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missjoy
Yeah, I'm not a fan of the minivan - though I like it more than the SUV. My family was able to get by fine with a sedan without any dvd players or anything.

Yeesh.

culturehandy
I just love how the new dodge commercial is pushing it's crappy mini van as a new family room? Like there isn't enough green house gas emissions already? nooooo, you need to drive your crotch fruit around and contribute more!

SUV's and Minivans need to go. Far far far away.
sassy
Wow...I can't believe I never noticed this forum on Bust before! I just got married 2-months ago and I get the "When are you having kids?" question all of the time from relatives. However...we DO NOT want kids. We want to establish our selves financially and travel. We want to be free to go where we want to go, when we want to go. I am young (22 and husband is 25) and I have friends my age who have already been married for a COUPLE of years and have had their first child. Their first child before they can even legally drink!! Needless to say, their lives are gone. They can't do anything now and everything revolves around the child. I do not want that and when I tell people I am not having children they always respond "You'll change your mind." I live in a southern conservative state and there have even been articles in our paper from priests/pastors declaring it wrong and a sin not to have children.
faerietails2
Hahaha! Yeah, that "family room" SUV commercial is really obnoxious.

UGH, and so are those DVD players in the headrests! Can't parents just make their kids, oh I don't know...read?...on long drives, or quietly play games with each other like they did in the good ol' days? But no, they have to hypnotize the little buggers into silence.

If I had to listen to Barney and all that annoying shit during my family vacation, I'd drive us right off the nearest cliff!
pollystyrene
Has anyone else ever listened to the latest Patton Oswalt CD, Werewolves & Lollipops? He and his wife are childfree and he talks about how they have an invisible baby, named "10 hours of sleep". He also talks about going into Wal-Mart on a Sunday afternoon and seeing (paraphrased) "dead-eyed 20 year olds with their broods of failure" laugh.gif laugh.gif laugh.gif laugh.gif It's a really funny CD.
i_am_jan
If there's one thing trolls love, it's war culture and gory photographs! Fortunately, it's nothing we haven't seen before. And a shout-out to Hollywood and Grand Theft Auto for desensitizing us all already! Rendering a Scary World 'not so much' these days!

ANYwho...the Patton Oswalt sounds great, must check out...

culture ~ I know what ya mean and I've said it before myself ~ Look out for the grumps with the crotchfruit at the grocery store ~ cuz they are NOT happy much of the time...I get the evil looks myself, and it's always such a slap in the face...I cannot tell you how many times I've held the door open for these people, or walked slowly behind them while they take up an entire sidewalk with like 3-4 rugrats, stepped aside when the baby walked under my feet, waited with my car running to pull into a parking space while they fiddle with car seats and their toddlers are running around in the space I'd like to go ahead and pull into...yet SMILED to let them know it was okay...but they NEVER seem too happy for ME, just dirty looks as though I'm unimportant and have infringed on their food-shopping or something. This happens often enough to remark on it again...

humanist77
heheeheee~broods of failure...
sassy, that's so repulsive to me that people so young are still getting married and having kids, like they were in 1950. Not even going to college. I'm astounded at seeing (through the wonders of myspace) how many of my HS classmates have done it; many of them who should NOT be reproducing. This is not just my opinion, this is a fact tongue.gif

I work in an affluent area currently, and weekend mornings are the favorite time for all the shiny, smiling yuppies to stroll around the city with their giant cadillac strollers and quadruplets of children, like little screaming, drooling trophies. I consciously do not look directly at them or their children when passing, because I know they want and expect that attention. I'm sure most of them don't take note of that, because they're lost in their own little worlds, but I feel like any less attention given to them is a good thing. I do however try to smile at obviously much poorer people with kids in the neighborhood that I live in-not because they're poor and have kids, but because they get treated like dirt compared to the beaming yuppie parents of the world..
culturehandy
I was thinking about how some people are so proud to become pregnant.

