Nym is a very large world, and various races and peoples aren't only limited to the central world; as other, smaller worlds also circulate within Nym's Eye, thus adding to the extensive size of populations. It would then be somewhat foolish, if not a little irresponsible, to generalize on the subjects of love and sex, because it is such a widespread topic that is affected, shaped and changed by so many factors; societal or not.
Many cultures, lands, nations and similar societal groups own diverse rituals, customs and even specific biological sciences that pertain to love and sex, and not all will share the same thoughts, or even possess the same knowledge on the topic. In some lands love could be non-existent, and reproduction is all that really matters. In other places love could hold a different definition, and might not even be limited to love between just two people.
Whatever thoughts are on the matter of love and sex, different creeds and societies will have had it change and shape based on religious events, mingling of cultures, and the forming of tribal or civilized societal classes. Cultural norms and expectations vary greatly, but to most the idea of love and sex both carry similar meanings, and it is a thing as old as time itself.
L O V E
When it comes to love, and what love is, the question is often left only mildly answered. There is no definitive understanding of why one loves and how it occurs; it is often something that just happens, either from long-term exposure to another person, or at the blink of an eye. To some it is merely an effect of simple attraction to another; be it from physical attractions or attractions of personality.
It is usually the norm for people of opposing genders to engage in love and coupledom. But there are several exceptions and differences, and generally the idea of love between same-sex couples isn't an issue, as is neither their general sexual orientation, as it is seen as a private thing. There is also the matter of gender, as some individuals might appear as one gender, but recognize themselves as another. In some societies there are more than just two genders, and in some there are no genders at all. Societal rules and personal opinions differ variably in Nym, and depending on where in the world one resides, those differences tend to define one's gender, sexual orientation and general attractions.
In some cultures a form of attraction could stem partially or entirely from an individual's style and clothing; extravagant or even simplistic shows to create allure, or as a way to show off wealth and power when courting. Sometimes attraction could originate from tattoos, the shape and size of one's horns, colourful feathers, their body, smell, actions, and many other aspects that are often devised from personal or cultural preferences. Among the Scaleshaped races, strong colours and powerful smells attract them to each other, among elves it is often through long courting rituals of grace and cosmetic enhancements, and in zjindri culture it is the fitness of one's physical prowess and intellect.
The freedom to love who you want is often an issue in many cultures. Most cultures will have set social standards and expectations; customs and restrictions that affect one's freedom to choose the person (or persons) they want to be with. It could be something as simple as a class divide, where a highborn would be forbidden from loving a lowborn, or similar familial restrictions. In other cultures a loved one could be seen as an enemy, or inter-species couplings can be viewed as scandalous or unacceptable, or illegal entirely. Love between two people of the same gender could also be faced with consequences, depending on the society.
However, despite many potential social or legal rules in certain lands and societies, most people of all sizes, groups, genders and races (especially on the central continents) are free to love and mingle with who they want. There is sometimes discrimination, of course, and often at the effect of societal or religious events or influences. People could also be criticized for the partners they choose, though often enough it is merely a result of personal opinions about personal dislikes, jealousy, class or racial issues, and anything else that could affect a person's opinions.
It only really ever becomes an issue when inheritance and lineages are involved, and especially so when it comes to the highborn. Among highborn societies, when it clashes with the intents and matters of continuing family lines and inheritance, or even the purity of highborn blood, the freedom to love becomes highly limited. It is also often that highborn children can't choose freely even among their own circles, as they could be arranged to another as part of a deal or treatise between Houses.
As such most highborn societies will forbid the coupling of different-sex or different-race individuals, or at least in matters of marriage, since it affects legal inheritance and lineages. Sometimes the highborn might allow for bouts of pleasure with the non-traditional, and these encounters are merely seen as quirks and indulgences; so long as it doesn't interfere with the family line. It does, however, sometimes bring shame to a highborn House, and sexual indulgences are typically done discreetly.
Incestuous affairs are often very intolerable, though in many past ancient empires, the act of marriage between siblings and other family members was an act of preserving blood purity. It has since become less common and is much more unacceptable and scandalous; or at least in most societies.
