When sitting down to talk with a new psychiatrist a few weeks ago, she asked me where I saw myself in the future. I covered the basics: get a job I hopefully enjoy, find a lifetime partner (the details of whether it would be a monogamous or polyamorous relationship, I was not sure yet,) own a little house, foster dogs and live my life childfree. She was quick to question why I do not want kids.
I was slightly irritated by this, and I am sure many childfree couples and childfree individuals get this question numerous times. I am nineteen years old, so I am not at the prime age to pop out babies anytime soon, but I am sure when my time comes (right now, the average age to have a child in Canada is late 20’s, early 30’s,) I will be asked the same question the psychiatrist asked.
Why do you not want kids? How could you not want kids?
I have decided not to have children for the following reasons:
1. Overpopulation. The world is overpopulated as it is, and the environment is suffering from it. Being Pagan, I am incredibly worried about the current state of the world’s nature, weather, animals, etc. I would just feel very irresponsible having children when we already have over 7 billion people on the planet. We seriously do not need any more, especially when you’ve got families like the Duggars who have 19 kids already.
2. Tokophobia. Pregnancy, childbirth, it all freaks me out. Having a parasite like thing clinging inside and feeding off me for nine months….I just can’t get over that.
3. No maternal instinct. I seriously feel I was never born with a maternal instinct. I was the only person in sixth grade who took the babysitting course that ended up hating babysitting. I felt totally out of place and didn’t know what to do with kids. All of my elementary school friends seemed to just have a natural thing for kids, me, absolutely not.
4. The cost. Kids are not just expensive, they are insanely expensive! Daycare, food, carseats, toys, clothes that they grow out of super fast, school supplies, medicine, and those are just the bare necessities! Once they talk they will want the latest technology and entertainment. If I were to have a child, I also would not only want to provide them with the basics to survive; but also equip them with tools for later in their life, like helping them pay for post-secondary education.
5. I just don’t see it as miraculous and amazing as some people make it out to be. Every single species reproduces one way or another to keep the species going, the difference between animals and humans are that humans have the choice whether to reproduce or not.
6. My Goals. My future goals involve travelling, reading, writing, educating myself, volunteering and giving back to communities. Having children are just not part of the equation for what I would want as my ideal, fulfilling life.
7. The time. Kids take up a tremendous amount of time, leaving the average parent exhausted, stressed or at least cleaning up after them 24/7. If I had kids, I would have no time left over to volunteer or help others like I plan to.
8. It is NOT just 18 years, it lasts the rest of your life!!! Lets just think about that for a minute.
9. My kid would be just like any other average person. Unlike some parents who assume their kid is destined for greatness, I am willing to admit my genes are nothing special.
10. My body, my choice. When I was born, I was born with a body, and it was mine, nobody else’s. What I do with my body is my choice, as long as it does not violate other individuals’ rights in the process, (i.e.: murder.)
I do not want to give birth or have children. This should be so obvious and pure, so it is kind of sad I am even noting this as one of the reasons why I do not want kids, but hey, we still live in a world where not everyone has access to birth control and/or programs like Planned Parenthood.
Some of you may think “Well what about adoption? If you are scared of pregnancy, why not adopt?” Numbers 3,4,5,6,7,8 and 10 include having and raising a child through adoption. I have nothing against adoption. Of course, I am not against having children either! These are my personal reasons why I do not wish to become a parent.
If you have read up to this point and NOT been offended, I congratulate you. This article was not to offend anyone, nor am I trying to convert anyone to the childless/childfree lifestyle.
I will be just as happy for my younger sister if and when she decides to have children, (through adoption or biologically,) or not. These are my personal reasons and my personal choice to choose to be childfree.
If you are still puzzled and confused with my decision, I turn the tables to you.
Why do YOU want kids? Do you love teaching, nurturing, protecting and dedicating your life to help a young, vulnerable person develop into their fullest potential? Or is parenting something you have not thoroughly thought through and just figured that it is just “something everybody does?”
If you chose the second option, I strongly encourage you to answer the following question, I mean really answer it:
Why do YOU want kids?