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Rescued Furnishings

Childless by Choice

A lot of you may not want to read this post. That's okay. It's not really Rescuing Related. Although some of you may to try to rescue me from what you think is a terrible decision. :) You can come back tomorrow, I will have something better. I feel like for some of you, talking more about my real life might be helpful. A lot of times in my DIY classes people talk about their life and kids. We get to know each other really well and I love that.

Step 1 in getting to know me is that I used to be an engineer.

And now, My husband used to be an engineer too.

If you follow me on facebook you know that I am HLA-B27 positive and have Ankylosing Spondylitis. There are good days and there are bad days. And there are days that I know some day soon I will be forced to make  some lifestyle changes. I think the sooner I make them the better, but I know they will be hard and I am not good at hard things so I put it off. Also, once I go down that road its official. I am officially sick and I officially have a life that has to be managed. I'm not good at this. I will be honest, ignoring it is easier....for now.

Anyway, something else that has become a part of who I am is my decision to not have children. I don't talk about it a lot because I think its personal and opens me up to hearing these things:
"You'll change your mind"

"You still have time"

"You will never know true love"

"That's so selfish"

and so on.

I have three dogs. We love our three dogs. We want more dogs. We will always have dogs. When people find out I am married, almost the very next question is "Do you have children".  The only right answer seems to be yes and when I say no the disapproval can be cut with a knife.

When Brandt and I got married, we did not know about my AS but we did know I was fairly positive I did NOT want children. He really doesn't care either way but leans more to not changing things. In all the time I have known him he has never questioned if we have made the right decision. I have. I literally stay up late to watch videos of people announcing to their families that they are expecting. I have googled till I am blue in the face and one time years ago I came across a blog that summarized my feelings perfectly. They wanted all the kodak moments. That was it. I wanted all the beautiful kodak moments but I didn't want to make school lunches. Ok, maybe I am selfish.

But when I got diagnosed with AS, it became my excuse. You can still have children, but its harder so it is easier to blame it on my disease.

But this is my choice and I should own it. I have read a lot of childless vs childfree blogs. Childless is a term for people who want kids and can't have them and childfree is a term for people who don't want kids and aren't having them.

After years, I can honestly say I am neither. I think there is a group of people that may regret later in life not having children but don't find that reason enough to have children. I think there is a group of people that LOVE kids and wished they wanted them. I think there is a group of people that see all their friends that have always known they have wanted kids but never had that feeling. I think there is a group of people that are jealous of their friends that have always known they wanted to be moms. At least this is what I tell myself so I don't feel like I am alone. I love kids. Sometimes it is almost heartbreaking that I don't want my own but I think it is the right decision for me.

I am writing this to bring light to it. Some people don't understand the decision of those that purposefully do not have children and may think its selfish or wrong but maybe you are missing that it is also painful. And it isn't a requirement. It is almost taboo to not want children, although I think that is changing.  I know it can be disheartening when the very people you are so so happy for when they expand their family think you will live a loveless miserable life. I know children are wonderful and amazing and that there is nothing like it. Ok, Maybe I don't KNOW but I get it and I am so so happy for those that have a family. Please don't stop telling me your adorable stories. I live for those kodak moments. We all have our own path. Parents have the world's hardest job. I have the utmost respect for you. Raising humans in this world is an overwhelming thought to me which is probably why it is better you than me.

But we can all talk about your little ones in our DIY classes over a glass of wine. :)

For those that struggle with the decision of not having children, I just wanted you to know...there is nothing wrong with you. It is okay. You are okay.

I am an ex engineer, with all the student loans to prove it, not using my degree at all, small business creative entrepreneur, dog mom and I am okay.

 

 

Nov 10, 2015

You are all so amazing and sweet and supportive and I just love all of you. Thank you!

Nicole @ Rescued Furnishings
Nov 10, 2015

Nicole,
Thank you for sharing what is so very personal. It’s your life, you have to live it, no one should judge you for that.
I was in school during the Gloria Steinem, NOW, women’s lib movement. A time when we were told, you can do anything as a woman. This was the 70’s. But, the brutal truth is that once you become a mother, your life is not yours to do with as you please. Ever again. I wish I had waited to let my life unfold before I became a mother. I wouldn’t change my history, or not have any one of my five boys, but for the past 30+ years, my life had only been about that. My creative life? Mostly back burner, except for music for a time. Now that my nest is empty I am trying to learn what to be! I’m amazed by women your age who already know! I think that is wonderful. Keep on your path, stay true to you.

Marcia
Nov 09, 2015

I have a few friends who have made the same decision….I probably should have made that decision when I was younger although I wouldn’t change having had my children now that I know them.
I admire sometime who knows how they feel and stands by their conviction.
You go girl!

Linda
Nov 09, 2015

In all honesty I never wanted to be a mom either. I was never around kids growing up and kids made me nervous. As I got older I did change my mind and want kids. I have a 5 year old son and a 2.5 year old daughter. While I love them and they are my whole world I understand why you have decided to stay childfree. Being a parent is one of the hardest jobs I’ve ever had. My worst day at the office doesn’t even compare to my worst day at home. I miss the carefree life I lived before kids. I have been envious of friends without kids or who have chosen to be childfree. I don’t regret having my kids at all. For myself it has been a learning experience and a true blessing. This life is the path I’ve chosen and while it can be hectic I would do it all over again. I don’t judge people on their choice of having kids or not. It’s your right to choose and it drives me crazy when people question your motives. Thanks for sharing for those whom have chosen the same path as yourself.

Annette
Nov 09, 2015

Never feel you have to explain to ANYONE that you choose not to have children. Frankly it is none of their business and I applaud you for your decision. Never feel forced to have kids because people say you should!

Patti Genz
Nov 09, 2015

Amazing post! I wish everyone were so honest about the complexity of emotions surrounding kids. I am struggled with decisions, then struggled with having babies, and now have them, but no path is right, wrong or easy. Hard. Thank you for being so honest and I’m happy you are in good place with everything

Melissa
Nov 09, 2015

I have read article after article about a woman’s decision to not have children because I wanted to be educated and empowered to defend my decision. I will never forget the day my decision was brought up in conversation and my bosses wife respectfully replied, “Good for you for making that choice and taking charge of your life rather than having a child because society expects you to. I have three kids and it’s definitely not for everyone.” It was the first positive reply I had after a long line of “You’ll change your mind” and “You just haven’t found the right man yet.” It was such a relief. I completely understand the judgements and criticism but they don’t live your life.

Melissa H
Nov 09, 2015

I love your honesty and sincerity it is endearing and heartwarming. I always only wanted to be a mom and many people thought that was crazy. Everyone has their own path for sure and there is no right path… This journey is yours!

Sharon Proksha
Nov 09, 2015

Thank you for sharing your personal perspective on this subject. Even though I had children, I fully understand! You may be an ex-engineer and a current entrepeneur but you also have a future as an awesome writer if HGTV doesn’t come to their senses, that is!!

Cheryl
Nov 09, 2015

I have to tell you that I think you are incredible for owning your feeling, and know yourself so well. People have children for many wrong reasons. You have and will be blessed with a wonderful life, and children is not the determining factor to ones happiness. In the world we now live in I would not want to be contemplating to have a family or not. I have the utmost respect for you!

Brenda

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