10 Reasons Life is Better Childfree

98 Comments

1. You’ll have more money to spend on yourself.

2. You’ll actually be able to save for retirement.

3. You can be the most kick ass aunt or godmother ever, because you aren’t burnt out from your own kids.

4. You can fully concentrate on your career.

5. You can have a white couch and white carpet and as many breakable things as you want.

6. You never have to spend a sick day taking care of someone else. (Except for your husband, maybe.)

7. You can fully pursue your educational goals.

8. You can spoil your pets rotten.

9. You can eat whatever foods you want at whatever time of the day you want them, without sharing a single bite.

10. You will never have to spend money for a sitter to sit in your house, eat your food and watch your TV.

Comments

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  1. 1

    Jane says

    Bravo! I think this perfectly sums up the child vs no child debate in an elegant and respectful way. Surely as mature adults we can all appreciate the various difficulties and joys of each others lives without taking anything away from out own happy existence.

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  2. 3

    The Mommy Psychologist says

    I used to be you:) For many years, I was the childless woman surrounded by mothers and believe me, they wanted to be me just like I”m sure they want to be you. I used to say I didn’t want children of my own because I spent all of my time working with kids (I’m a child psychologist). But then my biological clock started banging so loudly it couldn’t be ignored and well…here we are:)

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    • 4

      Kelly says

      This is one of my pet peeves when it comes to mommies; this “I used to be JUST like you but then my bio clock went off and I became a mommy”.

      Do you know what you’re insinuating when you say that? You’re insinuating that being childfree is a phase and eventually…like it or not; we women will get that itch and we’ll have children too.

      Am I the only one who is annoyed when people say this? Am I the only one who has decoded this sense of “aww sure! You say that now, but wait…” attitude.
      Drives me crazy!

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      • 5

        Rachel says

        I 100% agree. I think what you really mean to say is ‘I used to have a fabulous, interesting life, and then I decided to chuck away my freedom for shitty diapers and no sleep.’.

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    • 6

      Annabell says

      This is exactly why it is so hard for childfree women to just live our lives and not become defensive, people like you who dismiss our life choices with the verbal equivalent of a condescending pat on the head, its like you are telling us that our carefully thought out and strongly held life decisions – which have been made for a variety of reasons that you know nothing about – are a phase that we will grow out of. Your comment indicates a lack of respect, you dont take other peoples choices seriously simply because YOU changed your mind, and you think this means all other women are just as fickle. Comments like yours can be found on EVERY article and blog post about childfreedom. In the future, please feel free to keep them to yourself.

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        • 8

          yummy_mummy says

          I think it is especially unfortunate when some women have made this choice in circumstances where they have made great sacrifices. My sister decided not to have children in order to be with the man she loves (who was incapable of having children) – it needs to be understood that women (and men) make these choices for a variety of reasons – yes, sometimes a person may choose to change their mind, sometimes their mind may be changed for them; but it is still ‘their mind’ that is at the core of it – leave them be.

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  3. 9

    Jen @ Ginger Guide says

    Well said! This is another topic where people love to bash others for their choices and it pisses me off. Besides, I love having friends like you. My girl friend will bring me wine if my stock is gone and take my 15 month old whirlwind to the park for a few hours. She gets her kid fix and I get my alone time. Winners all around.

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    • 10

      Jen says

      Thank you! I think my two friends who still have young kids appreciate me too. I do love getting my kid fix and when I can give one of them a break. It is good all around.

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    • 11

      rachel says

      I couldn’t agree more. We waited 5 years, and before kids I loved hanging out with mommies. It was so fun to just watch babies playing and offer them a little time out. Last night I met new neighbors that informed me no one else on the block would speak with them ‘ because they are in a different stage of life.’ I assured them that was ‘not a thing’ and we would love to being friends regardless of their no-kid status.

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    • 12

      Kelly says

      I like your attitude Jen!

