But now that I've started to reach that imminent 'no going back' age and have friends who are child free, I am less concerned by what anyone thinks. I've read some of the 'child free and happy' websites but I've never felt the urge to rant and rave about it or get up on my soap box and defend my right not to have kids. I don't feel the need for solidarity with similar people and I certainly don't feel marginalised by society as some of these people seem to be. I think they're being paranoid but I guess it depends on your social circle.
I suppose my lifestyle choices have hindered any ticking clock I may have had. I was always a career person, a main earner, driven and never had time for things like settling down. My relationships were always lacking in too many areas for me to even consider settling down to parenthood.
I suppose my greatest fear is that suddenly, post ability, I will suddenly meet the right man, everything will fall into place and then I'll inexplicably want children. We always want what we can't have - right? But is that likely to happen - really? I suspect not. We're not all built for relationships and some of us are just wired to pick the wrong people every time.
There is the additional worry of what will happen when I am old and potentially alone. I think that's what bothers me the most at the moment. I know having kids is no guarantee you won't be stranded high and dry by them, but I have seen the older relatives in my family who made the no kid choice slowly becoming more and more isolated as family members shuffle off to better climes.
Of course I've also seen people who had children abandoned by those blood relatives who should have been there to care for them and provide a lifeline.
|Edith Craig - I did it my way|
I'd like to think I'll end up living in one of those quirky little creative community set ups somewhere like Edith Craig did with her chums in her twilight years. I can't predict anything here and now but it could be an awfully big adventure.
And I'll never have to fund someone else's University education along the way.