August 23, 2006

Purple Woman in Europe

Guest Contributor: Tanja
alias: Morgaine the soap maker
Morgaine's Soaps

My name's Tanja, I'm 29 years old, single and I live in Switzerland.

Lately, I almost became a bit paranoid - I felt I was being followed around by pregnant women. Seriously, simply walking across Campus at work I encountered at least 5 pregnant women within 15 minutes...

...not to speak of friends who are pregnant or already have kids, but I guess I have now arrived at an age where most people already settled or plan to do so in the near future. And for most people that includes kids. I'm being swamped with stories from old classmates and friends about their kids, pregnancy and of course the inevitable photos.

Don't you just love those re-unions where everyone brags about their life and then the inevitable question,
accompanied by a pitiful glance comes: "And what about you? Married? Children? Oh, you concentrate on your career...Oh, you want to follow your dreams? How cute...", and more pitiful stares follow this statement.

Don't even get me started on my mother and my aunt pestering me about (non-existent) boyfriends and when I plan to bless them with grandchildren. A few years back my mother was so concerned with my not having a steady boyfriend that she asked me if I was gay. Not that anything would be wrong with that, mind you! (We're being politically correct, right?) But I could see the tremendous relief when I assured her that I prefer a man in my bed to a woman.

Repeat after me slowly: I - do - not - want - any - kids.
My reasons are simple and mostly selfish. First, I'm not too fond of children. (I'm definitely an animal person...) I can spend an afternoon with them if they have a certain age, but I'll happily return them to their parents in the evening. Babies and toddlers are not for me. It's beyond me why people bring in their newborn babies to work to show them off and 98% of the female employees and 90% of the males go ga-ga over them. I spent an afternoon in the city with an old friend of mine and her 1 year old son. It was absolutely impossible to have a conversation, because the little guy could not keep quiet.

Another, and I suppose popular, reason is that I'm scared of giving birth. I do not plan to go through 9 months of feeling miserable and then pressing a human being the size of a basketball out of my vagina. I'll have to raise it, go through all the shit and worse I put my parents through with it and then being stuck with it for the rest of my life. C'mon, it's not just 18 years, (being a parent is a life-long task). I plan to evade the curse of all parents: Asking themselves at one point or the other what on earth they did wrong and if they failed miserably.

I love my independency too much to give it up. (Hey, I even have issues putting up with a partner!) I have dreams, I have plans that include immigrating to the US and starting a new life. I'm not willing to do that with a child. I'm not even sure I want to do it with a partner.

Egotistical? Yes, definitely. But why should I lead a life that complies with what society dictates if it's not what I want? After all, my ultimate goal is being happy - for me, this does not include children.

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kT said...

Yay! For you and for me (I see myself in a lot of what you say).

I don't get the adult need to obsess over babies and I refuse to feel like a horrible person because I don't want to make goo-goo noises and/or faces.

Teri said...

Tanja - Thanks for this post and for sharing your (perhaps not so unique) experience as a Purple Woman in Europe.

Also, thanks for subscribing to PW. I just changed the feed to a weekly so it isn't too much bother in people's in boxes. Should batch to you on Wednesday if I did it right!

kt - You're great just as you are!

alphagirl said...

Bravo! I, too, don't enjoy babies and toddlers and am not compelled to fuss over them. As a confirmed animal person, I jumped at the chance to "babysit" my neighbor's puppy for the day. Not so much with a neighbor's child.

I saw a lot of my sentiments in what you had written..well done!