At a time when it can still be controversial for a woman to so much as want easy access to birth control, it is even more persistently shocking for a woman to declare she does not want to have kids. At all. Ever. And for good reason! Who the hell doesn't want to have kids! It is, as we all know, one of life's greatest gifts. The tiny miracles we call "babies" cry all day and night, poop whenever and wherever they want, and prevent you from enjoying your old favorite pastimes such as, you know, showering. Then as they get older, you get to participate in exciting adult social groups such as the PTA, and then you get to cry softly into your pillow at night after your teenager tells you she hates you. What kind of cold-hearted non-human doesn't want to add all of that to their life?
Besides, for a woman to not want to have children is basically the same as her saying she wants to be a man, because she clearly hates all that womanhood stands for. After all, women are the breeding sex. Our one job is to pop out more little horrible self-centered humans to aid in the destruction of our already heavily overpopulated planet. Then we're required to spend the rest of our lives sacrificing our entire identity in service to those little humans, all in the name of love and motherhood. We have one job, ladies. How is it that some of you aren't interested in fulfilling your Biological Destiny™? Do you actually want your lives to be hollow and meaningless, as you drift aimlessly towards death, having not made any worthwhile contributions to the world? IS THAT WHAT YOU WANT? Because that's pretty much what happens if you choose not to have kids.
Despite all of these overwhelmingly wonderful reasons to procreate, some people still unfortunately continue to resist the idea of becoming parents. If the knowledge that the only reason we have sex parts is to procreate isn't enough to convince these outliers to change their minds, then they should consider this list of the top 10 things people who never want to have kids are going to regret:
1. Having more money
Ugh, money. Who wants it? As The Notorious B.I.G. so eloquently put it, mo money equals mo problems. People who don't have kids are going to be endlessly sad about all that extra cash sitting around in their bank accounts. Stressing about finances is one of the most enjoyable recreational activities, and parents especially get to participate in it all the time! They get to worry about not having enough money for their kids' medical bills, education (hello, college!), not to mention necessities like clothes and a PS4 for Christmas. The cost of having a child is currently estimated to come out to a grand total of $245,000. It's not like there's anything else you could spend that money on instead, right?
2. Being too well-rested
This is the worst thing about not having kids: You get to sleep as much as you want! Blah! No one enjoys sleeping in on weekends or consistently getting a full night of uninterrupted sleep. Fun fact*: Our bodies actually function much better on just a couple of hours of sleep here and there, which young children can help you achieve better than anything else. They keep you up all night with 100 degree fevers and wake you up at 3AM to tell you they had a nightmare about Anna from Frozen not being able to reach Elsa. This is all so much more enjoyable than waking up feeling rested and energized. Plus, people with children don't need to invest in alarms, since their screaming kids are more than capable of making sure they rise with the sun. It's truly tragic how people without kids are doomed to a life of sleeping in on Sundays and giving their brains and bodies the nightly rest they require for basic health and functioning.
*not even remotely a fact
3. Having more time to devote to your career
With no tiny humans demanding the majority of their attention, childless people can focus their efforts on their career paths. But no one really likes to work. There are absolutely no people on Earth who take pleasure in throwing themselves wholeheartedly into rewarding professional pursuits; No one at all feels good about being able to put in long hours to achieve new levels of success, or complete fulfilling projects without having to feel guilty about neglecting to spend adequate time with their kids. Pssh—who doesn't want that guilt?!
And if you don't know what your professional passion is just yet? Ugh, if you don't have kids, you have nothing but time with which to figure that out. Gross. By not having kids, you have the freedom to choose from a wider variety of potential jobs, which just sounds exhausting. Then you have to act happy when your boss gives you a raise for outstanding performance in your workplace, even though that means moving all your stuff to yet another bigger office with a beautiful view and dealing with the hassle of rising up another tax bracket. Like, who has time for any of that?
4. Watching whatever you want on TV
Yo Gabba Gabba is easily one of the best shows currently on television, but chances are you've never seen it, because you're too busy watching subpar shows like The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones. Those shows are definitely not G-rated, or even PG, which means you're putting a lot of inappropriate content into your head. There's also a lot you miss by not watching the same episode of your favorite TV show over and over and over again. But if you have kids, they'll show you how it's done: They'll demand you put on the same episode of the same show every single time you ask them if they'd like to watch TV for a while. It's also so nice to go to the movie theater and know that, at most, you'll have to choose between two films, since the rest are not family-friendly. Decisions are stressful, and the new SpongeBob movie is much better than Fifty Shades of Grey or Furious 7, anyway. (Actually, that last part MIGHT be true.)
