Last week I shared my reasons for not having kids with SHAPE Magazine. It’s not something that I talk about often, but it’s a relevant topic for women my age.
People often tell me that I’d make a great mother, which is a huge compliment. I absolutely adore my nieces, and I can’t imagine life without them. My church is filled with bouncy, happy kids who run to me in droves to hug me. They even call me ‘Olaf’ because I remind them of the sweet snowman who loves warm hugs. It makes me so happy!
I always dreaded the idea of having kids, even when I lived with a man that I thought I would marry in my late 20’s. He wanted them; I didn’t. It was a small source of contention, but we had plenty of other reasons to break it off.
Last year when I had serious feelings (like I want to marry him, and I’ll spend the rest of my life living in a mini mcmansion in the suburbs if it means I can be with him kind of feelings) I realized that I might want to be a mother. He has three amazing kids, and being close to all of them them helped me understand what it would be like to be responsible for another person.That man was the first person (and the only one so far) who ever made me think that the 9 month process that women go through might be something that I’d want to do.
I’m not going to marry him and live happily ever after in the suburbs, which is okay since I’m more comfortable in my urban, high-rise environment. It was painful to come to that realization, but he showed me that it was possible to feel that way about a person and having a potential family.
When a writer from SHAPE asked me about my thoughts on having children, it wasn’t easy to offer my opinion.
Women are supposed to want to have kids. Many of them grow up playing with baby dolls, dreaming of the perfect wedding dress, etc. I didn’t think about that much as a kid. In high school I assumed that I’d go to college, then get married around 22. Most people around me at the time did just that, but I traveled, moved to the coolest city in the nation, made friends, found love, lost it, went back to school, etc.
People who have kids tell me how much it changed them, how awesome it is, etc. They explain that they once felt the way that I do, that having kids makes you less selfish…I believe that’s true, but I’ve seen situations in which kids are not a parent’s top priority. It’s sad, and it’s irresponsible.
It’s also important to note my size. I know several women my size who have kids, and I definitely have more energy than many people that I know (larger and smaller than I am.) I’d be at a higher risk than a person of average size too. I’m not saying that it’s not possible; I’m just saying that there’s risk involved.
It sounds so harsh to say that I don’t want to have kids, but that’s not exactly true anyway. The truth is that I just don’t know, and I think you need to be fully committed to it before adding another human to this overpopulated planet.
I don’t have a supportive husband, and raising a child isn’t something that I want to do alone. I don’t even have a dog right now because I’m not home enough to care for one properly. How am I supposed to be responsible for a tiny human life?