I was around thirteen when I realised I don’t want kids. This I understood, as I could barely stand being around people my own age, and not at all being around kids younger than me. This has followed me thru my whole childhood. It has made it somewhat difficult to make friends, but I’ve managed. It also meant that me and my little brother did not have a good relationship. We were both equally mean towards each other. It’s only now, after he turned eleven, that we have started to be able to hang out, without trying to kill or seriously maim each other. My parents are not used to this new development in our relationship and therefore they still try to medel when we jokingly trade insults.
My dislike for children, even when I was a child myself, made it very clear to me that any child that I would theoretically have, would not be a happy child, possibly even a neglected child. But more importantly to me, I would not be a happy mother. I crave a certain freedom that would be impossible to maintain with kids. I don’t ever want to be that responsible for some little thing that can’t do a thing for itself. This, as I have learned recently, applies to both children and dogs. Apparently, taking care of something helpless, causes me a great deal of stress that takes hours to recover from. Therefore it’s only logical that I don’t have kids.
This has proven to be difficult for adults to understand.
Sporadically the topic is raised, and I always make it very clear that I don’t ever want kids of my own. I’m happy to be a cool aunt, I am even looking forward to it. Still, grown ups tend to say one out of two things: either “Of course you don’t want children now, you are only 17” or “Children are delightful, how can you not want them?”. For the second alternative I could explain the reasons listed above, and the first alternative is a very valid question. I’m only 17, my opinions could change when I grow older. I don’t think they will, but it could happen. The point is, that both alternatives undermines my judgment. Sure, I’m 17, but my opinions are still valid and shouldn’t be questioned.
Another thing that I have found to be a misconception, is that my disinterest in kids means that I don’t want a family. That is not true. I want a loving partner, and I want to be a hella cool aunt that my future nieces and nephews can rely on. This includes both the children that my brother may have, but also those of my best friend. The somewhat ironic thing is that she’s completely willing to have the kid on her own, while I’m sure I want a partner. I think that the main problem is that people, specifically adults, are so stuck in their ways about how a family should look. And also sexsism. If I was a guy then, I believe, adults wouldn’t try and convince me the same way they do now.