It's self-love.

Ever been called selfish? I know, I don’t need to ask!
One of the most common insults wielded against childfree women is, “You don’t want kids?! How selfish!” 🙄
Backed into a corner, it’s tempting to throw back in parents’ faces that there’s nothing selfless about wanting a “mini-me”; that everyone acts out of self interest. And while it’s true that parenting involves a lot of sacrifice – motherhood especially – people who had kids did so because they wanted to. Or at least, that’s how it should be.
Let’s be honest: everyone acts out of self interest. Everyone should. Everyone should be able to. (There are still far too many people raised as girls who aren’t able to choose what they do with their bodies, their lives.)
So what if we reframed the whole concept of “selfish”, for both parents and non-parents? What if instead we focused on self care, self love, self preservation? What if women were allowed to look after themselves first, before looking after everyone else?
That’s the theme running through today’s stories. When I first photographed Kate back in Berlin around 2017, she shared how she’d only just reached full health in her late 30s:
“I want to focus on my life, and all the things that I didn’t get to do. If that’s selfish, then I don’t think that’s necessarily a negative thing.”
I love that energy! Looking after yourself should be enough. And of course, for folks like Savannah, it can give you the energy to then care for others…
“If caring for and giving to my friends, family, finances, husband and community are selfish, I don’t want to be selfless.”
…but you don’t have to!
You do you. And don’t feel threatened by accusations of selfishness, like you have to defend how community-minded and altruistic you are. Trust yourself, love yourself, and hold tight to the knowledge that you’re a good person 💝
We see you. And we love that you’re part of this community with us.

Originally published in the We are Childfree Newsletter. Sign up to get more childfree tea, plus a brand new childfree story, straight to your inbox – “a childfree hug every week”.