“It was very much a decision thrust upon me at a really young age so it’s probably why I’ve thought about it more than my peers.”

Natasha, 35, UK

When I was 21 yrs old, I was diagnosed with a bicornate womb – essentially a heart-shaped womb BUT in my case the heart shape is so pronounced that there isn’t even space for a IUD! My threat of miscarriage is significantly higher than normal and I was told if I decided to get pregnant it would be difficult.

This is what started me thinking about if I even wanted to have children and why would I have children. I always I assumed that I would because that’s just what you do? But the older I got I started to question why.

It also didn’t help that my parents (very traditional Hindus) were very much set on me reproducing. When I plucked up the courage to tell them when I was about 25 their logic was – well as long as you have one child and medicine can do so many things so it will be fine. There was zero concern about me (very odd considering that my mother had about 10 miscarriages before I arrived). I am also estranged from my parents due to them attempting to force me into an arranged marriage – so I also don’t want to pass that brand of crazy on to any offspring.

I started to give it even more thought and realised that I actually liked my life without children. Thing is, I love children, I’m an aunt, I’m a regular visitor to all my friends with children but I love being able to leave them there. What is weird and hard is that now that I’m in my 30s all my friends are busy with their children and it’s like – what do I do?! I should add that my partner and I are in agreement and we made the decision together and I also told him that if he wanted children I would understand if he wanted to break-up. I would never want to hold back someone I love from fulfilling a life they want.

So yeah, I am now happily childfree as a considered decision. I don’t often have to justify myself to people. Although when I do, people usually say “you’ll change your mind” and I’m like, I’m 34, soon to be 35, my body physically would not be able to cope with a pregnancy if I were any older than this, and mentally…? Definitely not. But lols I obviously don’t share that with people.

It was very much a decision thrust upon me at a really young age so it’s probably why I’ve thought about it more than my peers, i.e. the cost of a child, the impact that a child has both on the the person carrying the child and the relationship (if you’re lucky) that it’s born into. And that it’s a lifelong commitment. Not one that I want tbh.