COUPLES & CUSTOMS:
It is generally assumed that love can sprout from anything; whether it be from years of slowly building attraction, or a few minutes after meeting. When love takes hold between individuals, different cultures have various ideas, rituals and customs for how to proceed in courtship. The most common societal ideas and methods involve having the male bring gifts to the female counterpart; typically flowers, or jewelry, food, or even weapons. This way is meant to prove affection and wealth.
In some cultures, it is actions that speak rather than gifts. A person who is trying to court another might go on a journey or a quest, collect trophies and tokens, or challenge other suitors to battle, or something else entirely to prove their affection and worth.
In highborn societies, couples are arranged between the heads of Houses, and courtships are more or less non-existent, save for a few customary interactions.
The most typical way of courtship involves spending time together, getting to know the people they love, and sharing in experiences; romantic or sexual.
Once two people agree to be together, they might wear visible symbols to show their relationship, or assign pet-names for each other. Jewelry such as rings is most common proof, although in some cultures it could be something like a piece of clothing, certain colours to adorn them, tattoos, branding, or various carvings. In some orcish clans, the male removes one of his tusk, and the female wears it around her neck. The zjindri tattoo their arms with the names and colours of their significant-other's mother tribes; merging the two.
Coupled life is generally seen as a private affair in most cultures, and every couple is different. Some relationships are rocky and troublesome, where arguments between couples can persist, yet they often continue to stay together. Other couples live in happiness, and then there are the more common couples; where the stability of their relationships goes up and down as a balance between their relationship's events of happiness and unhappiness. Most people agree that it is often not their business what goes on between couples, although it isn't uncommon for people to gossip or compare.
Couples in most cultures and societies are expected to only love and be with each other, but there might sometimes be various exceptions. Some couples hold very open relationships, where they are allowed to engage in sex with people outside of their own marriage. Other times a couple could allow for more than just two to be part of their loving relationship.
Individuals are generally free and encouraged to find and choose who
they want to couple with, depending on the culture and society. Once two
people become a married or unmarried couple, they share in property; such as
money, resources, businesses, children and other similar possessions.
Disagreements or conflicts that might occur during their life can
lead to a split between couples, and in the case of married couples it results in a divorce. Former
couples then tend to work out a way to divide their properties between
each other privately, or they seek out mediators, professional or not,
to help them divide ownerships when there are more legal issues; often as a result of marriage agreements.
MARRIAGE & CEREMONY:
Couples who choose to live together will often engage in marriage.
Marriages can be widely defined depending on where in the world one
resides. In most cases it is a ceremony and official contract of love between two people, and
the promise of faithfulness to each other. But in some societies
marriage could just be a political thing; with no real love shared
between two people. In other places marriage isn't limited to just
between two people, and could extend to several or more people under the
same marriage. Or several different marriages could exist at the same
time, as there are some cultures where one marriage doesn't exclude
another. Some kings or chieftains possess extensive and large harems of wives, or in the case of zjindri kingdoms, a zjindri queen has a harem of potential suitors; male and female.
Marriages are typically sanctioned
and ceremonized by a religious figure belonging to a Temple, such as
priests. In some places the local Lord or Lady is meant to recognize and
legalizes the marriage, or couples could engage in what some call
illegitimate marriages, that are performed privately and in secret. Although, it
is commonly only legally recognized marriages that allow couples to
share in legal rights to property. Similarly, legal institutions or religious representatives are usually responsible for recognizing divorces of legal marriages.
Certain marriages, often arranged ones for political purposes, tend to hold large, public wedding ceremonies; ceremonies that to be legally recognized must fulfill certain conditions, such as a specific cost of the ceremony, minimum number of attendants, or the presence of legally recognized officials. These are held between families that possess valuable lineages or hold seats of high authority and office; such as in kingdoms, between highborn Houses, or owners of highly wealthy and influential businesses. Legal officials are present to mediate deals between concerned families or representatives, and to determine the transactions of merging and splitting property between the two unified families.
