My youngest stepson says he will never have children. He’s been pretty consistent about that, although he doesn’t give reasons.
Last weekend in Georgia, I talked to two men who were very open about their reasons. Alek, who runs a bookstore, is 40, unmarried and childless. He doesn’t want kids because he doesn’t like them, he says. I asked him what he’d do if he hooked up with a woman who wanted to be a mom. He replied that no woman who wanted children would want him. “I’m married to my work and I’m difficult,” he said. Okay.
Then I ended up in a cab driven by Massoud, with his wife Puran riding shotgun. They’re from Iran. Massoud has two daughters from a previous marriage and had a vasectomy eight years ago. Puran, who wanted children, had to have a hysterectomy four years ago, so they are childless, but seem very happy together. Why no more kids, I asked Massoud. “They take all your money and they’re nothing but trouble,” he said. I wonder what his daughters would think if they heard that. Anyway, biology has sealed the deal for them.
I know men who have agreed to fatherhood despite age differences, offspring from another marriage or misgivings about the whole deal, but I’m always surprised when a man states so definitely that he is not having any children, period, end of discussion.
On the heels of these conversations, I was thrilled to discover a new book, Nobody’s Father: Life Witout Kids, has been published in Canada. This collection of essays, edited by Lynne Van Luven and Bruce Gillespie, is a followup to Nobody’s Mother. Amazon has it for $16.95. I’m looking forward to reading it.
Childless men out there, I just have one question? Why?