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Mormons and motherhood


YPestis

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This sort of thing makes me see red. I'm childless by choice and come up against similar comments. Firstly, I'm not sure why people think that your reproductive choices are any of their business, and secondly, the implication that you are a selfish person for not having kids is completely moronic for the reasons stated above.

For me, I've never ever felt any maternal urges, and don't think that societal expectation is a good enough reason to create a new human being. I'm also pretty introverted and need downtime or I suffer from anxiety/depression. And finally, I am a kick-ass auntie to five wonderful people, and have 30 students a year to whom I am a role model and a confidante. If I had my own kids, I wouldn't have the energy to work with the other young people in my life like I do.

I support all my friends who choose to be parents, and they in turn support my decision to be another auntie to their kids. Each to their own. Screw you, Mormon sanctimommies.

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The sad thing is is that it's not just a Mormon thing. I argued about this on another forum and some posters - who weren't even religious - said you don't know if you want children if you never try. Then I said it's not s if every person has a child and never regrets it and they saw red. And then one of them said she thought a lot of it was feminists causing women to 'ignore their biological imperative' and then I had to leave for the sake of my mental health.

I don't understand this paternalistic attitude towards women who don't want to have children, and why people care. It's not as if the world isn't already populated enough. And I'm sick to death of women who act like they're better than everyone because they're MOTHERS and you don't know how hard it is to be a MOTHER.

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I totally agree with you. I've had strangers tell me that I will regret it if I don't have kids. Maybe I will, maybe I won't, but its a damn sight better than having kids and regretting them. At least I'd only be hurting myself.

I sometimes wonder whether the people who make the most fuss about the childless are maybe the ones who maybe doubt their own choices.

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The sad thing is is that it's not just a Mormon thing. I argued about this on another forum and some posters - who weren't even religious - said you don't know if you want children if you never try. Then I said it's not s if every person has a child and never regrets it and they saw red. And then one of them said she thought a lot of it was feminists causing women to 'ignore their biological imperative' and then I had to leave for the sake of my mental health.

I don't understand this paternalistic attitude towards women who don't want to have children, and why people care. It's not as if the world isn't already populated enough. And I'm sick to death of women who act like they're better than everyone because they're MOTHERS and you don't know how hard it is to be a MOTHER.

This drives me absolutely crazy. I was telling my mom the other day that if I was to write a Facebook post about how proud of myself I am for doing well on a test because I worked and studied really hard, I would be jumped on for bragging, but if somebody writes a post about how their four-year-old didn't cry at the dentist, that's fine. I'm not trying to tell anyone not to be proud of or devoted to their kids. I'm sure it is both immensely challenging and rewarding to be a mother, but there are OTHER accomplishments a person can devote their life to. (Ditto romantic relationships. I don't understand why acquiring a significant other is treated as the greatest achievement ever.)

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This drives me absolutely crazy. I was telling my mom the other day that if I was to write a Facebook post about how proud of myself I am for doing well on a test because I worked and studied really hard, I would be jumped on for bragging, but if somebody writes a post about how their four-year-old didn't cry at the dentist, that's fine. I'm not trying to tell anyone not to be proud of or devoted to their kids. I'm sure it is both immensely challenging and rewarding to be a mother, but there are OTHER accomplishments a person can devote their life to. (Ditto romantic relationships. I don't understand why acquiring a significant other is treated as the greatest achievement ever.)

It's just where someone's head space is at that time.

If you are in school, tests are your priority. If you have young kids, they are on the top of your mind.

If someone is genuinely your friend, you take an interest in what is important to THEM. If not, feel free to ignore them.

If your Facebook "friends" would criticize a post saying "Aced the big exam - Woohoo!", then they aren't supportive so screw them.

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The sad thing is is that it's not just a Mormon thing. I argued about this on another forum and some posters - who weren't even religious - said you don't know if you want children if you never try. Then I said it's not s if every person has a child and never regrets it and they saw red. And then one of them said she thought a lot of it was feminists causing women to 'ignore their biological imperative' and then I had to leave for the sake of my mental health.

I don't understand this paternalistic attitude towards women who don't want to have children, and why people care. It's not as if the world isn't already populated enough. And I'm sick to death of women who act like they're better than everyone because they're MOTHERS and you don't know how hard it is to be a MOTHER.

Just tell those people that, unlike buying a shirt at Walmart, children come with a strict "No Returns" policy.

On a more serious note, if you actually feel like having a conversation and not just ending it by saying "that's an interesting POV" or "I guess we have different views", you can say:

"I strongly believe that children deserve to have parents who are fully committed to loving them unconditionally and providing them with all the care that they need. Unless and until I am able to do that, I would feel that I was being selfish by having a child. It shouldn't be about me and using children as some sort of experiment to test my feelings, but about being responsible for the life of another human being. There are plenty of parents who want a child to love, but can't focus on the child's needs instead of their own, and the consequences of that are tragic."

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This sort of thing makes me see red. I'm childless by choice and come up against similar comments. Firstly, I'm not sure why people think that your reproductive choices are any of their business, and secondly, the implication that you are a selfish person for not having kids is completely moronic for the reasons stated above.

For me, I've never ever felt any maternal urges, and don't think that societal expectation is a good enough reason to create a new human being. I'm also pretty introverted and need downtime or I suffer from anxiety/depression. And finally, I am a kick-ass auntie to five wonderful people, and have 30 students a year to whom I am a role model and a confidante. If I had my own kids, I wouldn't have the energy to work with the other young people in my life like I do.

I support all my friends who choose to be parents, and they in turn support my decision to be another auntie to their kids. Each to their own. Screw you, Mormon sanctimommies.

How does anyone know that you are childless by choice?

If you tell them, then you are opening the door to discussion by revealing highly personal information.

If you don't tell them, they should STFU. Any and all questions about plans for children can be answered with "that's a really personal question, isn't it?". For all they know, you could be struggling with infertility or pregnancy loss and their nosy questions could be like a knife to the heart. [Having been on the receiving end, I feel like it's my personal mission to say that it is NEVER, EVER ok to ask another person "when are you going to have kids (or another kid)?"

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How does anyone know that you are childless by choice?

If you tell them, then you are opening the door to discussion by revealing highly personal information.

If you don't tell them, they should STFU. Any and all questions about plans for children can be answered with "that's a really personal question, isn't it?". For all they know, you could be struggling with infertility or pregnancy loss and their nosy questions could be like a knife to the heart. [Having been on the receiving end, I feel like it's my personal mission to say that it is NEVER, EVER ok to ask another person "when are you going to have kids (or another kid)?"

Gotta agree with this. If you don't want to discuss your reproductive and lifestyle decisions with somebody else - and you certainly shouldn't have to discuss them with anybody except, perhaps, your romantic partner/spouse! - then don't bring them up. If you mention that you're childfree, and introduce it into the conversation, you're sending the message that your choices are, in fact, up for discussion. And if they're not, then it's really nobody's business but your own.

That's not to say that you can't bring them up if it seems appropriate and you want to talk about them, but if you don't want to talk about this sort of thing with any particular person, perhaps because you suspect they're jerks about it, do yourself a favor and don't even start. If they ask, change the subject.

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I don't think it's automatically a secret though. After all, people will tell you stuff like "We can't wait to start our family!!!!" so it shouldn't be weird to say "I don't want any kids".

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