I feel like I’ve discussed this topic a lot on the blog, and I wish it wasn’t the case. It’s not that I’m trying to beat a dead horse or anything, but unfortunately, in the world we live in, I can’t express my desire to have a future without children in a nonchalant way like one might discuss how they’re going to dye their hair a darker shade of brown. Very few people lecture you on why you should or shouldn’t dye your hair a different color, but most everyone has an opinion of what you should do with your reproductive organs.
So by now, you know I don’t want children. And you know most of the reasons why. And you know how I struggle with the expectations that others have for me especially when it comes to others expecting me to have kids just because they want kids. But what I wonder when I interact with my friends who are now having children and doing the “family thing,” is if they think I don’t like their children. I wonder if they think I don’t want to coo at their baby or hold his or her hand and make him or her smile. I’ve made it clear on my YouTube channel that babies kind of freak me out as they’re these helpless squishy, crying masses that I don’t know what to do with. So it might seem to an outsider that I’m a child-hater. That I scoff at any and everyone having kids now. That I turn my nose up at my friends’ children.
But I’ll tell you a secret…
I actually love kids.
Well, I love watching them and being around them. Being responsible for them is another story (which is why I tend to shy away from holding them because I might, you know, drop them or something). I don’t get as gooey-eyed as many of my gal friends do around babies, but I certainly enjoy them. I love watching the faces they make and the adoration they have for their parents. I love seeing kids figure things out and be imaginative and creative. I love seeing myself in children and realizing that I wasn’t really that much of an outcast.
Kids are kind of like kittens. Even if you don’t want to be a cat owner one day, (even if you’re allergic to cats!) you can’t deny that they’re cute and cuddly-looking and generally just amusing to watch and be around.
Sometimes I wonder if I need to make this distinction because I feel like I have to yell so loudly to be taken seriously on the child-free issue that the “child-hater” message is inadvertently interpreted along with it. And nobody wants to be known as a child-hater! So bring me your children! I will love them and play with them and coo at them. I just won’t leave with any overwhelming need to procreate myself. (Actually, in truth, I’ll probably leave with a little bit of relief!) And I think that’s just fine. What would this world be with adopted “aunts” and “uncles” out there who can give 100% love and play because they can go home to their quiet life at the end of the day?