Leslie Ashburn-Nardo, a psychology professor at Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis, studies stereotyping, prejudice and discrimination. Her latest study looks at adults who choose not to have children.
“I started drawing parallels between my research [on racism and sexism] and my personal experience as a childfree woman.”
“My husband and I would meet total strangers, like at dinner parties, who’d ask about our kids. I understand that’s a natural thing to do … most people our age do have children. But what surprised me was the reaction when we would say, ‘We don’t have kids.'”
She said they would give her a look as if she had done something wrong.
Millennials – those born between 1994 and 2014 – are showing lower rates of procreation than any other generation. I’m actually a little older than that, but I still decided not to have children. There is a still a cultural stigma surrounding those of us who decide to forego parenthood. People question you or say things like, “You don’t know real love until you have kids.”
In America, it seems as though people view marriage and parenthood as the normal path through life. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that, but there is nothing wrong with choosing a different path either. Parenthood is not for everyone, and there is nothing wrong with people who don’t choose to have children.
Featured image via Twitter.