Social isolation due to not having children

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Your experience is interesting as I am 40 and finally pregnant (I chose to wait). But I get sick of my pregnancy being the only topic people want to talk about with me. I think it's a little bit of a cultural thing here in the USA. Like how women in their 20's tend to obsess about engagement and marriage.

I've been lucky because most of my girlfriends are very athletic, we all run marathons, so while motherhood is a choice for some of us, for others it's not. But we all get together and run and talk about everything under the sun. Actually, I miss my running women friends alot. My point is, perhaps you'll find some female friends in an activity that you enjoy that doesn't revolve around kids stuff.

I'm sorry you feel isolated. I don't know what I'd do without my women friends. One thing is for sure, less competition between women and more of a sense of sisterhood (sticking together) no matter what a person's lifestyle is should be the norm.

Ugghh! Tell me about it! It seems every woman at my workplace is off having kids and you're right, it becomes an obsession, its all anyone ever talks about. It drives me nuts because my husband and I chose to wait to have kids, we figured that we would likely have one when i was 38 - I am now 38 and struggling with PTSD. I have now chosen to wait even longer, well, at least until I can get the symptoms under control enough to deal with the hormonal turmoil, not to mention that my trauma actually deals with a pregnancy complication.

I'm tired of younger women telling me that I am 'running out of time' to have kids. If I have them then I do, and if I don't, well, I've already lived 38 years without them.

I totally understand where you are coming from, I've taken to gravitating to the younger 20 somethings who are still gushing about engagements and boyfriends, lol.
Dear Medic72

So far, my pregnancy is normal and healthy. There is a real advantage to waiting to have children when you're older. Older women are a little more settled in there lives, have seen some "life" and have usually achieved some of the things they want.

Turn off the voices of those 20 year old gals and appreciate yourself for the woman you are. You couldn't get me to go back to being in my 20's. When I turned 40 I felt like I could do anything and that's exactly what I started to do.

Plenty of healthy women have children into their 40's. I really understand that little sense of knawing dread every time you hear "you're getting a little old". I was there.
You have got to take care of yourself and your PTSD, and you are trying to do that...GOOD FOR YOU!

Hang in there Medic72. There's beauty,wisdom, and freedom with age.


I have a child, but she's 10 and my friends have much younger kids. I understand how annoying it is when you just want to hang out with a buddy and their heads are all into their kids. I am over the phase where everything Sarah has said is utterly adorable, and I can be away from her for a few days without falling apart. (In fact she's currently away for six weeks).

Becoming a parent is life changing. Especially if you do it after a career has started. I started young so it was while I was still having many changes in my life. I can imagine once you are 'settled in' and have is quite a shock! I definitely think that once the 'new parent honeymoon' wears off, you will find your friends back to living for themselves again. But then again, maybe not. There is a weird trend these days where moms are losing themselves completely. I was kinda hoping that was going to fade out soon. It's not healthy for the kids or the parents IMO.

Hang in there, maybe find some new friends with older kids? Friends come to us for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. It's ok if you need to branch out for more companions. :)

I have 1 son and 2 daughters. When they are home and under my care I have no choice but to be social. Baseball, marching band, school activities and more birthday parties than I can count. When they are away I go into hermit mode.

I have good friends that have had to put up with this for years. This includes using the phone. I have told my kids for years that the phone has no constitutional right to be answered. If it is important there is voicemail.
Thank you for starting this thread! First, my partner's friends only talked about engagement rings, then weddings, then wedding rings, and sharing pictures from the ceremony, and are now all pregnant. I have focused on studying with high career aspirations and have recently had trouble in my relationship which is PTSD related. I don't know if I will ever get married or have kids. I am in a long term relationship and I am a realist--almost nobody is together for life anymore. When I get a career going, and a permanent contract I will consider children. However, I am not there yet and am so bored of hearing about rings and ceremonies and now pregnancy. I almost feel like an alien when I get together with them. At the same time the decision to have kids seems selfish to me, people want a human "gift" from their relationship. Perhaps I am too ambitious or my long term partner is not "the one", I don't know. I feel numb a lot, even towards him at times so it is hard to say. I at least know when the time comes I am going to be ready and armed with courses, and a job which will give me the income to give my child/ren a very good life. Due to this choice my partner's cousin told me I am lazy because I have not been pregnant or had children yet, and my partner's mother seems to hate me. It seems for the longest time the only word to come from her mouth was "grandchildren". I am so much more than a baby-maker.
I also do not have children. I am 39 years old, and I have known since I was 16 that I did not want children. I have found that the majority of my friends who have children slowly move away from our friendship because to be honest, I am not interested in a thousand and one photographs of, or hours of chat on, whatever adorable thing little (insert name here) did this morning. Many of them cannot see that there is more to conversation than this.

