Life Without Baby

Filling the silence in the motherhood discussion

Chero of the Week: Charlayne Woodard November 18, 2011

You might recognize Charlayne Woodard from TV shows like Law and Order, ER, and Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, but more recently she’s been making a name for herself on Broadway.

Charlayne isn’t a parent, but she’s a godmother, auntie, and mentor to dozens of other people’s children. She’s had a stranger on a subway train tell her she’s not a real woman because she doesn’t have children, and she’s had a friend try to convince her to make a split second decision about adopting a baby. But she’s stood firm, and now she’s written a one-woman play about her experiences as a non-mom.

The Seattle Times called The Night Watcher “thoughtful and engrossing, entertaining and poignant” and says that Woodard “vividly illustrates a critical source of love for young people living in a culture that exalts the idea of biological parenthood but doesn’t always follow through.”

I’m so pleased to see someone finally addressing the subject of the important role that people who aren’t parents can play in the lives of children. And lucky for me, Charlayne is bringing her show to Los Angeles this month, so I’m going.

I’ll report in when I’ve been, but for now let’s hear a “Brava!” for Charlayne Woodard for having the courage to speak up about being childfree.

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5 Responses to “Chero of the Week: Charlayne Woodard”

  1. Angela Says:

    That sounds like a great show, I really want to see it!

  2. Mali Says:

    I’m jealous you’re going to go!

  3. Michelle Says:

    Thank you for standing up fo those who would be brow beaten by society to have children. We’re also childless by choice!

  4. Kathleen Guthrie Woods Says:

    She’s a wonderful writer and performer. I saw “Neat” at the Mark Taper Forum years ago, and it’s still with me. Brava to Ms. Woodward for taking “our” message out to the world!

  5. gary Says:

    I hope you didn’t just turn the other cheek to that rude, obnoxious, uncouth, sadistic verbal tyrant on the subway who attempted to rob your sense of womenhood for being childless. How did he/she even know?


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