Many women and girls see themselves as destined to become mothers – but for others that’s just not the case, and that’s okay.
Fortunately, in most parts of the world, we’re past seeing women as existing purely to bear children and we’re learning that women can literally be anything they want to be, whether they choose to raise a family or not.
One mum had always dreamed of having kids, and thought for sure she’d be welcoming a family with her husband, until their marriage broke down after just six months, when she was 24 years old.
“My parents have photos of me as a little girl with my dolls in my pram and even as a teenager, I was still playing with dolls every now and then. I just couldn’t wait to be a mother,” the mum, from Australia, wrote for 9Honey.
“I had a failed first marriage that only lasted six months. I was only 24 and it was a disaster, one of those marriages that never should have happened. We used to fight a lot, one of those awful on and off relationships.”
However, by the time she met her current husband, Ben, she was in her late thirties and had lost all interest in the dream she once had of becoming a mum.
“I was just exhausted by life and all the dramas that I had going on at the time. I didn’t see why being a parent was going to be this dream come true,” she explained, adding that Ben was desperate to get to making a baby after their wedding was over.
“I told him I wasn’t overly keen but he wouldn’t accept that at all. He comes from a family where each couple has at least three kids, so that was expected of me as well – apart from the fact I was getting too old to have many children at all.”
Ben couldn’t seem to grasp that she didn’t feel maternal, so eventually managed to convince her to come off birth control, and they quickly fell pregnant.
The couple now have a two-year-old son, who the mum absolutely adores, but even now she feels as though she ought to have trusted her instincts that having kids wasn’t for her.
“I’m just not maternal and not cut out to be a good mother. I think I’m an okay mother, I love him so much and I care for him to the best of my abilities,” she explained.
“But I feel sometimes I do the bare minimum. I couldn’t wait to go back to work so my son has been in day-care from a very young age. Will I regret it when he’s older? I very much doubt that.”
On reflection, the mum admitted the main reason she got pregnant was to keep Ben happy and she wouldn’t have done it if he hadn’t carried on insisting.
“I had a kind of fear that, if I didn’t make him a father, he might leave me for a woman who would.”