I married my husband almost six years ago, now. I told him many a time, and gave him one last ‘out’ the night before our nuptials about the children thing. I don’t want them, I have never wanted them, and if it was something he may even possibly want at some point, then we shouldn’t go down the isle. I didn’t want him to resent or regret anything. But he was happy with our life together and so we met at 3.00pm the next afternoon at the alter for a beautiful joining of the families.
By 8.00pm that same evening though, the questions started: when were we going to start a family? How many kids did we plan to have? How happy would our parents be to have grandkids? It really ruined parts of my night and left me avoiding guests for fear of having to have that conversation. When did it become acceptable to stick your nose in other people’s sex lives?
We had only been married for a matter of hours. Not even enough time to digest dinner and yet the questions loomed over us like the plague. Sure, we married young but we had been together since my second year of undergraduate school. Yes, we were planning a life together but why did everyone assume we would favour the path so often chosen? Perhaps, I thought, the questions would calm down with time.
I was wrong. The longer we’re married without children, the more often we are asked. Just the other week someone was so bold as to address my age and the quality of offspring I could produce. Beyond the fact that this was just plain rude, my husband stepped in and replied it was our business and to stay out of it. But I was not satisfied with this response; I have already hit my wits’ end.
What goes on between the sheets is of concern to two people in my life: my husband and I. Imposing your belief that having children is the single best thing a human can do is akin to Jehovah’s Witness knocking on my door. It is intrusive, invasive and unacceptable, and I will not tolerate it anymore. This is my body, my life and my decision to make. I do not want to hear anymore that I need to feel the miracle of life, or that children are the raison d’être. Maybe they are to you; I’m glad you have found your calling. For me, it is travel, experience and a glass of wine on my backyard patio unencumbered by toys, dirt or noise. Now, if you would please excuse me, it’s time for my birth control.