Out at happy hour with several couples she’s never met. They are together because they are couples without children. She has taken the step forward in her childfree life to try to meet other couples like her, childfree, and yet she is quickly finding she does not fit in here either.

There seems to be a lot of talk of how their houses are not childproof and how frustrating it can be that their other friends, the ones with kids, always expect that their kids are invited for gatherings. Or how much canceled plans can suck. Or how much they don’t want to talk about soccer games or potty training or sleep schedules.

She sits back and listens. Because this is, of course, what she does best. And this is, of course, what shame has silenced her to do.


Childfree couples, partners without human children, maybe even without furry kids.

Perhaps historically, and unfairly, referred to as selfish people; ones who chose not to procreate. Who chose to not do what is expected of them by society and their families.

But what if they are simply couples who are willing to own their truths?

Couples who know they really don’t want kids of their own, even though they love kids.

Couples who know they really don’t want kids of their own, because they just don’t like them.

Couples who tried desperately to have kids but can’t.

Does it matter how the childfree status is come to?

Parts of her say, yes absolutely! Parts of her say no, why would it?


iStock_000031144666SmallBut to own her truth, she breaks her silence…

“We actually have a toy room in our house,” she blurts out and then hesitates, but just for one second.

“We love kids and sometimes it gets old always having to go to our friends’ houses. So, with a toy room and a pool at our house, all the kids in our lives can grow up with us.”

For the most part, she is met with bewilderment and the subject is quickly changed.

But she breathes a sigh of freedom and truth. She gets it may not be easy to understand but she has done the work to accept her life, let go of what isn’t  and redefine.

This is her truth, her story, no longer silenced shame.

She wanted to a be a mother, it did not work out and now she owning her story, living her truth out loud and lighting her ever upward.

This post inspired by the WordPress Weekly Writing Challenge: The Sound of Silence

14 thoughts on “Shamed Silence Broken

  1. Justine, I love this. I think we can all relate to those moments when we are listening to other people and think we should feel the way they feel, but don’t. And it’s so much easier to play along and agree with what everyone is saying, while thinking to yourself “I don’t feel the same, but I don’t need to voice it. As long as I know inside that I feel differently.” It takes a lot of courage to give voice to how we are REALLY feeling. It validates your truth. Plus it lends a much needed perspective to others that not everyone’s story is the same.

    The line that struck me the most was, “all the kids in our lives can grow up with us.” It’s so easy to make these false boundaries between people with children/people without children… but child, teenager, adult, senior…we are all part of the same world, and we should all grow up together.


  2. Jen says:

    Beautiful! Thank you for sharing.


  3. Catherine says:

    If it makes any kind of difference, I live your idea of a toy room, and welcoming the kids in your life to grow up with you. I long forward to that as well.


  4. litadoolan says:

    Such honesty in the writing. Uncompromising and compelling.


    1. jlbf4 says:

      Thank you so much!


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