Not wanting kids is a lonely place to be

As a 37-year old married women with no kids, I must admit that I don’t exactly know where I ‘belong’ in society these days. You see, one would have thought that as people have started to accept mixed racial couples and same sex relationships, so too would the idea that a woman who decides not to have children be okay. But it isn’t.

I still get the confused looks, the gasps and the disbelief. In fact, majority of people who know my decision will still tell me that I will change my mind in future and ‘I better hope it’s not too late.’

Women judge me and quiz me as if somewhere in my explanation they’ll find a loophole to my reasoning and try to convince me otherwise. I’ve been warned that I will have no one to take care of my when I’m old. I’ve been informed that when KK and I grow tired of one another, that we’ll have nothing in our lives to hold us together.

I’ve been told that I am missing out on the biggest blessing of life and that there will be no one to carry our family name in to the future.

But not many will tell me that it’s okay. Very few are able to tell me that it’s my decision and that there are loads of women like me who are fine not to have kids and who have never even wanted to have any.

I get insulted when people say that I have four-legged children instead. Um, no. I grew up with dogs, I love dogs but they are not a substitute. They are dogs. I get upset when people suggest I am concentrating on my career. Nope. It is just a job and I personally do not want to be the boss. I just don’t want children.

Do I hate children. No, why would I hate them?

The hard part is that I have lost many girfriends who have moved on into that phase of their lives and now have nothing in common with me anymore or perhaps who don’t know what to talk to me about anymore. It’s still me. Bron.

All around me, I am flooded with messages on TV, magazines, billboards and the media about what a ‘normal’ couple looks like.

And I guess that’s my point. I’m confused as to where exactly in society I fit. In my head and my heart, I know who I am and the decisions I’ve made.

But not everyone around me seems to get it.

29 thoughts on “Not wanting kids is a lonely place to be

  1. In.the.same.boat. Although I refuse to explain myself to others any longer, I’ve taken to educating them on the etiquette of questioning another person’s reproductive choices. Strangely satisfying. I’m also trying to better myself by not writing women off if “I’m a mommy” is the first thing to come out of their mouths when I ask them about themselves. I have a long-term boyfriend and a cat, but that wasn’t the question.

    Love your blog (hate running though, sorry!), great to meet you yesterday!

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  2. You know what I actually wish more women would not have kids if thats how they feel – it is 110 times better NOT having children if it is something you do not want to do than having kids and resenting them their whole life – it happens.

    I have kids and I love them and all that but if I could do it over?? I don’t know if I would make the same choices!

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    • Oh wow, thank you for your honesty. I’ve heard some friends mention the same thing. I don’t think it’s so much the kids as much aa the stress and strain of the lives we live today that makes it so tough on women. (thx for reading my blog)

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  3. Hi B! I hear you. I have heard the same things said to me, time and time again. I am 36 now, and after many years of saying I don’t want kids, still feel the same way. Likewise, friends have moved on, and making friends with mommies are profoundly difficult as they talk kids nearly 100% of the time and I have little to add in such conversations.

    BUT then my friends sometimes murmur in a very “make sure no-ones looking” whispered voice how they envy me, and wish they could trade lives just for a day…

    It will be interesting to live life to it’s completion, if it allows us to experience the late years, and see how it really does effect us.. Whether it be positive or negative, I am sure it will be different for everyone.
    But you are not alone. 🙂

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    • Thanks for your reply! I am starting to realise that it’s not the same for all of us and we do want different things in life. In the end it’s our choice. Nice to now others (like yourself) know how I feel. phew…

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  4. It’s sad that there is people who can’t accept your decision to not have kids and therefor aren’t your friends anymore.
    We have friends who have made the decision to NOT have children and that we respect. We understand it. We never question it. We accept their decision just like they accept our children. It’s okay not to have children, it’s a choice and that’s it. Nothing to explain.
    I’m sorry that you are experiencing the fact that people question your decision. Maybe we should be friends? 🙂

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  5. I’m 32 and my partner and I have also decided not to have kids. I also hear “you’ll change your mind” etc etc – my best was “just get pregnant then you’ll change your mind”! Uhm, no? I am not ambivalent about kids, I’m sure.
    I find that telling people the last thing this poor, suffering, over-exploited planet needs is more people usually shuts them up. I find it incredibly rude that people think they can have an opinion about MY reproductive choices.

