This blog post has been on my mind for awhile and I’ve been hesitant to write it because I know it’s not a popular opinion but I feel like it’s finally time I share it…
As the title says, I’m 30 (in 1 week), married, and I don’t want kids. To be honest, I’ve never really wanted kids but I thought that would change as I got older because that’s what everyone told me and that’s just what you do. You get married and you have kids. It’s as simple as that. Only it isn’t. I’ve wished for so long that my feelings would change but they haven’t and I’m not sure they ever will. I was never really a baby person when I was younger. I rarely played with dolls, never wished for a baby, never had baby fever and never dreamt of being a mom. Don’t get me wrong, I like kids, but that doesn’t mean I want to raise one.
I’m at that age where my friends and family are started to have kids and it’s just made my desire to not want kids that much stronger. I love their kids, I love seeing them grow up but I still don’t wish I had a child of my own. It took me a long time to realize that there’s nothing wrong with me and that I can’t help how I feel but some days it’s still hard. I don’t want to explain to people why I don’t want kids, why I won’t change my mind in a few years, why not having kids isn’t selfish, etc. I just want to be “normal” and that’s why I’m writing this post. Because whether or not you want kids, it’s normal. Just because your life is different that someone else’s, doesn’t make either one right or wrong, it just makes it different. And coming from a Christian upbringing, I find that most Christians view having children as God’s will. That if you’re a godly man or woman, you want kids. This makes it even harder to express how I feel; however, over the years, I’ve learned a lot more about the Bible and God and I think that most Christians have it wrong.
I grew up thinking that you get married and have children because that’s what God wants for our lives. I didn’t get married until 3 days before my 29th birthday and I definitely felt the pressure from my family, friends and society to “take the plunge”. Not that I didn’t want to get married, but I definitely felt the pressure to get married sooner rather than later since I was almost 30. Our first year of marriage wasn’t easy for me and I quickly regretted getting married. I won’t go into details but the only thing that kept me from quitting was knowing that anything was possible with God. I knew he could turn it around and that I just needed to trust him. I started reading my devotional and Bible more regularly, pretty much because it was the only thing that gave me hope. One day, I came across a few chapters in the Bible that I vaguely remember being taught in church:
1 Corinthians 7: 1-2, 8-9 “Now for the matters you wrote about: It is good for a man not to marry. But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband….Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I am. But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.”
These verses were written by Paul who later explains why it’s better to be unmarried but I remember reading this and thinking, then why do Christians want everyone to get married super young and start having kids if it’s better not to?? This is rarely taught in church and I think it’s important to teach girls and boys that not getting married isn’t a bad thing. It’s actually better to be UNMARRIED if you really want to follow God. This got me to thinking about kids and why Christians are so adamant about having children. I looked through scripture and realized that there’s nowhere in the Bible that says we should have children.
A lot of people quote Genesis 1:28: “And God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it..” as the verse where God commands us to have children; however, I would disagree that this is a command for us now. First, this is in the Old Testament and there are a lot of things in the Old Testament that we don’t follow anymore like cutting our hair, wearing makeup, etc. Second, this command is given specifically to Adam & Eve and isn’t mentioned anywhere else in the Bible so I don’t think we should assume it was meant for everyone. Third and probably most importantly, the world looks pretty filled to me… I think it’s safe to say that whether this command was given to us or not, it’s been fulfilled.
Another reason Christians give for having children is because they’re a gift from God. While I do believe that children are a gift from God, I don’t think that necessarily means that every Christian has to have children. There are many non-selfish reasons to not have kids just like there are many selfish reasons to have kids.
Personally, I want to have children because I strongly desire to raise a tiny human and love them unconditionally. I don’t want to have a child because “that’s just what you do” or because I’m afraid I’ll regret it or because I want someone to take care of me in my old age. A lot of these reasons are why people have children now, and I think they can also be viewed as selfish reasons. I want God to place the desire on my heart to have my own children (or adopt) and if that doesn’t happen then there’s other ways I can grow the kingdom of God, make a difference, and have a meaningful life.
Over the years, there’s been so many times that I’ve felt bad because of how I feel and I want other women to know that it’s normal to feel this way. Every time someone says, “Wait until you have kids” or assumes I want kids, I just smile and nod because I’ve learned that telling people you may not want kids doesn’t go over very well.
Whether you want kids or not, I hope we can all respect each other’s decision. Choosing to have a child is a big decision and we should be supportive no matter what that decision is. ❤