I get it if you have fertility problems, but if you are just some regular schmucko off the street, guess what, it's not amazing feet that you can do what every other organism can do. Survival of the fittest doesn't mean that you are amazing because you got knocked up. I can practice getting knocked up all the time.

Humanist, I agree, what is with all these people having babies so young? I see people I went to h.s. with having babies, and I'm shocked. I'm only 25! It's like people are in such a rush to live a miserable existance! Oooooooh doggie, just what I always wanted. I alwyas wanted to make sure I had to plan my life around a poop machine. I can't go out, I can't take a vacation, I can't buy something I want, I can't have a good nights sleep, I can't have alone time to make sure I don't loose my mind because of the crotch fruit. Just how I wanted to spend my life.

Can you tell I'm a little bitter today? hee hee.
faerietails2
I work/volunteer in the mornings for the humane society, and today while I was feeding the cats, this woman with a billion obnoxious children came up to the windows outside the cat room. All of a sudden all I could hear were kids shrieking "LOOK AT THE CATS! WHAT' HIS NAME?! I WANT TO TOUCH IT!" while banging on the cages. The poor cats looked miserable. Anyway, the mom decided to turn that moment into a "teaching" opportunity, and started reading the names/stories off the cage cards in hopes that they'd all shut up. I was trying my hardest to hold in my laughter with a few of those stories, because the words would just die on her lips. "Jack likes to keep to himself. He almost died...because he wouldn't eat out of depre--..." And she'd just move on to the next story. There were about three tragic stories she stopped midsentence in.

Seriously, I think 6-7 year olds can handle hearing that a cat was sad and wouldn't eat, but now he's getting better. They weren't paying attention to her anyway. rolleyes.gif
humanist77
ugh, there just was a commercial on TV for Toyota. I wasn't paying attention to the beginning, but towards the end of it, a baby starts crying for some reason, which naturally made me look up and cringe. The crying kept going for several seconds, even through the last part of the ad where the Toyota symbol is shown on the screen, and it ended with the baby still crying. Just weird and annoying, and I said out loud, "who the hell wants to hear that? why would I want to buy a toyota now because of an annoying crying baby in their commercial?"
Trust me, it was really irritating-to those who hate that sound anyway...
i_am_jan
fairietails2: OMG, those pet shop stories just break my heart...I feel for those cats who must be *so* annoyed by these brats

Humanist: I love your smiling policy! laugh.gif I fell to pieces when I read that, and I totally feel it...
angiepoo
So getting fed up with the "so when are YOU going to have babies?" thing. After endless oneway coversations with the inlaws about the new grandson and sending HUGE e-mails filled with photos of the kid doing everything imaginable 'look, he ate a whole Cheerio!" A few times a week even. Even when we drove 12 hours to visit last spring, they barely said two words to us, every second was devoted to this kid, they didn't seem to care we were even there. I mean the kid has a mother (who lives with them now), he doesn't need 4 or more people hovering over him at all times and interrupting everything to comment on what he's doing.

Anyway, we got some revenge. We started sending tons of pictures to them, of my cat, a rock outside, a tree, the lawn, the spagetti we made for dinner ect. and for Christmas we sent cards with the cat on them too. It worked! Now they only talk about the kid if it happens to come up, and its not so bad. I think they got the hint we have lives too.
Just heard the other girl in the family is preggers, ugh, can't wait.
angiepoo
QUOTE(faerietails2 @ Nov 6 2007, 10:44 AM) *
I work/volunteer in the mornings for the humane society, and today while I was feeding the cats, this woman with a billion obnoxious children came up to the windows outside the cat room. All of a sudden all I could hear were kids shrieking "LOOK AT THE CATS! WHAT' HIS NAME?! I WANT TO TOUCH IT!" while banging on the cages. The poor cats looked miserable. Anyway, the mom decided to turn that moment into a "teaching" opportunity, and started reading the names/stories off the cage cards in hopes that they'd all shut up. I was trying my hardest to hold in my laughter with a few of those stories, because the words would just die on her lips. "Jack likes to keep to himself. He almost died...because he wouldn't eat out of depre--..." And she'd just move on to the next story. There were about three tragic stories she stopped midsentence in.

