Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Mommies Found My List (and they aren't too happy with me)

Suddenly I got a rash of comments to my most popular post, The Top 100 Reasons Not to Have Kids (and Remain Childfree) and the comments were from mommies. So I went to Site Meter to find out where they are all coming from and looks like there's a whole thread on a site called "Just Mommies" dedicated to ripping me a new one. The mommies are none to happy with my "pathetic", "selfish" self. How dare I criticize the glorious mommy life!

(I think they're just mad because someone is finally telling the truth about motherhood instead of promoting the myths they all fell prey to).

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

To those of you who celebrate, a very Merry Christmas! Thank you for stopping by and visiting me at this blog, for your emails and all your interesting and insightful comments over the year. I hope you have a fantastic day!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Friday Laugh

Thank you to Monika for forwarding me this cartoon. Gave me a chuckle.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Childfree (or childlike?)

One of the negative stereotypes about childfree individuals is that we are immature and not fully developed adults, the idea being that becoming a parent is an essential step to becoming an adult and until a person has a child, she is forever locked in a childlike state. Lori Bradley, in her recent post Does Having Kids Make You Old? smartly observes that in many cases the opposite is true, and many people seem to use parenthood as an excuse to avoid aspects of mature adulthood.

I don't find parents who give up career, friends, and adult interests particularly mature. Many parents seem to launch themselves into a world of youthful fantasy that temporarily frees them from facing the difficulties of adulthood. Ironically, they abdicate their roles as parents as they desperately seek to be a best friend and key member of their childrens' clique.

And, it's important to remember that caring for others doesn’t mean just catering to kids. It can mean caring for the community, the planet, for students, for pets or other aging family members. Caring and nurturing comes in many forms. Parenthood is not the only path to maturity or social responsibility. In fact, if parenting is not undertaken with maturity it can lead to chronic childishness.

My reader Betty emailed me with her thoughts about this matter (and gave her permission for me to publish part of her letter here).

"My nephew's wife, Laura (age 29, with 2 lovely little girls who would be my great-nieces) said to me, "I believe you don't really grown up until you have children." Really? My husband and I don't have children, which must mean we haven't yet grown up, however:

*My husband and I are not only both University graduates but have advanced degrees

*We have no student loans or credit card debt, in fact except for a small mortgage on a rental property we are completely debt free.

*We have never defaulted on any payment, EVER.

*We have not been drunk since our college days, don't smoke and have never done drugs.

*We have not borrowed money from our parents.

*We file our taxes on time every year.

*Both my husband and I have had modest careers with Fortune 500 companies that have afforded us many opportunities to travel, work and live overseas.

*I speak 3 languages fluently (English, Spanish, German and actually a little bit of Thai), and my husband speaks fluent German and English.

*Due to my husband's career, in the last 8 years we have lived in Melbourne, Bangkok, Buenos Aires and currently live in Munich, Germany. Meaning I have planned, organized and done 4 international moves, found a place to live in each country, set up house, dealt with all the transition issues of a new culture as well as set up our social network and support system and then packed up and done it all over again...several times.

*We are avid sailors and owned our own sailboat when we lived in Melbourne and have chartered sailboats in many different parts of the world. We have sailed the Great Barrier Reef, Bass Strait, Gulf of Thailand and Mediterranean Sea, mostly just the two of us without any crew on 30-35 ft sailboats. Our ability to work well together as a team at sea has proved invaluable to our relationship on land.

*We have only 1 car, my husband's company car which he drives to work. I go everywhere either on my bike or on public transportation which admittedly is top notch here in Germany.

*We live in a nicely decorated, clean and tidy apartment.

*I love to cook and without being too crazy about it eat as much non-processed, fresh, organic, high quality food as possible. I can't remember the last time we had take out food from a box.

*We are kind and loving to our parents and family. My husband is a doting godfather to his two nephews.

*We have been living on only my husband's income the last 8 years. Due to the many international moves it wasn't always possible for me to work. However, we still manage to have 1+ year salary in savings.

