Here’s a terrific slideshow about celebs who’ve chosen not to have kids. They offer some interesting reasons: wanting to keep a marriage strong without the pressures of parenthood, loving their work and not wanting to put it on the back burner, enjoying getting eight hours of sleep at night.
Cameron Diaz puts it this way: “I have an unbelievable life. In some ways, I have the life that I have because I don’t have children.”
George Clooney: “Even one kid running around my villa makes me nervous.”
The theme of “I work too hard to be a good parent” emerges in many of the quotes. And Lara Flynn Boyle says she’s too selfish to be a good mom. That’s a brave statement, but it also makes me cringe. One of the stereotypes about childfree women is that we’re too selfish to offer up the love parenting requires. And I just don’t think that’s true.
The slideshow also reminded me of a long-ago interview where Gwyneth Paltrow talked about her mom, Blythe Danner. Danner is a talented and successful actor who gave up acting for many years to raise her kids. Paltrow said she had all kinds of respect for that choice. I do too–that takes devotion. But again, I have mixed feelings. If Danner had really wanted to, could she have done both acting and parenting? Only she can answer that.
As annoying as it is for us regular ladies to get quizzed about our choice to be childfree, I bet it’s even more annoying when reporters are asking you about it.
And the media is still touchy about the topic. A recent issue of MORE magazine profiled Marisa Tomei, who doesn’t have children. They made sure to include quotes along the lines of, “Well, in real life she’s not a mom, but she often gets cast as a mom because she’s such a warm and loving person.” There’s a hint of apologizing or justification there–she doesn’t have kids, but if she did, she would totally be great at it.
Maybe as the childfree discussion spreads and grows, more celebs will “come out” about their parenting and non-parenting choices.