During high school, thanks to the scare tactics of “sex education”, I became irrationally afraid of pregnancy.
The fear never abated, and suddenly I found myself in my late 20’s, scrambling to get to Walgreen’s because it’s been 67 hours, and I NEED PLAN B RIGHT NOW, DAMN IT! I WANT TO LIVE! I HAVE SO MUCH LIFE AHEAD OF ME, OH GOD, CAN THIS LINE MOVE ANY SLOWER?!?!?!?!
As I’ve gotten older, it’s become more and more clear: I don’t want kids. Ever. I have felt guilty because of this realization for a long time. My poor mother, who only had one child, will be crushed when she realizes that she may never have grandchildren. The thought of working so hard for so long to finally attain a level of personal sustainability, both financially and psychologically, only to flush it all down the toilet in order to produce a tiny creature that looks a lot like me, so that it can love me unconditionally until the day it screams, “I HATE YOU!” and slams a door in my face… isn’t appealing to me.
Well of COURSE you don’t want to have kids right now!, you’d say. You aren’t married, you can barely afford to keep your cat alive, and you’re incredibly selfish! You’d be right, but I can’t imagine myself ever having children. I think that’s okay. I have other goals for myself. The only reason I can think of for having children is to make my mother happy. Is that a good reason to create a new life and force it to be my child? I don’t think so. (And for your information, my cat lives a VERY happy life.)
Sometimes, children kill their parents. There have actually been a terrifying amount of child-on-parent murders in our history. I don’t think I want to take that chance. That’s realistic, right?
I’m not criticizing people who DO want to have children or people who have children already. That’s great! You’re keeping the human race from disappearing! If the world was full of people like me, we’d be screwed. It would be like Children of Men, except all of the people with wombs would be too busy playing with cats and painting their nails (i.e., my busy life).
Men will look up and shout, “Save us!” …and I’ll whisper, “no.”
There is a certain expectation, though, especially of ciswomen, to want to be mothers. We’re all so NURTURING! We have BIOLOGICAL CLOCKS! THEY’RE TICKING! TICK TICK TICK! A woman doesn’t become a REAL woman until she has a baby!!!! AMIRITE?!
You don’t need to be a parent. If your goals don’t include parenthood, that’s okay. If you decide to be a parent, do it because you really want to. If you don’t, enjoy all of the money you don’t have to spend on mush food and poop bags.
Hell, I may change my mind. For now, I enjoy the thought of doing whatever the heck I want for the next 60 years.