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Friday, January 21, 2011

Letting Go of Crap: the Motherhood Edition

I don't have any children, I'm almost 40 years old and don't have one child and have never been pregnant. Now before you start misting up thinking, poor her, please don't. I don't want any children, I'm very happy being childless. I know it's a shocker, people seem to think that all women are made to be mothers and I must agree with that on the biological level, yes we are built to carry children but we're not all built to desire children. I actually love kids, they are great, cute and funny and I certainly love all the kids in my family. Between Matt and myself we have 15 nieces and nephews ranging from 24 years old to 2 years old. I love those kids so much and I want to be a good influence on their lives but really I like living in a house with Matt that is all adult, all the time. I don't have to hear the cries, temper tantrums, or see the unhappy faces or get the attitudes or listen to back talk or any of the frustration that can come with being a parent. Now, I don't think children do that all the time, of course they don't, I know they bring joy to their moms and dads but I also know that sometimes when I look at the parents of my nieces and nephews, they could use a break and it's not always easy to come by one. I can certainly understand that.

Now the decision not to have children was not a rash one, I thought long and hard in my twenties over whether or not I wanted kids. I am a type 1 diabetic and although it's not impossible to have children it takes some planning and I've gone to the doctor twice thinking about having children but in the end always changed my mind. I'd feel guilty bringing a child into the world that could possibly inherit my diabetes or risking my life to have child and the child ends up with no mom. I don't think it's fair. But believe me having type 1 diabetes is not the only reason I thought having kids would not be the best thing for me. I really do love my quiet, peaceful existence unless Matt and I are having a loud discussion, it's always quiet here. I also know it's not cheap to have a child and it bothers me that many people bring children into the world with no thought of the cost of having that child and expect others to 'pay' for their decision. I really do like spending my money on myself and the things I desire and I can certainly spend money on my nieces and nephews but I'm not responsible for them and if I don't want to, I don't have to. I like having that choice. I also enjoy that anytime I want to get up and get outta here, I can. Matt and I will be driving to Portland, Oregon this weekend for an 'us' weekend just some time to get away from home and relax just the two of us. I know for my brother and sister-in-law it's not always easy to get away and get time to themselves, they have to have a place for my niece to go. And although everyone loves her, with her cute little self, not everyone wants to be bothered with her at some points. I love being an Aunt, it is the best, I get to be like a parent without all the responsibilities. They come to my house and eat all the junk food, stay up late, watch bad television, oh it's on when you come to Auntie Punkin's place LOL. I love spoiling them, then when people get too mouthy I can just say 'oh it's time to go home'. The freedom of being an Aunt is what I love. I feel no obligation to my nieces and nephews, I do stuff for them because I want to do it, because I enjoy doing it and I like that arrangement so much better.

Women are made to feel 'less than' if they don't have kids. When I tell people how old I am, they usually ask me if I have kids and I say no and this look of utter shock comes on their face. I think most people expect for a black woman my age to have children and they may think something is defective about me because I don't. There is nothing defective with me, I've made a choice and I'm concious of that choice and what it means. But I wasn't planning on having kids to save my marriage or take care of me as an older adult, it bothers me when people have children and the kid is barely out of the womb and they already got it working. Children are a gift from God and should be treated as such. Because I was cognizant of who I was and who I wasn't, I made the best choice for  me. It's been said that if you don't want kids, you're not nuturing and men don't like that, eh I call shenanigans on that crap. I nuture my nieces and nephews, they don't have to be your kids for you to nuture them and there is nothing unfeminine about not being a mom. I love my mother, very dearly and I'm always so glad she understands and respects my decision to not be a mother. It's an important job being a parent and I truly respect any person that does it well because it ain't easy. But I'd like respect too because I've chosen a different path, one that suits me and my fiance. I wish more people would think critically as I did in my younger years about becoming parents because it's an important job, anyone can make a baby, it takes real women and men to raise one. It also takes real women and men to decide that it's not a good choice for their lives.


  1. Well, if people don't want kids then people should not get them. Simple as that, I'm totally agreeing with you. Not everyone wants kids and that should be the end of it.

  2. Hi,

    I love your blog. It's pretty interesting.

    I totally agree. I'm 36 years-old and I don't want kids either and I have known this since I was 12 (and I'm serious). I find it very condescending when women with children or women married with children talk about how women like us, who don't want kids are living lesser lives than they are or that our lives must be sooooo empty.

    First off, if you're so happy with your life why do you care about what's going on in ours? I have absolutely no interest in them and lives,at all. I believe a lot of these women are just not secure with themselves and are using the whole "look at me I got husbands and kids" to make themselves feel important. I don't need that to feel important or special. And I feel sad for any woman that's depends on that.

    Besides that, I don't see what's so special about having children. I mean, bugs,insects and rodents have them all the time.

  3. @Nkoszana, I wish everybody felt like you.

    @Liza207, glad to see you here and please enjoy the blog and comment more. I understand the feeling you get from some women who are married with kids. As much as I love the kids in my family, I don't envy the work they have to do to raise them. And my life is very fulfilling.

  4. I am glad to see you are not afraid to speak openly about where you stand as far as having children is concerned. I know many women feel the exact same way, but are ashamed or afraid of saying it in the open. Nothing is more beautiful than seeing someone who is happy in their own skin and not compelled to act according to the programming of society.

  5. I wish more women who felt as I do would stand up and have the courage of their convictions to say something. I wish even more that women wouldn't bow to pressure to have children they don't desire b/c of family or societal pressure. Sucks for the baby.