The Sept. 19 letter to the editor, "Life without children seems pointless," extolled the virtues of large families and Utah still does, I suspect, have the highest birthrate in the nation.
But, as is often the case, there are two sides to this coin and I frequently witnessed the other side in the three decades in our public schools. To cite just one of the many memorable examples, I've never forgotten the boy in my class who never took his coat off. It didn't matter how warm the classroom became, he never took it off. I finally asked him for an explanation.
Embarrassed, he told me that there were a lot of kids in his family and that they lived in a very small house. His father had decided that there wasn't enough room in the house for all of them to sleep inside, so he got a bunch of junked cars and parked them around the house. These cars became their bedrooms. In the summer, it wasn't so bad. But, in the winter, sleeping outside in that car without heat, he said he never really got warm. Thus, the coat.
I've always suspected, too, that there is a direct relationship between these large Utah families and the research by pharmaceutical companies indicating that Utah has the highest incidence of prescribed anti-depressants in the country.
M. Jensen Ogden