5. Traveling with ease
Sure, taking a romantic trip to Rome or backpacking across the the renowned Inca trails of Bolivia may sound truly exhilarating, but those travel destinations are nothing compared to the family fun available at your city's rickety amusement park, or—if you're getting really adventurous—Disneyland. The special bonds between you, your partner, and your children form when you're all crying because, after spending two hectic hours trying to get your kids fed and dressed and out of the hotel room and all the way to the Happiest Place on Earth, your kids have decided they're terrified of Mickey Mouse and just want to go home and your partner is telling you this is all your fault because you're pushing the kids too hard. In moments like that, you really feel like you belong and are loved. You can't get that same sense of wholeness by looking out at the wonder of the Shifen Waterfall in Taiwan.
6. Having a clean home filled with whatever stuff you like
A childless home has the potential to be truly beautiful since you can keep it as clean as you like and adorn your shelves with expensive, highly breakable glass decorations. It will be free of those stylish rubber table edge bumpers, and plastic outlet covers; There will be no dried puréed peas stuck the the hardwood floors; There will be no spilled juice stains on the sofa. In other words, your home will be sad and empty and lacking any real heart. Because, as we all know, nothing is more aesthetically pleasing than a pile of broken toys and the smells of the overflowing Diaper Genie wafting through the house. It's the beheaded Barbies which truly transform a "house" into a "home." Besides, stains from your kids' frequent "accidents" can help give your furniture a pleasant worn-in look that makes guests feel much more welcome when they visit.
7. Not catching every single illness that goes around
You might think you're healthy, but you're not. You can't be REALLY healthy unless you have kids. People without kids are missing out on the best immune booster available: Being constantly exposed to the numerous bacteria and viruses your children pick up at daycare, school, and the playground. Your friends with kids get to experience measles after taking that family trip to Disneyland! That's a truly impressive war story right there, whereas the most impressive disease people without kids tend to encounter is the basic common cold. Parents also get to hold parties where they all bring their kids together so they can be exposed to chicken pox from a currently infected child. That's right; they get to have A Chicken. Pox. Party. So enjoy your birthday bash in Vegas; one day you'll wish you'd spent your birthday bathing a red-spotted kid in an oatmeal bath instead.
8. Having time for hobbies and interests
Do you like going to concerts? Reading good books? Going to bars on Friday nights with your friends? Do you live for your twice-weekly pilates classes? Are you super into the Portuguese class you've been taking? LAME. All of that stuff sounds...just...awful and boring. If you really want to have a good time, try attending an elementary school play! Or watching AYSO soccer games! Building a house out of popsicle sticks on Sunday night for your kid to take to school tomorrow for his History homework! You don't know what fun is until you have a kid. Besides, if you have time for hobbies as an adult, you clearly have too much free time for leisure, which means you must be doing something wrong. The only way to truly live is haggard, exhausted, and devoid of any personal time.
9. Having a vibrant sex life
Seriously, the absolute worst part about not having kids would have to be the freedom to have whatever kind of sex life you want. Sure, having sex reduces stress, releases endorphins, and benefits cognitive function, including memory. But NOT having sex saves time, reduces pressure to look and feel attractive, and keeps your relationship strictly business, meaning you'll get more done around the house. It's difficult to have sex with your partner once you have a child; Kids occupy most of your waking hours, and then, of course, you don't want to traumatize them by getting it on when the kids might be able to discover you. Without kids, you can have sex anytime you like, and can still get spontaneous and kinky if that's your thing. But surely you'll look back on life and be much happier you spent all those hours doing productive tasks like cooking and cleaning and wiping the snot off young kids' noses than lying around in bed.
10. Not experiencing childbirth
If you decide not to have a baby at some point in your life, you'll never know what it feels like to have a creature attach to your body and begin feeding from your insides like some mutant parasite. Then you'll never know what it feels like to have said creature decide it's done being holed up inside your belly after nine months, and have it claw its tiny way outside of your vagina. Your vagina will be spared the incredible suspension of the laws of physics and space that is childbirth. Not to mention the drugs! If you want, the doctors will pump all sorts of groovy pain killers straight into your bloodstream to counteract the horrifying agony of pushing out something that is a billion times larger than your vagina. Oh, and then there's all the medical testing, expensive fertility treatments, and monumental self-doubt that you'll get to experience if you have difficulty conceiving "the old fashioned way" which is also obviously a boatload of good fun. Who wants to miss out on that?!
OK FINE: In all seriousness, parenthood undoubtedly has the potential to be one of life's greatest joys if it's something you want, and many parents enjoy all these finer parts of life in addition to having children. I have nothing but respect for all the mums and dads of the world, and this is all meant to be taken in good fun. But for some people, having kids sounds more like one of life's potential greatest miseries—and that's okay too! We are all entitled to do whatever we want with our own lives, no matter the opinions of other people. So if you, like me, want nothing whatsoever to do with children in your adult life, I hope you can try to power through the agony of not having to change all those diapers while you sip margaritas on your next vacation in Fiji.
Images: Christopher Lance, Michiyo 小兽, Sam Churchill, José Manuel Ríos Valiente, jinkazamah, Amy LeForge, Ray Wewerka, DAVID Swift/Flickr; Yo Gabba Gabba/Facebook; piudiunamiciziapiudiunamore/Tumblr; Giphy