Seriously, I think 6-7 year olds can handle hearing that a cat was sad and wouldn't eat, but now he's getting better. They weren't paying attention to her anyway. rolleyes.gif



Poor kitties, I hope that family doesn't try to adopt a cat, that would we torture!
culturehandy
If I had a car and all I heard was screaming babies, I'd drive the car off a cliff.
i_am_jan
Don't worry about it culture, one of the things frequently high on my list of goals is to be nicer to my cats. Ahem, yes my pets. Like actually pet them once in a while rather than ignoring their attempts to come up in my lap and hang out or whatever... unsure.gif

But at least we know enough to stick with our days jobs, right boys and girls wink.gif (Hmm, by the way I wonder if culture's still dating the naughty cop, need to go check out the thredz, tee hee)

PEACE!
culturehandy
jan, my dog is my child. I take her out every day (and have the paw prints in the back seat of my car to prove it!), I play with her, I talk to her, thing is, she doesn't expect anything but scrathes and play time and walk time. She doesn't ask for money or my car, or clothes.

She does however, drive me nuts, good thing I don't have a kid, cuz I can just give the hound a bone and she leaves me alone!

I'm still "involved" with the cop. Dating, though, we are not. As he has two kids (twin daughters), and an ex wife. I can deal with an ex, not kids, though.
ginger_kitty
My cattledog is scared to death of kids. The people that had him before we adopted him, had bratty kids that were abusive to him. I feel so bad for him.

One of my hubby's uncles was telling him the other day that we need to start having babies. The Mr. let him know we were quite content with having three dogs, and weren't interested in ever having babies. But his uncle kept pushing the issue. I wonder what age we will have to be for people to realize that we are serious about never having children....40?...60?
i_am_jan
Gingerkit: Yeah, 40 is about right...but there will be a new question then: it's entitled: "Do you ever regret not having children?" (Just a heads-up.) It started for me pretty much after I got past 35. Sometimes I feel like just going "Oh god YES, and starting to howl out crying, what am I going to do NOW, throw myself over that person's shoulder and sob" just to make people *think* HMMMM, before they start asking presumptive questions and prodding comments.
culturehandy
the hound is also terrified of children. Not toddlers, but kids around 6-10 mark. There were some kids at the park who asked if they could pet her. I said they could try, but she was afraid of kids. They walked up nicely (didn't run! impressive!) and the booted it. And wouldn't come back near me (as the kids were nearme). She hunkered along once we started walking again.
pollystyrene
A few months ago, someone here posted a link to a childfree forum about how to reply to the "When are you going to have kids?" question...there were some very good ones, mostly sarcastic (but effective) replies.

My favorite was, while a little long-winded, quite good. To paraphrase, it was something like "There are thousands of women who are unable to have children and everyday is heartbreaking to them, trying to put on a happy face for their friends with kids, going to baby showers, just seeing kids playing in the in the park. And every time someone asks them when it will be their turn, it rips them apart inside all over again, reminding them of what they want so desperately but may never have. Now, I'm not going to tell you whether or not I'm one of those women, because it's none of your business, but I just want you to think about that possibility every time you're tempted to ask someone that question again."

LeBoy and I have just chosen to be blunt about it to our relatives and no one really asks anymore. His mom drops hints occasionally, and I'm sure once we actually get married, they'll start questioning again.

