Category: Childfree

The Childless Life Monthly Coffee & Chat

Published / by sandymichelet / Leave a Comment

A chance for Baton Rouge area childless women to meet face to face on a regular basis. There is power in meeting someone who “gets it”.

If you’re feeling a bit nervous or shy about coming along… that’s ok. Childless women are everywhere…but we often don’t speak about it…which makes those of us going through it even harder.

There is no agenda to this…..let’s just get together over coffee and talk.

1st Saturday of the month 9am – 10am

Coffee Bean, 12177 Coursey Blvd, Baton Rouge, La 70816

www.TheChildlessLife.com 

www.gateway-women.com

12 Days of Childlessness and 12 Days of Infertility.

Published / by sandymichelet / Leave a Comment

On the 1st day of Childlessness, my inner voice said to me “This bites, you’ll have no legacy”.

On the 2nd day of Childlessness, my inner voice said to me “What did I do wrong”

On the 3rd day of Childlessness, my inner voice said to me “I have empty arms”

On the 4th day of Childlessness, my inner voice said to me  “I will die alone”

On the 5th day of Childlessness,

my inner voice reminded me 

“FIVE PREGNANT HIGH SCHOOL GIRLSSSSSSSSS”

On the 6th day of Childlessness, my inner voice said to me “People treat me different”

On the 7th day of Childlessness, my inner voice said to me “I’ll never have a baby”

On the 8th day of Childlessness, my inner voice said to me “I’m embarrassed that I’m broken”

On the 9th day of Childlessness, my inner voice said to me “My family is small, its my fault”

On the 10th day of Childlessness, my inner voice said to me “Am I a real woman?”

On the 11th day of Childlessness, my inner voice said to me “Don’t look at me with pity”

On the 12th day of Childlessness, my inner voice said to me “Will I be remembered?”, “Don’t look at me with pity”, “Am I a real woman?”, “My family is small, its my fault” “I’m embarrassed that I’m broken”, “I’ll never have a baby”, “People treat me different”, “FIVE PREGNANT HIGH SCHOOL GIRLSSSSSSSSS”,  “I will die alone”, “I have empty arms”, “What did I do wrong” and “This bites, you’ll have no legacy”.

12 days of Infertility

To me, someone who is infertile has been unable to conceive a child but is still TTC (trying to conceive) and is hopeful that it will happen. 

On the 1st day of Infertility, my family asked of me “Are you pregnant? We want to see a ba-by”

On the 2nd day of Infertility, my coworkers asked of me “Have you seen a doctor?”

On the 3rd day of Infertility, my dry cleaner said to me “Stop trying it will happen”

On the 4th day of Infertility, my neighbor said to me “Adoption is an option”

On the 5th day of Infertility, my doctor said to me

“FIVE CLOMID DAYSSSSSSSSSSSSS”

On the 6th day of Infertility, my pharm tech said to me “You need to try harder”

On the 7th day of Infertility, my lady at the drive through said to me “If its meant to be you’ll have one”

On the 8th day of Infertility, my mailman said to me “Hurry, you’re getting older”

On the 9th day of Infertility, my waitress said to me “Is it you who has the problem?”

On the 10th day of Infertility, my dentist said to me “IVF could fix this”

On the 11th day of Infertility, my nail tech said to me “Why can’t you get pregnant”?

On the 12th day of Infertility, my doctor said to me “This will never happen”, “Why can’t you get pregnant”?, “IVF could fix this”, “Is it you who has the problem?”, “Hurry, you’re getting older”, “If its meant to be you’ll have one”, “You need to try harder”, “FIVE CLOMID DAYSSSSSSSSS”, “Adoption is an option”, “Stop trying it will happen”, “Have you seen a doctor?”, “Are you pregnant? We want to see a ba-by”

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This started to be a tongue in cheek blog post…but as I wrote I started remembering the unsolicited (i.e. unwelcome/unwanted/not helpful) advice I had received over the years. Add that advice to me already beating myself up and it was a constant barrage of negativity….like a partridge jumping out of the pear tree to peck the childless to death.

