Why do some people not want children?

There are a lot of reasons why someone might say that they don’t want to have children. And you have to remember that just because someone tells you that they don’t want to have kids, it doesn’t mean that that’s actually what they think.

Your Friends Might Not Be Telling You The Truth About Not Having Kids

There are a lot of people out there in this world who would love to have a family, but can’t. Maybe they are unable to physically have a child because of infertility issues or because of problems in a relationship, or lack of one.

It could be that they can’t afford to have a family, even if it appears on the surface that they are doing okay with money. They may have suffered multiple miscarriages and feel too traumatized from their previous experiences to try again.

They may be too ashamed to admit that they cannot have children, and just say that they don’t want kids at all.

They See Children As A Burden

Other people see children as a burden rather than a blessing. Undeniably, raising children is a humongous undertaking, that can drain the physical, emotional, and financial resources of an adult. There have been studies out there done on the happiness of parents, and across the board, the finding is that when parents have children, especially young children, there are huge drops in the overall happiness and satisfaction in life.

In fact, in 1975, advice columnist Ann Landers asked this question of readers about having children, “If you had to do it over again, would you?” Landers received 10,000 handwritten postcards answering her question, and 70 percent of the parents said that they would not. (source)

People who do not have kids do not experience the same dips in happiness in their twenties and thirties that their compatriots experience. Think about it, while one couple is elbows deep changing diapers and wiping up vomit, the couple that doesn’t have kids has two incomes and the freedom to take more trips, buy more things, spend more time on themselves doing yoga, buying healthy food and cooking at home, seeing a psychologist, getting acupuncture and massages, and generally dedicating a lot more time to their physical well-being. They can invest more of their life into their career and gain satisfaction from that.

Sometimes I think that as parents, we don’t want to consider that maybe we would have been happier had we not had kids. It’s hard to say that we wouldn’t want to have our children if we could go back and do it again, because they are so amazing and a part of our lives.

But it is hard to deny the data. Kids are hard on relationships, and when kids leave the nest, studies find that this is when parents are happier than any other time in their relationships. (This is also when divorces occur, but maybe that is part of the happiness).

But just because you don’t have kids, doesn’t mean that you would necessarily have a life that was unhappy, unsuccessful, or unfulfilled.

No Confidence That They Can Do It

I have talked with some individuals about not having kids, and they have explained that they didn’t feel like they would be a good parent. Some people have rough upbringings, and don’t feel that they have the confidence, patience, emotional intelligence, stability, or the right stuff to be a parent. They see what it takes to be a good mom or dad, and do not believe that they could do a good job of it. Rather than risk having a child and doing it badly, they just choose not to do it at all.

Don’t Want To Pass On Bad Genes

I’ve also talked with parents who are really adamant about not passing on their genetics. My mom dated a man who had struggled with severe obesity in his younger years and even underwent a gastric bypass to get control of his weight. He has struggled with his physical health his entire life and feared that if he were to have children, that they would struggle in the same way. He felt that having a child would be almost the same as passing on a death sentence to them due to obesity and he was unwilling to do that.

I’ve also talked with other individuals who struggled with severe mental health issues such as depression or bipolar disorder, and feared that if they were to have kids, that their children would end up just like them. Their own personal negative experiences strongly influenced whether or not they would want their children to undergo the same.

Okay With Being Selfish

Some individuals can candidly say that they are selfish. And not in a way that makes me think they’re a bad person, they just want to focus on themselves and their lives and don’t want to focus on raising kids, especially given that one you have a child, you are committing to a lifetime of education, love, support. I’m just selfish I guess, is something I’ve heard a lot.

Just Don’t Like Kids

Other adults have said that they don’t like children. I know this is hard to imagine or believe, but some adults just don’t like children, forgetting the fact of course that they were at one point a child. They don’t enjoy being around children they don’t enjoy interacting with children and the last thing they would want to do is commit to having a child around them for 18 years and then for the rest of their life.

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