“As you get older and as you experience and go through different things you realize you have to set boundaries. You have to say this is OK and this is not OK. This is my life. It’s the only one I get and so I have to set boundaries.” Jennifer Lopez
In today’s world, more and more women are beginning to own their sexuality and are taking charge of their own reproductive health. An ever growing worry in our traditional societies, however, hold more women accountable to child bearing more than it questions the men. This worrying phenomenon keeps women depressed even to the extent that some even want to end their lives as a result of the amount of pressure that society mounts on them. This growing trend of harassing women for not having or not wanting to have children must be up for some debate at both local, national and international spheres of our society. Women should be allowed to own the right to their bodies without being held accountable.
Not Less of a Woman
It has never been on anyone’s agenda to question men the way they ask women when they intend to start child bearing. For all you know, the couple are taking some time to decide whether they really want children or not. In a Time article, Stephanie describes her ordeal about having a child when she wrote, “I had finally found the thing that I loved doing, and now I had to make room for something else–someone else–and that would supposedly make my life complete?” Her article, ‘Why I have Zero Regrets about my Childless Life’, was based on the fact that society only saw women as complete only after they have had a baby, which she believed is a wrong trajectory.
Most successful women are by far not the most loneliest ones, given the fact that they are surrounded by their career, friends, and some of the most influential people in the world. However, for some reason, society finds a way to describe women without babies as lonely. People refer to such women as sad and frustrated, among other name calling. It may interest you to know that they are able to keep the most friends and have the most of time to socialize with the outside world.
Don’t Hate Kids
Women with no children are not necessarily those who hate children. Interestingly, some of them have gone on to cater for the children of their siblings, nieces, friends and other colleagues. Some of them are teachers at day care centers across the world. Also, most of them are doing just fine with other people’s kids, therefore where lies the deception that they are often hateful towards children?
Don’t Need Pity
Oh how sad? Is that how she’s going to live in her old age, without anyone to cater for her? These are some of the questions that come up when people hear stories of women without their biological children. May I remind people of the fact that not having children does not call for a pity party? If having children of your own becomes so much of a burden that you cannot bear, why not think of adopting one instead of crying your heart out? It should not be a cause for a mini burial service, or anything of that sort.
Women can do better with or without a child. This doesn’t make them selfish or selfless in any way. Looking back, I’d say most of such women that I know are more generous because they have so much bounty to share with others, and they tend to be more of philanthropists too. Take Oprah Winfrey as a typical example. This woman turned out to donate more to the needy and the less privileged more than anyone else who has ever been married with kids.
This should be a motivation for women out there who are trying their best to have children of their own. It is more important to channel that effort into becoming better at what you do rather than being depressed because society tells us that we are only complete as women when we have at least one or two children to our name.
Well, as cherished readers, what are your thoughts on this gender based issue in our society? Share with me in the comments box below.