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  6. What a load of crap. There are people out there who have kids and are not fit to be parents. Your are a fantastic aunt and spoil kids. Times are changing and those people who are living like the Walton family – trust me, that is not normal just for the sake of having kids or carrying down a family name. It is not easy being a parent either. As a single mother, when madam leaves home I am going to be alone.

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  7. I get it B! You don’t want kids. That’s it. Simple and to the point. What ever your reasons may be they are yours and people should respect them.
    I get it because in a society that has evolved so much for woman we still have people thinking there is a norm.. Get married and have children.
    I get sad that some woman define themselves by the word ‘mom’. What happened to them – did their dreams and goals just disappear at a name change? Another story, to be debated another day.
    I get you B, I respect your decision :).
    I got asked the other day …’When are you going to stop gallavanting and settle down, have kids’… My response… When I’m old enough, and that day may never come 🙂 later that day I got quite angry at his question, at the norm he had created in his head cos his daughter is now a mother?!
    Be happy with the choice you made Bron 🙂 be happy with KK and don’t let others bring that down.

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  8. People are different. It may just be a strange concept to grasp for some people because having a child is certainly a life changing, emotionally overwhelming thing. It’s been amazing for me so just as it may be hard for you to understand the urge to want kids, it’s hard for people who have kids to understand (or believe) that you don’t. There’s no right or wrong here.

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  9. oh, Gina – yep same here, I was 27! wouldn’t change my life now, but Bron I would be 39 probably saying welcome to the club, like i said no regrets and I have none, but no matter what you do you are judged. The only person that looks back in the mirror is YOU and above all be true to YOU – so stuff ’em all!

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  10. what baloney! but i know how you feel! I get similar comments being 1. choosing to have single child, 2. to actually have a successful career. And its the women who judge you more! Well done to you – stand up for what you believe in and always be proud of the choices you made – no regrets ever, just the right choice for you and that is never wrong and never be a regret! our biggest supporter in our choice our 11 year old!.

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  11. I know exactly how you feel. For 33 years I did not want children. I heard the same comments about being lonely in my old age and growing tired of one another etc. 3 years ago I suddenly changed my mind – it was quite sudden and I just realised that I wanted to be a mom more than anything.

    I have just found out that we can’t have children – so maybe I am just not meant to be a mom and my life has been forced back on to the path that I was on for 33 years…

    Tarryn

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  12. I am 27. I’ve been told that “eventually you’ll want children”. Or “talk to me in 5 years”. I can honestly tell you, I have no desire now, and nor do I ever think I will have a desire, to have children. I don’t hate them either (Although I’m not overly fond of other people’s. I mean, seriously. Have you MET most little buggers nowadays? ), I just don’t want any. I feel like we need to start a support group for “Women Who Won’t Want Kids (WWWWKids)”.

    Anyway. I guess I’ll get back to you in 5 years. When – or so i’ve been assured – my ovaries will start to shrivel up and wither away (The horror!).

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  13. I don’t believe you need to fit in, but that may just be me. To those people who suggest that you won’t have ‘anything’ (kids) to keep you together are themeselves still together for the very wrong reasons. I don’t see why your pups can’t be your companions (I refer to mine often as ‘furkids’ and the people saying that your pups are a substitute for kids are obviously dog haters. And trust me on this, those ‘friends’ that suddleny can’t connect with you anymore cos they’ve had babies, are NOT the sort of people you want to be around. They are the scary people that live through their kids and show you endless picturess etc. Uh uh, stay far away from them!

    Live your life Bron, I’ve never met you and yet I find you to be the most genuine person that I know. So real and honest.

    And finally – FUCK EM!

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    • Nats!! Your comment means so much to me considering what the last few weeks have been like for you and Munch. You’re still able to ‘get’ me. Thx! (hug)

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  14. I totally relate to your post and support your decision not to have children. If I had not ‘accidentally’ fallen pregnant at 17 (with a son who is the absolute love and light of my life) I can, without doubt, say that I too would have elected not to have children. You are not alone. (((HUGS)))

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  15. It is ok Bron, if that is your choice, it is ok. And some of us understand and accept that my friend…just like some women want to adopt a child of a different race or have three or more kids, some just don’t wan to have any. And that is ok with me. Nothing wrong with you. xoxo

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  16. Nice posting. Lara and I are also childless by choice and circumstance. It allows a couple an enormous amount of freedom. I do not for one second regret it. And I mean it.

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