Angiepoo, we go through the same thing. My sister and I are both CBC and our parents are cool with it. Both of LeBoy's siblings have kids and it's just so annoying to spend much time with his family. His siblings are mostly okay, but his mom is just in full-power grandma mode and she's just so focussed on the kids. We pretty much get ignored and everything's just so kid-centered. All family events are scheduled around the kids naps and meal-times. We're not allowed to watch anything remotely adult on TV if the kids are present in the house, let alone in the room. And on the few occasions we are invited over when the kids aren't there, all his mom does is talk about the kids.
culturehandy
Why having children is so wondrful. Right from the horses mouth. Heh.
humanist77
Ya'll will appreciate this biggrin.gif
turbojenn
OMG, humanist - that is Hi-larious - I'm emailing that to all my CBC friends! smile.gif
sassy
Angiepoo: The Christmas cards with your cat on them...that is by far one of the best ideas I've heard for a long time!! As I mentioned before, I've been married only a couple of months and though we tell our family we don't intend on having kids, they still ask. My husband's sister has a 1-year-old and it was the first grandchild of the family and we pretty much get ignored now. Oh well.

We do have three dogs that we consider our children and believe me, they take just as much work between cleaning up bodily fluids and breaking up fights. (Two chihuahuas and a daschund.)
missjoy
I think more people thinking about kids or asking why people aren't having kids should read that truemomsconfession site (which is kind of highly addictive).

I'm also amazed by the number of people who seem to hate their spouse or are sure they are cheating on them - perhaps I'm a blissful newlywed - but who puts up with that shit - and how long did you know your spouse before you married them? - yeesh.

I do think it helps to hear people talking about times they don't like having kids - gets away from the sugar coated, everyone-should-do-it train of thought.

angiepoo
missjoy - I've noticed the same thing, I wonder why so many people even get married, with the way they act in public, I can't imagine what their relationship is like at home behind closed doors. About half the people I know are getting divorced, mostly soon after having kids. Suprisingly so many women seem to still think having a baby will save their relationship and make everything better. I feel sorry for the kids actually.
pollystyrene
Has anyone seen even the commercials for that TLC show, Jon & Kate Plus 8, the reality show about that family with the 8 kids (a set of twins, then sextuplets)? The commercials alone re-affirm my commitment to birth control, but the few minutes I've seen of the show is just unbearable and not just because of the kids- the parents have these little separate interviews (together, but away from the kids) and all they do is argue and complain about each other.

And what I love is that the voice-overs on the commercials are always saying, "America's cutest family"....did the writers actually watch the show? Because all I saw were a bunch of whiny-assed kids and parents who weren't much better. I cringed every time I saw the commercial for the episode a couple of weeks ago when they took the kids to the dentist. Reminded me too much of the parents at work who want to be in the room when their little monster's getting work done. And don't understand why we [politely] ask them to leave. That commercial pretty much showed why. rolleyes.gif
culturehandy
Crying, screaming children give me anxiety. I get so stressed when I hear it. Bah.

why would you want 7 children at once? Seriously. The only things that were meant to have any more than three babies at one time are anything other than humans. Oh, and elephants. Whatever. I'm just saying it's not healthy! Nor normal. It goes against the natural order of things.

turbojenn
I dunno, polly...I was home sick on Monday, and you know, there's not much on TV, so I sat there and watched 2 epis, and I actually thought that they were remarkably sane and reasonable for having 8 toddlers running around. The fact that either parent can even string a coherent sentence together trying to keep up with that bunch just really amazes me. I wouldn't wish that many kids on anyone I know...yikes.

And really, sextuplets - can we pleeeeeease talk about legal limitations on the number of embryos fertility docs are allowed to implant at one time? Bad ethics, and damned dangerous, if you ask me. Which no one did....cod, I sound crabby, eh?! I think that's MRG talking. wink.gif

i_am_jan
On Conan O'Brien last night (it must have been a rerun although I hadn't seen it before), in the monologue, Conan says "did everyone hear about the man whose wife just gave birth to their 17th child? Yeah...after it was born, the other 16 kids threw him a surprise "okay we get it, you're not gay" party."

