Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Do you think you would have preferred a life without kids?

Posted by   + Show Post

'Time' Magazine's 'Childfree' Life Article Shows Moms What They Are Missing

by Sarah Bernard

As someone who has not taken a vacation in the seven years since my twins were born -- a real one that involves lying in the sand in a bathing suit -- Lauren Sandler's Time magazine cover story about life being better without kids seriously struck a nerve.

My daughters aren't only the best thing I have ever done, they were a hard-won prize that came with one of those harrowing IVF stories we are all accustomed to hearing now. When motherhood didn't come easily to me, I was devastated, depressed, and distraught. The idea that the thing I most desperately wanted in my entire life might never happen was equal to annihilation. Yes, that real and that intense.

I hate being away from my girls. But this summer they have been lucky enough to spend weekdays at day camp in the country with grandparents and a babysitter running the ship while my husband and I work. And I am slightly horrified to admit that for the first time maybe ever, I can see the appeal of the child-free life

Like all working moms, my day is book-ended between school drop-off and when the babysitter leaves. I am home often. Most nights, I'd say. And it is not a sacrifice. I want to hear about school, spend time with my goofballs, read them Rainbow Magic books before bed. I fall asleep with them more than I'd like to admit. But there you go. I just did. I would go so far as to say there might even be a bit of co-dependence going on between me and my daughters. Hence the vacation problem mentioned above.

When the summer started, I worried that I would miss them so badly and that they would miss me so badly that this experiment would fail miserably. I watched friends send their slightly older kids off to summer camp for seven impossibly long weeks and my heart broke for them. For the record, they have spent every day since trolling their camps' website for photos of their children looking happy that they then email around as evidence that their pain is worth it.

The first week that my husband and I were in the city, my girls called a lot. One of them would cry in the mornings because I wasn't there. Then, the calls tapered off. And something happened. My husband and I met for drinks at 9:30 p.m. I started staying up late and watching movies or reading. Reading! I met friends for dinner -- is it worth noting that these friends happened to be of the "childless" variety? I worked late -- the way I used to in the old days. It felt right. It felt normal.

I found myself saying goodbye to my munchkins on Sundays and secretly looking forward to the start of the week. Driving away from my girls, I felt downright giddy.

The truth is, my enjoyment of this time is in part because I know it is temporary. I know that in a matter of days, my husband and I will be back to doing the full-time parenting, the drudge work, the refereeing, the cuddling, the playing, and the answering of precocious questions that make me squeeze them so hard I could cry.

If this child-free life were in fact my full-time life, no matter what Lauren Sandler says is a statistical trend, or what the women she interviewed insist they prefer, I would be miserable. I think a lot of moms would agree. For many of us -- if not most -- having children is having it all.

Do you think you would have preferred a life without kids?

by on Aug. 6, 2013 at 9:06 AM
Replies (41-50):
by Silver Member on Aug. 6, 2013 at 10:35 AM
No. I don't know what I would do without my kids. Sometimes, I honestly don't know that I would make it through life without them.
by on Aug. 6, 2013 at 10:37 AM
2 moms liked this
I love my kids but I truthfully am not the type to have kids. Even people I run into that I knew before I kids will say: Wow, you have kids! I never would have thought you would have kids. -- I try to be the best mom.
by on Aug. 6, 2013 at 10:39 AM
1 mom liked this

My life would be so empty. All I ever wanted from life was to be a mom though, even when I was little. I just wanted to be a wife and a mom. Sure I want to pull my hair out sometimes. I have thought about what my lif would be like if I had never met someone and fallen in love, and I think it would have been pretty great. I probably would have been a successful artist, I would go to social events, I would have a nice one bedroom apartment in some artsy villiage somewhere, I would have time and money to travel and time to read books...two of my favorite things. All that aside though, In wouldn't change a thing.

by Silver Member on Aug. 6, 2013 at 10:39 AM
Oh my goodness. I thought having 3 boys was rough. You are more woman than I. Lol.

Quoting momaof8:


preaching to the choir I have six teenagers

Quoting TerraIncognita:

Ask me after I get through the teen years.


by Ruby Member on Aug. 6, 2013 at 10:47 AM

I love my life with my kids, I couldn't imagine not having them

by Anonymous 4 on Aug. 6, 2013 at 10:56 AM

I wouldn't have preferred child-free life, and I'm not just saying that because it's "what a Mother is supposed to say." I mean it. I have one child. One thing I can say is I didn't up and decide to have 2-3 in a row like a lot do, and I can see how that can overwhelm a person. I know for a fact I would be sitting here feeling incomplete and like something was missing if I had not had a child by now. He's a good kid, and he doesn't complicate out life, he makes it better. We can still have a lot of fun, plan vacations etc. I guess it depends on what you want in life and your priorities whether of not the grass looks greener without children, but for me it's plenty green where I'm at. :)

by on Aug. 6, 2013 at 11:08 AM

My life would be vastly different if I did not have children. I would not be sitting where I am, probably quite literally. I have bettered my life FOR my children. IDK where I'd be without them.

by Anonymous 5 on Aug. 6, 2013 at 11:12 AM
1 mom liked this
Yes. I hate to admit it but I'm not cut out for this. I hate myself for it.
by on Aug. 6, 2013 at 11:13 AM
1 mom liked this

No.  When I became a mother a whole part of me opened up that I never knew existed.  At the risk of sounding cheese and dramatic, my son made me a better person.

by on Aug. 6, 2013 at 11:20 AM
No, but I would love to have more family support while I attend college. I would kill to have a kid free weekend once in awhile so I could get caught up on all my assignments !
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)