1. reclusivehermit:

    I enjoy children the way others enjoy leg cramps.

     

  2. Anonymous said: Do you have advice dealing with in laws that keep reminding me they want a grandkid even though my partner and I have zero interest in having a kid. It's really ridiculous they want me to become pregnant, birth, and raise a kid just to make them happy. I don't want to be rude but that's a lot of work, physical and financial and mental obligation, and changes they are demanding.

    procrasticrack-negotiator:

    procrasticrack-negotiator:

    marktwainsheadonablanket:

    beingchildfree:

    marktwainsheadonablanket:

    beingchildfree:

    marktwainsheadonablanket:

    beingchildfree:

    Unfortunately, you may have to be very firm to get these people off your back, even if it’s perceived as rude. They’re already being rude! They’re trying to weasel their way into your very personal life choices that they have absolutely no rights to. If you can’t go on tolerating their bullshit, then there will need to be a confrontation of some sort. But it really should come from your partner, since it is from your in-laws. They will have the best sway with them, they will have the most credibility with them, and as their relatives, approaching them is initially their responsibility. Unless they have legit problems with calling their relatives out. Your partner or you should tell them they need to stop insisting you make choices based on their desires and not your own. That you are not interested in being a parent, and they will not be getting a grandchild from you ever. That this decision is not about their wishes, and it impacts you the most. That they need to drop the topic, because they cannot change your minds. That if they keep this up, they will face spending less time with you because of how they disrespect you when you’re around. I know it can be daunting, but with these types, that’s probably the most surefire way to bring an end to it. Best of luck.

    This is not a real problem. Parents can want grandkids all they want. It doesn’t affect you. No, really. I’m speaking from personal experience here. No matter how annoying it is to hear “I want grandkids,” it doesn’t affect you, it’s not your problem. And if it *does* affect you, then it’s because you are looking for something to be annoyed by.

    How incredibly ignorant of you to shit on the experiences and feelings of others purely because of your individualistic experiences, or possibly the experiences of a handful of others you may know/have heard of. This is such a ridiculous “argument” that I shouldn’t even be wasting my precious time entertaining it, and I won’t beyond this. When people constantly invalidate you and your very personal life decisions, some decisions which could carry very strong emotions and sensitivities for an individual for a variety of reasons you don’t know about, then yeah it can take a fucking toll and affect someone’s mental health. This pressure from in laws is also a clear sign of disrespect for the couple and their needs. Not to mention the negative cultural implications associated with people who aren’t the couple thinking they should get to say anything about what the couple chooses when it comes to children. So yeah, it does fucking matter when people in your life who should be supporting and respecting you are completely disregarding your feelings and boundaries in favor of their selfish desires. The rudeness of others is rude for a reason - it is unpleasant, uncomfortable, and has a shitty impact for many (even if the same thing doesn’t bother someone else somewhere else in the same way). I don’t give a single flying fuck if you’ve had no problem in this regard, or if this kind of shitty treatment from others doesn’t bother you a lot. Good for you. Lucky you. I understand why it might not affect some people as much as it does others. It still doesn’t mean you get to speak for all on this, that you get to define what is and isn’t a “real” problem for someone else, and it doesn’t mean others don’t have a right to be bothered by or complain about it or try to bring a stop to it if it’s getting in the way of their happiness. Also, if you think there’s such a thing as people who are obviously genuinely upset looking for something to be annoyed by, then you clearly don’t understand enough about the human mind to even be vaguely discussing interpersonal and psychological concepts. 

    No, this is most empathetically NOT a real problem. You smile through your teeth and if they’re abusive then you treat it as such.

    It’s literally as simple as that. Not having kids isn’t complicated. It doesn’t require other people’s opinions.

    You are so ignorant to the possible circumstances of your fellow childfree out there in the world if you believe that not having kids isn’t ever complicated and doesn’t carry extra issues for some people. It’s also pretty damn ableist to separate issues into “real” and “not real” problems, considering that what we’re specifically addressing right now presents a lot of legitimate issues to many with mental illnesses and other disabilities. It’s also extremely arrogant and entitled of you to make yourself an authority on how experiences should affect other people, especially when there’s no such thing. People are allowed to feel how they feel about the way they are treated without someone else telling them they have no right to feel that way. You’re like those people who tell someone that’s upset about something shitty in their life that “it could be worse, there are kids starving in Africa you know.” I honestly have no idea why you felt you’d have a good experience following this blog when your attitude clearly doesn’t match the one of support, safety, sensitivity, and validation that I have worked hard to establish and maintain here.

