IUPUI Study Finds Participants Feel Moral Outrage Toward Those Who Decide to Not Have Children
Parenthood is often seen as a moral imperative, according to new research.
People should not be judged poorly or harassed or shamed for deciding not to have children. Women especially bear the brunt of this – men who decide not to procreate don’t seem to receive as much condemnation for remaining childless as do women.
As for myself, I was not terribly interested in having kids of my own. Had I married when much younger, I was open to the possibility of having a kid or two within marriage, but as I’m still single into my 40s, I have no interest in having kids now if I marry, and I sure as hell have no desire to have a kid out of wedlock and raise it alone (nor do I have the means to do so).
Society needs to get off the backs of people who are childless – whether it’s by choice or circumstance.
I cannot understand why other people act as though everyone has to share the same life goals or choices as they do, and then shame or condemn them for choosing or living differently, especially over something like this.
Data representing individuals from across the United States indicates that U.S. adults are increasingly delaying the decision to have children or forgoing parenthood entirely. Yet evidence suggests that voluntarily child-free people are stigmatized for this decision, according to a study published in the March 2017 edition of Sex Roles: A Journal of Research.
Leslie Ashburn-Nardo, an associate professor of psychology at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, recently investigated this bias against those who choose to not have children.
“What’s remarkable about our findings is the moral outrage participants reported feeling toward a stranger who decided to not have children,” Ashburn-Nardo said. “Our data suggests that not having children is seen not only as atypical, or surprising, but also as morally wrong.”