Childless by Choice: Your Choice, Your Life

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Greetings to My Savvy Sisters!

This week I would like to introduce an alternative lifestyle that many are unaware of. I was first introduced to this concept last summer when I met a young lady who was recently married. I always ask about love stories and she eagerly shared hers with me. After mooning over the bliss of true love I asked, “So when are you going to have a baby?”

“I’m not,” she shared.

“What do you mean?”

“I am not having any children. I told my husband before we were married and I guess he didn’t believe me. I don’t want children.”

I was awestruck. “You don’t WANT children? How can that be?”

She shrugged. “Motherhood doesn’t benefit the woman in any way,” she explained. “I’m not getting into that.”

For the next few days I couldn’t get her perspective out of my mind. Recently, as I researched various topics to explore on My Savvy Sisters I came across a woman by the name of Laura Scott, who has written a book called Two Is Enough: A Couple’s Guide To Living Childfree by Choice.

I was astonished by the Childless by Choice Project and the work that Laura has put into it. On her website she published the results of a survey that details the attitudes of 171 voluntary childless/childfree individuals living in the U.S. and Canada.

The website reports the results of the survey as follows:

The Top Six Motives are:
1) I love our life, our relationship, as it is, and having a child won’t enhance it.

2) I value freedom and independence.

3) I do not want to take on the responsibility of raising a child.

4) I have no desire to have a child, no maternal/paternal instinct.

5) I want to accomplish/experience things in life that would be difficult to do if I was a parent.

6) I want to focus my time and energy on my own interests, needs, or goals.

The first three motivations listed above were determined to be top motivators because they were rated a 4 or 5 on a scale of 0-5 by more than 70 percent of the respondents. The remaining three were rated a 4 or 5 by over 60 percent of the respondents indicating they were also strong motivators for the majority of the participants. All of the motivations above had an average rating of more than 3.5.

What are the Least Compelling Motives for this group?

The following motive statements had an average rating below 2.5 indicating that were compelling motives only for a minority of the group surveyed.

“I delayed having children and eventually decided I wanted to remain childless.”

Only 21 percent of women and 22 percent of men gave this statement a rating of 4 or 5. That is not surprising as only 21 percent of the survey respondents described themselves as “postponers.”

The rest of the survey respondents had made the decision to remain childless early in adulthood, or had “acquiesced” to a partner’s wish to remain childfree, or were “undecided.”

“I am concerned about the physical risks of childbirth and recovery.” Only 24 percent of the women rated this statement a 4 or 5. However it is interesting that 12 percent of the men surveyed rated this statement a 4 or a 5 indicating that some men are concerned about the risks of childbirth and recovery, too.

“People I know have not realized the rewards they expected as a parent.” Only 30 percent of men and 25 percent of women surveyed strongly identified with this statement.

“I don’t think I would make a good parent.” Interestingly, only 26 percent of the men and 30 percent of the women surveyed were strongly compelled to remain childfree because of perceived lack of parenting skills or aptitude.

After reaching out to Laura Scott to congratulate her on her work, I asked her if she knew any women who wouldn’t mind being profiled for this feature. She posted an announcement on her facebook page and 5 delightful women contacted me to be a part of this feature. Each day this week I will post a new profile of a woman who is happy being Childless By Choice.

Whether you’re enjoying motherhood or deciding to live a different lifestyle, there is a lot to be learned from women who take a stance to do what they feel is best for them rather than following the status quo to appease others.

Women Who Enjoy The Childless by Choice Lifestyle

Lindsay’s Story

Susan’s Story

Jennifer’s Story

Sheila’s Story

Angela’s Story

With Love,


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One Response

  1. Anonymous March 14, 2011

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