When I was a young kid, I already knew that I didn’t want kids. But I thought it was something that you had to do – grow up, get married, have kids. It wasn’t until I was in my 20s that I realize that you really didn’t have to have kids, and thus born my childfree lifestyle.
To be fair, circumstances worked out in my favor – I went to college late, and my jobs since college never had a normal 9-5 schedule (and neither did my husband), so the logistics of having kids just never worked out. Fine by me.
I’ve been on birth control in one form or another since I was 16 – first the pill, then the ring, and finally I’m on my second IUD.
My psychiatrists have always been very fatalistic about me getting pregnant – it would be dangerous in one respect as I’d have to completely change my meds to ones that would be safer for the fetus, but also ones that we know don’t work well – or at all – for me. Another reason being that I’d be an incredibly high risk or natal and post-natal depression and psychosis, and severe at that since I couldn’t take my normal meds. It would be impossible for me to breastfeed as I would have to switch my meds back ASAP after giving birth. I’ve had two doctors tell me that they’d help me get through it, but they highly recommended against it.
A few years ago my gynecologist warned me that the time to get pregnant was quickly closing – due to my age it would be dangerous for me to get pregnant, especially a first pregnancy.
All of this was fine by me. At one point Mike kind of thought it might be nice to have a kid, but he realized that he likes our lifestyle a lot more.
Here’s where the problem starts.
A few years ago I made it known to my gyn that I wanted to be sterilized and have my fallopian tubes removed. All of a sudden everyone was so concerned that I would change my mind and regret it. Bros – you all just went through all of the reasons that I shouldn’t have kids, and yet here we are, all of you telling me that this is a bad idea and that I’d regret not being able to have kids.
What. As it turns out, only my psychiatrist was on board. He didn’t seem to think there was anything wrong with it – I had been clear on my stance on having kids for my entire adult life, and most of my adolescence. He knew that at this point in the game I wasn’t going to change my mind.
Yeah, tell that to a surgeon – I literally cannot find one. Granted, the pandemic put a stop to the search. (I’m now wondering if Planned Parenthood would do it….. hmmm… ) I mean seriously, I’m 38 do people really think that I’m going to change my stance at this stage of the game?? I don’t get it.
But I kind of do. I’ve come to find that most people don’t understand the decision to be childless. Everything from “who’s going to take care of you when you’re old?” to “your life doesn’t have meaning unless you have kids!” Neither of these logics I understand, especially the second one. I mean… so my accomplishments and triumphs mean nothing because I don’t have kids? Or that they mean nothing compared to incubating a small human for nine months?
It’s just so frustrating. I thought our families had finally come to terms with us being childfree, but it was my mother-in-law rather than my mother that supported my decision. My own mother wailed and cried and begged me to reconsider. It made it feel like my only use to her was as a breeder, despite her earlier ascertaitions that she supported us not having kids.
For fuck’s sake, I’m almost 40, do people really think I want to have my first kid at this point in the game?
Reddit has a childfree subreddit, and apparently on that board is a doc with names of doctors that will perform the surgery. Maybe it’s time to dip into that and get serious about this, even if it does piss people off.