I don't plan on ever having kids — here's why you won't change my mind

Becca SloaneI (right) just don’t see kids in my future.
  • I’ve never seen myself as a mother or a mother figure
  • Having a fulfilled life doesn’t necessarily mean being fulfilled by children.
  • I want to give my all to a long-lasting career, and I know that I personally couldn’t do that with children.

From a very young age in my life, I began to realise that the traditional expectation placed on women to have children when they grow up was not necessarily something I was interested in.

I would watch mothers with their children – including mine – and wouldn’t feel any type of connection or longing to recreate that experience for myself.

It looked like a rewarding experience for sure, but also relatively life-consuming, and I had a lot on my plate that I wanted to accomplish in my lifetime. At that point, it didn’t seem like being a mother was something that could fit in with everything I had planned for my life, and I was OK with that.

As I got older, I learned that other people weren’t so OK with that.

People spent a lot of time trying to change my mind or convince me that my opinions on the matter would change, but frankly, I knew they wouldn’t.

I have a lot that I want to do in my lifetime, and having children just isn’t one of them, for many reasons. Some people understood – they could connect to the concept of not wanting to be pregnant or spend a lifetime with children potentially interrupting my career and taking over my life – but others did not, and tried to tell me I was wrong.

To be honest, a lot of my reasoning doesn’t make sense to most people. For starters, my ever-growing and ineffable fear of throwing up certainly wouldn’t allow for any morning sickness … or any other pregnancy discomfort. Most people insisted on making sure I knew that no matter how sick I got, it would all be worth it in the end when I had a child, but I wasn’t so sure that would be true for me.

Parents with babyOdua Images/ShutterstockThis just isn’t the life that I see for myself.

Some people also assume I don’t like kids. I do like kids – I just don’t want to raise them.

There were groups of people who assumed the reason why I didn’t want to raise children was that I didn’t like kids. I personally know this not to be true. I love children; I like being around them and I’m quite good with them, so this puzzled me quite a bit.

It’s not that I don’t like kids, it’s that I don’t feel the need to have my own. It doesn’t really fulfil any kind of greater desire within me.

I also have many fears about having to raise children. There is something very pure and beautiful about motherhood and getting to experience that in a lifetime. Unfortunately, I do know there are other cases of parenting that have gone awry. I don’t think I’d be a bad mother necessarily, but I would worry that the stress and emotional wherewithal that it takes to be a mother would ultimately hurt and potentially damage my children, who I would love deeply, simply because I might not know how to parent them the right way.

Though some people don’t understand my decision, it helps when people, like my best friend, who inspired me to write this piece, feel this way too

I believe I would personally find it challenging to balance being a mum with having a career.

In general, I’ve always been driven to work towards a specific goal, and that has typically been something concrete and rewarding for me. Whenever I’ve spoken with aspiring mothers, there seem to be only two paths: stay at home to help raise their family or else try to become successful in their career while also balancing their children’s needs.

For me, I would find it challenging to be committed to both a job – with potentially a lasting career – and to your kids, and I would never want to do either halfway.

Don’t get me wrong – there are lots of mothers who handle their careers and motherhood well and don’t feel like they need to choose between the two. But because I know myself and my own limitations, I’m certain I wouldn’t have the headspace to do both. I would end up having to choose to put my all into one, likely to the detriment of the other.

I am also an independent person and I don’t think I need children to be happy in life.

As a young adult, I’ve really come into my own and I’ve learned a lot about myself in the past few years. I am an extremely independent person, and as I’ve grown into that label, I’ve found that I’m really comfortable with the person I’m becoming.

In that realm, I just genuinely don’t feel like I need anything further than that in this lifetime. That’s not to say that I don’t want to share love and romance with somebody. I do, I have in the past, and I don’t want to be in this life alone long-term. But for me, I don’t think that need for companionship and greater joy would be fulfilled by having children.

When I give other people that rational, most of them try to convince me that my mind will change and that when I grow up and get married, I will feel differently. I don’t believe this to be true and I wish it was just enough to love myself and my body.

Plus, even without having kids, I know I’ll continue to find ways to make the world a better place and help others.

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