Posted elsewhere, but I felt it important enough to share here. This is about why I am child-free, and made the conscious choice to do so.
I do make derogatory terms about breeders, but when I say them, I am 99% of the time referring to my siblings. To me, they are fantastic examples of why I remain childless.
I am the middle child. When I was 14, my older sister got pregnant and decided to keep the kid. She was 18, going to college full time and working near full time. Mom refused to do anything with raising hands on. So instead of listening to the child scream, I took over most of my niece's childcare. I had my fill of diapers before I graduated high school. I had to break my dates so that my sister could date, and "hopefully land a man." She met her first husband while six months pregnant with my niece, and that man was fantastic with my niece and my sister.
After college, for whatever reason, I came down multiple chemical sensitivities. It means I'm violently allergic to anything perfumed, most cleaning products, paints, etc. And yes, "baby powder scented" is something that sets me off. This of course makes me really "enthusiastic" about the challenge of taking care of a baby and trying to find stuff that won't make me ill. When the child gets older, I don't want a rebellious teen making me ill just because they can. Nor do I want to try to explain to a 6-year-old why little Timmy can't visit because he smells and makes mommy ill. About the same time I developed my allergies, I started seeing the man who became my husband. He was very supportive for my health issues, but he clearly did not want children. He had a vasectomy years before I met him. We have talked occasionally about a vas-reversal, but we usually swing back to not wanting children. The odds of his vas-reversal working are pretty damn slim anyway, and the longer he waits, the worse the odds. He's now 48 and I'm 38. Truly, we're better off not, at this point. The window is really closed.
Two months after my marriage to my beloved, my little brother took his wife down the aisle. They were still both in college, but my brother was expected to graduate that spring. You can guess the reason for the rush. Watching them struggle financially and continually add to their family certainly makes my tubes tie themselves. They now have three children (two boys and one girl, all with problems), one large bouncy dog, and varying numbers of cats (one of which now lives with me as a rescue) in a very tiny house.
I still adore my niece. I even adore her half-brother who was raised by my fabulous ex-brother-in-law. Oh yeah, and the reason he's my ex-brother-in-law is because on my sister's 40th, she went through a midlife crisis. She had an affair resulting in her divorce. Now she's recently remarried, and expecting her third child at 42. Um, do I need to say that marriage was a rush to the altar too? My niece will be 25 when her little half sibling is born.
I sincerely wish they would think about it. I know I'd be a great mom. But my favorite part of all children at the moment is being able to send them home with someone else. So I'm focused on being a great Aunt, and maybe my adorable niece and nephew will take care of me when I am old, and I am happy to will anything I have to them. I also adore my "furbabies"- 4 cats, 2 dogs. Life is wonderful without kids.