(D'OH!) ohmy.gif
deschatsrouge
Yeah it was a rerun, but I never get tired of it. What could be better than a seven foot tall man making fun of the Duggers and talking to Quakers the shit eating duck. I love Quakers the shit eating duck so very much. I want a shit eating duck when I move to the country some day. I also like saying shit eating duck over and over.
humanist77
I found this photo in the Onion archives with the headline
"Earth to Be Made Child-Safe"


scary..hilarious...scalarious?

I'm addicted to the Onion :p
i_am_jan
Oh how I love THE ONION biggrin.gif
missjoy
I saw this on a website today, it made me so mad I could spit:

"I'm sorry you can't have children, I really am. But that does not mean it's okay for you to constantly compare your flea ridden unhousebroken jumpy hyperactive MUTTS to my SON. Or to compare your love for those dogs to my love for my child. If your dog died, you'd get another in a minute. If my son dies, I won't be stopping at the orphanage on my way home from the funeral."
pollystyrene
There's a special place in hell for that person.
faerietails2
QUOTE
that does not mean it's okay for you to constantly compare your flea ridden unhousebroken jumpy hyperactive MUTTS to my SON."

No bitch, it's not okay for YOU to compare your germ-ridden, screaming, CROTCH DROPPINGS with ADD to my well-mannered, housebroken furBABIES. Their poo is biodegradable. Your brat's diapers are decidedly NOT. rolleyes.gif
treehugger
<snork> ...she said "crotch droppings"..... wink.gif
designermedusa
I was at:

the mall at lunch the other day, and I was trying to walk when I see two mall moms, one with a single stroller and one with a double stroller. I just know they didn't give a shit that they were taking up the entire walkway with their strollers.

Ikea on Saturday, and almost got run over in the store by a woman pushing a stroller.

The best, and I had to smile at this. A woman at the mall food court put her toddler on the counter right by a cafeteria style of food, the guy behind the counter said "Please get your child off the counter", and he said it with an rolleyes.gif.
missjoy
Good article - from the U.K. I believe:

Civil war rages in the office...
by Nicki Defago
last updated at 15:42pm on 14th February 2007

Five-thirty in the afternoon and a PR office in London is buzzing with activity.

Quarterly figures are due in a few minutes from the New York headquarters which will trigger a frenzy of phone calls and meetings.

Despite this, two women in designer business suits are packing their bags and pulling on coats.

Why? One of them has a child who simply to be picked up from an after-school club. The other has a nanny who has just called in sick.

As they rush out the door, their childless colleagues throw steely looks after them and turn back to their computers.

Welcome to the ugly front line of what is being dubbed the Womb Wars.

The scene I describe above is not based on a specific incident, but ones just like it are happening every day in thousands of offices across the country.

In most modern offices today, a division exists between those who have children and those who don't.

Offices, factories, surgeries, shops and studios are having to cope with increasing incidents of job jealousy — between those who insist on more time with their children and those who are forced to take up the slack which their colleagues with families leave behind.

So one might imagine that this week's news that Beverley Hughes, the Minister for Children, wants to introduce flexible working rights for all employees — not just those with children under six — would have signalled a rapprochement between the two warring factions.

I very much doubt it. Not only are businesses big and small going to resist this to the death (the CBI was first out of the traps to condemn it as "foolish") but this is the self-same Government that come April is to extend paid maternity leave from six months to nine, and which wants to give fathers the opportunity to take half a year off as well.

Of course, I fully appreciate how tough it is bringing up kids, and it's even tougher for working mums who have to juggle children and careers. But the truth is that the so- called family-friendly policies introduced to benefit them are starting to cause deep resentments among their childless colleagues of both sexes.

I know this because I recently spent a year writing and researching a book examining the growing social phenomenon of the child-free - people who have chosen not to have children.

For some, it is circumstantial - fertility reasons or not meeting a suitable partner - but an estimated one in five women will actually decide that she does not want to become a mother.