In lesser weddings between commoners or similar, marriage ceremonies are often conducted the same way, and can be private or public. The difference is then that these weddings aren't typically burdened by costly conditions and requirements, and instead must usually be witnessed and performed at least by an official (priest or noble) who can sanction it. These marriages are less political and hold fewer societal consequences, and it is typically only friends and the nearest locals who attend these weddings as guests.
Various traditions and customs of different cultures might have the couples of a wedding ceremony dress up in ceremonial pieces of cloth or metal, exchange vows, or provide marital gifts to each other. It varies between cultures, societies and Temple traditions; like in weddings performed by Bastirith's priests, where the wedding couple must appear completely nude before each other and their peers during the ceremony, or in some faraway tribes where the couples don't meet until after the ceremony, and might even be sent away from each other for a set period of time.
After a marriage ceremony is concluded and two people are wed, it is then common for the husband and wife or their families to arrange for a sizeable feast; where various parties and guests (friends, acquaintances or locals) exchange gifts in the form of goods or services. Song and dance is added to celebrate the newlyweds, or various theatrical performances from hired performers and artists serve as entertainment.
In some cultures such feasts can last for days, but in most they are just for a night. After the feast is over, the newlyweds typically go off into a private room or area, where they will lie together and finally consummate the marriage. In highborn societies, consummation is the final act of legalizing a marriage, and couples must often show proof of the consummation; either after, or during in front of official witnesses.
S E X
Not to be entirely misinterpreted as love, but not excluded as an effect or cause of love, feelings of lust are often a driving point for most races. One doesn't need sex to reciprocate love, but people tend to find partners who can nurture both their need for romantic relations, as well as their need to satisfy their libido. Lust is a main advocate for the purposes of arousal and sexual pleasure. It is one of the most natural instincts for almost any race in Nym, and has always more or less gone hand-in-hand with love, sex and attraction.
While not all races exactly reach adulthood through puberty at the same age, and they don't procreate in the same way, most races' sexual organs share similar purposes and methods of inception and conception. Inter-species sex is usually a non-issue, both physically-speaking and, to some degree, culturally-speaking; although certain races might experience some discomforts in regards to a racially different partner's member or orifice, which can often vary greatly in size, shape and function.
Certain races might experience more pleasure from the act of sex, or more discomfort. Not all races experience sex the same way, and the various acts used to perform can be very different and shocking to other races. Some races even produce special pheromones, that instill and awake lust in their partners. When two different races engage in sexual intercourse with each other, the effects could be variably painful, difficult, or awkward.
Additionally, inter-species sex can in some cultures and societies be viewed as either sinful or unacceptable; sometimes entering the zone of illegality. Other societies might even look at sex as a whole as something that one should be shameful of, or at least very terse about as it is at least a necessity for producing offspring. But then again, some other societies might view sex as something that should be celebrated, and hold more open societal norms about it.
Same-gender sex is also generally not seen as something shameful by most societies, and the lusts of men and women who find attraction in those of their equal gender are more or less free to do so. Sexual orientation is variable in Nym, often depending on the local culture's views on attraction and sexual customs.
Temples and highborn societies tend to hold very firm beliefs about lust and sex. In the case of Temples, it is often forbidden by many for their members to pursue sexual pleasure with each other or others; encouraging or requiring celibacy. It often depends on the Temple, as there are those, like the Temples of Bastirith, who train priests who worship and promote lust and sex. Some organizations might have very strong agendas regarding sex: positive or negative.
When it comes to highborn society, the most common ones view an active and frivolous libido as something shameful, and it is often the topic of scandalous gossip. Sex outside of marriage is greatly discouraged, and even just playfully enjoying another person's (or persons') company in sexual acts is something that is usually kept fairly secret from other Houses. On the other hand, certain highborn societies don't shy away from lust and sexual pleasure, and keep either mistresses, concubines, slaves or harems at their disposal.