*We have written wills, health insurance, life insurance, car insurance, rentors insurance and disability insurance all paid up and up to date.

*We don't keep the neighbors awake with loud parties or annoying music.

*We do not own a Playstation, Wii, X-box or any form of a video game.

......So I am kinda wondering what part of us has not yet grown up?????.......

Thank you for doing such a great job at the blog. Would enjoy being in contact with you.

Warm Regards,


Thursday, December 9, 2010

Mommy Thumb

Thank you to Hilary for alerting me to the fact that childfree folks are fortunate to avoid yet another malady - MOMMY THUMB. Add this to my Thanksgiving Thankfulness list.

Monday, December 6, 2010

A Man's View - Hated on Mostly

I read a yahoo news article recently and a comment by Susan Sarandon really bothered me and was an example of one of many reasons why I do not want to have children.

After so many years together, she suggested they had reached their limit: "You bring people into your life at certain times. Maybe you have a relationship to have children and you realize that it's fulfilled after that point."

Comments like this and women's general baby rabies behavior that eventually comes to dominate all things in a relationship always make me question whether a woman is really into her partner and really loves him or is he merely a means-to-an-end. The end being children and oftentimes the financial ties that bind a man once he has children. The majority of relationships with children resemble this comment in that once the children enter the picture the woman stops caring about her boyfriend or husband and focuses on the children and whatever else she is into (anything except her partner). The sex stops, the affection stops, the honey-dos list become unending, fun non-business type conversations disappear, etc. He basically becomes a worker-bee/butler for the most part and is only there to serve the children and his now unattentive woman's needs.

I have seen it myself and heard about it in numerous confessions from men who are "happily married with children" too many times over for it to be a coincidence. This is a behavior very unique to having children. I never seen it in the few child free relationships that I have encountered or heard about. I don't think a woman can take a man for granted as much when the legal and financial ties that children create do not exist. Neither party, man or woman, can bind the other with children in a childfree relationship. I think that leads to a healthier relationship because both participants have to actually like the other person and demonstrate it on a regular basis since the person doesn't have to "stay together for the kids" or "the child support will kill me". Laziness has no place in an intimate relationship and not having children helps reduce the chances of either party becoming lazy or taking the other for granted.

I think it is a topic that a lot of child-free people and men in general never discuss and to me is a huge elephant in the room. The fact that a lot of women enter relationships just to have children and there are a lot of unsuspecting guys on the other end of that who suffer, emotionally, mentally, and financially. The man doesn't really matter other than if he meets a profile good enough to her standards to have a child with. He is replaceable and unimportant. He only needs to feel special or loved up to the point that the baby pops out (sometimes not even that long). Once the baby is there he is stuck and you can ignore him.

Does a woman really love you if she would leave you because you won't have kids? A person who doesn't even exist is more important and more loved and desired than you who is right there with her right now, going through life's ups and downs with her? That is a very offensive notion to me and one of the major reasons (the others you cover pretty well) why I will never children. How can I trust someone who would leave me for someone who doesn't even exist. That doesn't sound like someone who is taking our relationship very seriously to me or someone who would have my back when I really need her to. If I am that interchangeable with another guy, she can't possibly be really that into me. I'll pass on that kind of relationship thank you.

I could write a lot more about this and maybe one day I will, but I just wanted to throw this out there as something to discuss since it never is and I think a lot of men with and without children can relate to it.

Thanks for the great blogs and links. Keep it up.

Hated On Mostly

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Childfree Celebrity Spotlight - Vincent Kartheiser

Fans of AMC series, Mad Men, may be delighted to learn that actor Vincent Kartheiser, who plays the role of ambitious ad man, Pete Campbell, is childfree by choice. In this clip from MSNBC, Vincent talks about his efforts to live an environmentally-friendly life, and how being childfree furthers those efforts. Thanks to Claire-Marie for the link.

Want to see what other celebrities are childfree by choice? Check out my list and be sure to let me know if you learn of others so I can be sure to add them!