I'm one of them. I'm 40 years old, from a large, happy family, and enjoy a successful career as a television producer.

But seven years ago, shortly after marrying my husband Jim, we decided we simply didn't want children. We were, and still are, perfectly happy as we were. With that decision came a realisation that there must be many others like me out there, and so I decided to seek them out.

What I discovered was a minefield of resentment, a growing backlash against a government obsessed with pushing familyfriendly policies to the top of the political agenda. Politicians need to capture parental votes, but in practice these policies affect us all, regardless of whether we have children or not.

Nowhere are the lines more sharply drawn than in the workplace. Childfree couples are branded the DINKS (Double Income No Kids) or THINKERS (Two Healthy Incomes No Kids Early Retirement).

On top of this, working parents are the subject of increasing vilification from those who think "childcare" has become some kind of magical password.

Uttering this magic word gives parents freedom to leave work early or arrive late, apparently inured from disapproving remarks about them inconveniencing others and having a lack of commitment to their jobs.

One male friend of mine who has no children told me: "If I took the afternoon off because the dog had a cold, my colleagues wouldn't accept it for one moment.

"But if I had a child, they'd reluctantly accept that I could go home if my child was sick. Why should parents get more breaks, flexible holidays, time off for school plays, paternity leave? What am I getting? And I do the same day's work for the same money."

Another woman, an IT consultant, told how she refused to step in for a colleague who wanted an afternoon off to go to her child's school swimming gala.

She told me: "She and another woman were bitching about me - saying that I'd said no to covering for her just to spite her, because I didn't have a boyfriend or children of my own.

"What struck me as stupid was that the woman she was complaining to had refused to cover her as well. But since she had children, they were in the club together, so they were on the same side."

Naturally, if they are shortstaffed, employers tend to go for the easiest option. Why ask the woman with children to stay late when you know she has childcare issues? Instead, pressure is brought to bear on the childfree person, who then feels obliged to help out. Few are brave enough to turn to the boss and tell him or her: "I have to leave at five, I'm cooking my mum's tea.'

So it is that the resentments grow - and they are further fuelled by the increasing time off being offered for paternity and maternity leave.

Of course, legislation now exists which means that jobs must be kept open for those parents who take maternity or paternity leave. But if childless people can afford to be more single-minded about their careers and put in more hours, why shouldn't they be rewarded?

A projected 60 per cent of women and 40 per cent of men in Britain will take up maternity or paternity leave at least once in the course of their working lives. At the statutory rate of roughly £100 a week, it translates into £148 million per week spread across all taxpayers, regardless of whether they have children themselves.

Many people would love the opportunity to take time out of a profession to study or travel but, although this would benefit employers, it isn't considered worthy of compensation.

People I spoke to are fed up with having to subsidise all this time off.

Thankfully, there will never come a day when time off for an art class is accommodated as swiftly as time off for childcare.

But is it really reasonable that while a mother is unquestioningly granted paid maternity leave perhaps two or three times in her career, a childfree person seeking even an unpaid break is invariably turned down? Imagine if they actually asked to be paid!

Yet who's to say that going to work on an overseas aid project for a few months or caring for a sick relative is less worthy of time off from work than having a baby?

The truth is, of course, that in reality, by definition familyfriendly policies are really designed to benefit only those with children.

But even if childfree people don't have dependent relatives, they have plenty of interests in their lives that they consider valuable.

The majority of employers and colleagues with children, however, deem those hobbies less important. Some even brand their childfree colleagues ungenerous if they refuse to alter their own lives to accommodate someone else's parental duty.

I spoke to another woman, a 50-year-old called Sue, who worked as a service industry telephonist.

She told me: "In the job I'm in now, there are women who routinely fill in sick forms when they take time off to care for their children. It's so unfair. Sometimes the child isn't ill, but maybe the nanny is or the teacher is.

