You ask me, at 17, to choose which college I want to spend thousands of dollars attending.You ask me, at 18, to decide what I want to study at that college.
You ask me, at 18, to vote in major elections for our country.
You ask me, at 18, to start thinking about moving out of my parents’ house, and think about getting a job, and to start becoming an adult.
And yet you say, at 19, that I’m too young to say that maybe I don’t want to have children.Well let me say a few things now to you.
By asking me to have kids you’re asking me to make an enormous commitment for a minimum of 18 years. Longer, if I have multiple kids, which also seems to be expected.
And by asking me to have kids, you’re saying that the most important thing I can do with my life is fall in love, get married,
settle down and go through months of pain and discomfort to create a tiny human being that I am then responsible for for the next two decades, multiple times.
And by asking me to have kids you support harmful ideas that the most fulfilling thing any woman will do is give birth.
Because you never mentioned what else I might want in my life, did you?But here’s what’s even worse. You didn’t ask any of that.You told me.
You assumed that one of my biggest -possibly my only- goals in life was to have children of my own.
Never mind that I have dreams and ambitions of my own that you don’t know about and didn’t care to ask.Never mind that those dreams have nothing to do with finding a husband or having kids.
Never mind that I don’t even have a boyfriend right now, let alone someone I’d consider marrying.
And I’m old enough that you’d expect that, wouldn’t you?Never mind that maybe I’d rather adopt than ever have “my own” kids.
Never mind that most of the people saying these things to me are complete strangers, people who have never met me or talked to me before at all.
You all assumed that I’d want kids, and of course! Why wouldn’t you? After all, it’s perfectly reasonable to assume I want that. It’s what every woman wants.
It’s what you wanted, right?Well not every woman wants that. It’d surprise you, I think, how many women decide they don’t want kids. And yes, a lot of them are my age.
It’s really not as different or as shocking as you seem to think it is. It’s quite common.
And please, don’t say anything like “You’ll change your mind when you’re older!” or “Follow where the Lord leads you!”First, I won’t change my mind.
I think I’m a little more qualified than you are to say what I will or will not think in the future.And to address that second statement, about following God’s plan.
Has it ever occurred to you, even for a second, that God’s plan for me might not include having children? That by deciding I don’t want that I am actually following His plan?
No, I don’t think it ever has.No one ever stops to think about how I feel about this. They’ve never asked, and they’ve never cared. They don’t know how much it hurts, to see them do this.
They’ve decided what I want for me, and then they’re surprised and hurt when I say I want something else.
Because to their minds, why would I want anything else?Maybe because I’m not you, and maybe because every single woman is a unique person who might want different things than other women.
And in the end, it is my choice, and no one else’s, what I want to do with my life and my body.I don’t get why so many people are offended by that.
Sincerely, a girl who is extremely tired of people telling her that someday she will want kids.[Disclaimer: To all mothers out there and all women who do want children, that’s excellent.
I’m very happy for you and I’ve got nothing against your desire for kids. This is just about me personally.]