I’m 28, I’ve got no kids, and the truth is I’m not ready to be a mum yet.
It’s not that I’ve never wanted, or will never want them. But I believe that your twenties should be a time of rapid personal growth. Finding out what you want from life, forming lasting relationships and most importantly, becoming a woman.
So here I am, 28 years old and just graduated (hey, it’s never too late!). I found the perfect man (finally). And I’ve realised that in your late twenties, people start to look at you funny.
It all started a couple of years ago, just as me and my partner got engaged. An acquaintance of mine, whom we met by accident on our way to the supermarket (after a long period of not seeing each other) congratulated us, then promptly asked, ‘so, when are you guys gonna have kids?’
This really annoyed me. I’m not ready to be a mum yet, so why should I feel pressured into it?
But it wasn’t until very recently when my future mother in law commented, ‘it gets very difficult to get pregnant after thirty,’ that I began to really think about this issue. Or actually, two issues.
Firstly, why are people so obsessed with turning 30?
Is 30 supposed to be the end of your existence?
Gosh, I want my thirties to be the best decade of my life!
The time when me and my partner can finally afford to get married, when we can buy our first house, and get that sausage dog I have always dreamed of!
My life is only beginning, and I do not want to be made to feel like 30 is the end of my youth.
This brings me to the second issue: Why is having kids seen as a necessity rather than a choice?
I do want to have kids, but I do not want them now. What I need right now is to start saving money in order to fulfil my dreams and desires. And having kids is, frankly, not going to help me with all that.
I look at people playing with their kids and I do not feel any resentment, any shame or guilt. Equally, I look at those who don’t have children, and I don’t judge them. Because you never know what someone is going through. Maybe they simply can’t have kids? Or maybe they have other priorities right now? Or maybe, just maybe – like me – they are simply not ready.
Just because you are in your late twenties, or even thirties, it does not mean you are ready. After all, having kids requires a lifelong commitment, great energy, and money that many simply cannot afford.
And speaking of affordability, today’s world does not support having kids. Everything is getting more and more expensive. If you can’t afford that beautiful dress at Topshop, you are most likely not going to get it. Even if you really want it.
So why should it be any different when it comes to making the most important decision in your entire life?
I honestly do not understand why shaming women for not having kids is even remotely considered acceptable. It’s our bodies, it is our lives, and we all have the right to live them the way that we want to. Judging and shaming other women for their own choice is not fair, and it is not right.
We, as women, have gone through so much throughout the years, had to fight so hard to get our basic rights. Yet, in 2020, we are still looked at as birth-giving machines who are somehow required to have kids. Because according to our patriarchal society, that’s the only reason why women even exist.
But this is not why women were created. This is not the sole reason why we are here. We posses the incredible power to create life and give birth, yet this is only a fraction of what we are here for.
And we should stand against this discrimination, and face it together, instead of turning on and shaming each other.
These are our bodies, and these are our lives. So let’s all live them the way that we want to. Without judgement.
Because I’m not ready to be a mum yet. You might not be either, and that’s okay.
Not every woman needs to be a mum. Not now, not ever. So let’s stop shaming other women for their choices.