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To Mother or not to Mother?


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Jennifer Aniston


On the Record.


"This past month in particular has illuminated for me how much we define a woman’s value based on her marital and maternal status. The sheer amount of resources being spent right now by press trying to simply uncover whether or not I am pregnant (for the bajillionth time... but who’s counting) points to the perpetuation of this notion that women are somehow incomplete, unsuccessful, or unhappy if they’re not married with children. In this last boring news cycle about my personal life there have been mass shootings, wildfires, major decisions by the Supreme Court, an upcoming election, and any number of more newsworthy issues that “journalists” could dedicate their resources towards.


Here’s where I come out on this topic: we are complete with or without a mate, with or without a child. We get to decide for ourselves what is beautiful when it comes to our bodies. That decision is ours and ours alone. Let’s make that decision for ourselves and for the young women in this world who look to us as examples. Let’s make that decision consciously, outside of the tabloid noise. We don’t need to be married or mothers to be complete. We get to determine our own “happily ever after” for ourselves."

Edited by Ryrin
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  • 2 weeks later...

I think so too, plus everyone's "happily ever after" is different. I think women get pressure though, however subtle, to at least be married and once married the baby questions start coming.

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  • 2 weeks later...

As a woman who's single and childless, I can relate. I've never heard anyone ask a man when he's going to "catch a wife" and start producing, but I've lost count of the amount of times I've been subjected to that.

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Probably a cultural thing, as where I live, men get asked when are they going to get married too if they are single, either by parents or friends/family. Probably not as emphatic as for women but it happens. I use to get asked at least once every several months by someone or I would get expressions of shock when others asked me if I was dating anyone and I would say no. I don't get that much anymore now that the people who talk to me the most know I've taken an oath of celibacy. Least where I live, if you are a man and not married, people start thinking there might be something wrong with you, like impotence, or that you are gay, either of which a lot of men don't want to be thought of so there is some slight pressure to get married.

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Do you think women might get asked more because their fertility is limited whereas a man can father children indefinitely?

I think that has something to do with it.



I have heard this asked of both men and women, but women get it more often and more often from someone not closely related.


My sister gets asked all the time about marriage and children, neither of which she is interested in. She hit the big 3-0 this year and I think everyone has slacked off on asking, but it really is like people think women can't be happy without kids and a husband.


I mean really: Why wouldn't you want to give up late night parties for late night feedings. That nice monthly facial for stained clothing. The freedom for being able to do anything without telling anyone for a strange person pulling at your pants leg if you so much as walk to the bathroom.

And that's just a husband, don't even get me started on a baby.  :tongue:


I think it is the roles women have been put in for so long that people just don't understand the lack of a need for it. 


One of my favorite quotes is from The Mysts of Avalon. This is not exact, but paraphrased.

A maiden needs a man to make her a mother. A mother needs a man to help protect and provide for her children, but the crone is so wise in her years she realized she no longer needs men and therefore cannot be controlled by them and that is why men fear the crone.


(I don't use crone in a negative context here. It is used as a wise woman and wise women do not have to be old and haggered). 

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