So I have this friend. She's strong, loving and compassionate. She's great at her job. And she doesn't plan on ever having kids.
She loves the decisions she's made about her life, just as I, a mother of three, love the decision I've made with mine. But judging by the number of negative comments and interrogations she receives, a lot of other people aren't as cool with her life choices as I am.
So many of us say we want a movement for all women stop ripping each other apart, to be accepted, praised, and supported, and encouraged, no matter what our choice, but maybe we only mean that if it includes women who want to be a mom, like us.
Women who chose not to become a mother can feel alone in their decision and like they're constantly being put on the witness stand. After speaking with a few women who have made this choice, they told me this is what they want moms to know about them:
1. Our Reasons to Not Have Kids Are Very Well Thought Out
When we made the decision not to have kids, we thought about it for years and years and a lot went into it: genetic health issues, childhood trauma, addiction issues within families, anxiety, or mental health issues, just to name a few. We put just as much thought into not having kids as moms put into having them. And while having kids feels natural to you, not conceiving is what feels natural to us.
Just because we don't want any of our own doesn't mean we don't have room in our lives and hearts for children at all.
2. We Don’t Feel Sad to Be Childless
In fact, we love our life and have made a choice that makes us incredibly happy without regrets. Yes, really.
3. We Don’t Look Down on Women Who Chose to Become Moms
If someone wants to ask us why we have decided not to have kids, we would like them to listen with an open mind and stop thinking it's a jab at moms for deciding to have kids. It isn't. It's a choice we have made for ourselves and ourselves alone. Moms often want to give us their two cents, but don't seem want to listen. That's not supportive, that's being judgmental and close-minded.
4. We Want To Be A Part Of Your Life And Your Child's Life
We enjoy spoiling your kids, having them in our lives and celebrating your child with you. Just because we don't want any of our own doesn't mean we don't have room in our lives and hearts for children at all.
5. We Are Not Selfish
Not being a mom doesn't mean we don't know how to give to others or we lack compassion and generosity. We are teachers, pediatricians, we volunteer, adopt hurt or sick animals, host exchange students, and give generous donations to charity. Being a mother is not the only way to show you aren't selfish.