I do not believe that my childlessness is a choice - just as many women are maternally-geared, so I am not. It is simply the way I am made.

Anyway, back to the point of this thread... yes, I do feel socially isolated at times by people in society who breed then feel the need to foist this fact on all those around them. I have had to remove some people from my Facebook because all of their updates were about their children. I avoid certain social functions because I know that there will be far too many conversations about little ones. I also know that I am not invited to some social events simply because I do not have children and the perception is that I would not 'fit in'.

I think the thing that annoys me most about the Mummy Mafia is that I often get 'that look'... the one that says: 'you poor thing, you will never be a real woman until you have a child'.

On the other end of the scale, I have one friend who did not make it known that she had children until I had known her for about 6 months. She rarely talks about them, and when she does, it is more along the lines of '(insert name here) was looking at porn on the computer, and I'm not sure whether I should simply direct him to safe porn sites or censor his internet use, I mean he is 13 after all, and he's starting to think about sex' (real conversation I had with her!). She has 3 children, 2 of them are under 6 years old, and whilst she is proud of them and loves them more than anything else, she does not rabbit on about them constantly.
I have children, and just had the first grandchild. Yes, i'm more than thrilled with this. It was their choice and their joy and lovely to watch.

My eldest son and his long time girlfriend do not wish to have children. It's just not something they see as important in their lives and that is their joy. My son's girlfriend has often discussed with me that despite many children in her family, they cannot get their heads around the fact that any female would prefer to remain childless. The wierdness there makes her avoid famiy functions because she's so sick of having to justify her complete and utter right to choose her life.

I have to say that even at my age I can see where it's isolating to be the one-woman-out in social gatherings. There is this total preoccupation with whose pregancy was more problematic, whose child is the most special, which child promises to be the next President and of course who has spent the most cash on what ridiculous acquisition for their offspring. At my age it's not alot better because you get to start allll over again with the granchildren. I'm not lying when I tell you that I've heard much more than I ever care to about the dilating cervixes of friend's daughters and daughter-in-laws. I don't think I even knew I had one of those until I was 20, much less tell someone else of it's condition at any given moment.

To get back to the point, it does seem to indicate that there's a big, fat void in too many lives when the only subject open for discussion is reproduction. Apart from the fact that I can promise you that 30 years ago it was unlikely we were at all comfortable with anything but oblique referrances to points-below-the-belt, it's just plain boring to enter another gaggle of females chattering about natural childbirth and breast pumps. I tend to isolate anyway, and this trend towards what is acceptable for conversation at social gatherings isn't tempting me away from the home. It is no doubt a little worse for those of the next generation down from me. With any luck, this is just a trend? That would be my hope for you lot, at any rate. :)

Take care,

I'm feeling a similar type of isolation at the moment but not with childbirth. All of my friends are either young and single and so talk about dating all the time and the ones that aren't are either married or engaged so they just talk about that. I'm just in a committed relationship and we don't plan on being married for a long time, if ever.

I think this competition thing is more common in the USA as I haven't come across it here in the UK.
I will say though that I think you need to find some new friends that you have more in common with. Are there clubs in your area that you could join? Think about the things you like to do and try googling where you can find other people to do them with in your area. Your local leisure centre might have some activities that you could enjoy and meet new people. It might be intimidating at first but you can really find some great people.

Failing that, just get a t-shirt made that says "talk to me about anything but children!" :)

Good luck and peace be with you,

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