SALE OF SEX & TABOOS:
The act of selling oneself for sex is in most societies neither illegal nor is it seen as immoral. Most large cities have brothels, and those that don't tend to still have individuals who sell sex on the streets at night. Depending on the society, the selling of one's sexual services is seen as something that has the potential for a wealthy and sometimes glamorous way of life. There are, of course, those places in the world where a person might turn to selling sex because they have no other choice, and others where they are forced into a lifestyle of providing sexual favours at the behest and command of others; which is very common for slaves, since most slaves are considered property with no real rights.
Prostitution is very common in most parts of the civilized world, and while it might in some places be publicly frowned upon (especially by highborn members), the greater majority of a land's population tend to accept it or simply just ignore its existence. Businesses that make a living from prostitution usually pay fair wagers for their performers, or at least in more civilized cities. There are many cases of low to even no wages, and performers could be subject to certain abuses, which might be illegal depending on the local laws.
Many sex-sale businesses might find it hard to succeed financially. There is no lack of demand for sexual favours in the world, but still, most who would purchase sex in, say, a brothel prefer to have extremely talented and experienced performers, who play into the many fantasies of their customers. This means that new performers will struggle to find clients and earn coin, or they will require extensive training, and in most places of the world it's more profitable for a business owner to simply focus on their experienced performers.
Neither women nor men tend to dominate the sex-selling industry, as sex-sellers can be of any gender, and both are equally as easy to find working as prostitutes. Races can be more difficult to find in variation, depending on where one is in the world, as well as on the local societal stance on inter-species sex. There is also the matter of racial cultures, where a race as a whole might view the act of selling sex to be a taboo.
There are laws set in place in most modern nations and cultures, that state that the act of sex must be consensual between the involved parties (with some exceptions in regards to slaves). Forcing oneself upon someone to have sex or soliciting sexual acts forcefully is a clear violation of laws and rights, and is viewed as a form of illegal assault; namely rape. Even outside of laws, it is seen as an immoral and heinous act, and you will find very few societies where such acts are welcome. Depending on local laws and punishments, a rapist could face jail, public humiliation, exile, fines, branding, or even death.
Additionally, many societies either make laws or hold negative views on sexual acts that are often seen as taboo. The most common ones being pedophilia, necrophilia, bestiality, incest, and similar. There are obscure and distant societies where some of these acts are legal, but most of the greater and modern nations of the world have created laws and viewpoints that severely punish these taboos, since these taboos are generally either seen as unclean and unacceptable, or they might clearly defy the views and laws of certain deities.
Many of these taboos were also more common in ancient times, and one can also hear of how even the deities themselves committed many of these taboos. These practices have long since been generally abolished and made illegal, in both the mortal world and the divine world.
HEALTH, STDs & ENHANCERS:
The benefits of a healthy sex-life can give a person good mental and physical health, and the act of sexual intercourse is often a good and effective way to relieve stress. To mages and general spellcasters sex is beneficial to release pent-up mana, and gain clarity of mind, which is why some specialized mages in Ashanor and Ryumar, so-called Sensers or Eroticists, use sex as a means to prepare for spellcasting. Additionally, priests, druids and similar individuals who worship gods and goddesses whose domains involve lust, sex and general eroticism, train and perform sex as way to gain divine connection with their deities.
A healthy libido and sex-life can also lead to stronger virility in men or fertility in women; with eggs and seed being freshly maintained, and often through not only sex, but through healthy masturbation. Proper education or upbringing, if available, can also teach people the safe ways and conducts to have sex, though it is often an awkward subject to talk about.
But sex is not always all good and healthy, even with proper understanding and protection. Unhygienic behaviour and improper bodily-care often leads to diseases, and some diseases which can be sexually-transmitted. There are many sexually transmitted diseases in the world, with some being ancient and others having been, usually accidentally, created by mage experiments. Certain races might carry an STD that is ineffective and docile to others of their race, but infectious or dangerous to other races. Sometimes a specific race might suffer lessened effects of an STD, and another could have to endure greater consequences of pain and sickness.
Various STDs sometimes affect genders differently, where a male could carry a disease that does him no harm, but after sex with a woman he could have transmitted and infected the female with a mildly inconvenient or potentially deadly disease. Different STDs are transmitted and caught in a variety of ways; some only transmit via saliva, others upon skin-contact, and some through the typical methods of sex.
