Just because I don’t want children doesn’t make me any less of a woman

Womanhood is not determined by motherhood

In an age where a woman can choose, work and learn why is there still a stigma attached to women who do not want to be mothers? Seen as “unnatural” and “selfish”, our choice to be childless is demeaned and frowned upon.

I do not want children. Whether down to education, career goals or financial issues, I know I am not alone. Those of us who don’t want screaming toddlers are made to feel immature and less of a woman because we choose what to do with our womb. If a woman can choose to have children, a woman can choose not to, also.

I enjoy my freedom, my ability to treat myself, study and do what I want when I want. I have never seen myself as a mother, even when I was small. I always wanted to be a pop star, historian, teacher, actress. I had ambitions of earning my own money and having my own life, and that doesn’t include having children.

Just not for me

It’s not that I don’t like children, but the aspect of motherhood does not appeal to me and never has. The fact is it never will. I am tired of being forced into the idea that “you will change” whether it’s down to the right man or right time.

Motherhood can force a woman to give up her freedom. It places great strain upon parents to protect, love and care for their child. There’s also the risk of being abandoned by your partner and forced to go at parenthood alone. And that works out fine for some, but I personally do not want to risk my health, happiness nor body for motherhood.

In a time of overpopulation why should I bring another child into a world, when there are so many children needing homes? Being childless doesn’t make you “cruel” or “cold”, in fact being a mother doesn’t automatically make you motherly. You can be nurturing to anything.

Girls constantly feel like they’re running out of time. There’s the pressure to conform out of fear of loosing family and even partners. However, I will not be forced to become a mother to a child I do not want. This is my life and my body, my ability to be a woman is not merely down to my womb.

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University of Reading