1) The title reminded me of a lady friend of mine, who was telling me why she wasn’t ready for marriage.
After reading this piece, I was reminded about couples I know who have chosen to stay childless, because of various reasons.
2) To have a child, to have how many children or not to have any at all — all are personal choices. Just like many choices we make. Only that this is an important one, with lot of implications.
Personal choices are usually never debatable. They don’t have rights and wrongs. They are more about, or rather, only about personal comfort levels. It’s advisable to do only what one is comfortable doing.
3) Traditionally, getting married and having children, is assumed to be the path of natural progression, or some would say, evolution. So, not being one of the above, is considered being non-conformist.
Quite possibly because of that, we don’t have to explain why we got married or why we have children. Reasons are called for only if we aren’t married or we don’t have children.
When we are non-conformists, we tend to feel guilty as well. The “am I wrong” sort of feeling. I don’t think we need to, as long as we are comfortable with the traditionally non-conformist stance. (O, by the way, what is non-conformist today, might become conformist tomorrow!)
Many traditional practices and values have changed, including those of family life. I know women who work and their husbands run the home. It’s perfectly okay for men to cook or wash clothes, or women to play computer games or drive trucks or to be bosses. There is nothing like “this is the way you should be” or “this is the way you should do it”. There may be general practices (what we call stereotypes), but nothing wrong in being different, because you are comfortable being that way.
4) “You will get used to the change”, is a common refrain. With the passing of years, we have all got used to various changes. And, we will continue to get used to changes. To some extent that is true. But, those are changes that we are comfortable with.
But there are some changes we aren’t comfortable with. And, those are changes we may not get used to; or rather, we don’t even want to get used to.
5) Relationships defy generalization. For, they are highly personal. No two individuals are the same, and therefore, no two relationships are the same. Just as there are women who have to bear the brunt, there are also women who have support and realise their dreams, career or personal.