Life Without Baby

Filling the silence in the motherhood discussion

Are you okay? June 25, 2010

Filed under: The Childfree Life: Issues and Attitudes — Life Without Baby @ 10:09 am
Tags: ,

I’m a little worried about you.

In Tuesday’s post I admitted that I had lost my sense of humor and was looking to find it again. I asked for your best jokes and even offered a fabulous prize! But only one person posted a joke; granted, it made me giggle, but now I’m worried.

Are you okay?

Seriously now, are you okay? Because sometimes we tell everyone that we are okay, and sometimes we even tell ourselves the same thing. Sometimes we mean it, but sometimes it’s a flat out lie. It’s seldom that anyone actually asks us if we are okay (and I don’t mean just the standard “Hi. How are you?”), but when they do it gives us the opportunity to ask ourselves, “Are we really okay?” My good friend asks me this frequently and I’m just as grateful to tell her truthfully that I am as when I need tell her about why I’m not.

So, I’m asking you now, “Are you okay? Are you happy/comfortable/at peace with not having children?”

If your answer to yourself is “no” then ask yourself what you need. Do you need to talk someone or throw something or make a change in your life? Do you need to go to bed and feel sorry for yourself for a day (this is allowed if you promise to get up and do one of the other things as well.)

If your answer is “yes, I’m okay,” what helped you get to that place?

And if you haven’t completely lost your sense of humor in this process, please share a good joke. After all, there really is nothing like a good belly laugh to turn things around.

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9 Responses to “Are you okay?”

  1. Kathryn Says:

    “Am i okay? Am i happy/comfortable/at peace with not having children?”

    No. Frankly, it is hard for me to imagine that i will ever be ok with this. I’m old enough that this should be long behind me, but i often still have a hard time watching new mamas/pregnant women/babies, etc.

    What do i need? Children in my life. I’m not talking about becoming a mama, but just having kids around some. Kids that like the attention of someone that is not their parent & who they can talk to freely. Little ones usually love to talk & share & parents often don’t have time/patience for it as much as the little once would like. The parents can go on a date night once or twice a month & leave the child/children with me for a couple of hours.

    I’ve even sought to try to create this. Neither my husband or i have family close enough that we can see nieces/nephews more than a couple of times a year, if that much. Our church (well, it was our church, we won’t go there again, but it is a long story) is full of folks much older than we. They have grandkids, but no one for us to form relationships with. I’ve tried to go thru “proper channels” like Big Brothers/Sisters, etc., but nothing much in our small community.

    I was encouraged by the “proper channel people” to “just foster.” There are many reasons we can’t do this. I always thought i would be a foster mama, but we can’t do that at this point & probably never can.

    So, i’m “on the lookout” for kids in my life. As we’ll be going to a different church, maybe the opportunity will come up.

    As far as the jokes, i’m sorry. I can tell stories ok, sometimes, but they also lose so much by being written. Also, i’m not good at “off the top of my head.” Sometimes a good one will come around & i’ll share it, but then, frankly, i forget it. So when you asked for them the other day i thought, “I can’t think of one. If one comes to me later i’ll come back.” One never did & i forgot. (My memory is atrocious.)

  2. Lindy Says:

    Am I OK right now? Right now, yes, I’m doing well – it’s summer here, and I love the sunshine, I can cope with so much more in the sun. I have my lovely young niece-in-law (is there such a thing?) to stay for the very first time – she’s 16, just finished school and chose to come and stay with us – we’ve had a ball so far and that’s great. Going to the beach tomorrow which will be cool. But still seeing my neighbours every day with their lovely two children and hearing the hustle and bustle and knowing that will never be mine, that’s a constant I’m afraid. I guess we just have to take the good stuff when it comes our way and know that it’s all the more precious for us.

  3. Jennifer Gill Says:

    That’s a tough one. No, not really. But I’m not okay with not being okay – I have a deathly fear of being needy, and hate being worried about.

    I’ve been dealing with depression for nearly two years (my third major episode; it’s recurred about every seven years) and this one seems more like a midlife crisis: I don’t know what to do for a living any more (all the wonderful online entrepreneurship advice seems to tell us we don’t have to quit our day job – but what if we don’t have one??). My self-worth is underground, a good degree and 20+ years’ work experience still don’t seem to give me anything to offer. I alternate between relief that at least I didn’t pass the gift of depression on to a child and wondering why I was born.

    I guess this is sort of beyond the scope of Life Without Baby, and I worry about it being “too much information,” in any case. I’m mostly dealing with it; financially I can’t actually afford depression so I’m chalking it up to hormones and hard times. If I can herd myself through this, I hope there will be enough healing experience to share, and perhaps meaningful work as a result of my growth.

    This website has given me excellent support and a feeling of belonging, at least a little bit, somewhere. And the childless thing is something I definitely need to deal with to get to a healthy “big picture” – it’s one of the empty holes left by dreams I used to have. It feels good to keep coming back here, though, and I think that’s a big step. I also am incredibly blessed by the love of a wonderful, strong man, so I know I’m lucky. What I need is to rebuild a solid sense of purpose, and I don’t know how to get there.

  4. Kel Says:

    Yes. As far as childlessness goes anyway.

    I believe I am an optimistic person by nature, however a series of events have rocked my world the last few years. I believed myself to be invulnerable in a way, it was a surprise (to me) to learn that I am not. It has been a humbling experience among other things.

    I have my health, and a great love in my life. I feel very lucky, and yet…..I still feel the aftershocks of last few years.

    I’m still unsteady at times and I don’t have a compatible joke for this subject. I did read this, and for me, it resonated.

    “You should leave off sniffing the carcass of your old life. You may enjoy unending pain. I do not. Nor is there any special wisdom in injuring oneself over and over. What is your loyalty to that pain? To abandon it will not lessen you.” – Robin Hobb

    Best, Kel

  5. Kathleen Guthrie Says:

    Yes and no and most of the time. Here’s where I am today: On Saturday, my fiance and I took care of our nephews (4 and almost 2) for the day, including a visit to the zoo ($150+) and watching two Disney DVDs at home. We had fun, but were wiped out by 3:30, and it was nice to return to a quiet, clean home after we dropped the kids off in the early evening. We also got to sleep in on Sunday. This morning, 5 days later, I got into my car, got hit with a wave of stench that made me gag, and thought, “What died in here?!” A thorough search revealed 1/2 a bottle of milk left over from the kids’ visit. My immediate response, as I rolled down all the windows, was, “Thank god I don’t have kids!” So, right now, today, I’m feeling very grateful for my mostly orderly home, my nights of uninterrupted sleep, and my clean-smelling car. Would I trade it all for running hugs and sloppy kisses? Probably. Fortunately, though, as an auntie, I get a little bit of the best of both worlds. And I’m okay with that.

  6. Cortney Lyon Says:

    I am not okay. I had lunch with a pregnant friend yesterday and then watched “Marley and Me” (not the best movie to watch when you’re already an emotional basket case). I am broken.

  7. Wendy Says:

    I know this is an old post but just read it and got quite tearful reading the comments. I certainly haven’t come to terms with not having children and still have hope for the future.
    The ‘Are you ok?’ title and theme really struck a chord with me as I always say I’m fine when inside my heart may be breaking. I just wanted to share something that I posted on fb after my second mc;
    ‘sometimes when I say “I’m okay”, I want someone to look me in the eyes, hug me tight and say “I know your’re not”. I got a lot of hugs after that post.
    Hugs to you all.

  8. […] Wendy added a comment to a post I wrote, and shared something she had once posted on her Facebook page. She […]


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