Life Without Baby

Filling the silence in the motherhood discussion

The Great “Life Without Baby” Makeover October 12, 2012

Those of you who anxiously await the arrival of the Life Without Baby post every day (I know you’re out there) probably noticed that there was no post yesterday. Normally Thursday would be Guest Blogger day, but this week I had no guest posts to offer and no time, or frankly, inspiration to write a post myself. I didn’t want to just cobble something together for the sake of having a post, either. I’d much rather write one well thought-out, useful post a week than five hastily thrown-together tidbits.

Which brings me the crux of today’s post: The Great Life Without Baby Makeover and more to the point, my question to you: What do you want from this site?

The LWB site is now two-and-a-half years old, which in blog years is pushing 90, and the old girl is ready for a makeover. I have a designer working on the beautification process and I am taking a lot of walks and thinking about what I want the site to be.

My overall vision hasn’t changed much since I started. I want a safe place to be able to come and talk about the issues of coming-to-terms with not having children, and I want a community of women offering one another support. But as the blog has grown, my vision has expanded and now I’d love the site to become more than just a blog.

I envision a resource for information, support, and community, kind of like a village with a well-stocked library, a community room with groups and events, and a cozy coffee shop where people can meet to talk. I don’t know yet how that all works on one little website, and that’s why I have a pro helping me to figure it out.

But now I’d like to ask you: What does your village need? If you were (or are) struggling with coming-to-terms with not having children, or looking for other childfree women who understand how you feel, and you wandered onto a site that was exactly what you’d been looking for, what would you find there?

Do you want articles, books, classes, support groups, resources, lists, pictures, interviews? What would you like to see?

As I work through this process, I can guarantee I’ll be coming back with more questions, and starting to get specific about what the site really needs, but for now, pretend it’s your birthday and you get to ask for anything you want. Aside from a million dollars and a month in Provence, what would you like from this site?


19 Responses to “The Great “Life Without Baby” Makeover”

  1. Jenny Says:

    Life right now is crazy busy so I have not been as active on this site as I normally am, but I wanted you to know that I read nearly every post, wait for it every morning, and yes, I noticed there wasn’t one yesterday. 🙂 I keep a blog and I know how hard it is to come up with content. I admire the way you have managed to put great stuff out there five days a week. I love that you keep your posts short and to the point. I have just enough time to read and get my fix over my cup of tea in the morning.

    As far as what I would like to see: the same as what you have been doing. Please don’t change too much. I know this is *a lot* to ask but I miss LWOB on the weekends. Some sort of wrap up, review, or something would be wonderful. Books would be great, I can’t wait to take a look at the new ebook you have listed on your side bar. Resources would also be great, not so much for me as the infertile but maybe for family members dealing with the infertile who has chosen to remain childless. Some of the things that would have been helpful for me when making the horribly difficult decision not to go with IVF would have been a checklist or something of “How to know When to Stop”. I had so many conflicting emotions, and I wondered if they were normal and if anyone else felt the same. I felt no one would really understand and I didn’t feel I could come out and talk about our decision. No one in our society just quits on the way to a dream. I do know that you have an online community and reading through those posts were so helpful during that time. I look forward to the day when things settle down a bit and I can get more involved there.

    Thank you so much for all your hard work. I have really appreciated all that you and others have put into this site.

  2. Andrea Says:

    My absolute biggest desire was to find people who flat-out said, “you are not alone.” the feeling of inadequacy and failure that comes with learning about your infertility is so powerful that you feel unique, and alone in a world where everyone around you is seemingly popping babies out every month. It’s hard to realize that you’re not the biggest loser there ever was, because your body can’t do this. So, I propose a section titled something like, you’re not alone”, where members could post their own stories of fall, personal suffering, and acceptance: of slowly getting back up.

  3. Maria Says:

    I also read your column every day and hope you don’t change it too much. I also love the fact that the length of the articles are short enough to read while I’m drinking my coffee. If you really want to change it, I suggest adding a separate section for men so they can access blogs written by men about their infertility or how to support their wives. I also would love to see a support group form that allows members or visitors to meet in person. If you could organize it by tri-state areas around the country, that would be most helpful. I would love to meet and make friends with some of the people who write for or visit this site. Notwithstanding, it’s great to know that there are women on the other side of the planet that feel and think the same as I do.

  4. loribeth Says:

    I also love LWB as is & hope you dont’ change things too drastically. That said, a couple of ideas did pop into my head. Reviews of relevant books, for one (e.g., yours, Pamela’s, the ubiquitous “Sweet Grapes,” etc.). And I LOVED the broadcast you did awhile back, & would love to see more of those (even just a plain old podcast). Maybe quarterly?

  5. Lori Says:

    Please pray for the Turner family who suffered a horrific family loss last weekend.

