Why your subtle nudges aren’t okay

I don’t know if it was because I was tired, I had a bad week, or I had just been poked one too many times, but the other day I snapped. My mother-in-law had done one of those silly Facebook quizzes about how many grandchildren she would have (14 according to the quiz). Beneath it there was a string of comments saying her boys better get crackingAnnoyed childfree woman
(for reference, she only has two boys and I’m engaged to one of them).

I had ignored all this and gone on with my day until my mom asked if I had seen the quiz. I knew she meant, ‘haha have you seen this, look how many kids you’re supposed to have’. I know, I know, this is all harmless and no one meant any ill intent with it. However it was one poke too many so I snapped. I wasn’t mean but I did retort with, ‘yes we did see this and we wondered when our parents will realize we’re serious about not having kids!’ This is rather abrupt for me. I’m usually a mild mannered people-pleaser. But I have had enough.

Here’s a little background. I’m almost 30. I have been with my fiancé for 11 years. For at least the last five years we have clearly expressed the fact that we aren’t having children. Not now. Not ever. But despite this we still get barraged with comments and subtle hints that we’ll change our minds. This is annoying. This is disrespectful. And most of all it is hurtful.

When someone knows that I don’t want children but keeps pushing me towards it, they are telling me, in no uncertain terms, that I am making the wrong choice. They are undermining my decision and pushing their beliefs onto me.

Trust me when I say most of us childfree women have thought long and hard about our decision not to reproduce. We’ve looked at the pros and the cons and have decided, for whatever reason, that it wouldn’t be fair to ourselves, or our potential children, to bring them into the world. We are making one of the biggest, most researched decisions of our lives. So please stop with your subtle nudges. They really, really hurt.