Dear Mr. Dad: It seems like every time I turn on the TV, there are the Duggars, with their 19 children, and Octomom with 14. How many kids are too many? What’s your take on it?
A: That’s a tough (and arbitrary) question, and the answer depends on whom you ask. The Duggars, for example, have made it clear that they’d like to have more kids, so in their opinion, 19 isn’t enough. I have a feeling that Octomom isn’t through either, and that the stars of the new show “9 by Design” are just getting warmed up. Fortunately, we can all rest easy now that John and Kate stopped at eight. On the other hand, a lot of people, including Bill McKibben, author of “Maybe One,” believe that one is the ethically and environmentally responsible number. Most of us, though, fall somewhere in between (the average number of children per household with kids is about two—and the prospect of an entire handful (or three) is frightening.