Not that I owe anyone an explanation…
I haven’t, for even one moment in my life, wanted children.
Yet, whenever I say that I do not want children, people usually give me something about not being ready or that it will happen eventually. For a while, I would just put my head down and say something along the lines of, “Okay, whatever.”
For some reason, in today’s society people will tell you not to have kids … and in the next breath will tell you that you’ll want them eventually.
It is a frustrating double standard that Millennials shouldn’t have to live with anymore.
I am perfectly fine with not having children and forever being the proverbial “cool aunt.” My younger sister is actually pregnant right now with the little man who is going to make my dreams of “cool aunt-dom” come true.
She has always wanted to have kids, and I will always support her in this endeavor. I, however, have too many qualms with the idea of having children.
Here are four reasons I am perfectly content to be childfree forever.
Having a child is not financially feasible.
The USDA stated in 2014 that the average cost to raise a child in a middle-class family in the United States was about $245,340 from birth to age 18. With this figure, the cost to have a child per year averages out to about $13,630.
My current salary puts me in the lowest income bracket, which means I only make between $13,000 and $14,000 per year. What this means is that to successfully raise a child in today’s economy, I would have to spend about as much as I make per year on said child.
This would be unfair to me and to this theoretical child.
The population is already bursting at the seams.
The world’s population has more than doubled in the past fifty years. In 1960, the population was about 3 billion and by 2016 the population reached more than 7 billion.
Because of this rise in population, there has been a rise in food consumption, deforestation, and pollution — among other things. These are all contributing factors to global warming. I could not in good conscience bring a child into the world when the planet is dying and said child would put even more of a strain on the planet.
The world today is WAY too scary.
Along with the aforementioned reasons, there are several environmental stressors that make me not too excited to have children.
We, as humans, are living in a world with a crumbling economy. We are living in a world full of violence and full of unrest. And we are living in a world where a major section of the middle-east is destabilizing.
The world is very scary to me as the single person I am responsible for, let alone the fear I would have for a child.
It’s my choice.
There are many reasons to have children, just as there are many reasons to not have children. What too many people just don’t seem to get is that this is a choice. Choices can be answered with either a yes or a no.
“Yes, I want to have kids,” or “No, I do not want to have kids.” It is as simple as that.
I am fine with being the proverbial aunt. I am actually extremely excited to become an aunt.
My sister knows where I stand on having kids of my own, and we even joke about me being the well-dressed aunt who gives great gifts and gets drunk at family gatherings. I wouldn’t give up my incoming “aunt-dom” for the world — but my excitement for being an aunt should not be construed as a deep-seated desire to have kids.
I have a choice, and I have chosen “aunt-dom” over parenthood.
Maybe someday I’ll change my mind and want to be called mommy. Until then I am perfectly happy with being the best Auntie I can be.
This originally appeared on YourTango. Republished here with permission.