Sunday, August 9, 2015

The Public Faces Of The “Childfree By Choice” Movement Just Went And Got Pregnant

Almost exactly year ago, TIME magazine ran a cover story called “The Childfree Life” about the rising number of Americans who were opting not to have kids. One of those couples was Paul and Leah Clouse, who both felt that they couldn’t balance their creative interests (a bakery for her, a blog for him) and also be good parents. “If we decided to have children, we’d have to grieve the life we currently have,” Leah said.
Now, it looks like the grieving time has begun. Because the Clouses are having a baby.


Articles like this are a little frustrating, because people who don't understand the inclination to never have kids will read this and think that we don't know our own minds - that someday, we'll change our minds about not wanting kids. It gives them more fuel for their "bingoes".

An important thing to keep in mind with articles like this is that there is a difference between "childfree" and "childless". In the childfree community, the term "childfree" is used to refer to someone who has thought about it, and decided that they don't want to have kids. Not just not right now, but not ever. "Childless" refers to someone who doesn't have kids, and doesn't want to have any right now, but does want to in the future.

Childfree people didn't just wake up one day, read an article on the internet and think "that sounds pretty cool, I think I'll be childfree, too." For most of us, it's something we have thought about for years. Many of us have children in our lives, whether it's students, nieces and nephews, or whatever. Some childfree people like children, but just don't want any children of their own. Some of us don't like children. (But as I said before, it doesn't make us bad people).

So please, if you meet someone who is childfree, don't tell them that they'll change their mind someday. You don't know that person better than they know themselves, and it's very arrogant to tell someone they'll change their mind about a decision when you don't have any idea what went into making that decision.
Don't tell them that they don't know what they're missing (because we do. Trust me, we do. It's part of the reason many of us decided not to have kids).
Don't tell them that they just haven't met the right person yet (another arrogant assertion).
And most of all, don't tell them that it would be different when it's their own child. Some childfree people would love nothing more than to have children, but can't, and making a statement like that, besides being arrogant, is incredibly hurtful.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

"I like kids, I just don't want any of my own."

Why do childfree women feel the need to say this? The underlying message is that if you don't like children, you're a bad person. I don't believe that. And I'm tired of the apologetics. You can be a good person and not like children.
I don't like children - or more specifically, badly behaved children. I'm indifferent to well behaved children.
It's more about the lack of manners than the age of the person. I don't like rude people, no matter what their age. Children above the age of 5 are capable of behaving themselves in public. When they don't, it's more an issue of not being taught manners than it is about "kids being kids".

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Census shows couples without kids outpacing those with them

Two’s company for a growing number of Canadian couples, with the latest census data showing an ever-widening gap between households with children and households without them. The latter outnumbered the former for the first time in 2006, and the latest numbers reveal that trend has only magnified in the years since.
Though our aging population explains part of the phenomenon, with many baby boomers’ kids having reached adulthood and left home, analysts say the big picture is more diverse. Overall, Canadian families are getting smaller, fertility rates are declining, and many couples are either delaying starting families or snubbing the reproductive imperative altogether.


Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy (pet) mother's day

Happy mother's day to all the mothers of 4 legged children out there.
Loving an adopted pet is no different than loving an adopted child.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

"I used to be childfree... then I had kids."

That's a surefire way to piss off anyone who is truly childfree in about 1 second flat.

Anyone who says this is not childfree, and never was. They were childless.
You might be saying to yourself "what's the difference?" Someone who is childless doesn't have children right now, but wants to (or might want to) have them at some point in the future.
Someone who is childfree never wants to have children, ever. Not biological children, not adopted children, not step-children.

If you would be ok with adopting, you are not childfree.
If you would be ok with dating/marrying someone with children, you are not childfree.
If you don't want children right now, you are not childfree.
Someone who is childfree doesn't want kids now or ever. Not their own, and not somebody else's.

And you are absolutely, positively not childfree if you dropped your kids off with the grandparents for the day.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Why are parents so offended?

In a recent discussion on a childfree friend's wall on facebook, she posed a question about overpopulation, asking why is it that people spay and neuter their pets in order to control the pet population, but people don't seem concerned at all about human overpopulation.

It's a good question, and I think it's one that more people need to think about, especially before they decide to have children.

She has quite a few childfree people on her friends list, so we were making points about the world being overpopulated, and that if you have even one child, you're contributing to the problem. A couple of us said that a lot of parents don't give it any thought and "just let it happen" (the statistic stating that 49% of pregnancies in the US are unplanned backs that up), and that people should give it more thought before they decide to have children.

One of her mommy friends got bent out of shape, and started in on a tirade right from the start, accusing us of making personal attacks, calling parents idiots and being disrespectful and condescending. In an effort to extend the olive branch, I asked her why she was so offended. I asked her why she was taking it as a personal attack, when none of what we said was aimed at her. Instead of answering my question, she kept in on her tirade about us being rude and condescending. After several messages like that, I got fed up with her hostility, and stopped being polite to her. She replied to me and called me a bitch.

I really don't understand why parents are so offended at a simple statement of facts. The fact is that the world is overpopulated. The fact is that 49% of pregnancies in the US are unplanned, so obviously there are a lot of people who "just let it happen" and don't give it any thought.

Why would you give the single most life-changing event less thought than you would put into the purchase of a toaster?

Basically all we were saying was that people need to think about it more before they have kids, and this seemed to get parents all bent out of shape. Why? Why do parents take this as a personal attack?

Monday, April 2, 2012

"I was born without the 'mommy gene'."

It really bugs me when childfree people say things like "I was born without the mommy gene." It implies that we're defective in some way because we don't want kids, or that mothers are somehow superior. I can only speak for myself, but I can tell you without a shadow of a doubt, I am not defective or inferior.

I also can't stand it when people say things like "I wouldn't be a good mother" just to placate mothers. Why make excuses? We just don't want to have kids. Making excuses makes it seem like there's something inherently wrong with not wanting kids and we need to make up some seemingly legitimate reason why it's not a good idea for us to have them.

If someone doesn't want to own a dog, they don't have to make excuses like "I was born without the 'dog lovers' gene". If someone doesn't want to climb Mount Everest, they don't need to make excuses like "I was born without the 'mountain climbers' gene" so why should we make excuses like "I was born without the 'mommy gene'"? It's a choice like everything else we do in life.

I don't care if someone has a problem with my not wanting to have kids. It's my life and my uterus, not theirs. They don't get a say in whether or not I have kids. My not having kids doesn't impact their life in any way whatsoever.