Luckily STDs, save for the rarest and more specific types, can easily be prevented not only from good hygiene, but from medicine. Various potions, salves, pills and other concoctions or devices can effectively neutralize an STD, or render it non-contagious. Spells, divine or arcane, can be used to dispel certain STDs, or provide protection from them. Some spells and types of medicine even render the act of insemination temporarily ineffective; preventing pregnancy.
In addition to medicine, herbs and spells against disease, there are also types of potions, drugs or spells that enhance sex or boost virility and fertility. In the case of potions and drugs, most are made from various types of herbs, and sometimes a herb on its own can have an aphrodisiac effect or similar. These sexual aides might range from increases in stamina, enhancements of one's sexual organ, increased chances of conception, aphrodisiac effects, "love potions", and more. However, most of these function only temporarily, and won't be permanent.
There are even certain devices, created either from magetech, energized crystals, or magically infused objects, that serve as ways to increase one's sexual performances or lusts; either from activation of these devices, or as a form of implementation to one's body, or something one wears. Some are used to increase the libido and eroticism between sexual partners, and come in a variety of different shapes, sizes and types for enhanced sexual pleasures. Often such sex oddities are made into various kinds of jewelry that are enchanted with so-called "lust spells", which can sometimes even change a person's gender or race (albeit only as an illusion).
It is most common for couples to use these various devices as a way to "spice up" their sex-lives; similarly to how certain couples might turn to acts of light or heavy sadism and masochism, roleplay, exhibitionism or similar sexual plays and displays.
But first one must find someone who either makes or sells such sex devices and aides, and then be able to afford it. It is, perhaps not so surprisingly, a very lucrative business to sell sex devices, drugs and spells, although it can be very difficult to find such a vendor, depending on the place in the world. Most will have to obtain their sex enhancers from herbs found in nature, or at local herbal stores and apothecaries.
Various aides and enhancers could also be used to make opposite effects, that hinder or neutralize sexual urges; useful for those who might feel distracted or inconvenienced by lust.
R E P R O D U C T I O N
Reproduction among the various races generally follows similar biological methods of insemination, conception and birth. Simply explained, typical breeding involves having a male insert his sexual organ into a female's, and fertilizing a female's egg with seed through insemination. There are some variations in method, sexual readiness, and gestation, but otherwise the biological recipe is generally the same between the different races.
Most races reach sexual maturity at roughly the same age through
puberty, though there are often societal views and laws that dictate
that legal maturity comes a few years later. Once an individual reaches
sexual maturity, they can start to reproduce for the purposes of producing offspring. The period for when a female becomes unable to carry more offspring is also roughly the same across races; with most reaching a certain age where they can no longer reproduce. In some races this period comes after a set number of successful births, instead of at a definite point of time in their lives.
Some races differ slightly in a number of further procedures and developments of pregnancy. Someone of the kin races, like a human female, tends to be impregnated from (successful) male insemination and carry pregnancy for 9 months, then give birth to most commonly one baby, but can on rare occasions give birth to twins, triplets or even more.
A scaleshaped and other draconian races will develop and carry several eggs (five to six) inside them to be fertilized during Spawning Periods (a triennial biological event), then lay them in a spawning pool, where they must be fertilized again by what is known as a Spawnfather (a more virile scaleshaped male). After 2-3 more months, those eggs will hatch. A female scaleshaped can control her own readiness; choosing either to accept the triennial changes to her body, or suppressing them for when she herself feels ready to carry eggs.
Female kafari and other similar wildkith races see increased sexual activity during periods when they are in heat, and after successful male insemination they maintain a gestation period of 5-6 months. At its end the females will give birth to litters; consisting of typically 2-6 babies per litter.
Most other humanoid races, like elves, dwarves, zjindri, etc. reproduce similarly to the kin races, with slight differences in the gestation period. Otherwise they are more or less identical in terms of reproductive processes.
Typically only same-race species can produce children through breeding; so-called Racial Compatibility. This means that two individuals of different races can't produce common offspring, due to their biological incompatibility. There are, however, a few notable exceptions.