"If I need a day off - say there's water pouring through my ceiling or my car needs emergency treatment - I wouldn't dream of pretending I was ill: I'd have to take it as holiday time."

Sue added that for many years she'd had to work nightshifts and that, like her, all her fellow workers in the small hours were single.

"There was a team of staff on duty during the day too - and guess what, most of them had children, " she said. "I can see it would be hard for them to be heading into work just as their children finished at school, but I did feel fed up at getting all the nightshifts.

"It felt to me that those of us who didn't have children were less important."

Then again, parents too often complain they're sidelined at work because they take so much time off, but surely it makes sense that those who have decided against having children and are perceived to be more committed get ahead faster at work if they're ambitious. Often heavy ambitions mean choosing not to have children.

If you were an employer and you had to promote one of two people, one of whom was childless and one who had four children, who would you choose?

I'm glad that as of April this year the flexible working rights are to be extended to all carers, not just those with children, but also to those caring for sick or elderly relatives. But the Minister's proposal that employees should have the right to request part-time work is little more than gesture politics.

Already, plenty of employers claim that flexible working is bad for business and actively want to discriminate against parents because of their "inconvenient" need for flexibility.

One director of a recruitment agency told me how he was approached by a businessman client inquiring about how he could devise a method of skewing recruitment in favour of young, single people.

The client suggested he should tap into the gay workforce to limit the money he had to pay out through maternity and paternity leave - not to mention the weeks and months of lost man hours.

"Plenty of employers want to keep families out," the director admitted.

As for me, I have always felt relief, rather than resentment, that I don't have to juggle my work with childcare responsibilities. But I can see that in the wider world this is a problem which is not about to go away.

The great irony, of course, is that for as much as this government likes to talk about equality, in reality all they've achieved is to drive a wedge between those who have children and those who don't.

CHILDFREE AND LOVING IT by Nicki Defago is published by Fusion Press priced £10.99.
turbojenn
WOW. Great article, Missjoy.

I think we've all felt the tension between parents and child-free in the workplace. And certainly, its not going to go away anytime soon, especially in the US. This week I was asked to give the last presentation in our new employee orientation day, which was at 4pm. I expressed that I could not take the 4pm slot because Wednesday afternoons, I HAVE to leave at 4pm because I teach graphic design to at-risk youth. I was point-blank told that the other presenters could not take the 4pm slot because they have obligations for their kids, and had to leave early. I come into work every fucking day at 7am. I negotiated before taking the job that on Wednesdays, I MUST leave, because I teach. If I am not there, there's no one to teach the kids...and teaching feeds my creativity as much as it does the kids I work with. Once again, my obligations are considered less important because I don't have children of my own. I did put my foot down and refuse to take the late presentation - it was not popular, but I don't care.

I may not have children, but work-life balance is what I seek above all else in my career. I work my ass off at my job, but at the end of the day, I want to leave on-time just as much as parents. It doesn't seem like it should be too much to ask.
culturehandy
that is a fantastic article. It also shows the inequities which exist in the work place. It also shows how pro baby and pro natalist so many places are. I am really getting sick and tired of people who go home because their kid is sick or whatever. I refuse to pick up the slack. I will not call your clients back, I will not do your paper work, I will see walk ins, and even then, I'll tell your client to come back when you're in. I don't get any sort of free time because I don't have kids. When is it my turn to have an excuse for fucking off out of work early???

I am sick of work policies punishing those people who don't have children. I know that people use their kids as an excuse to get out of work when nothing is wrong. I want a day off too.