      I’m child-free and I get my kiddie fix from friends or relatives.

      I love babies and some kids, but I cannot handle one 24hrs for 18years. I don’t want or need a kid full time but it doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy them for short periods.

      We can work together, us mommies and Child frees. We don’t have to hate each other.

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  4. 15

    Kate in Ohio says

    I respect and applaud people who don’t have kids and don’t bend to the peer pressure to have them. There are so many moments that I would trade with you, and there are equal amounts of them that I wouldn’t trade for the world. It is all about making and living with choices and being happy with the life we choose or is chosen for us.

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    • 16

      Jen says

      Yes, it is about being happy with our choices. Once in a blue moon, I do feel a little sad that I don’t have my own child, but then I don’t. Like you said, there are moments we think we want to trade but in the end they are what make our lives whole.

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  5. 17

    Anne Kimball says

    Your take on the need for people to not presume you would only be happy IF…. is expertly written.
    I can remember when I had been dating my then boyfriend at the time, it was, “When are you getting a ring?”
    Then once we were married, it was, “When are you getting the baby carriage?”
    Now that I’ve got six kids, it’s : “Are you ever going to stop? Enough already!”
    Woe to those who do not follow society’s pre-ordained path of what’s supposed to come next.

    Well done, Jen!

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  6. 19

    Brittany says

    This is wonderful! My two best friends are in New York without kids and I am in North Carolina with a husband who travels a ton and 3 kids 5 and under. I wish they lived closer! They adore my kids and kids in general. One is even a principal, but they don’t want little ones. Now I will take you living closer :) You could babysit any ol’ time.

    Thanks for reminding me how special those tiny people are and at the same time appreciating all over again that not everyone wants kids.

    My younger sister doesn’t, and my mom is always SHOCKED. She wants to travel the world foreever and she goes to some very dangerous places. What would she do with a kid?

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  7. 20

    Christie says

    I LOVE this line: “In the end, the moments we think we’d like to trade in seem to be made up by all the ones we never would.” You really hit the nail on the head. I think that we all suffer from “grass is greener” syndrome every now and then but, as they say, if everyone sat in a circle and threw their problems in the middle, you would gladly take your own back out. Great post.

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    • 21

      Jen says

      Christie
      I know I’ve had to really let the “grass is always greener” thing go. You can end up letting it apply to just about everything in life. I love that visual about throwing everyone’s problems in the middle. You’re right. I’m sure we’d all probably take our own back.

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  8. 22

    Alexandra says

    It’s hard to go against the grain, and there are some people that are convinced you just don’t know…and they need to brainwash you.

    My sister is 42, and has never felt the need for children. It’s not that she doesn’t want children, she just really likes her life the way it is.

    And I get that.

    Not everyone feels the same calling for a certain type of life.

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  9. 23

    Tricia says

    We all make of life what we want to make of it. Nobody should compare one to another as each life is unique, just as it should be. Love this post, specifically how you talk about knowing that there are things we all miss but if we just learn to notice them and let them go, we’ll notice all of the things we love about how we’re living.

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    • 24

      Jen says

      Tricia
      I think it’s okay to acknowledge that there are things we are missing out on. No person’s life is perfect or just right. The challenge is letting them go and moving on. Thanks so much for commenting!

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  10. 25

    Megan {{Millions of Miles}} says

    So well said! My sister and law and my best friend have both made the choice that having children is not the right decision FOR THEM. But I can’t tell you how many times we go to family gatherings, etc. where the entire topic of conversation turns to criticism of their choice. For some reason most people fail to understand that a woman can still be a WHOLE person (full of awesomeness) without children. Both of these women have such a profound positive impact on the lives of my three kiddos. They are the best aunts imaginable (and yes- they always have gum!) Thanks for sharing your heart! I always love hearing this perspective put so eloquently.