Three of the kin races; orcs, humans, and half-giants, are Racially Compatible, and can produce common offspring. Such copulation has given rise to the halfcast; three different half-breed races who are a result of breeding between orcs, humans and half-giants. Oddly enough, it would seem that these three halfcast races can't produce offspring between each other, and are only Racially Compatible with their own specific half-breed race.
Another example of Racial Compatibility are the scaleshaped races, who all share a common pool of creation from their creators, the Dragon Gods. The various scaleshaped races can produce offspring between each other, and it is possible to study an egg to determine the race based on its size, shape and colour. A scaleshaped hatchling will typically inherit its father's race, though some exceptions can occur.
Beyond the typical civilized races, there are some specific and lesser races, which are mainly either all-male, all-female or genderless, who are only able to reproduce by using other races. The most common example would be creatures like dryads, who breed with men of other races to produce offspring. Another example would be the primitive cave-dwelling vettins on the northern continents, who kidnap females of other races to be used as enslaved breeders.
Some insectoid creatures also trap and plant eggs inside other species; using them as a food-source for their young upon hatching. Sometimes it's not an actual sentient species, but a plantoid creature that makes use of other races; planting spores and infecting another species, regardless of gender, to allow themselves to spread.
It doesn't generally end well for the recipient of these races who rely on inter-species breeding. In most cases the person either ends up breaking from trauma or constant abuse, or they are simply killed (and then possibly eaten) when their uses have been exhausted.
CONTRACEPTIVES, ABORTION & STERILITY:
It's possible to use certain types of spells or herbal medicine, or even certain devices, to create contraceptives. Once an individual consumes or makes use of a contraceptive, their ability to reproduce will be temporarily neutralized or numbed, and the chance of producing offspring will be drastically reduced. There is always still a chance, depending on the contraceptive used, but they are generally found to be very effective countermeasures for those who don't wish to have children.
In addition to contraceptives, it's also possible to abort a pregnancy altogether; granted that the pregnancy hasn't progressed beyond a certain point, and depending on the race of the pregnant individual. Procedures of abortion are varied; in some cases it's a medical procedure performed by skilled professionals, or it's a herbal concoction or drug, or a magical spell or magical procedure.
There is also the societal issue, depending on the local culture and laws, as to whether abortion is socially acceptable or legally allowed. Some certain societies view abortion as a defiance of natural or divine laws, and in other societies it is considered to be a free right to one's control over their own bodies.
Some individuals are entirely sterile and can't reproduce at all. These states of sterility can occur from several causes; either natural or magical. In natural cases, a person's body might have developed wrongly as they grew up, or they might have been subjected to physical strains or injuries that either intentionally or unintentionally sterilized them.
In the case of magic; individuals who experience an Awakening (be it Magical, Divine or Spiritual) will see increased mana pools within themselves. As a side-effect of this mana surge, the increase in mana causes irreversible sterility in an individual's body. Other magical causes could also lead to sterility, such as a Withering, mana storms, certain devious spells, or a variable number of other sources and causes.
There are also those who willingly undergo procedures or seek out ways to become sterile; usually to the effect of it being irreversible. In most cases it's not out of willingness, but as a requirement or punishment. Some cultures, both primitive and civilized ones, use sterilization as a form of punishment or as a safety-measure; the latter being the justified choice of words against individuals considered too dangerous to be allowed to reproduce.
OFFSPRING & UPBRINGING:
The typical offspring of the average race will go through mainly four stages:
As a baby, they are newly born to the world, and as they grow and develop they will learn to walk, talk, and generally interact with the world and people around them. Babies are incapable of taking care of themselves, and so they depend on a guardian, be it biological parents or non-related nursers, to watch over them. Depending on the race and culture, they might be fed either milk, blood, soft flesh, or something else. Their race's biological makeup will also determine when they reach the next stage, although it is commonly somewhere between 1-3 years of age.