This is one point that boils my blood.
missjoy
I used to work with a woman who drove me nuts because not only would she leave early every now and then but she would also bring her kids randomly into work with her if she didn't have a sitter. This was a desk/cubicle job and I shared a workspace of four cubicles with her - it was just wrong.
rainarana
Horrid as it may seem to some, married to the director of a company, we specifically don't hire women who are likely to have kids in the near future. Of course we’d never publicly say this, and fortunately we work in a male dominated field so it doesn’t come up often. And we have low turnover with employees. Here in the NL most women either stop working or go to part time when they have kids. Some men do as well. And by law companies have to accommodate them unless they can prove that there is absolutely no way they can perform their work part time. In other words, if everyone else can pick up the slack then too bad. I hate this and grew to detest a coworker who was eventually fired because of his unwillingness to even put in an effort to make up for lost hours. Once he had kids he became useless. The job was demanding, required evenings, overtime, availability, which he refused to put in since having kids. Had to pick them up from the creche, was there late because of dropping them off, couldn't make it to evening obligations, even though this was part of the job description WELL BEFORE he had kids.

IMO-Family (only) friendly policies actually end up hurting workers with families if they can't make their personal lives conform to work. At least if everyone was offered equal flexibility there would be no reason to discriminate against parents specifically, but as it is if the job requires more than a parent can be expected to put into it, many employers, not just us, won't hire them. And I have to agree with this.
deschatsrouge
I thought this was appropriate.
humanist77
Deschat, that's hilarious!
Here's The Onion's radio story that goes with this picture I posted recently:
It's even funnier than the photo : P

"Earth to Be Made Child-Safe"
culturehandy
Bwaaaahahahahaha. That's too true.

i_am_jan
That story about the dog compared with a child ...?? ... it's like yeah lady we understand that you can only love something that is literally an extension of your own ego, your own flesh and blood. You cannot understand how someone else could love something that did not come directly from their womb or sperm. That another life form not directly related to you may be actually worthy of your love. ?

That workplace shite boils my blood too. I worked for years as a legal secretary and I would hear ladies there literally lie about getting their kids or having sick kids just to get out of work. I mean like, a couple people (work friends at the time) actually told me they were lying. And it was amazing *just* how quick, easy and painless it was for them. Like the magic word "kid" was uttered, and instantly they were packing their bag to leave work.

Then when I married a guy who had a small child, I use to use her as an excuse to get out of work too. It was just like magic. And let me tell you something else: I got more *respect* from the management and the other office ladies when I had that "kid" than at any other time in my career. Until that point, I was treated like an alien or some other life form that they could not understand. Then I got divorced from that guy so the jig was up for me.

After we divorced, I decided to sell most of my stuff, pay off all my bills, credit cards, etc. in an effort to create a low-overhead lifestyle for myself. I wanted to work part time. I just decided: ya know what? full-time work ~ 5 days a week ~ with 2 measly weeks vacation a year if you're lucky ~ is for those parent-people anyway. Not for me. It's for people who need to keep raking in that cash to support their expensive life/repro choices. Not for me. I mean, I'm one person living by myself. And it's not like I'm all career-minded. Why should I work the kind of hours that mommies and daddies and yuppies work? 5 days a week? For what? I never buy stuff, if I do it's always used/recycled. The only thing I really have that's important to me is my art. My time. So I quit working full-time. I'm a temp now. A clockwatcher. But at least I don't have to put up with a bunch of angry, overworked, hostile parent/slaves anymore. And be marginalized to make sure they comfortable and coddled at work. I'm so happy not to have to deal with their constant anger, their minivan traffic at 5 pm, etc.

But what I never understood was: if you *know* that signing your kid up for volleyball, ballet, WTF-ever, will mean that you need to leave work an hour early, then why did you sign your kid up for that? I mean, it's a *sport*. Extracurricular. Not a health issue, doctor appt., teacher conference. So: why can't I, as a single person, join a volleyball team and leave an hour early every other day. Right? No. Well why not? I'm just so glad finally the childfree are beginning to organize just a little bit in the workplace? Because it's very necessary.
rainarana


Haha! I Love Engrish. . .
humanist77
HA!!
faerietails2
the gmail quote of the day on my screen:
PJ O'Rourke - "Everybody knows how to raise children, except the people who have them."

so, so true.
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