Post # 31
ClaudiaKishi: but words have meanings. Childfree means being just that childfree. Not wanting biological children but being open to parenting via other means (adoption/stepparenting/fostering) is not being childfree.
A duck isn’t a zebra just because someone starts calling it that.
There are enough misconceptions around being childfree without people going around muddying the waters. Most CFBC people want to live a life where their choices are not judged but they will continue to be whilst people go around calling something which isn’t CFBC just that.
This was supposed to be a place where people who are living a life with “no kids” could talk about their issues. To me this is one of the real issues facing CFBC people. People claiming to be something they are not.
Post # 33
I dated men with kids before and I would NEVER do it again. Too much baggage and drama for me. If I don’t want children of my own, why would I bother with someone else’s kids? Being a stepparent is no picnic and I don’t want to go down that road.
Post # 34
I never dated men with children. I was not interested in a serious relationship at the time, it would have been completely unfair to the kids to be involved and just leave them when the relationship did not work out. Happened to me plenty as a child and I did not want to repeat the pattern
Post # 35
j_jaye: I suppose I could describe myself as ‘attempts to conceive, pregnancy, childbirth, maternity leave, weaning, potty training and life forever necessarily centred around the needs of my offspring-free’ but it’s a bit of a mouthful. If my friend brought her puppy round each week and asked for my input on training and interacting with it while it was there I wouldn’t consider myself a dog owner. I don’t need to dislike dogs or refuse to interact with other people’s dogs to consider myself dog free by choice. I also don’t need the world to be free of children. I interact with some of them, one of them regularly. Because we are at different developmental stages our interactions have a certain quality. Parenting is a convenient shorthand that I’m neither attached to nor repelled by. When I’m married I’m sure some people will address me as Mrs rather than Dr or incorrectly assume I will use my husband’s surname. I can correct them or not as I choose. Equally some people will assume his child is our child when we’re out together. They’re wrong but it’s not that relevant. Im pretty sure I will continue to consider myself childfree by choice because for the vast majority of my life and in almost every meaningful ways I am.
Post # 36
This is part of the reason why I had changed my mind on a CFBC board when it came up years ago and I’m glad this is a no kids board. Some people were stating they wanted a CFBC section using the more strict definitions for CBCers ONLY.
I think it’s pretty reasonable for people to call themselves CFBC by the choices they made! I would think it was a bit odd if someone referred to themselves that way if they had a step-child who would live with them part of the time or they were involved in parenting a step child somehow.
As for the original question, I really don’t know. I certainly didn’t and wouldn’t have in my 20s. If I were single now though it’s difficult to imagine myself in that position. I wouldn’t be seeking someone out if they had kids, and I would see having that extra complication of dealing with the relevant relationships to be a negative thing but I don’t know if I would rule it out 100%.
Post # 37
redbutterfly: I really don’t think you understand what being childfree by choice actually means. CFBC people don’t automatically hate children or refuse to interact with them. But nice use of stereotypes.
Being CFBC is about more than not potty training or the other nonsense you brought up. It is about not parenting a child. Being a stepparent is parenting a child. You and your partner make household decisions together that affect the child. If the child needed to come live with you then it would right? That is called parenting. You do not have to give birth to a child to become it’s parent and to ingnore that is pretty darn insulting to the hundreds of thousands of people involved in stepparenting, adopting and fostering. You also do not need to live fulltime with a child to parent it.
Post # 38
j_jaye: fine, that’s what it means to you. I choose not to let you decide what it means to me
Post # 39
I disagree that being a step-parent is the same as parenting, at least in my house. I have a step-parent who I adore and we have an adult relationship. He’s the best. I’m also married to a man with an adult daughter and two grandkids and they live in another state.
Everyone’s situation and life is different, it’s never going to be a one size fits all world.
Post # 40
I voted ‘Never’ as it was the closest one for me. However I suppose there is a 10% chance I would date someone with kids in a special situation. I’m really not keen on the idea though, I have seen first hand the problems it can cause and I would want our own family to be DH’s main priority. I also like the idea that the big things in life are things we are doing together for the first time, this includes marriage as well. If I knew he had done it before with someone else it would take the shine off it!
ETA: I just read the post properly and realised the CFBC part…I plan on having children so I guess it makes my answer invalid on this post, sorry ignore me!
Post # 41
I actually joke that this would be the best situation for me as an adult (assuming I wasn’t already happily married to some one with no kids – when I was in my 20s dating someone with a kid would have been a total no)…. we basically want grandkids but don’t actually want to have kids (for many reasons – biology being one but our jobs, lifestyle and where we live being the big ones)
If for instance something happened and I was dating again I think that a guy with an adult child that lived just close enough (2 hr drive or so) that we could visit but they weren’t expecting 24/7 free baby sitting would be the perfect thing for me…… get in some baby time and cuteness at holidays but then live my life as normal the other 300+ days of the year
the hardest part of being CFBC for me is wanting to have a big extended family to do holidays and other celebrations with – that is a big part of my life and who I am (though I know having kids doesn’t guarantee that as my Darling Husband parents hae 3 and we basically see them one-two times per year max and that is the most out of all the kids)
Post # 42
littlemisshostess: Haha I’m with you! In 30 years, give me the grandkids! I just don’t want to have the kids though in order to have them.
Post # 43
For me, no kids means NO KIDS of any sort, and I am not missing out on the love of my life by refusing to consider dating someone who is a parent in any sense because someone who is a parent in any sense, by defintion of being interested in being a parent, is not going to be the love of my life.
(Sorry, but it drives me mad when people tell me that I “need” to be open to dating people who already have kids of some sort. People who do this are assuming that I don’t know myself or what’s best for me.)
Post # 44
j_jaye: I definitely don’t disagree with your point (and I’m usually a pretty big proponent of “words mean things”, especially here on the bee). The reason I made my post was, in part, because my understanding of the reasons for creating this board was to kind of get away from those hardcore, militant CF places elsewhere on the internet.
I think 3ish days into the board and already coming in to a thread saying “no, you aren’t CFBC because you don’t fit x definition” is starting to go down this slippery slope that eventually turns into infighting, vicious debates, etc. about who is more hardcore CFBC and who isn’t. IDK, I’ve seen it happen so much that it just makes me concerned that’s the tone these boards will take.
While obviously “step parenting makes you a parent” is reasonable (although you said you would consider someone who step-parents an adult child CFBC so even you have drawn some lines/taken liberty with your own definitions), I’ve seen it get down to “well if you have an unplanned pregnancy and decide to keep it you aren’t CF so GET OFF THE BOARDS RARRRRR” or “If you would consider taking in your nephew if your sister died, GTFO” and I’m just not about that and hoping these boards don’t devolve into that, you know?
Post # 45
ClaudiaKishi: I agree with you. I am also on team “words mean things,” but I’m willing to have a little flexibility here, because people, especially women, who don’t have biological children often face a lot of judgment and badgering as well.
The only problem, IMO, might come about when someone (who would probably be someone who is hostile to CF in general, not someone who might be a regular here) might try to suggest that women who aren’t open to being parents of any sort are morally inferior/inflexible/otherwise worse than those who would be willing to foster/step-parent. (Doing so gives parenting a superior moral status that I don’t think it possesses.) In that case I suspect and hope that the women who do not want biological children but may have foster/stepchildren would come to the defense of the women who are opposed to having any children of any sort.