In almost all societies, and especially ours, having a child is almost a given if you are a woman. We have been told for centuries that motherhood ‘completes’ a woman. However, does it really? We talked to five different women who decided to live a childfree life and why.
I am a reporter, and I love my work very much. I would never want to do anything that will interfere with my work. It takes a long time to get pregnant and to raise a child, and I cannot compromise my work at any cost. The decision to not have a child is not just mine because I involved my husband too. He was hesitant initially but now is on my side. Our love for each other is still the same, even after my decision.
Kriti Arora, 27, is a journalist based in Mumbai
My mother was in a government job. When I was two years old, she left me in the village, and I was raised by my grandmother. My mother was not able to handle her job, home and me in the city. I was deprived of my parents’ love while growing up and my education also suffered. I do not have very fond memories of my childhood. Ironically, I am in my mother’s shoes now and have a good job. I too am finding it tough to find the right balance between home and office and can’t even imagine how I will raise a kid. That’s why my husband and I have mutually decided that we will not have kids.
Meenakshi, 29, is an engineer based in Lucknow.
I have seen many women go through labour pain and have come to the conclusion that I can not bear such pain. I had told my husband before marriage that I do not have the courage to bear a child and endure such pain. When we feel the need for a child at any stage in life, we will adopt one. We are focusing on building our careers right now.
Avantika Parmar, 24, works at a bank in Delhi.
I married a guy going against the wishes of my parents. We both come from humble backgrounds, and our parents were not financially strong. Because of this, we both could not do what we wanted to do in our lives. Although we both work in private companies, we still earn only enough to meet our daily needs. After paying our house rent and EMIs, we are not left with any money at all. We cannot even imagine how we will raise a child in such a situation. So we have decided not to have one unless we are financially better off and can work flexibly to take care of our baby. Till then, we are very happy in our own small world.
Sonam Singh, 27, is a BPO executive in Varanasi.
I saw my sister’s condition after she had a baby. No one in the family, even her husband, has helped her with the baby. It is her sole responsibility. She is also expected to do all the household chores. I feel miserable for her and believe that I should never have a baby. I have a job, and I am a working woman. I would never want to lead such a difficult life of raising a child while managing all the domestic work. So I will stick to my decision never to have a kid and enjoy my life as a working woman.
Ritika Mukherjee, 29, lives in Noida.
Persons in the picture are models.