Jennifer, 33, lives in San Francisco, California and runs a research desk for a financial services company. She has been in a committed relationship with her boyfriend Uri, 35, for 3 ½ years.
I am the youngest of three children by 8 years. I had a very loving Latin mother who gave me a ton of attention. My dad wasn’t as affectionate but always provided for us. I guess you could say we were upper middle class. I never really fantasized about having a family. From my family I observed that family sticks together and that family consists of parents and children and grandchildren and cousins.
No one helped me make the decision to be childfree. I never wanted children and I never expected to have them. I made the decision for myself. I did become more comfortable with accepting myself for not wanting children as I met other women in my life who decided not to have children and were happy. One British woman I met while studying in China in particular sticks out. I met her about 6 or 7 years ago. She was in her 50s and sat next to me in class. She traveled the world and lived in HK. I thought to myself, “Wow. There are women who have remained childless and have a rewarding life. There are women who like their lives, have friends and are active.” Since meeting Jane I have met several other women my age who have decided not to have children. We are all educated, working, and come from loving families.
Deciding to be childfree is not like coming out gay where you have to make it official or tell everyone. I just always knew. The first time I discussed it was with a boyfriend at the age of 18 or 19. He was shocked. Whenever asked by family or friends or boyfriends I have been honest that I didn’t want them and no I wasn’t going to change my mind when I hit 30. I have had a couple of relationships break up over it.
I do have friends who have children. They accept my decision for my life. When I was younger they said I would change my mind when I was in my thirties or that I just hadn’t met the right person – a lot of pre-conceived ideas about kids and the notion that I would inevitably want them. I interact with them great. I love other people’s kids. I play with them, watch them and enjoy them. I just don’t want any of my own.
I give my love everyday to friends and family and the world by being a good person and treating others how I would want to be treated. I volunteer to help animals, I tutor immigrant teenagers to pass the SAT and I treasure mother earth and don’t take natural resources for granted. I accept people for who they are regardless of race, religion or sexual orientation.
So exciting and refreshing to read these! I love being Child free!!