Woman Who Unpopularly Decided To Never Have Children Reflects On It Now That She’s 85 Years Old
I was never really for or against having children myself – had I married younger, I was entertaining the idea of having at least one kid, if I could’ve done so by the age of 35.
One of the things this 85 year old woman says is something that I deduced years ago: it’s a huge mistake for any woman to base most or all of her purpose and identity in parenthood or marriage (same is true for men).
If you build most to all of your identity and purpose upon being a spouse or parent, what do you do if you or your spouse are infertile, if you have an only child and he dies young, or if your spouse is abusive so that you have to divorce him (or her), or your spouse gets into a car wreck, gets cancer, or has a heart attack and dies? Or, what happens if your spouse develops dementia, which, in a manner of speaking, kind of leaves you alone?
What happens when your children grow up and move out, leaving you alone with just your spouse?
Actually, what I’m saying here is true of anyone – if you’re a Codependent, never married, childless person, you have the tendency to lose yourself in the problems and lives of your friends, co-workers, and family members. That will end up being a waste of your time or being a mistake as well.
Even though an astonishing number of people don’t feel, and have never felt, the urge to become a parent, the pressure to have kids is still tremendous.
Any person who has made this profound decision about leading a child-free life can tell you it’s usually met in two different ways. One, people mutter a series of condescending phrases such as “oh” or “you’ll change your mind”.
Two, they actually take you seriously and instantly warn you that you’ll be lonely and regret it when you’re old.
Speaking of the latter scenario, one open letter on the ‘Childfree’ subreddit put this notion to bed once and for all.
An 85-year-old widow addressed the young people of this community, shared her experience, and proudly stated that she has zero regrets about her choice. Being married for 50 years, she offered her perspective and some validating words of wisdom.
“If I could go back in time, would I do it again? (being childfree), 100% yes. I would live the same life one thousand times,” the woman wrote. Her story sparked a discussion in the comments below, with responses ranging from kudos to appreciation. Scroll down to read the story in full and the reactions that followed.
For some reason, people who decide to lead a childfree life often hear they’ll regret it once they’re old and alone
So when this 85-year-old widow shared an open letter about her childfree experience, people felt incredibly validated
Letter from an 85 year old widow: My childfree experience and a few humble opinions
Dear Young People
I wonder if I am the oldest person to post on this forum? It was a young lady who told me about this forum and I have read many of your posts and comments for a few weeks. Many have made me smile. Some have made me wince.
It appears to me, many of you on here to validate your life changing decision.
Finding people similar to you is important and I understand the needs. So can I just say, from my experience, your decision is a good one? And if you want to know why I think that, please give me 5 minutes of your time.
I was married for just over 50 years. We bucked the norm and did not want kids. In those days we said “we are trying” for a few years than “we cannot have kids,” case closed. It was our personal secret. It was nobody’s business.
If we were honest and said “we cannot have kids, because we just don’t want them” the fallout with family and friends would have been tough for us.
Our 50 years in a nutshell was perfect. Good jobs, no money worries, followed our own interests and hobbies.
Had many friends and many lovely nieces and nephews. If I could go back in time, would I do it again? (being childfree), 100% yes. I would live the same life one thousand times.