Others dream of visions of sugar plums dancing in their head. We dream of a child. 

Others think a Silent Night is a good thing. We think its another night without hearing a cooing baby.

All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth. Nope…………………………

We heard him exclaim as he drove out of sight. Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

My jaw dropped

Published / by sandymichelet / 2 Comments on My jaw dropped

It was a LOT different than I thought it would be. Looking back, I should have read the agenda for the 2 day conference a lot better. It clearly stated the event’s purpose. However, my brain decided that it would be something similar to the Gateway-Women’s retreat. I was wrong.

For the purpose of clarification….this blog defines childless as those who cannot have children (for whatever reason). Childfree describes those who have made a conscious decision not to have children.

On Friday, a childfree keynote explained the backlash she received after a 1974 interview on CBS’ 60 Minutes. She and her husband discussed their decision to not have kids. The morning after the TV show she was fired from her job, received death threats and was ostracized from her friends/family.  After realizing the footage had been edited to remove any positive references, she became an author and now in her 70’s, continues to advocate for and celebrate those who decided not to have children.

The message, though, was a little hard to take. The keynote was cheering (arms in air) about not having kids….actually celebrating….mere feet from childless women who had come to the event unsure of what they were looking for….but I don’t think this was it. She was celebrating not having the one thing that some in the room desperately wanted but couldn’t have. The more she spoke, the lower my jaw dropped.

Please understand. I have nothing against Marcia Drut Davis. I admire and applaud her for taking a stand and setting the stage for women to be able to make the choice to have kids. (After the conference I purchased her book for a friend and asked Marcia to sign it…which she happily did.)

So why was I so….so….shocked? Confused? Honestly, I think I had just geared myself up to hear a supportive talk for the childless and was surprised by the obvious lean to the childfree life.

After the keynote, 4 superstars in the childless/childfree community took to the stage for a panel discussion and a Q&A. Based on the comments and the audience participation, I guessed the room was split about 80% childfree, 20% childless. Childfree women shared their stories. More cheering. So far, nothing from the childless.

I reallyyyyyy started to question if this weekend was going to work for me. And I don’t think I was alone.

I watched the mic move throughout the room while I sipped on coffee…I initially had absolutely no plans of speaking up…….I was full from lunch and happy with the caffeine. But my heart started to break for my new childless friends who I knew had to be listening to everything I was….and who were not being acknowledged as attendees. I raised my hand, asked for the mic and started to share my thoughts (insert your surprised face here):

  1. “Yay for you if you decided not to have kids. Seriously, it is your choice….and I applaud you not having kids just because someone/society/your mother says you are supposed to have kids.”
  2. “Something was becoming very clear to me. We actually had three groups in the room: a.) The cheering childfree, b.) the childless who were well on their journey to peace (like me) and c.) those who were coming to terms with their childlessness and accepting that their life wouldn’t turn out like they’d planned. That last group was rightfully raw with emotion….and being completely ignored.”

A few random claps…and I felt like I had alienated myself from the rest of the group. Way to go, Sandy. Making friends in Cleveland….

The conference organizer, Karen Malone Wright thanked the panel then addressed the group. From the podium, she spoke directly to me with sincere concern for the childless women in the room who (at least in my mind) had previously been unacknowledged. Then….she clarified the format for us….and realized that she hadn’t done it at the beginning over the conference. The first day’s keynote was dedicated to the childfree, the second day the childless. Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh. That made a LOT more sense. I immediately felt better. Kudos to her for starting The Not Mom group to provide a safe space for women who (for whatever reason) do not have kids. She is passionate about making this group inclusive and protected.

After the clarification, I was flying high. And ready to meet some peeps. Ba BAM!

During the break I was lucky enough to meet women who felt the same way I had all morning….and they wanted to speak up but didn’t know what to say or, as one woman said, didn’t have the strength to say it. So…my estimation of 80% childfree, 20% childless was actually wrong. The childless were there…but just not ready to talk yet.

So….that meant that the following day was for us. And Jody Day did not disappoint.

Next Blog Post: The Super Hero of the Childless