Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Childfree Women: Tell Us What You Love Most About Not Having Kids

Huffington Post
Here's a (totally not exhaustive) list of reasons that I don't have kids right now:
1. I love being able to grab a drink( or two) with my co-workers after leaving the office -- and not feeling guilty if I get back to my apartment a little tipsy at a slightly inappropriate hour for a weekday.
2. I love living in New York City. I live in Manhattan in a lovely but small space. Where would I even put a crib? On the fire escape?
3. I never need to think about hiring a babysitter or worrying about whether said 16-year-old babysitter is a sane/responsible human being.
4. The ability to make last minute plans. On Saturday mornings I can sleep in as late as I want. When I do leave the house, I can pop over to a museum or Central Park or see a movie or have brunch, and I can decide on one -- or none -- of those things at the drop of a hat.
5. Provided I have the funds, and give my bosses a reasonable amount of heads up, I can go on vacation whenever and wherever I want.
6. I can have a spontaneous dance party at 1 a.m. in my apartment and not worry about waking anyone up. 7. My money is my own. Period.

Now let's hear from you. If you're a woman without children -- regardless of whether you see yourself having them at some point or never want them -- tell us why. What do you love most about not having kids? Tweet @HuffPostWomen using the hashtag #NotNowBaby. We'll compile your responses in a slideshow here!
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unencumbered said...

Did you see this Sociological Images post about happiness in working/non-working mothers and non-mothers?

Interesting Gallup poll of 60k US women.

Unknown said...

Sleep , glorious sleep. Not having the stress of guess-work/process of elimination -- trying to figure out what would please or what would fix the ailments of a tiny vulnerable human who doesn't know words or how to string them together to form a sentence would drive me crazy and emotionally drain me.

Anonymous said...

1. Being able to sleep. I cannot function without sleep, and I cannot stand continually interrupted sleep.

2. No "mom body". Maybe it's primarily a southern thing, but most mom's I've seen end up with this rounded, amorphous blob of a body. This isn't just an aesthetic thing, these women all have Type 2 Diabetes as well.

3. My life is not centered around the role of mommy. I don't have to relate everything to children, how it will affect them, or talk about how I'm a mother. I get to have my own identity.

4. Freedom. I'm not a party gal, but I want to be able to go out for a movie on the spur of the moment, or simply spend time with friends. And I can do that. I'm not bound to screaming little tyrants, or at the mercy of a babysitter.

5. No subjugation by a loser dude. Seems like most men I've met who become dads instantly check out. If they do stick around, they saddle the mother with the childrearing duties, and expect to be taken care of just like them. He becomes another child, only he goes to work every day. I would not want that.

6. Less disgusting things in my life. Let's face it, children are GROSS. They're covered in food or snot, or other things I don't wish to discuss. They're germy and sticky. I can't stand that. And I could never be like a parent and think that that crap is cute or funny.

7. I like being able to do something good for the environment, that I can actually believe is good. As confusing as the debate over what's good or bad for the planet is, it's pretty easy to come to the conclusion that we could do with less people. So there's that.

L.T. said...

My own tweet as @ltciaccio made the HuffPo slideshow; it was about how I want to have my husband all to myself when he's not working. For those of us who are passionate about our careers, it can be difficult to find enough time to socialize, either with our spouses or our friends.

If I had a child, I would have to give up virtually all of my alone time with my husband. I am not willing to relegate our time together to a once-weekly date-night with a babysitter waiting at home. It just isn't enough. Heck, I don't even think now is enough (I've been known to relish 3 week road trips alone with him), and all I share him with is his pursuit of a PhD.

There are countless other reasons, of course, including those named in the article and by my wonderful commenters. However, I selected this one because I thought it the smartest one to present for mainstream HuffPo audiences - it presents us as something other than the career-driven or hard-partying self-centered stereotypes.

Unknown said...

Having a healthy and firm body unencumbered by the rigors of what it takes to squeeze a watermelon through a garden house.

Money. Having more of it.

Not having to give a rat about what happens if I die, who should get what.

Having sex any time of day or night with my man.

Sitting in restaurants that don't accept children.

Not having to go to Chuckey Cheese. (I'm not sure I even know how to spell it)

Being able to proudly say "no I can't babysit, I've never changed a diaper"

Having more education and more time to get educated.

Not having to put filters on my cable TV box.

Being able to walk around in the all-together anytime I want in my own home.

Peace and tranquility.

Anonymous said...

Not being part of the overpopulation problem, thus helping every human and living thing on the planet.

The other "C" offset, the Child offset.