    It would’ve been one thing to say it’s not a problem for you so you don’t understand why it bothers other people so much, because then it would’ve sounded more like you were taking the opportunity to share with others what your personal experience is. That’s not what you did though. Sharing your opinion that this isn’t actually a problem and going on to insult others who do have a problem with it, holds no relevance to this post, and it doesn’t change that it creates a problem for the anon who asked the question. You are not helping them out. Telling someone not to feel the way they feel never improves a situation, and usually makes the person feel worse. You are being incredibly out of line here. 

    OP specifically didn’t mention anything abusive, she just said it’s annoying.  Which is super fair.  Parents are annoying.

    But again.  If that’s the biggest annoyance from in-laws, then I’m jealous of how easy their life is.

    Really now.  What precisely is difficult about:

    • not having kids
    • listening to parents freak out about it
    • living your life anyway.

    You’re encouraging her to “confront” their parents to get them to, what? change their mind about wanting grandkids?  Why is that a goal?  Why do they have to accept it?  They’re allowed to want grandkids. They’re even allowed to mention it.  And she’s allowed to either be a giant jerk who “confronts” them or she can offer a mature statement of a shrug and “okay then” while letting her actions speak for herself.

    Unless your parents are poking holes in your condoms, then what *precisely* is the problem?  

    (And I follow this blog to make sure my own childfree lifestyle doesn’t cause me to fall into the self-congratulatory self-absorption I see in other childfree people.)

    How you don’t recognize that parents who continuously remind you that they want children is verbal and emotional abuse is beyond me. Go educate yourself on what abuse is and then reread this whole thing. You should also realize that your minimization of these people’s feelings is abusive and you should stop.

    Your reading comprehension is terrible. No one mentioned anything about abuse until you and there was no statement about changing the parents minds. It isn’t about changing their minds it’s about getting then to respect you and not bring up the subject again. They can want kids but that doesn’t mean you need to hear about it.

    (Strikethrough is mine)

    Basically, this person hits it right on the head. You don’t fucking get it. You should read the other in-law experiences I was sent, and maybe you should get out your Google and read about problems that’ve been caused by in-laws for childfree couples. It’s a real problem for many. Anon asker also never said it was simply an annoyance. You’re assuming a lot here. Maybe you should go back and read their message. They never said it was abusive, and I don’t have enough info on what the in-laws have said in detail along with frequency, but these situations can become emotionally abusive. It’s abusive to continue bothering someone about a topic in a way that’s obviously hurtful, it’s emotionally abusive and definitely manipulative/damaging to try influencing a decision that’ll impact the couple and possible child so much, when they’ve likely said they’re uninterested. Continuing to bring it up knowing the couple wants something else is an attempt to coerce and pressure the couple into doing what the in-laws want. Constantly nagging/coercing someone to pursue a particular reproductive decision they are not interested in = abusive. That’s an interference with someone’s bodily autonomy. But I never said anything about abuse, anon never said anything about abuse, only you did. The in-laws wouldn’t even have to get to a point of “abusive” in order for the anon or anyone else to feel hurt by what is going on, so distinguishing between abusive/non-abusive is irrelevant. People are allowed to be negatively affected by rude, yet non-abusive situations.

    There is nothing wrong with confronting people who are causing you problems. It’s called open and honest communication, and we need more of it in the world. Confrontations don’t even have to be aggressive, incredibly risky, or cause a big scene, so I’m not suggesting anything absurd here. I listed off a myriad of responses the anon or their partner could use in conversations or as quick little asides in order to make it undeniably clear to the in-laws that they need to cut it the fuck out, possibly before it reaches a level of abusive. How they choose to go about it with their tone, timing, etc, I did not comment on. Your suggestion that they basically grin and bear it = years of built up resentment (which causes A LOT of issues), consistently uncomfortable family gatherings, likely deterioration of any decent relationship with the in-laws, unwanted and rude comments from in-laws, continued attempts at coercion on the reproductive decision. Wow, much solution you came up with there. 

