Post # 1
So my older brother’s wife was talking to me today and asking me about the marriage. She was specifically asking me when we want to have children after getting married. I told that my FI really does not want children and wants to have a Vasectomy ( there is a large age gap between us), I really have never wanted kids nor do I have any maternal instinct, occasonally I will get an urge but it usually passes in about 24 hours. When my FI told me he wanted a vasectomy, I supported him 100 percent. My sister in law was almost insulted by this and acted like there was something wrong with me that I don’t want to have kids. I then felt like I had to come up with reasons why didn’t want them ( like the fact I have MS etc) when really I just don’t want to be a mother and would rather enjoy the company of my nieces and nephews. To her not wanting to have kids means I am selfish, actually I think it would be selfish of me to have children if I didn’t want them 100 percent. I just wish she wouldn’t judge me based on her life, she has children and is happy, so do a lot of my other friends, and I am happy for them they are so happy, I just don’t think I would happy with kids…why is that so horrible?
Post # 2
Not her life, not her decision. Do what’s right for you and your DH.
Post # 3
It’s not horrible. At all. Some people want kids, others don’t. What’s so wrong with knowing what you want and sticking to it? You should be able to say “No I don’t want kids” and not have to justify it! I think it is very mature to not think you have to have kids because people expect it and to know that your life is going a different way than those who do want kids. People can be so annoying.
Post # 4
It’s not…some people just have to impose “normal” on others in order to explain them. Too many people have children because they feel they should when they are not 100% into it. I say congrats to you for not being selfish and doing it because you don’t want to and recognizing the place for kids in your life is in a aunt role and not a mom role. Its a brave stance to take as choosing not to have kids by choice can bring a lot of criticism and judgement that should not be there.
Your SIL can just suck a lemon. Just avoid the talk with her in the future.
Post # 5
Well, I am sorry to say this is society: and I am not saying it is OK. People judge EVERYTHING. I am so sorry :(. As a young bride I get a lot of hate for “ruining my life” etc. If I was 40 and wanting to get married I am sure people would be shoving their unwanted opinions down my throath.
The only thing I have to say (appart from *hugs*) is that you should stop explaining if you don’t feel like debating. If you feel like sharing your choice and someone starts an argument just smile and ignore.
I hope we someday get to the point of shutting our mouths when we are not asked. Smile!
Post # 6
One of the signs of maturity is when we no longer feel the need to judge our decisions by others’ standards.
” I do not judge you for your decision to have chidren. I ask that you do not judge me for my decision to not have children.”
Post # 7
Never understand how it’s selfish to not want kids.. Makes no sense! It’s a totally valid choice to do or not to do, but sadly I don’t think that’s the last conversation you’ll have about it where you have to defend yourself! Hopefully opinions change over time and we start letting women decide without nastiness. Glad your Fi is of the same opinion as you and best of luck with your twosome!
Post # 8
I have much more respect for you for feeling that it would be selfish to have children if you didn’t want them 100% than the countless other women out there (your SiL most likely included) that just plunk them out because that’s what they think they should do. You don’t need to justify your choices to anybody, least of all someone who’s sticking her nose somewhere it doesn’t belong. Your marriage; your life; your decision. Next time she brings it up, change the subject immediately. Maybe after a few times she’ll get the hint that she has no business trying to dictate how anybody else lives their lives.
Post # 9
BelleEtoile: Whaaat. Suck a lemon indeed! This is actually none of her business. Screw that. Don’t worry. Everyone has different wants in life. It’s not wrong to want children. It’s not wrong to NOT want children. Could you imagine if you went around like that, judging people for having kids???? SIL would lose her shit if you turned this around on her.
All that said, I agree that not engaging in the debate is a good idea. She can’t pick apart your reasons if you don’t give them. (By the way, having MS would qualify as a pretty damn good reason. Not that you even need one.)
I have a couple of friends who think it’s the height of selfishness to only have one. Well, we only want one. Too goddamn bad for anyone who decides we should have another. They don’t get a vote.
Post # 10
BelleEtoile: People give me the same shit because I am not sold on the whole kids idea. And neither is my DH.
In my twenties, people said I would grow out of it and want children. Now in my mid-30s, people give me the same crap they giving you.
I always point out that you shouldn’t have to convince somebody that they want a child. That those of us that don’t want them shouldn’t have them–we shouldn’t have a child because people guilted us into it.
Interestingly, in the sequel to Eat, Pray, Love, she writes this wonderful chapter on the role of childless women in societies.
Post # 11
I’ve heard this before and it, honestly, confuses the hell out of me! To be selfish is to think bout yourself more than somone else. But the thing is, there’s no “someone else” when you don’t have a kid. The kid doesn’t exist. And it’s certainly not selfish towards society as a whole – hello overpopulation! So I really don’t get the “selfish” argument. Frankly, as someone who works with kids who come from awful homes (not that yours would be) I wish more people realized that kid weren’t for them and just didn’t have them.
But, some people are crazy ridiculous. And you can’t argue with crazy. All you can do is smile and changee the subject. You are doing what is most responsible and what is right for your family. Don’t let her make you feel bad for your totally legit decsion.
ETA: If I was in your position and in a bad mood, I would have delighted in telling her that I like to drink and sleep in and have loud sex in the living room, so a kid doesn’t really work for me.
Post # 12
When you think about it, it’s more selfish to have children. Who does having children benefit – no one but their parents. The economy loses out on a working mother paying tax, there is more of a drain on natural resources. You just need to be strong in your convictions and not let other peoples negative opinions sway you from what you feel is the right decision for yourself.
Post # 13
So sorry hun! I seriously DO NOT understand why people think it’s so wrong to not want children. My stepmom never wanted children…she was pregnant once and accepted the fact that she was going to be a mother. She ended up having a terrible miscarriage that almost killed her, and even though she was far enough along that she felt connected with the baby inside her, it never made her change her mind and decide to have kids. She fell in love with my dad when us kids were little and I think it was really hard for her to be a stepmother to us. When I got older I started to develop a closer relationship with her and I started to understand that she wasn’t a horrible person for not wanting to be a stepmom to us.
Ok, so my story was kind of a little different than what’s happening here, but my point is that my stepmom was not DEFECTIVE because she didn’t want kids. That’s just how she was. And I don’t care who you are, I don’t think it matters!
Post # 14
BelleEtoile: Jeez she really needs to learn when things aren’t her business! I can’t relate to the feeling of not wanting children because I very much do but I would never judge someone who doesn’t want them. In fact, i’ve personally witnessed what happens when someone who doesn’t want them is guilted in to it.. and its not good, for the child especially.
If she brings it up again, don’t feel the need to make up excuses. Tell her its your life, your decision, and she should stop giving her opinion when its not required nor wanted!
Post # 15
I get shit for being 36 and childless/ childfree all the damn time.
I will respond very bluntly to anyone who chooses to comment on that particular topic. Selfish would be to bring children into the world when they aren’t wanted. Not following a particular life path is totally acceptable, and screw anyone who tries to tell you otherwise.
I swear, most (I said most, some are fabulously happy with awesome children who are a joy) of my friends with children act as though they are exhausted and downright miserable. I think sometimes they resent our free time, ability to be spontaneous and certainly our extra income.