Baby? No thanks.

baby1In June, I’ll get to go home and visit Southern California. I’m super excited that I’ll get to spend my birthday there. However, before I get to enjoy the sunshine on my face, the fresh ocean breeze, the tall palm trees, and the company of friends and family, I get to spend 3 days with my sister in law and her new baby in Minnesota.

I get along just fine with my sister in law. She’s a funny and kind person with a TON of personality. But she and I are different people. She’s loud, an extrovert, chaotic, and has a need to make everyone her friend. I’m an introvert, quiet, organized, and I don’t care to make everyone my friend. On top of all that, she’s recently had a baby who will be 4 months old when I see him.

The problem? I don’t like babies. I’m just not a baby person and I realize that makes me different than most women in this world. I have no interest to have a child of my own. I seriously think the mommy gene skipped my species and went to all of the other members of the animal kingdom. I go crazy for all the other baby animals and I love having animals in my life, but my own child, no thanks. I don’t think babies are cute and adorable, or rather, I’m indifferent to them. I view them more as crying and demanding beings. The picture I’ve posted at the top of this post doesn’t make me go “aw a baby!” Put a picture of a piglet there instead, and I’ll squee.

What I think, when I think of babies

What I think of, when I think of babies

I suppose I can admit that I am a selfish person. I like the freedoms I get to enjoy because I don’t have children. I like being able to take off on a traveling holiday at a moments notice. I like that I can go out for a romantic dinner for two and not have to make arrangements. I like being able to sleep in on the weekends. I like being able to be lazy in the afternoon if I want to be. I like that if I’m sick, I can spend the day in bed and not have to suck it up and take care of the kids.

Perhaps, this makes me a selfish person, or perhaps this makes me an educated adult that simply recognizes the responsibility of having children and has decided it’s not for me. Deep down though, there is one truth, I just don’t have a natural force within me screaming to have a baby. I wouldn’t say I lack a maternal instinct, because I very much have one when taking care of animals and my own dog. I just don’t have a maternal instinct with human babies.

Of course I think about my not having children all the time. Firstly, I am my mother’s only child and I think it has disappointed her that I won’t be giving her any grand children. But, that’s not a good enough reason to have children of my own. I have thought about the fact, that I could very well die a lonely woman. Let’s face it, as we age, we can usually rely on our children to be there (not saying that’s the case for all). Our spouses come and go, but are children are there for us. Should my husband pass before me, I won’t have children to be there for me as I age. I won’t have children to care for me. It’s kind of sad and scary to think about, but again, not a good enough reason to have children. Then there’s the fact that society wouldn’t pressure me so much if I were a stay at home mom and not simply a housewife. It’s not looked down on as severely when a parent chooses to stay home for the children, but someone who simply stays home while their spouse goes off to work, is often looked down on and said to live a “kept life”.

I’m dreading the 3 days I have to spend with my sister in law and her baby. Mostly because I won’t want to do anything with the baby. I don’t want to watch him, I don’t want to change him, I don’t want to feed him and, no, I don’t want to hold him. My sister in law will take this personally and knowing the type of person she is, she will try to push the issue. She will try to get me to change my mind about babies. She will insist I have to hold him. I’m hoping that our three day visit will not be as bad as I picture it.

Maybe I will change my mind about babies? Eehhhh… let’s not keep our hopes up.

My idea of adorable babies

My idea of adorable babies

© Semi-Charmed Life

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5 thoughts on “Baby? No thanks.