    As for what can be so difficult about being childfree? You speak like women* who claim feminism isn’t needed since they think they don’t face issues simply for being a woman*, completely forgetting that they’re not the only women* in the world. It’s so unbelievably counter-productive when they try getting in the way of a philosophy that’s aiming to help them and less fortunate members of their group. You don’t know enough about diversity in the childfree community if you have the ability to take such an uninformed stance that there are no complications or issues that come along with a childfree decision, or the environment a childfree person might be in. Your bullshit is very invalidating for me, given some very difficult and complicated circumstances surrounding my childfree decision. No, I won’t get into what they are, because they’re extremely private issues for me that I don’t have to voice to the whole world. Just because childfree is simple for you, and just because you don’t see how being childfree can be hard for some people, doesn’t mean you are correct about how it works for everyone. It doesn’t mean that your experience should take precedence over everyone else’s. 

    What’s showing right now is your ignorance, lack of experience with a variety of childfree individuals, and flat-out disregard for the well-being of others. You don’t think there’s anything wrong with trying to dictate the feelings of other people. You lack empathy and compassion where it is needed, and that’s not something I tolerate here, especially not on a post where someone came to me looking for support. You don’t have to be bothered by what someone else is. I know I’m not personally bothered by all the concerns brought to me, but I’m also not so narcissistic as to believe my individualistic thoughts should be the authority on what is and isn’t a problem, or that they should direct the way I approach a person who’s upset about something. If someone comes looking for help, they need support, they possibly need advice, they definitely need compassion and validation. It doesn’t matter if we’re bothered by the same things as someone else is. The moment you try to shit on them and others for it, you’re causing a problem, and you’re making this space unsafe for other childfree individuals, which means you don’t belong here, and you’re exactly the kind of person who gives our group a bad name. So your posts and interactions have now been blocked/ignored from this blog.

    My sincerest apologies to the original anon who has had to endure this, and I’m sorry your post was derailed by this completely insensitive user. 

     

  3. Anonymous said: Another story about the parents of a spouse. My hubby's parents basically disowned him because we didn't want kids. They're religious extremists who are very pro natalist. I don't think my husband will ever cop to it but everyone can see this has worsened his depression. He'll never have a working relationship with his family again who he was close to. If that's not a real problem then I'll be damned.

    Tagged #childfree
     

  4. Anonymous said: I don't want kids, but my boyfriend's brother most likely does. I'm terrified that someday his parents are going to favor his brother's future wife because she will give them grandchildren. And that I'll be jealous of all that attention and fuss that pregnant people get. I don't want to be the failure daughter in law. I know this hasn't even happened yet, but I'm scared it will.

    I hope that won’t be the case. I hope your in laws will treat you with the same respect and value as they do the brother’s future wife. But if they don’t, please know this does not truly reflect on your worth as a person. You are just as important. Your fears are understandable, and I hope they don’t become a reality. You will never be the failure daughter in law for making decisions that are best for you. It only shows responsibility and incredible self-awareness on your part. Take care.

    Tagged #childfree
     

  5. Anonymous said: Do you have advice dealing with in laws that keep reminding me they want a grandkid even though my partner and I have zero interest in having a kid. It's really ridiculous they want me to become pregnant, birth, and raise a kid just to make them happy. I don't want to be rude but that's a lot of work, physical and financial and mental obligation, and changes they are demanding.

    marktwainsheadonablanket:

    beingchildfree:

    marktwainsheadonablanket:

    beingchildfree:

    Unfortunately, you may have to be very firm to get these people off your back, even if it’s perceived as rude. They’re already being rude! They’re trying to weasel their way into your very personal life choices that they have absolutely no rights to. If you can’t go on tolerating their bullshit, then there will need to be a confrontation of some sort. But it really should come from your partner, since it is from your in-laws. They will have the best sway with them, they will have the most credibility with them, and as their relatives, approaching them is initially their responsibility. Unless they have legit problems with calling their relatives out. Your partner or you should tell them they need to stop insisting you make choices based on their desires and not your own. That you are not interested in being a parent, and they will not be getting a grandchild from you ever. That this decision is not about their wishes, and it impacts you the most. That they need to drop the topic, because they cannot change your minds. That if they keep this up, they will face spending less time with you because of how they disrespect you when you’re around. I know it can be daunting, but with these types, that’s probably the most surefire way to bring an end to it. Best of luck.

    This is not a real problem. Parents can want grandkids all they want. It doesn’t affect you. No, really. I’m speaking from personal experience here. No matter how annoying it is to hear “I want grandkids,” it doesn’t affect you, it’s not your problem. And if it *does* affect you, then it’s because you are looking for something to be annoyed by.

