In kindergarten, Anne remembers asking herself if she would rather be born a boy or a girl. Her five year old mind was reluctant to choose boy as such a choice would require her to go to war and kill people. But, being a girl she reasoned would require her to have children. Both options seemed equally bad to her.
At the age of 32, Anne opted to have an elective surgery to ensure the possibility of bearing children could never come to fruition.
Here is a bit of her story.
Could you talk to me about how you decided not to have children?
I never really wanted them. There are so many people in the world. We do not need more people. We need to care for the people who are already here. There are plenty of kids who need to be adopted. If you want to make the world a better place you could help a lot of people with all of the time and effort put into raising kids.
Would you consider adoption?
I don’t think I want kids. I am not averse to possibly adopting an older child. I went to Harvard and I always joke I am going to adopt 17 year olds who have really good grades and send them there.
How would you describe your feelings towards children?
As long as they are not annoying they are fine. I prefer children I can have a conversation with, so I tend to like older children.
Have you ever had a problem in a relationship when a guy learns you do not want children?
Yes. It is part of the reason I like online dating. It indicates up front whether or not people have or want kids. Every time someone contacts me and it clearly states they want kids, I wonder why they are wasting my time.
What was the procedure you had done?
I had an Ablation. It took an hour. It ultimately stops your period. They basically cauterize the blood vessels in the uterus so the uterine lining can no longer build up and therefore can no longer shed. If an egg was by chance fertilized it wouldn’t have anywhere to implant itself. It would either spontaneously abort or attach itself to the uterus which would be a medical concern.
Is there a reason you felt you had to go to this extreme to ensure you would not have kids?
It wasn’t extreme for me. They have laser hair removal and many other things to make life more convenient. The thing I hated the most about being a girl was my period. Very few people ever ask me if I am going to have kids, but now I can say with a clear conscience that I can’t.
When you tell people you can’t have children do you explain this was a voluntary choice?
The last time it came up was about 3 years ago and I think I said, “I don’t want to have kids and I made sure of it.” It is a medical procedure and it is private. I have told two friends of mine. I have never told my parent’s or my sister. I told my roommate because I was really excited about this liberation.
Were you ever afraid you would change your mind?
No. Never once in my entire life have I ever considered having a child. They usually recommend having this procedure when you are older. I was 32 at the time. I was old enough to make the decision.
Did insurance cover it?
The insurance covered the majority of it. I would have paid for all of it. I think the whole procedure was about $2500 or $3000. I think I paid $600 or $1000 towards it. As far as I am concerned it is the best deal in town.
What are your thoughts on people who do have children?
It is fine as far as I am concerned. If you get pregnant I am against abortion, so I think you should follow through. I think people should be responsible for the kids they have. I think people should consider others in their town and world before they start having 20 kids, but at the end of the day it is their choice.
How do you think this has or will change your social life?
I tend to attract people who do not want to have kids, so I don’t think it affects my social life. I don’t think it will impact me in the future, but maybe that is lack of imagination on my part.
What do you think about the argument of “you will regret it when you are older” or “who will take care of you in your old age”?
Certainly end of life concerns weigh heavily on me. I am keenly aware of the fact I might not have anyone else to cover my end of life expenses. I just think to put all of that on your kids is not ok. You create social networks wherever you are. The idea that you will suddenly be without a social network when you are older is hard to believe.
What do you think the biggest misconception is about people who do not want to have kids?
People think we are selfish. The thought is I am not doing my part to bring more smart people in the world. I don’t get it. Why don’t we do a better job educating the people who are here?
Is there anything else you would like to say?
There is the notion of legacy. For me, I never knew my grandfathers. I kind of knew my grandmothers. I don’t know what kind of people they were. Legacy lasts for 5 minutes and then it is gone. This is why I am about making my own legacy, making my own mark on the world. To me it is passing the buck. People are trying to give their kids the American dream. Why don’t they live the American dream, help others achieve it, and stop trying to pass that responsibility down to the next generation?