Well, this is something you don’t see everyday. Writer and teacher Abby Rosmarin used Thought Catalog as a platform to thank women who choose not to have children.
In the piece she writes:
“Thank you for recognizing that childrearing isn’t for you and being true to who you are. It doesn’t mean you hate kids. It just means that raising one is not part of your path in life.”
As a purposely childless woman myself, I can appreciate that. If you are of “a certain age” and haven’t popped out any kids, people sometimes make the worst assumptions. You must hate children. You must be really sad that you don’t have children. You don’t have children because you are selfish. Or what I think is the worst one…You’re not a real woman unless you have children. Ugh.
“Thank you for not succumbing to the societal pressures. I’ve known far too many parents who had kids because that’s what was expected of them. Working in childcare, you see more of this type than you wish to see. The resentment is almost palpable. They love their children — at least, they have no choice but to love their children — but every single movement seems to scream, ‘I wasn’t meant for this.’”
I agree that oftentimes people do things (even major things) because they believe that’s what they are “supposed to do.” Bringing a child into the world is a huge decision and being a parent is the most important and challenging job on earth. Not a great idea to jump into such a lifestyle in reluctant way. Sure, everyone will have reservations about becoming a parent, but you really have to dig deep into yourself to determine whether your reservations are due to understandable anxiety or to a desire to simply not have children.
Call it selfish if you want, but some women prefer the childless life to the mom life and that’s fine. I do happen to appreciate my ability to fly to some little weekend island getaway on a day’s notice and not have to worry about anything but making sure my cat has enough food and water. And I’m a proud aunt who loves kids and who especially loves that those kids have awesome parents to tend to their basics and beyond, so I can just supply the fun stuff.
Also, the world needs people like me, that is people who choose not to have children. If everyone who was able to have kids had kids, we’d have an even more overcrowded planet. So, you’re welcome Rosmarin. For me personally, I don’t see myself ever giving birth to a child, but if year’s from now I change my mind and my body is no longer in the baby-making business, there are many beautiful children sitting in foster care hoping to be adopted into loving homes.
Are you a purposely childless woman? What are some of the more eye-brow raising comments you’ve gotten about your decision?