But had I known that a life without it was acceptable, something the child-free-by-choice women of my generation knew in a way that I did not, that would have been incredibly useful information.We need to be more open about the many ways there are to experience a meaningful and fulfilling life when motherhood doesn’t happen.
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I was against the idea of in vitro fertilisation (IVF) because I didn’t think I could keep the wheels on the road in both our marriage and the business we ran together if I also had to cope with the mood swings associated with the hormonal treatments. In hindsight, I wonder if some of my earlier ambivalence about having children had crept in.
By the time I was 37, and having had a rocky start in life myself, I knew that I couldn’t bring a child into the chaotic environment that my delightful but emotionally unsteady husband was wrapped up in.
Keep up with this story and more “I don’t know if that’s selfish,” says Jordan, the daughter of an Ecuadoran and an Ohioan who grew up in the South Bronx, explaining her reasons for a decision increasingly common among women across the developed world, where more than half of the world’s population is now reproducing at below the replacement rate. And that’s not something I’m interested in doing.”The global causes of postfamilialism are diverse, and many, on their own, are socially favorable or at least benign.
“I feel like my life is not stable enough, and I don’t think I necessarily want it to be ... The rush of people worldwide into cities, for example, has ushered in prosperity for hundreds of millions, allowing families to be both smaller and more prosperous.
For several decades, there was a rather standard course laid out for people in Japanese society: finish your education at 20 or 22, get married by your mid-20s, and have children shortly thereafter.
In recent years, though, there’s been a change, as an increasing number of individuals lead unmarried and/or childless lives.Before I became a statistic, by reaching my mid-forties without having children, I thought, as many of us do, that there were two ways to become a childless woman: you either didn’t want them (“child-free”) or you were infertile.It has been estimated that 80 per cent of women who don’t have children are “childless by circumstance”, a phrase coined by the Australian academic Dr Leslie Cannold in her 2005 book, The figure comes from the work of Dr Renske Keizer, a professor at Erasmus University Rotterdam, who in a 2010 meta-analysis of data from the Netherlands and the US estimated that 10 per cent of women without children are childless by choice, 10 per cent for medical reasons, and 80 per cent by circumstance.It’s really not the “obvious” solution many imagine; some of us have even tried it and have been turned down.If I had my time over, I’d still like to experience motherhood.While that same scenario is unfolding in many countries, Japanese society has long found greater virtue in group prosperity than personal fulfillment, and so the lifestyles of Japan’s happy singles and childless citizens can be extremely hard for their elders to wrap their heads around.