Life Without Baby

Filling the silence in the motherhood discussion

It Got Me Thinking…Abouts Childfree PSAs April 11, 2011

By Kathleen Guthrie

While on a treadmill at the gym this morning, I caught the tail end of a public service announcement (PSA) about forest fire prevention. PSAs encourage us to stop smoking, promote charities that support vital medical research, raise awareness about health and safety issues, and diminish the stigmas associated with victims of assault and people who suffer from mental illnesses. In the last category especially, they remind us we are all equally human. And it got me thinking….When do we, the Women of the World Who Are Childfree, get a PSA?

Our script might read something like this:

Music in background: instrumental of Bonnie Raitt’s* “Something to Talk About”

Voice #1, Kathleen Guthrie*: My name is Kathleen. I am a writer and I am childfree.

Voice #2, Oprah Winfrey*: My name is Oprah, and I don’t need to have children of my own to raise up humanity.

Voice #3, Lisa Manterfield*: My name is Lisa. Every day, women around the globe are rocking the world instead of rocking a cradle.

Voice #4, Ashley Judd*: My name is Ashley, and we are Women of the World Who Are Childfree. Join us today and get a free toaster!

*All of these rocking women are childfree.

Okay, I’m kidding about the free toaster part. But one day, in my lifetime, I’d like for women like us to be able to talk openly about being childfree without having to apologize or feel sorry for ourselves. Better yet, I’d like to see my childfree-ness become a nonissue when my value is measured in our society.

Ad Council: Are you hearing us?

Kathleen Guthrie is a Northern California–based freelance writer. Her articles have appeared in AAA’s Westways, GRIT, Real Simple, and 805 Living magazines. Read “How to Be the World’s Best Aunt Ever” on