  6. Klara Says:

    LWB is my safe place, where I feel I am not alone.
    I also hope it won’t change drastically since I love the site just the way it is!

  7. SparklingRain Says:

    Hello 🙂
    Here’s what I’d love to see on LWB:

    1) Regular posts everyday (not just one post a day). Um, that’s how dependent I am on LWB.
    2) A forum section, hosted in the same web page as this one (I am aware of, but visiting it requires me to open another browser tab)
    3) A separate section, updated everyday *cough*, dedicated for interviews with Cheros, with photos of their livingrooms/work desks/anything that can give us a glimpse on what their lives are really like (perhaps I’m just nosey).

    But of course, even if you leave LWB just the way it is now, I’ll still come back everyday 🙂

  8. Elizabeth Says:

    This site reminds me I am not alone. I feel like people get me and understand. This is so important so please keep it up as so many blogs seem to turn into pregnancy blogs…

  9. Nadine Says:

    I really love your site and your posts. Like Andrea, infertility made me feel so alone and discovering this site was like a safe haven for me. I like the regular post and the guess blogger. As for new idea, as alone as I felt and I still feel sometimes about infertility, I know that being childless not by choice is also hard to grasp for men. So a section from the point of view of men would be a welcome addition.

  10. loidid Says:

    Love the blog as it is but sometimes I know change is good. I like having guest bloggers – it’s great to hear from a variety of voices. This blog was a huge help for me when newly dealing with never having children. Just the fact that there are many of us out there and I’m not alone. This blog is rare in that it does not deal with infertility treatments, pregnancy tips etc. but with people like me who have come out the other side wondering what now. It’s a safe place to be, and to comment and to support each other.
    I like the idea of additional resources – books, links to other blogs etc.

  11. Lynn Says:

    I live in New Jersey and wish there were a group for IF women who are not ttc anymore. I joined a group for if , but all of the women were actively ttc, and I am past that.

    • Maria Says:

      I live in NJ and am looking for the same thing. Perhaps the blog can have a meetup option where people can get together.

      • Lynn Says:

        Hi Maria,
        Where do you live in NJ? I live in Cranford, Union County. Maybe we can meet. I belong to the meetup groups but there are no groups for IF in NJ. There are a lot in NYC.

  12. jthorne Says:

    I love this site. It’s been a huge comfort during a transitional time in my life. I would also love to see support-type groups by location so people could meet in person if they choose.

  13. Rose Says:

    The vision should not change: coming to terms with not having children/facing the future without children should remain the context of the site. I agree with poster above: it’s great that the site doesn’t deal with IF treatments/donor conception/pregnancy/adoption, as the readers of LWB have taken a different road.I would hate that stuff to start featuring, ‘tho I know it won’t.
    Having a new, unpredictable article to read every day is fab, not many sites achieve that.
    Book reviews would be a great feature.
    I see the value of interviews with successful Cheros and pieces about famous/amazing childfree people etc, but personally they make me feel more inadequate and panicky about how mundane my life is….I’m a person coming to terms with the fact that I haven’t had kids AND I have a monotonous job that gives me no satisfaction, but I’m totally stuck in a rut unable to move – maybe it would be good to get advice on how to turn that around / or how to find general acceptance and banish fears of a lonely future…. I think the lonely future fear is an important theme that would be good to tap into.

  14. JCL Says:

    I’d love to see more content on aging gracefully without children.

    It is easy for me to imagine my childless young (and even middle-aged) life, but I cannot really drill down on what my golden years will be like without children and grandchildren. I have panic attacks thinking about having no one to drive me to the store or sit with me at the doctor’s office. Not rational, but a fear I spend inordinate time on…

  15. […] you for all the great feedback about the website makeover last week. I must admit to chuckling a bit as I envisioned a small but dedicated staff of writers, […]

  16. […] month I announced the Great Life Without Baby Makeover and asked, “If you wandered onto a site that was exactly what you’d been looking for, what would […]

  17. Robin Says:

    I just read your recent post which linked this one and I want to reply to Jenny’s comment above. I agree 100% with what she wrote here… “Some of the things that would have been helpful for me when making the horribly difficult decision not to go with IVF would have been a checklist or something of “How to know When to Stop”. I had so many conflicting emotions, and I wondered if they were normal and if anyone else felt the same. I felt no one would really understand and I didn’t feel I could come out and talk about our decision. No one in our society just quits on the way to a dream”

    Thank you for writing that Jenny. I am right there, right now. I would love a checklist or something to know When to Stop. I know it’s so different for everyone but anything would help with conflicting emotions this puts you through. I totally get the last sentence too. I don’t want to quit on a dream but I definitely can’t live through much more pain either.

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