“I can’t stand the way social media has idealised motherhood at the expense of women and children.”

Jasmine, 39, Australia

My boyfriend is also childfree by choice and we had both realised in our early thirties that most parents we’ve known don’t inspire us to have children of our own. I always assumed that I’d become a mother since everyone around me assumed that I would until I started questioning the status quo.

I’ve been interrogated about when I’m having children more times than I could count since I was in my teens. If people are truly happy with their own choices, I’m sure that they wouldn’t feel the need to question anyone else’s. I’ve also seen a lot of people having to stay in relationships and jobs that they hate to be able to take care of their children.

My mother was severely abused by her stepfather as a child and her mother did nothing to protect her. She became a drug addict to cope with her unresolved trauma and lost custody of me when I was five. Several years ago, when I bumped into her, she asked me when I was going to have a baby and sulked when I said that I wasn’t going to.

I can’t stand the way social media has idealised motherhood a lot over the years at the expense of women and children. I often wonder how people can pretend that we live in a world without all these economic uncertainties and environmental concerns then start reproducing like their lives depend on it.

I’m really inspired by reading the stories of other childfree people and looking forward to meeting more of them.