“I’m 52 now, and happy with my choice of not having children.”

Barbara, 52, Belgium

I’m 52 now, and happy with my choice of not having children.

I never wanted children. Since my teenager years. At that time it was mainly because of climate change (already then…)

For a small moment I hesitated, because of all the pressure from around me. People telling me I was selfish not to want any children, people telling me I was going to regret it… and who will take care of me when I’m old? etcetera…

Except one friend who had children and told me that if I’m not sure I want them, I shouldn’t make any. And then I saw a documentary featuring women who regretted having children, who didn’t love their own kids. That was when I realized I really don’t want any children.

Since Covid I have never been more relieved not to have children.

It’s not that I don’t love children. I do. I have three goddaughters who are adult now and I have taken care of them a lot. Especially in their very difficult teenage years.

I’m also involved in helping my husband’s three children when they need anything.

I’m not worried about my old days because I have a lot of friends. And I volunteer in a care home for people with dementia and see a lot of lonely old people who don’t get any visits, although they do have children…

Don’t let society put any pressure on you. If you don’t want any children, stay childfree.