About this Blog

After banging my head in frustration over the obsession everyone around me had with procreation, I went online to find a community of people who were more like me. I have met some fascinating people along the way, but I have also found that many in the childfree community are quite hostile toward Christianity and a Christian world view. I understand that, unfortunately, many of my Christian sisters and brothers have given them a lot of ammunition (undoubtedly, I have been guilty of this at times too). Not wanting to be perceived as "trolling" for expressing my Christian perspective on other people's forums and blogs, I use my own blog to share my musings on childfree life while at the same time expressing my faith.

My intention is to show support to childfree people, both Christian and non-Christian, but from my own Christian perspective. Questions and constructive comments are welcome; negativity and intolerance are not.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Childfree Confessions, #11 – Leave me out, please.

In the time surrounding Mother’s Day, I witnessed a variety of responses in the childfree world online.  Some childfree felt resentful or hurt that there is a day to honor mothers but no comparable day for the rest of us; some rejected the day altogether as crass commercialization, a sentiment that is undoubtedly not unique to the childfree; but some planned to celebrate as “mothers” of animals; others rejoiced in being appreciated as a “mothering” or nurturing figure (a doting auntie, a mentor, a teacher, etc.) and receiving cards, flowers, and such.

I suppose that some of the hurt feelings or the desire for inclusion is a reaction to our mother-worshipping culture (which seems like a bit of a contradiction to me, because all of the sexist stereotypes about mothers indicate that our culture also hates women for being mothers… I’m going to have to cogitate on that for a future post).  Mother’s Day is just one more day to tell us, the childfree and the childless, that you are nothing if you aren’t a mother.  You don’t matter.

As far as I am concerned, though, I want none of it for myself.  I celebrate Mother’s Day because I have a mother, I love her, and it pleases me to shower her with gifts.  In that sense, I feel no exclusion.  Further, aside from the tiresome cultural assertions that motherhood is the ideal for all women, I don’t begrudge anyone a day to recognize the responsibilities she has taken on.  For me, it is much like Administrative Professionals’ Day or Veteran’s Day – no one will ever celebrate me on those days, and I am OK with that.

The more I think about it, the more I would like to be invisible on Mother’s Day.  I personally would find it a little insulting if someone gave me a Mother’s Day card “from the cat.”  My relationship with my animals is not one bit parental, nor do I think of them as children or child-substitutes.  And while I would like to be seen as a kind, considerate, and reliable person, pragmatic yet compassionate, I would actually rather not have the reputation for being motherly or nurturing.  It has been bad enough to deflect the stereotypes that come with being a wife; I cannot bear the thought of being even remotely associated with anything related to motherhood.  On Mother’s Day, see me as the daughter acknowledging her mother, nothing more.  I am fine doing without the sappy cards, cheesy TV ads, and troubling stereotypes.