You really owe no one an explanation if you do not have children. Even asking the question of someone may be crossing a fine personal line. If a person cannot have children for medical reasons, it may open a wound deeper that might never close. For those who have chosen a life with no children, the reasons may be many. When I answer this question I could go through a litany of reasons. By the time I get through that list, there are more that come up.
Telling people I am living a life not having children is not an exhausting conversation to partake in. It’s a part of who I am. It’s an issue that has been part of my life for a long time. It has crossed over into my professional life and I’m very grateful for this.
One of the most common questions I get is how to answer the question in response to people asking things like “Why do you not have children?” This is something I have spent a fair bit of time on. I’ve concluded that the best answer to the question is simpler than you might realize. The best response will be whatever comes to mind at that moment. Your response may change in each occurrence. Mine often has. When a couple approached me some time ago to ask how they would answer the question, I really needed to think about my own answer to help them. This couple could not have children for medical reasons. Understandably it is a sensitive issue for them. My advice was to encourage them to respond at their comfort level. If they don’t want to reveal the reason, they should not have to. Saying “It’s Personal” is just fine. If they want to share details, then only share if they are comfortable doing so.
The same really could be said for anyone who has made no kids a choice. You can say “It’s Personal” if you want to keep it to yourself. Unfortunately, a social stigma is still attached to the child-free choice. For me, it becomes an opportunity to educate others about the choice. I’ve taken advantage of every chance given to have that conversation with people. Most of those conversations have been positive. Only a few people left those conversations seemingly offended and off-put.
The conversations will continue. I’m happy to have those talks with anyone who would have me as part of them