I’m childfree by choice. A part of me has always known, and looking back I can see the signs that a traditional path was never for me. Racially I’m half Sephardic Jew, half German, and raised Orthodox Christian, so I feel like my existence is a contradiction.
I was raised in a very strict, controlling, and abusive environment even before my parent’s divorce, and after it, things got worse. My life has been a series of traumas to overcome. From sexual and emotional abuse, surgery, multiple suicide attempts, and family estrangement, I’ve been shown that children are too often pawns in the games adults play, and I have no desire to bring another life into existence.
Because of the spinal fusion surgery I had at 12 I’m terrified of experiencing more pain. It took a lot of work to get out of muscle atrophy and the thought of hurting myself with a pregnancy and destroying my body with a baby sounds like my version of hell. I’m also creeped out by infants. The whole process of pregnancy, giving birth, and infancy gives me panic attacks that I’ve had literal nightmares about. Toddlers are okay, but I still don’t want them.
Instead of motherhood, I’ve spent the past 15 years healing. It’s afforded me time for my mental health and following my bliss. I’m the only person who has to experience my choices so I refuse to live for anyone else but me. I tried to live for others but that drove me to my first suicide attempt. I’ve struggled with Borderline Personality Disorder and severe depression and was voluntarily hospitalized three times. It wasn’t until I went no contact with my family that I could finally begin to recover.
I don’t make many female friends because of how differently I think about life, so my exposure to societal pressure is very low in comparison from others. My best friend from high school has had two children so that’s been a rollercoaster. I still love her and I do my best to stay in her life, but our relationship is different now and will never be the same. Finding a supportive community has always been a challenge for me. I don’t feel as successful as the other people in your community, but I’m still on the journey to build my life and career.
I now have two supportive partners in an open polyamorous relationship. The first is 15 years strong. We started a niche adult gaming and animation studio 12 years ago with plans to start my own publishing company as I focus on my writing career. My second is 7 years strong. We all live together in an apartment with a gorgeous mountain view. Both men are also childfree and entirely supportive and encouraging of my choices. I’m stronger through their support and love.