    How incredibly ignorant of you to shit on the experiences and feelings of others purely because of your individualistic experiences, or possibly the experiences of a handful of others you may know/have heard of. This is such a ridiculous “argument” that I shouldn’t even be wasting my precious time entertaining it, and I won’t beyond this. When people constantly invalidate you and your very personal life decisions, some decisions which could carry very strong emotions and sensitivities for an individual for a variety of reasons you don’t know about, then yeah it can take a fucking toll and affect someone’s mental health. This pressure from in laws is also a clear sign of disrespect for the couple and their needs. Not to mention the negative cultural implications associated with people who aren’t the couple thinking they should get to say anything about what the couple chooses when it comes to children. So yeah, it does fucking matter when people in your life who should be supporting and respecting you are completely disregarding your feelings and boundaries in favor of their selfish desires. The rudeness of others is rude for a reason - it is unpleasant, uncomfortable, and has a shitty impact for many (even if the same thing doesn’t bother someone else somewhere else in the same way). I don’t give a single flying fuck if you’ve had no problem in this regard, or if this kind of shitty treatment from others doesn’t bother you a lot. Good for you. Lucky you. I understand why it might not affect some people as much as it does others. It still doesn’t mean you get to speak for all on this, that you get to define what is and isn’t a “real” problem for someone else, and it doesn’t mean others don’t have a right to be bothered by or complain about it or try to bring a stop to it if it’s getting in the way of their happiness. Also, if you think there’s such a thing as people who are obviously genuinely upset looking for something to be annoyed by, then you clearly don’t understand enough about the human mind to even be vaguely discussing interpersonal and psychological concepts. 

    No, this is most empathetically NOT a real problem. You smile through your teeth and if they’re abusive then you treat it as such.

    It’s literally as simple as that. Not having kids isn’t complicated. It doesn’t require other people’s opinions.

    You are so ignorant to the possible circumstances of your fellow childfree out there in the world if you believe that not having kids isn’t ever complicated and doesn’t carry extra issues for some people. It’s also pretty damn ableist to separate issues into “real” and “not real” problems, considering that what we’re specifically addressing right now presents a lot of legitimate issues to many with mental illnesses and other disabilities. It’s also extremely arrogant and entitled of you to make yourself an authority on how experiences should affect other people, especially when there’s no such thing. People are allowed to feel how they feel about the way they are treated without someone else telling them they have no right to feel that way. You’re like those people who tell someone that’s upset about something shitty in their life that “it could be worse, there are kids starving in Africa you know.” I honestly have no idea why you felt you’d have a good experience following this blog when your attitude clearly doesn’t match the one of support, safety, sensitivity, and validation that I have worked hard to establish and maintain here.

    It would’ve been one thing to say it’s not a problem for you so you don’t understand why it bothers other people so much, because then it would’ve sounded more like you were taking the opportunity to share with others what your personal experience is. That’s not what you did though. Sharing your opinion that this isn’t actually a problem and going on to insult others who do have a problem with it, holds no relevance to this post, and it doesn’t change that it creates a problem for the anon who asked the question. You are not helping them out. Telling someone not to feel the way they feel never improves a situation, and usually makes the person feel worse. You are being incredibly out of line here. 

     

  6. Anonymous said: Do you have advice dealing with in laws that keep reminding me they want a grandkid even though my partner and I have zero interest in having a kid. It's really ridiculous they want me to become pregnant, birth, and raise a kid just to make them happy. I don't want to be rude but that's a lot of work, physical and financial and mental obligation, and changes they are demanding.

    marktwainsheadonablanket:

    beingchildfree:

    Unfortunately, you may have to be very firm to get these people off your back, even if it’s perceived as rude. They’re already being rude! They’re trying to weasel their way into your very personal life choices that they have absolutely no rights to. If you can’t go on tolerating their bullshit, then there will need to be a confrontation of some sort. But it really should come from your partner, since it is from your in-laws. They will have the best sway with them, they will have the most credibility with them, and as their relatives, approaching them is initially their responsibility. Unless they have legit problems with calling their relatives out. Your partner or you should tell them they need to stop insisting you make choices based on their desires and not your own. That you are not interested in being a parent, and they will not be getting a grandchild from you ever. That this decision is not about their wishes, and it impacts you the most. That they need to drop the topic, because they cannot change your minds. That if they keep this up, they will face spending less time with you because of how they disrespect you when you’re around. I know it can be daunting, but with these types, that’s probably the most surefire way to bring an end to it. Best of luck.

