As I was cruising the Internet today, I stumbled upon an interesting Russian article where the writer claimed that there's nothing wrong about choosing to stay childfree. Her opinion triggered a huge wave of negative comments. Are people who choose to stay childfree really wrong though?
It's becoming more and more common for Montrealers to decide not to have children. I have a bunch of friends who don't like kids and aren't interested in ever building a full blown traditional family. Ever. Ask around, you'll be surprised how many people prefer to live for themselves, travel and not have to worry about kids.
I have never really completely understood this mentality. Being exceptionally curious by nature, I decided that it would be interesting to take a moment and reflect on this subject matter. I'd like to play devil's advocate and figure out why anyone would ever want to stay childfree. Isn't procreation part of basic human nature? Let's see why so many people are tempted to choose the childfree lifestyle.
Freedom of choice
Every human being has the right to determine their own actions especially when it comes to having children. This is an important life decision with no right or wrong answer. It all depends on each individual case. We never judge someone for having children, so why do it when the opposite occurs?
It makes sense economically
I apologize in advance, I know this sounds terrible. However, when you think about it, it makes sense. No college tuition, gifts, baby stuff, sitters, etc. Without kids, you also end up consuming less natural resources, thus saving the planet and being eco-friendly in a sense.
Strong personalities' preference
Strong personalities often have trouble compromising. Having kids undeniably changes you. Being a parent entails a completely different lifestyle. People with stronger characters can find it difficult to accept: "Why would I change who I am, my individuality, for someone else?"
You're free to do whatever you want. You can take off on vacation whenever you please, you can stay up late, sleep in, make bad decisions without worrying about being a bad example, host loud parties at your house... Life can obviously be a lot of fun without kids.
Being with your partner for the right reasons
Sometimes children represent that one thing that holds couples together. You know, the usual, "We can't divorce, what about our children?" type of scenario... When you're in a relationship or marriage without children, you know that you're together for the right reasons.
Less stress, anxiety and responsibility
Being a parent comes with a lot of stress, anxiety and responsibility. The worst part? You need to stress about someone else. Metaphorically speaking, it's like worrying about a car driver who doesn't know how to drive and having to make sure he gets home safely. How do you do that without losing your mind? Without kids, you only have to worry about yourself.
Although there is no direct correlation between being childfree and being successful in business, it does make sense to assume that without children one has more time to focus on work. It's also possible to make career your priority if children are not in the picture. However, we have published a post about successful Montreal mommies, so one thing does not necessarily exclude the other.
Being a parent is scary
Imagine raising a child for him or her to grow up and tell you how you've ruined their life when you said something really mean when they were four years old? The amount of pressure that being a parent puts on you in unmatchable.
You never have to adult
Being a kid at heart is wonderful. A lot of adults inevitably lose that careless, giggly and curious kid they once were when responsibilities start to weigh them down. Not having kids does not guarantee staying young at heart forever, but it can certainly help to be more carefree.