Toddlers are at the stage of an offspring's life when they will have more or less become accustomed to the basics of their body, and they're now able to process and consume harder foods. Their speech will improve and their control over their bodily functions will do so as well. As they continue to grow, they will learn the societal customs and expected behaviours of their surroundings; mimicking those around them.
When they reach the stage of a normal child, most races' offspring will have reached a point where they are better able to take care of themselves, although still to a limited degree. Depending on the society, a child will still be highly attached to one or several guardians who take care of them (by providing food, shelter, etc.), but at this stage they will also start to become more mentally self sufficient. Various functions of their body will begin to rapidly develop, and at the age of 11-12 (on average between the different races) they will enter the next stage of their lives.
It is at the adolescent stage that a typical child will start to experience puberty. Their body will start to change to accommodate for sexual maturity, and most guardians will at this point consider the offspring to be almost completely self-sufficient; though with a lack of life-experience to truly set them free. The act of reaching actual adulthood widely depends on the culture, and in many cultures there are various rituals and ceremonies, societal or religious, to mark the ascension of becoming an adult.
It is also during adolescence, come the first signs of puberty, that Magical Awakening could occur.
Once an offspring reaches adulthood (depending on race or society; this could be at either 16, 18 or 20 years of age), he or she will be considered self-sufficient and free depending on laws, but most will still stick to familial ties; if they grew up in families to begin with.
Offspring will at birth inherit various appearance and physical traits from their parents. Be it race, skin-colour, eye-colour, shape of ears, nose, etc. As they grow up, they will then start to inherit and develop personality traits from their upbringing; shaping their views on life, what they consider to be moral or immoral, and so on.
Typical offspring will be born to a family, where they are taken care of and loved by their parents. But this will again depend on the culture and society, as there are some places in the world where a child is only born out of necessity, or it could be assigned to a specific caste at birth, or be brought up in batches by communally assigned nursers or teachers. In these cases it is unusual for an offspring to have any familial ties to their blood-relatives, and are instead brought up by the community as a whole.
In scaleshaped cultures, hatchlings are born in batches and then taken care of by groups of Spawnmothers. In the kafari clans, all the adult females of the local clan take care of each others' offspring equally, while in most other cultures (especially human, zjindri or elven), children are born into families that bind them to that family's name and blood for the rest of their lives.
Depending on the community, the upbringing of a child is usually the responsibility of a parent or general guardian. As such these upbringers maintain rights of certain ownerships of such children, until the child is old enough to be considered an adult, and can begin to make their own life decisions. Granted, of course, that the local culture doesn't have certain familial expectations, or restrictions of caste or similar.
In cultures where familial blood and relations are tied to laws, offspring born outside of marriage or couples are considered illegitimate children; or more commonly called bastards. Laws and societal opinions regarding bastards are especially common and relevant in highborn societies, where there is always a question of birthright or bloodright, as well as the concern of lineages and inheritance.
Offspring abandoned by or otherwise separated from their blood-related parents are known as orphans, and have no familial ties, or at least not any familial ties that are blood-related. In cultures where it is common for children to be communally raised, or in certain caste societies, the idea of an orphan is less common, as they more or less didn't have any parents to begin with.
In most societies, children are generally brought up (be it in families or in communities) to inherit a trade or certain responsibilities. In castes it is common for the offspring to be trained for their entire juvenile life to learn one or two assigned jobs, while in typical family-focused societies they inherit their parents' trade, or are brought up to fulfill familial responsibilities.
In various cultures, there might be different rights, expectations or societal perceptions between a male or female offspring. Some places, especially tribal and even feudal societies, it is common for girls to grow up to perform tasks related to sewing, cooking and babysitting, whilst boys learn to hunt, fight, or do harder labour. There are even societies, like those consisting of all-male or all-female members, where a child of an opposing gender will be killed or sent away; to preserve that society's way of life and adhere to local laws.
To some races the likelihood of a certain gender over the other is more assured. Scaleshaped races tend to see more male hatchlings, and trolls as a whole have allegedly never seen a female child in thousands of years; leaving very few female trolls still living. It is otherwise 50-50 across the average race as to whether a boy or girl is born.