nicelyproportioned saidBe careful what you wish for
I've read Gilbert, Seligman, et. al. There was also a great article about this in NY Mag a year or so ago. Anyone who thinks children are a quick way to happiness is delusional, and primed for a big disappointment. Babies and toddlers, especially, are no fun. I helped my divorced sister raise her son from when he was 8 months old till he was 5. He is 15 now and I am still the closest thing he has to a father figure (my sister's ex husband is an asshole). As I said above, I do not see fatherhood through pink-colored glasses.
Being a parent is not about fun or happiness. For someone like me, who not only doesn't have to be a father, but is going through a great deal of trouble just to become one, fatherhood is about bringing more meaning into one's life, though I hasten to add, of course, that it is not for everyone--different people find meaning through different channels.
I'm giving up a great deal of "fun" already to save for adoption or surrogacy. But at 32, having left a country under duress and received political asylum in another, having made a life in this other country, and having walked thousands of miles alone with my thoughts (with thousands more to go before I reach LA), I've come to know myself quite well. And I know at 90 I won't regret the nights out I gave up, or the movies I had to wait till they hit Netflix to watch. I would regret, however, not raising a child, not seeing him or her grow up to be the man or woman he or she chooses to be.