For many years, I have been wont to quote Francis Bacon's statement that the man who marries and has children "gives hostages to fortune." I had always construed the line as meaning that when one marries and has children, one places one's happiness in the lap of the gods, because something terrible may happen to them that one cannot control.
Well, that just shows what I know! This morning, for no very good reason, I decided to look up the quote, and good old Google provided it instantaneously. Here is the whole line:
"He that hath wife
and children hath given hostages to fortune, for they are impediments to great
enterprises, either of virtue or mischief. Certainly the best works and of
greatest merit for the public have proceeded from the unmarried or childless
men, which both in affection and means have married and endowed the
Beware of taglines. They may come back to bite you.