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    • 27

      Kelly says

      Megan,

      you just described my life.
      It doesn’t matter if there are juicier topics to discuss; the topic of convo always turns to ME and MY CHOICE to not have children. It has gotten to the point where I avoid family gatherings!!

      Its sad because I love my family but I’m sick of their criticism about this!

      *sigh*
      I needed to vent!

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  11. 30

    Arnebya says

    This is perfect in that it captures not only our sometimes fleeting feeling of wishing we had what we don’t, but also that men say dumb, inappropriate shit far more often than women. Ha. But seriously, I feel this way more often than I’d like to admit when looking at either single friends or friends without children. The ability to get up and go, and do so without naptime being a factor, the ability to watch mindless tv without it being taken to mindless extreme when someone requests to watch Spongebob instead. It’s all relative. The feelings pass. Just b/c you don’t have children doesn’t mean you’re pining for them. And just because I am bogged down with a husband and three kids doesn’t mean I’d trade for someone else’s life. It just means sometimes I just…sometimes.

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    • 31

      Jen says

      Arnebya
      What a wonderful comment! Thank you so much. Yes, watching mindless television when one wants is a pleasure. I just get nudged by the dogs to be let out. This is much easier to deal with than changing a diaper.

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  12. 33

    Kristin says

    It’s all about personal choice. If you’re happy with your life choices that’s all that matters.I wouldn’t want people questioning why I have children and it’s certainly not my place to question why people don’t. I bet you make a great “auntie” lady! : )

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  13. 34

    Marie says

    Kudos to you, Jen, for your poignant and honest take on the controversial subject of having children vs. not having children. I appreciate your sentiments – this was a beautiful post! I sure wish you were my “aunt”!

    Marie

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  14. 36

    Kristin Shaw says

    I respect completely your decision. When people understand that they do not want to have children and stick with that path rather than bow to the pressure of they think they “should” do, it’s a much better world. I have some very close friends who don’t have or want children, but damned if they don’t pick out the best gifts for my son. :-)

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  15. 38

    Melissa says

    For many years this is what I thought I wanted too but somewhere along the line I realized that I would regret it. So I now have my one perfect darling girl (well, most of the time) and she gives that hug that I wouldn’t trade for anything in the whole entire world. That being said, she is the only one I want that hug from so there will not be any more. It’s funny how you get criticized for that too. “Oh, she’ll be so lonely growing up.” (What? Is she such a loser that she won’t have any friends?) “Oh, you’ll be so bored playing all of those silly little games that little girls make up that she’ll make you play.” (What? Do I really have anything else so super important to do?) “Two children are ideal.” (Says who?) So no matter what you do you’re going to get those naysayers telling you what they think you should do so yes, take your path and just enjoy it!

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    • 39

      Jen says

      Melissa
      That is so interesting. I have even labored over that issue as well. What if I do have a child but only want one? The questioning never ends. It’s all about making the best decisions for you and then being happy with them.

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  16. 40

    Kate says

    I loved this post. We all are making the best choices for our own life and we really should support that. I have two children of my own but am really good friends with a woman who has chosen to not have children. She’s loves my kids and loves to spoil mine with adventures while I get a uninterrupted hours to clean my house or share a quiet dinner with my husband. When they return home, I have kids who are happy and tired because they got to spend time with their “auntie”. I’m so grateful for her it’s unimaginable.

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    • 41

      Jen says

      Kate
      It really gives me a wonderful feeling getting these fabulous responses like this. It’s so nice to know that there is appreciation on both sides of the spectrum. Like I said, some free babysitting is never a bad thing. And, I get free hugs from the kids when I need them. Plus a few from very grateful friends.

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  17. 42

    Christine @ Quasi Agitato says

    I have some happily married friends who don’t plan to have kids and I totally get it. I definitely asked, early on in their marriage, if they thought kids were in the cards. I don’t know why. I just HAD to KNOW. But past that…it’s really none of my business. We all do what’s right for us in our circumstances, yes?

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