    This is not a real problem. Parents can want grandkids all they want. It doesn’t affect you. No, really. I’m speaking from personal experience here. No matter how annoying it is to hear “I want grandkids,” it doesn’t affect you, it’s not your problem. And if it *does* affect you, then it’s because you are looking for something to be annoyed by.

    How incredibly ignorant of you to shit on the experiences and feelings of others purely because of your individualistic experiences, or possibly the experiences of a handful of others you may know/have heard of. This is such a ridiculous “argument” that I shouldn’t even be wasting my precious time entertaining it, and I won’t beyond this. When people constantly invalidate you and your very personal life decisions, some decisions which could carry very strong emotions and sensitivities for an individual for a variety of reasons you don’t know about, then yeah it can take a fucking toll and affect someone’s mental health. This pressure from in laws is also a clear sign of disrespect for the couple and their needs. Not to mention the negative cultural implications associated with people who aren’t the couple thinking they should get to say anything about what the couple chooses when it comes to children. So yeah, it does fucking matter when people in your life who should be supporting and respecting you are completely disregarding your feelings and boundaries in favor of their selfish desires. The rudeness of others is rude for a reason - it is unpleasant, uncomfortable, and has a shitty impact for many (even if the same thing doesn’t bother someone else somewhere else in the same way). I don’t give a single flying fuck if you’ve had no problem in this regard, or if this kind of shitty treatment from others doesn’t bother you a lot. Good for you. Lucky you. I understand why it might not affect some people as much as it does others. It still doesn’t mean you get to speak for all on this, that you get to define what is and isn’t a “real” problem for someone else, and it doesn’t mean others don’t have a right to be bothered by or complain about it or try to bring a stop to it if it’s getting in the way of their happiness. Also, if you think there’s such a thing as people who are obviously genuinely upset looking for something to be annoyed by, then you clearly don’t understand enough about the human mind to even be vaguely discussing interpersonal and psychological concepts. 

     

  7. Anonymous said: Do you have advice dealing with in laws that keep reminding me they want a grandkid even though my partner and I have zero interest in having a kid. It's really ridiculous they want me to become pregnant, birth, and raise a kid just to make them happy. I don't want to be rude but that's a lot of work, physical and financial and mental obligation, and changes they are demanding.

    Unfortunately, you may have to be very firm to get these people off your back, even if it’s perceived as rude. They’re already being rude! They’re trying to weasel their way into your very personal life choices that they have absolutely no rights to. If you can’t go on tolerating their bullshit, then there will need to be a confrontation of some sort. But it really should come from your partner, since it is from your in-laws. They will have the best sway with them, they will have the most credibility with them, and as their relatives, approaching them is initially their responsibility. Unless they have legit problems with calling their relatives out. Your partner or you should tell them they need to stop insisting you make choices based on their desires and not your own. That you are not interested in being a parent, and they will not be getting a grandchild from you ever. That this decision is not about their wishes, and it impacts you the most. That they need to drop the topic, because they cannot change your minds. That if they keep this up, they will face spending less time with you because of how they disrespect you when you’re around. I know it can be daunting, but with these types, that’s probably the most surefire way to bring an end to it. Best of luck.

     

  8. Anonymous said: Thank you for this blog. I love kids but I'm not mentally stable enough to have them

    You’re welcome. I completely understand. Take good care, and do what’s best for you. 

    Tagged #childfree
     

  9. youjustknewwhileisighed:

    I think people feel threatened by other people’s fashion choices for the same reasons parents often feel affronted by childless(/childfree) people. or married people pester common-law married people on why they aren’t getting married.

    i mean, just let people make different choices than you! you don’t have to be threatened by difference!

    or are you scared that you didn’t think your choices through - or that you didn’t realise that there was a choice - and you’re now trying to hide your panic in a shroud of aggression? huh?

    let people be different!

     

  10. Anonymous said: Thank you for your recent post about the "I don't want want kids, but I like kids" kind of caveat. I am consciously trying not to say things like that anymore. I appreciate your reminder of our validity. All the best to you.

    Anon is referencing this post.

    Thank you for this feedback, it’s always helpful to hear these things. I am glad you’re working on that. I’ve had to work on it for a while myself. Every now and then it’ll slip out, but it’s much less frequent now. Soon it shouldn’t happen at all (at least I hope). 

    Tagged #childfree