"I’m childfree" :)
"I mean it’s not like I hate kids or anything and I love my nieces/nephews/other people’s kids asdfghjkl;" … :/
I’m so sick of seeing this, particularly in most popular childfree articles I’ve come across. The reason you’d feel a need to say that is out of worry for the negative reactions of others to your childfree decision. Let’s be real here: your love of children isn’t relevant when informing people you’ve made this choice, and if they’ve got a problem with you being childfree, they won’t give a single solitary fuck that you “like kids” anyway.
The fears around telling are perfectly fine and valid, and it’s not your fault if you feel a need to brace yourself this way in our culture. But everyone should be aware of how it throws other childfree individuals under the bus. It adds to the stigmas of what any childfree individual is like (i.e. sociopathic, evil, mean, cold-hearted). It’s a way of reassuring parents about a choice you made, when the choice doesn’t warrant reassurance for anyone other than yourself. It’s a way of separating yourself from “those other” childfree who really can’t stand being around children for a variety of legit reasons, and it contributes to the harmful mentalities our culture has toward them.
It’s okay to be childfree and enjoy the company of kids! It’s okay to be childfree and not enjoy being around children! It’s okay to be childfree and fall somewhere in between! All these feelings are OK, yet we do need to be careful with our language when sharing our childfree decision, because it does have an impact. How we present ourselves as childfree individuals influences the way others see all childfree individuals, even though that shouldn’t be the case. The burden shouldn’t be on us to combat this and fight stereotypes, but it’s not like a pro-natalist world is gonna do it for us. If you think you can healthily get away without adding “I like kids,” then avoid saying it.