do not want to give up having pets for someone I don't know well and don't intend to spend the rest of my life with. I wouldn't expect someone to compromise his health for someone he didn't know well and didn't intend to spend the rest of his life with. If my BF suddenly developed an allergy now (after 3 years of dating
and his full knowledge and consent when I adopted my dog), I would expect him to try and deal with it, but ultimately, if he could not, I would have to accept that there would be no pets or that I'd have to break up with him.
Lucky for me, my BF is the type of person who likes to pretend he doesn't like dogs at all, but he secretly adores mine. My dog treats my BF like his most favorite toy, and gets super excited whenever BF is around. His behavior is really quite annoying, but BF actually misses my dog when he hasn't seen him in awhile