  1. Hey Sylvie,
    I don’t think there is anything wrong with you not wanting children. Now unlike you, I do coo when I see a baby or a picture of a baby and I do have moments when I think about having a baby (but I think that is because I have had two ectopic pregnancies). However, I know that I definitely don’t want to have children. I even went to my OB and asked if I could have a hysterectomy, of course she said NO. Anyway, everything you said makes perfect sense to me and I think it is completely unselfish that you don’t want to bring children in this world knowing your feelings towards them and the fact that you are not allowing yourself to be pressured by family, friends and society. However, I also understand what you mean in regards to when you get old and who will be there. I too am married and my husband has two children from his previous marriage, so I have two children, but I do find myself thinking about my legacy, or lack their of in terms of children. Sometimes it does bother me that once I die, my legacy dies too, but I quickly get over that. Yes, you not wanting children can be considered selfish, but as I mentioned before, I also believe it is completely unselfish. Now I have heard women say that before they had their child, they thought they never wanted children, but once they had their child, it completely changed their life and I am sure that is the case, but what if it isn’t the case? What if you have a baby and all the “motherly” feelings don’t come. What if you have a baby and their isn’t a bond? Then what? Anyway, I said all of this just to say once again that I understand and you are not alone. Great post!!!!

    • Thanks for the visit and the comment LenaJoh. It’s nice knowing there are other people out there who feel the same way as I do, because I don’t have any friends who feel the same way I do. In fact, it is unbelievable how many of my friends are having babies right now or are pregnant and will be expecting later this year. I remember when I wasn’t yet 30, how many people would laugh at me like I was a fool when I said I didn’t want children. They’d look at me like I was naive. “Just wait till you get a little bit older and you hold a baby. You’ll change your mind.” Well, here I am 5 years down the road, and I still feel the same. I don’t think anyone the lesser for having children, it’s a natural human response. Many people are genuinely happy to be parents and love it so much. Now I know that should I find myself “oops I’m pregnant”, that I would have this baby and embrace parenthood. Part of me thinks I’d be a good candidate for post partum depression though. Part of me thinks I’d make a great parent too. But for whatever reason, I just never felt like having children of my own. It will be interesting to visit my SIL. Maybe because I’ve not been around many babies, I haven’t come around to falling in love with them? It will be interesting to see if I come out of this experience a changed woman. It will also shock me. My husband is a father to a daughter from a previous marriage. Maybe my heartstrings will be pulled and my biological clock will start to tick as I watch him embrace his nephew and hold a baby in his arms? Who knows really. It might be a defining moment for me. It may very well cement my decision to not have children, or it might make me change my mind. In the meantime, I won’t be holding my breath (or babies) 😉

  2. Fuck societal expectations on women to be “maternal”. I realised a long time ago that i do not want to have a child. I have many, many reasons for that choice, all of which are my business alone until I decide to share them. Anyone who tries to push the issue with me once I’ve stated My. Goddamn. Choice. is coolly treated as the rude and arrogant motherfucker they are behaving like. Good luck with your S.I.L., my dear. I hope she surprises you. XXX

    • Thanks Squeaky. I’m finding that (and understandably so) women who have made the same life choices as I are being very supportive, but some women (not all) who are parents are deeply uncomfortable and shall I say, offended by my lack of love for babies. They shouldn’t take it personally as I’m not saying I don’t like their baby or children. In fact, I rather enjoy the company of children. More so when they are well behaved. My husband has a daughter from a pervious marriage and because she is still young, and we live in a different country, we only see her when we get back to the states. As she grows older, this will change, I am sure of it and I will find myself spending summer months with a growing child/preteen in my home. Is this going to be a hard adjustment? Sure, but I will take it on gladly. Right now, since she is still very young, I enjoy my times with her when I get to just be the fun “Sylvie” who plays with her all day. I find for the most part, people respect my decision to not have children, even though I think they feel sad for me that I will never enjoy the joys of parenthood. But it’s interesting how many people are appalled by my saying I’m not into babies. I’m not going to pretend I’m gaga for babies and want to hold every one I see. And I’m not going to apologize for being truthful. I don’t think babies are the cutest thing on the planet, get over it. You may not think (insert baby animal here) are the cutest things in the world but I’m not going to be appalled by this. But what it really comes down to, is this is a blog and my chance to be blatantly honest about how I truly feel.

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