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May 13, 2022

Why Opting Out of Having Kids is not a “Waste of a Good Thing.”

Pro-choice isn’t just about abortion. 

Pro-choice is about self-agency.

It’s about having sovereignty over the one vehicle that holds me together on this planet: my body. This is about me opting out of child-bearing in the age of birth control, egg harvesting, IVF, and the looming interruption of abortion rights in the United States. 

Oh, what a time to be alive!

I am a happily married bisexual woman well into my child-bearing years, knocking on pre-menopause’s door, and proud to share that I have deliberately chosen not to procreate. I am grateful to live in a time and space where I can say it, choose it, and be proud of it.

I’ve never been keen on the idea of pregnancy or giving birth. Nothing about it appeals to me. I’ve never gotten the ticking clock feeling. And for a time I remember being concerned about it not being a thing for me—I even asked my therapist if there might be anything wrong with me not having that desire.

She advised me to honor my instinct. That it was a gift to have the wherewithal to be so clear, and not succumb to conditioning or peer pressure. 

From the time I was little, I would look at photos of my mom, my grandmothers, and aunts before they had children, and I remember observing how much slimmer, happier, and prettier they all looked pre-pregnancy. That must’ve really stuck with me. Because now, when anyone has the nerve to ask me why I haven’t made babies of my own…

…my go-to answer is to point up and down along my torso with my hands and reply, “And lose this figure?!” Laughter always ensues.

Sometimes an uncomfortable nervous laughter comes up, sometimes a giggle of comic relief and agreement, either way, the laughter always reveals them. 

It fascinates me that people assume that something must be wrong with me for not wanting kids. Believe it or not, I actually love babies! I love to hold them, I love to play with them, I love to laugh and listen to them. I do have active children in my life, I just like to interact with them on my own terms—in short, sweet fully present doses. The best gift I can give a child, ever, in my humble opinion.

Here are some examples of what people have asked me about opting out of childbearing: real commentary

Don’t you want someone to love you unconditionally?

Aren’t you afraid to be alone in your old age? 

Who is going to take care of you when you get old? 

Isn’t it a little selfish to not even try when you are so healthy?

Don’t you want to have a family of your own? 

You guys would make great parents/have such cute babies! 

To all this I exclaim: Wow!

What makes anyone think having a baby would guarantee all of the above? 

I chose not to procreate because I deliberately wanted to break the unhealthy habit of having children for all the wrong reasons. My folks thought they could try to work things out by having me, in the midst of infidelity and mistrust. There was no way I would ever have been a solution to their problems. I was raised by an emotionally scarred single mother who did the very best she could with what she had. This was no healthy way to be a parent. 

To my great joy, my best friends did the birthing for me. 

I am godmother to seven amazing young humans and have more amazing little beings in my orbit whom I love and adore. I am present in their lives and am happily willing and able to hold space for my amazing friends when the bandwidth runs short, and a new perspective is needed. I love having the energy for them. I love witnessing them become better parents than the ones that came before us, I love being there to talk and listen…and listen. Our girlfriends who are mothers need us.  

My point is, it is none of anyone’s business if I don’t put my fully intact and healthy uterus to “good” use. 

The same way the current lawmakers are taking away the right for a woman to not bring a pregnancy to term, is the same jab I feel from the people who think my choice not to procreate is a “waste of a good thing.” F*ck off with all that.  

My body, my choice. 

I choose not to contribute to the millions of unwanted and accidental humans on the planet that keep some people in power and strip others of theirs. 

My choices are not imposing or limiting others’ freedoms, why should theirs now limit mine?  

I’m proud of the decision of not procreating up to now. During the pandemic when everyone we knew was complaining about being stuck at home with the creatures they had created, my partner and I were cracking up and high-fiving our decision! I mean, it was clear for me: I did the right thing, thanks to my IUD and my clarity! 

I love my godchildren and the young people in my orbit more than words can ever express here. What I know for sure is that I’m not missing out and I feel zero FOMO about it.

To those of you are called to want to keep asking why, please stop. Ask yourself why it matters to you. Ask yourself why seeing someone practice self-agency pisses you off or gets under your nerves so much. It is none of your business why. Unless you’re my partner trying to make a baby with me, it’s really none of your business. 

My overall wellness is my business. I give thanks, celebrate, and dance “hollerllujah!” for living in a time, country, and space where I can write, speak and be proud of it.

~

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