I have been thinking for a while about writing this blog, as it is very personal. Having recently celebrated my tenth wedding anniversary it felt like a good time to reflect on why I don’t have children. Since my beautiful wedding day, I estimate I have been asked this question over 1000 times (using a conservative average of twice per week).
Here is an example of how a typical conversation plays out (I’ve used a random name to illustrate the point):
Sharon “Do you have children?”
What follows is interesting. There is always a follow-up question, often preceded by an awkward pause. I have attempted to capture a flavour of actual responses I have received in the table below:
|SHARON’S RESPONSE||MY THOUGHT PROCESS|
|What a bad decision||According to what measure of “bad”?|
|Does your husband want kids??||Sorry this is 2017, not 1817|
|Do you have pets?||hahahahaha|
|You’ll change your mind||So you’re an authority on my mind?|
|You might regret it one day||You might regret having yours one day|
|You’re running out of time to change your mind||What if its not a choice?|
|Don’t you want them?||No I am the child catcher from “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang”|
|Can’t you have them?||Have you ever had (insert nasty disease here) (bit personal)|
|Waste of a good woman||I literally have no response to this|
|If you have them you’ll change your mind||This is illogical – does not compute|
|Who will look after you when you’re old?||People I pay, there is no guarantee your kids will look after you|
|The world would end if everyone thought like you||With Trump at the helm, it may happen anyway|
|I have a friend like you, she is a career woman too||Since when was having a family related to work?|
|Do you have brothers and sisters?||What?|
I have not written this to berate or shame the Sharon’s of the world; but merely to help people to talk to me (and others) about not having children. I would prefer Sharon just to say “cool” or “great”.
There are probably over 1000 reasons why women don’t have children. For example, left it too late, had a bad childhood, had multiple miscarriages, don’t want them, frightened of giving birth, partner refuses to have them, not met the right person, raped as a teenager, affordability, worried about exponential population growth, the world is not a nice place, don’t like them (you get the gist).
So, back to the question, why I don’t have children . . . . . that’s for me to know . . .