This just in! I don’t plan to have kids. How many of you just judged me a little? My husband and I are proud DINKs (Dual Income No Kids) which means we get raped by the IRS Yay! What’s it like living in a society in which the social norm dictates procreation? Well, people are always curious and inquisitive about MY disinterest in having offspring but my husband doesn’t get interrogated about it. So basically, it sucks for me and makes no difference for him.
My favorite ignorant question I get is “Is your husband ok with that?” Do people really think that this is something we both don’t mutually agree on? I’m serious. Do people think we would have gotten married if we weren’t on the same page about something as fundamental as this? This is something we discussed as early as our second date. The universe led two like-minded individuals to each other so rest assured world, I think that might mean the big man upstairs probably approves of our self-inflicted barrenness so I’m not about to let no judgemental man or woman put asunder! OK?
We don’t hate babies, we don’t kick little children in the face. In fact, I am a Godmother to 4 sweet souls and I aspire to grow that number until one day my entire community doesn’t even refer to me by my first name and just calls me “The Godmother”. Sidenote: If you ever find yourself in Santa Monica, CA go to Bay Cities Italian Deli and order their signature sandwich “The Godmother”. Order it online, then go pick it up on the opposite side of the store. Avoid the deli counter line. It gets crazy in there and the parking lot may give you PTSD, but the sandwich will make you forget every ugly thing you saw in that parking lot. Back to my post. Ya, so I have never had a dying need to be anything’s mother, but my biggest dilemma in life is that I do want to be a grandmother. I guess I’ll have to settle for just being “The Godmother”.
This past weekend I was visiting two aunts. One is divorced, in her 80s with no kids, the other is in her 70s, married and a mother of two. The one with kids began asking me about my increasing age and flat out told me to “have a baby”. When I told her I wouldn’t be having kids because I’m fulfilled by my active community life, I could tell from her body language and demeanor that she disapproved. This woman isn’t only my aunt, she was an actress, she was my schoolteacher in grades 3 and 5, and she is also my Godmother. Growing up I adored her and looked up to her so I take the things she says to heart. To either justify her own choices in life or to sway me from mine, she began saying that not experiencing motherhood is a shame. What I felt was a shame was her saying that in front of her child-less older sister. When that didn’t evoke a reaction from me, she shifted gears and tried a different angle. She pointed out that she too had been super active in her community before she had kids, but her children fulfilled her so much that she didn’t feel the need to go back to volunteering, acting or organizing events and fundraisers because she was content being a mother. I just shrugged and changed the subject because what I really wanted to say to her was that I didn’t think she is in any position to be advising others to try motherhood since her two adult male children both in their 40’s, still live at home and don’t have careers or relationships. Boom!
There are a myriad of reasons that we don’t want to have kids. Here are just a few:
1. We know TOO MUCH about the downsides of parenthood because parents talk too much about all that’s bad and not enough about what’s good. Being well into our 30’s we are surrounded by people with kids who openly share their frustrations. It seems people go into parenthood blind not even comprehending a quarter of all it entails. Youth and ignorance can make you do crazy things. When I was 19 I went skydiving. Now almost 20 years later I know that was one of the dumbest & most irresponsible things I did without thinking through all the possible consequences. Part of being young is thinking you know everything and are ready to be and should be a parent. So many people are WRONG!
2. We would have no help from family. I don’t want to be a full time mom. It really takes a village to raise kids and our village is sparse. We live an hour away from our family members. We also live in Southern California where that hour drive can turn into a 2 hour drive due to our infamous traffic.
3. I love to travel. I can only name a handful of adults I know who travel successfully with children.
4. We live in a shit world. Humanity is awful to each other. We don’t want to bring a little human into this God forsaken place. If people want us to procreate they should all treat each other better.
5. Just because our bodies are designed to do something, doesn’t mean we have to do it. We all have a conscious and a brain but we don’t all use those things. Not everyone with ovaries and sperm needs to procreate. We simply don’t need all the extra humans. I want to grow and create amazing things with my brain and imagination not with my Fallopian tubes, and uterus. (Anyway, a majority of women I know can’t even conceive naturally anymore! but that’s a whole other blog post of it’s own)
6. Read that Aziz Ansari quote I posted. Having a child is like putting a quarter in a gumball machine. You just don’t know what you’re going to get. Your child could end up being a little asshole. Your child could end up being the most boring human being ever, Your child could end up being the sweetest/funnest kid ever! There are just far too many unknowns. Why take that chance? Kids don’t come with receipts, you can’t return them. It’s very final. We aren’t big gamblers.
7. I’m all about breaking social norms and not conforming. Just look all these child free role models this blog talks about!
Any fool can be a parent, but it takes a special kind of fool to think they can CHANGE THE WORLD. I’m a fool of the later persuasion. I don’t want to “Keep Calm and Carry On” I want to “Raise Hell and Change the World” that’s why I’m a mentor and a youth group advisor. Instead of just procreating I choose to spend MY free time molding the children of other people who had kids without really thinking about what they were doing . I choose to be a contributing part of other people’s sparse villages because those little humans are the future generations of this planet. MY planet and I want to make sure that I’m doing my part to make this world a better place for myself and others.