To those who have chosen to be childfree for life, what was/were your reason(s)? I am curious to know why other agnostics/atheists may decide not to have children. Please note, while I have included health related issues as options, I am really referring to people who do not wish to adopt children either. Please feel free to elaborate on your answer(s) in the comments. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this!
Note: This poll allows for multiple selections.
Mental illness and addiction run in my family, on both sides. I've never been financially stable, nor what you might call psychologically "well-adjusted".
The best thing I can do for the human race is neither pass on my genes, nor parent a child. You're welcome.
I'm an antinatalist, and for me it seems more ethical to not bring a life into the world. Some percentage of humans will live in misery, suffer terribly, have serious mental and emotional problems, etc., and there's no way of gaining the nonexistent person's consent prior to conception, so I don't feel I can make that decision for them myself. I also believe that we are in no danger of running out of people, so my progeny won't be missed — and they won't contribute to the consumption of natural resources, the pollution of the air, water, and land, and so forth. On top of all that, I just don't feel that biological desire that many people seem to have; very little about parenthood seems attractive to me.
My immune system wouldn't allow me to stay pregnant.
Did you know that the human immune system considers the eyeballs, the male scrotum, and gestating female's placenta, as foreign objects? They all have a protective lining which stops most of the white cells from attacking and destroying them, but some folks' immune systems can breach those protections.
It's why I could ever have children and why I'm losing my vision.
The human body is an amazing thing.
At this point in my life, I'm glad I don't have kids. I can send the nieces and nephews home when I'm done with 'em. I don't have to put braces on them, or put them through school.
I've always had high expectations for myself, and I would have felt like in order to be (my idea of) a good parent, I would have had to give up my academic and career aspirations. Luckily, I never had a strong desire to have any kids.
I know some seem to be able to do both, but for me it really was a zero-sum game.
I basically agree with @resserts.
I've never wanted them. My parents were abusive and I recognized that I had some characteristics of each of them. I wasn't willing to take the risk of treating any child even close to how I was treated. I was so sure that I had a vasectomy at 30 and have never regretted it.
I think too many people have kids without thinking about it. I think you should have training, a license, and have to post a bond to cover the kids education before you can have any. I know that will never happen, but it should.
About 90% of the people I know have kids or want them.
I have no maternal instinct and people get really mad when I discipline their kids that are terrorizing my house. I don't think it's cute when they dive-bomb off my railings onto me and/or my dog.
I see how badly some people want kids. We are talking 6 figures on IVF and surrogate mothers, adoption, fertility clinics. If I were meant to have kids, shouldn't I want to feel this way? I'm talking "Hand that Rocks the Cradle" moments or tears b/c I don't have them. You probably shouldn't have a kid if your first thought would be "where is the nearest fire department for me to drop them off?"
I tried to like kids, for the sake of my then gf, who wanted them badly and whom I planned to spend the rest of my life with.
One of us had a young nephew and the other a young niece. The nephew was easygoing, self-motivated, and friendly with all children and adults. The niece was an emotionally neglected, materially spoiled brat. Late in my and my gf's two years together, after a day with the nephew, I realized that I wasn't enjoying the well-behaved kid much more than the damaged kid. The relationship crumbled quickly after that.
Lovely spouse also has an inheritable disability, not that she wanted kids either.
I don't want children becuase I like to travel. I’m in the military and I can't bear the thought of not only leaving a child behind for 6 months or forever if I died. But, I have conidered running a orphanage or adopting a bunch of childern when I’m older.
There is no action a human can take on behalf of the Earth's biosphere that has more positive impact than choosing not to have children.
The next century or so is going to be really hard. Desperately hard for many people.
I'm the oldest of 7, and come out of a highly abusive household. One result of that dysfunction is that I already had plenty of "parenting" experience by the time I was 13. I have had enough of it.
I am in an odd situation. I have a daughter with my first wife. I was the primary parent for 7+ years. My ex ran away with another man and took our daughter and moved to the other side of the world. I then had a relationship with another woman who didn't want to have kids (neither did I). We joined a local group called Childfree By Choice which turned national. I heard lots of stories and we interacted a lot with the group. After a number of years my daughter started visiting but only on a short term basis. My partner and I stayed childfree and lived the chilldfree lifestyle. Even though my daughter was an oops baby I really cared for her. We are close now but she lives elsewhere and has her own life. I realized, with my late partner I just did not have the instincts to be a really good parent certainly if I had to do it alone.
Well the one pregnancy I had ended in a still birth at 5 months in.
After that there was just never an opportunity again. I took care of my parents as they aged.
Sub-total hysterectomy at the age of 36. (Endometriosis and Adenomyosis). So no kids. Really wanted them - but other things were more important to me.
Helped raise my sister's boys a bit after my BIL died. Hope I did some good there.
Just never wanted them. Plain and simple. I look forward to a world when a woman doesn't sound psycho for saying that.
Reasons, as I've gotten used to being required to explain: There are so many people already living who are worth my time, affection and love, the world is overpopulated already, chlidren are expensive, I had health issues for a while and couldn't imagine being able to handle all the noise.
Children are freaking annoying!!’ I try to avoid them out of all means. My aunts three kids are annoying to be around and sometime I dread having to go get groceries when the women have their stupid, annoying kids screaming and they’re doing nothing to calm the child. I just look at newborns as needy, helpless people, who has to rely on you for every damn thing. They grow up to be annoying ass, disrespectful teenagers and I can’t stand most teenagers because I’d been then hurting them and ending up in prison. I won’t tolaerate disrespectful brats!
I have been told, and I agree, that I'd be an excellent parent ... but having kids has never been high on my priorities and I have usually been in relationships with very independent girls who don't want kids. Recently I've been with girls who have kids and it was brilliant so my preference would be to find a girl who has small kids that I could help raise.
From a young age, I wanted to rescue animals instead of have kids. Here are a few reasons...
My mom had five kids and didn't seem to enjoy it much.
Overpopulation! I thought it was a major problem from the time I was a teenager.
My older sister is an idiot and a terrible mother. She had 4 kids by 3 different dads and screwed the poor kids up horribly. I'd rather be the cool aunt helping them out, than having my own. I also stay in contact with an ex boyfriend's daughter.
My "picker" was broken when I was younger, so I never found myself in a healthy relationship and didn't think it was right to bring kids up in an unstable environment or a broken home.
I have never regretted the decision.
I'm horrified by pregnancy and I like having money to travel and buy myself things. That being said I think I would be a very good mother ( I've taken care of my younger siblings and friend's children) and would have no problems being a mom to a partner's kids or adopting a child with a partner that wouldn't feel fulfilled unless they had one. That being said, I think I would be just as happy without having a child in my life as having one.