Why I Do Not Want Children

no children

I had the unfortunate displeasure of seeing an article about how women who choose to not have children are inherently wrong and the only accomplishment that women are worth making is bearing children. I am calling bullshit.

At this time in my life, I absolutely do not want a child. Granted, I am merely a 20-year-old college student who can barely make my own meals, let alone take care of another human being from birth. I am fully aware that I am completely not qualified for taking care of a child and I have no desire to do as such.

What bothered me the most about this atrocious scrap of scribblings was that it disregards the fact that other people can be happy without children and still be selfless. She makes the huge argument that it’s all about self preservation and selfish life choices. But, women who don’t have their own kids can still do incredibly selfless things. What about the incredible people who adopt? Sure, they didn’t bear the children themselves, but they are giving them a home nonetheless. That sounds pretty damn selfless to me.

For some people, having children is not a happy idea. Maybe they live in an environment that would be incredibly dangerous for a child, so they choose to spare a child from a difficult situation.  Also, unwanted children can live in unloving homes. I find a huge double standard in this whole situation. First, you criticize women for not having children, claiming she is separating herself from her femininity by not doing so. But then, if a child is born in an unwanted or dangerous home, you complain that “well they shouldn’t have had kids if they couldn’t take care of them.” The hypocrisy of it all puts a sour taste in my mouth.

Also, what does this say about women who physically cannot have children? True, they are not consciously choosing to not have children, but does that mean they are less feminine and haven’t accomplished a woman’s greatest gift? To me, this article indirectly attacks these women. How can someone prove to this author that they are still a true woman and are still feminine and worthy if she cannot produce offspring?  At first sight, you can not.

Oh, and the other frustrating part is that, what if a young girl read this article? You’re teaching her that her feminine worth and biggest accomplishment she can make is having a child. WHAT WHAT WHAT ARE YOU DOING?! You are telling this young girl that her goals should be to get pregnant and reproduce to an already very populated world, regardless of if it’s a good or personal decision.  Why can’t we teach this young girl on the other side of the screen that she can accomplish many great things in life, and it’s her CHOICE on what she chooses to accomplish.

Now let me be clear, I am not anti-child at all. Maybe someday when I am stable and married, I might have them. I just strongly believe that it is a CHOICE that is personal, private, and should not be scrutinized by outside opinions. It’s not my place to tell ANYONE whether or not they should or should not have a child, or do anything for that matter. I’m not being apathetic towards others, I just understand that it’s their life to live, not mine. If you want to have a child, or multiple, then do that! If you don’t, then don’t. It’s never my place, or anyone else’s for that matter, to tell you, dear stranger on the other side of the screen, what to do.

Thank you, dear reader, for letting me rant.

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17 Comments Add yours

  1. Lindsay says:

    I couldn’t agree more with you.

    I more than likely will not have children but my reasons are that we live in a shitty world. Do I really want to be bringing a child into this hell on earth?? Sure there’s so many positives and beauty this life to offer, but on the flip side, there’s war, conflict, suffering, and single-handedly us humans are destroying this planet and on most days, I’m ashamed to be of the same race just for that reason alone. Like you, I’m not anti-child but I just don’t think it’s for me. I love babies and I’ve always wanted a baby belly of my own, but those reasons alone aren’t enough to convince me to have children.

    And don’t even get me started on people who say “you don’t understand” or “_____ because you don’t have children”. Just because I don’t choose to spawn doesn’t make me lesser of a person than you. It’s just sad that some people even have this crazy idea in their mind. Yes being a parent is an honour and a privilege, but it doesn’t make you any better than the next person.

    Okay, end rant. 🙂

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  2. mcowder says:

    I did a recent post (well, maybe a month or so ago) about not having children and can relate. It’s frustrating to see the variations that people’s faces take on when you tell them about not having/wanting kids. It’s even more frustrating when women act like this is the single greatest accomplishment that can ever be achieved in their lifetime. I actually feel bad for those women if that’s the greatest thing they’ve ever achieved. Great post! 🙂

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  3. I’m just like you so I completely agree. My friends always say, “You should stop ‘making’ cats and start making children.”

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    1. Poli Impelli says:

      Well Vanessa, you can remind them that children are human beings, and to give birth to them and raise them, you need much more consciousness than “making” cats. Maybe they don´t remember how important it is… 😉

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  4. lderringer says:

    As someone who does want kids, I can totally appreciate you not wanting them. There’s nothing wrong with either stance. It’s a shame that people are so judgmental about those who have differing opinions on the subject. I won’t tell you that you’ll change your mind when you get older, because you may not, and if that’s the case I think that you can and will still do awesome selfless things!

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  5. Sahar says:

    I think there is nothing wrong with not wanting to have kids. I know many people who have kids just because they want the ‘accessory’ or because it’s just something that they feel they have to do next. Why is that better than someone saying they don’t want kids for the right reason? Great post! Thank you!

