Friendship and children

I’m childfree. My decision to remain childfree is for various reasons, none of which are really important in the context of this post.

I’m in my mid-30’s, and unsurprisingly, my friends are having kids left, right, and centre. I appreciate that it’s their decision to have kids, and in no way to I begrudge them that choice. It’s simply a choice that I’ve refused to make.

What I’m finding increasingly frustrating is the fact that I am now the only one in my group of friends who doesn’t have kids. In and of itself, this doesn’t actually bother me. What bothers me is the fact that I can no longer have a single conversation with any of my friends without the whole thing revolving around their kids.

Where once upon a time we used to get together to talk about everything from celebrity gossip, to politics, to science, and philosophy, now it seems my friends are literally unable to talk about anything but their children.

I get that having children is a huge deal, and I’m prepared to listen to the occasional story about them (much as I might not want to), but when it has become literally the only thing that they will discuss? I’m sorry, but I no longer want to talk to them. I think I’ve been pretty patient, and have given people enough time to get over the initial excitement when their kid is born. The fact that this is still happening years later is enough. I’m friends with them, not their kid.

I’ve come to the realization recently that I am in fact prepared to end friendships over this. I’ll listen to people talk about their kid from time to time, sure. But it is not the only thing I’m prepared to listen to. Especially when it comes with the condescending “oh, just wait until you have kids, you’ll be a complete person then” comments.

We’ve been friends for a very long time. They all know my thoughts on kids, it’s hardly a well kept secret. Suddenly they have one and then expect I’m going to change my mind? Suddenly I’m sub-human for not wanting to procreate? They need to get the fuck over themselves. I don’t need people like them in my life.

How do other people who choose to remain childfree deal with this with their friends?

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