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Whether in magazine articles, blogs, online publications, or in person, women without children are “bingoed” (chastised for not having kids/told why we should have kids—“Oh my god, you’d love it!”) pretty regularly. We’re told - usually indirectly and/or from a safe distance - that we’re cold, we’re freaks, we’re selfish, we’re child-haters, we’re non-nurturers, we’re unnatural, etc.
The insults are actually too absurd to be offensive, so I’ll call them “pesky.” Offensive is the study oft-repeated in the media that women are apparently at higher risk of developing breast cancer if we don’t produce offspring. How’s that for pressure?
And how do all the men without children get off so easy?
Or do they get off easy? I recently saw an article online titled “Childless Men May Face Higher Risk of Heart Disease”…. So, I guess we’re all screwed. At least we’ll die young together.
A survey conducted by author Laura S. Scott, author of Two is Enough: A Couple’s Guide to Living Childless by Choice, found that men and women’s reasons for choosing blissfully unladen lives are basically the same, and the “why” of it has been covered ad nauseam. So I thought I’d interview a few men who frequent The Childfree Life internet forum about their experiences simply living as men who choose not to have children.
Have they been pressured to use their semen to procreate the same way we’ve been pressured to use our uteri incubate? Have they had difficulty finding a partner? What word comes to mind when asked to imagine having a child in their lives?
(“NOOOOOOO!” was one word.)
I do, of course, ask them why they don’t want children, because the personal answers are far more interesting and relevant than the overarching psychobabble “there-must-be-something-‘off’-deep-within-you” explanations some are desperately seeking.
The men in this interview, ages 26-53, hale from the U.S., Canada, and Australia, and are identified in this article in keeping with their individual preferences. Their answers below may or may not surprise you, but what they unquestionably do is give you a glimpse of the men’s world in a way you haven’t seen it before.
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