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Childfree

I Never Wanted Kids -- Until I Did

xoJANE | Posted 03.19.2015 | Women
xoJANE

Ten years after I made my initial no-babies-ever-under-any-circumstances declaration, I'm perusing baby name books and painting my guest bedroom a shade of pastel periwinkle.

I Don't Want Children -- Ever

Jessica Burnell | Posted 03.03.2015 | Women
Jessica Burnell

It's not that I don't want children right now. It's not that I don't want children until after I'm married, or after I've paid off my student loan debt, or after I've bought a house. There is no caveat to this statement. I do not want children ever.

What Is Active Acceptance?

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 02.23.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

I actively work my acceptance of my life without kids, but do not be confused by the word acceptance. Definitely do not miss the words actively work.

Where Do I Belong?

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 02.17.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

It is now, as a 35-year-old woman without children, where I'm struggling, thankfully, for the first time in my life, with the sense of not belonging. I have learned there are two major things no one tells you when you begin the journey of IVF.

From A Childfree Woman To All The Parents Out There

Sabrina Hoffmann | Posted 02.06.2015 | Women
Sabrina Hoffmann

Only you know what it really means to be parents. But perhaps this will show you that while people like me might be childless, we are not heartless.

Making Room for the Light

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 02.02.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

It's sad IVF didn't work for us. It's sad we lost our three babies. It's sad we lost those three dreams. Giving myself permission to continue to feel that sadness, as needed, will help to stave off that anger that seems to set me back so much every time.

It's Always Been for You: An Ever Upward Circle Back

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 03.25.2015 | Books
Justine Brooks Froelker

This book is for everyone who is struggling. This book is for everyone who needs a good story to show them some ways out and that it is possible. That we all have the power to change our lives; the power to define our own happy ending.

Our Fellow Warriors, True Friends, Limited Supporters and Incapables

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 03.15.2015 | Women
Justine Brooks Froelker

Being completely understood by others needs to have nothing to do with who we are or our stories. We must honor ourselves, no matter what our loved ones' capabilities of understanding us are.

Making It Well With My Soul

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 03.07.2015 | Religion
Justine Brooks Froelker

So many of us are struggling to not only do the work to survive this life but to embrace that these struggles, losses and hurts can, will and must become well with our soul. But, we cannot do this alone. I'd even argue to say that we cannot do this with only our faith either.

My Ever Upward Mothering

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 03.02.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

I mothered. I mothered not my own children, but I mothered nonetheless. I mothered in a way that I am accepting and embracing, but also defining for myself.

A Convoluted Christmas

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 03.01.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

I feel the freedom and less stress, perhaps, without children of my own at Christmastime. And yet, I feel so sad and maybe even a little empty without them.

Forever Changed, Never Fixed

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 02.22.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

Survivors of infertility know how quickly your joyful high can be crushed by the breath-stealing loss of heartbreak.

I Was Ambivalent About Having Kids -- Until I Wasn't

Dana Norris | Posted 02.19.2015 | Women
Dana Norris

I find it hard to believe at first because I don't feel any different. But then days go by and I begin to feel a buzz around my edges. I realize that I, through no conscious effort of my own, am slowly building another person. My husband and I compare bellies in the mirror every night. I didn't think it was possible, but I enjoy being pregnant.

The Semantics

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 02.18.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

I chose the term childfree over childless for the subtitle because I am not less of anything. I am not missing anything. I am not less of a woman because I cannot be a mother in the traditional sense.

If People Who Don't Want Children Said What They're Actually Thinking

The Huffington Post | Alanna Vagianos | Posted 12.17.2014 | Women

"Wait.. you meant to get pregnant?" A new video produced by Buzzfeed illustrates how annoying (and hilarious) life can be for people who don't want...

I'm 40 And I Don't Want to Be A Mom. Now What?

The Cut | Posted 02.14.2015 | Women
The Cut

I knew I did not want this motherhood thing, an idea I had, without much thought, signed off on early on as being something I should want. If fate knocked me up, I'd be okay. But if it didn't, that was pretty great also. Maybe greater.

The Dichotomy of Life

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 02.08.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

What I am figuring out is that this ever upward recovery I fight to live every day will always be filled with the dichotomy of life.

When We Become a Mother or Father

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 02.07.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

I will never get full understanding from everyone, let alone validation. But, I will still speak my story. I will own all the parts of my story. And, I will continue to fight and break the shamed silence that surrounds infertility, miscarriage, infant loss and recovery.

Defining Our Enoughs and Everythings

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 02.01.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

Defining our everything and our enoughs in order to let go, embrace and move forward. I think we can apply these questions to many areas of our lives that we are struggling with.

An Apology and Thank You to Bobbie Thomas

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 01.31.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

Thank you for your realism that this doesn't always work. Without even knowing it, you had my back in that interview. Thank you for supporting what needs to be the message.

Let's Stop Giving Shit To Women Who Don't Want Kids

Karen Mangiacotti | Posted 01.31.2015 | Women
Karen Mangiacotti

The mandate that you must have children to be a "real woman" is completely false, but you are real. How could anyone ever tell you otherwise?

Scarred, But Never Closed

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 01.24.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

Our trauma, tragedies and losses (infertility related or not) make us who we are. I have learned that I am a better everything because I wanted and loved those babies so much. I am also a better everything because I lost them.

Our Infertility Rap Sheets

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 01.24.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

As men and women suffering through infertility treatments we are identifying ourselves, sometimes completely, through how many treatments we have endured. We are so much more than this.

A Letter to the 14-Year-Old Girl Trapped in the Darkness of a Body Cast

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 01.20.2015 | Healthy Living
Justine Brooks Froelker

Trust that you will thrive through this and that this isn't the end of your story; because, I promise, it is not even close. And try, to hold onto that light just a little, knowing and believing that someday it will flicker again.

Making a Family Just Isn't That Easy - Part 3

Justine Brooks Froelker | Posted 01.10.2015 | Parents
Justine Brooks Froelker

When it comes to family planning, fertility, infertility, miscarriage, infant loss and recovery, there really can't be too much love.