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  6. theclutterboxblog says:

    I wish people would think the having children through more. I know people who love their one child, another couple who are having their second but can’t afford the first and I know couples who can’t physically have children and due to a small stupid mistake in their past weren’t allowed to adopt. We need to remove the barriers and allow people choice! Great read!!

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  7. Poli Impelli says:

    I couldn´t agree more with you! You´re very clear, and I think women´s mission in life is to GIVE life. Not only having children, there are many ways in which we can accomplish such a goal. Do what you love, and you´ll be giving life and love to your own child inside. It´s a personal and intimate decision, and being a mother is not just having children: it´s something deeper, having chosen to be one and spending all your life and effort to raise your child as humanly as possible. I´m one of those who observe nature and mothers everywhere, and unfortunately, the 80% of the times I wonder: “Why did the have those kids? Are they “parents” just because they gave birth to them?”. Fortunately, there are others I admire for their great success. Personal decisions, whether others like it or not, nobody can decide on our bodies ladies… Being a woman is not being a mother.

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  8. annabelt says:

    Well I’ve got 3 kids (and I’m older) and what you’ve said sounds completely reasonable to me. The other post on the other hand, I can’t really relate to at all. After all, it’s not as if having children (of your own, even) is the only opportunity in life to do anything for anyone else. And it certainly hasn’t turned me into Jesus or Harry Potter or whatever else she said. Whether you have kids or not, or when, is nobody’s business but your own and whoever you’d be having them with!

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  9. justinerae23 says:

    What bothers me is that I feel like this ties back into gender inequality. If a man says he doesn’t want children that is way more widely accepted than if a woman doesn’t want children. Same goes for not wanting to get married. Even my aunt (who has one child) was bothered by multiple people for having one child. People asked her when she planned to have her “next child” or “why are you only having one child?” I wish this was more of a private, personal choice rather than a societal expectation.

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    1. Exactly, it is a gender inequality issue

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  10. purpldragon says:

    Yes it should definitely be our choice to have children and there is nothing wrong with not having children.

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  11. claire says:

    Well I’m 43 this year, have been with my husband since I was 16 and we never felt the need to have children. It wasn’t so much that we decided we didn’t want them, more that we never decided that we DID want them. Our lives have been full and happy, and although I’ve worked with kids, babysat etc etc I could never ever imagine having a child live in my house! ha! I’ve had it all.. I’m selfish, I don’t know what I’m missing, what will we do when we get older? etc etc. This coming from people that spend their time arguing with their kids, moaning about their kids and about having no money and the stress and the mess and having to work all the hours to provide for them, about having no social life, well there you go. Maybe I do know what I’m missing, and have chosen to miss it…;) xx

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  12. You make so many valid points!

    As a women who does definitely not want children, I support your message. When you tell people that you don’t want children they look at you like you’re weird for not following the social norm. And that’s the thing – it’s the social norm. I find it extremely wrong that we can live in a time with so much focus on human rights and room for everyone, and a woman (or man for that matter) is criticised for not wanting children. Seriously. Shouldn’t people live the way they wish to – have the right to be happy on their premise! I think so. I don’t critise people that want children – so, please, don’t criticise me for not wanting them. So hey, let’s screw them and live happily ever after without children but more time for our husbands, and show them just how good a life we’re capable of having without children! 🙂

    Oh yeah, and as the world is increasingly getting more and more over-populated, we are really doing their children and grandchildren a favour by not having children.

    xo P!

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  13. Okay, I haven’t read the article, so I am just reacting based on what you said, but I am completely offended by this! I’m in a situation where kids aren’t an option. It’s not that I can’t have them (I have no idea, I haven’t tried), it’s just that they aren’t going to happen in my circumstances. So that makes me less of a woman and of less worth than my friend who’s expecting her fourth baby? No way, no how.

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  14. I’m currently reading a book of essays called Selfish, Shallow, and Self-Absorbed which is 16 writers sharing their reasons for not wanting children. Some missed their chance, some never wanted them, and some wanted them but couldn’t. The point is, it’s not up to anyone else to tell you whether or not you should have kids. That said, thank you for the reminder!

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  15. ReelCarina says:

    This is written right out of my heart, thank you so much! I’ve been thinking about having kids a lot recently because many people around me have had a child within the past year or so. I’m only 21 and I know I don’t have to decide anything yet, but it’s still something that bothers me… In our society I often feel that having kids is the standard that is expected. For example, my mum (even if implicitly) expects me to get married and have kids. Of course she won’t tell me that, but especially since I’m a single child I know exactly how disappointed she’d be if she never got a grandchild…
    However I really hope many young people are gonna read this! Very lovely, thank you!
    xx Carina

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