One to One Coaching

I offer free 30 minute telephone/Skype consultations for people wanting to find out more about coaching on the 'baby decision'. Email me at mailto:beth@ticktockcoaching.co.uk and assistant Laura will respond and arrange an appointment with you. Visit http://www.ticktockcoaching.co.uk/ for more information about my coaching services.

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

When you don't have a strong biological urge to have children

I just came across this blog where the blogger has decribed the difficulties she and her partner had in making the decision to have children or not. She perfectly describes the difficulty in trying to decided when you don't seem to have a strong biological urge to have children.

Wednesday, 18 June 2008

More on acadamic women and the decision

Well, I am so honoured - I've been mentioned in the blog of the Dean at the University of Manitoba! Well, not me exactly - this blog!

He raises some interesting points in his post so do go and check it out!

Anyway, on a personal note, I'm off for a short holiday up to Newcastle in the North of England - I'm hoping the rainy weather doesn't follow us up from London. Will be posting again when I'm back next week!

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

The decision to have kids and financial considerations

Found this blog post on Dual Income No Kids.

Lots of good tips on what to take into consideration in terms of attitudes towards finance and money when you are trying to decide.

I guess my only point would be is that if you do decide to have children, you might find your viewpoints changing - but at least you will know where you are both starting from!

Thursday, 12 June 2008

'I adore him but he doesn't want kids'

Here is another advice column which appeared today in Canada's Globe and Mail on that common question - what to do if you want kids but your partner doesn't.

There was quite a range of opinions offered - I liked the last opionion in the last paragraph:

'Treat your vision of the future as a strength and not a need. Tell your paramour that you adore him, but that you are re-entering the rugged world of dating. There is something undeniably sensuous about the person who knows what he or she wants - the cowgirl, the soldier, the statesman all move forward like singular arrows.'

Monday, 9 June 2008

Whose 'fault' is it that women have delayed having children?

I came across this article called Baby Gone which argues that feminism has played a key role in encouraging women not to think about babies and having families untill it is too late and they find that it is difficult (if not sometimes impossible to conceive). The author says this:

'THE strategic silences of feminism are having profound effects on society. For all the brilliant choices ushered in for women - the freedom to forge ahead with careers, to stay single, if that was their wish, not to be tied down by family and babies, if that was their choice - feminism failed women by refusing to inform them that their new-found choices came at a price.
By failing to remind women about their biology and their declining fertility, feminism deliberately ignored the innate desire of most women to have a child. The silence continues. It is there in the classroom where, like previous generations of young girls, the present generation is still not taught that fertility cannot be taken for granted.'

I find it quite shocking that someone can actually seek to blame the feminist movement for women not having choices about their biology! It's something I'm aware of in writing my book - I know how easily it is to turn this debate into 'all those career minded feminists - look where that has led!'

I don't want to turn back the clock - I don't want us to return to the world of my mother - who was told in her senior year of a top ivy league college in the 1950's that her degree made her very well qualifited for an admin post in an art gallery!!! We have a lot to be grateful for - the feminist movement has fought for our right to have control over our bodies and lives.

What I feel is that women in their 30's now are dealing with a dilemma or issue that our mothers and grandmothers never had to deal with - it's an un-intended consquence of having more choices. Whereas in our mothers and grandmothers day, it was implicit that women would get married and have kids - it wasn't really seen as a option. Yet, today it's not. Therefore, we now have more responsiblity to make that decision, to choose. Unfortunately, as I've explored before, for some women who are ready to have kids, they have to deal with the reality that the men in their lives also see themselves as liberated from past expecations of settling down and raising a family.

The solution isn't to hark back to an idealised 'glory days' of motherhood and apple pie. But to deal with this new reality and explore alternative solutions and new realities which weren't so acceptable in the past - including fostering, co-parenting, child-free life and having a child as a single women.

Sunday, 1 June 2008

I came across this blog entry at the Brazen Careerist on the decision not to have children.

I really liked the piece - it was a very cheerful and honest look at the decision to step away from the traditional 'Good Housekeeping' ideal of relationships and family life.

My favourite quote from the piece is this:

'There’s something about magazines like Real Simple and TV shows like House Hunters that depresses me. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but every time I attempt a sit on the couch post-work I am irritated by things like Everybody Loves Raymond. There’s a part of me that is suspicious that these forms of entertainment have been created to make us believe that not only are you content with your life, but you are enthusiastic about it, a subtle (or not-so-subtle, in my opinion) brainwashing of home-improving, toddler-yogaing, exasperated-but-happy-at-the-end-of-the-day, we’re-the-same-kind-of-unique status quo. Welcome to the new yuppiedom.'

The author, Holly Hoffman, goes on to say.

'When I get a case of the I-just-want-to-be-upper-middle-class blues, I daydream another life.
In this life I usually am married, or in a long-term committed relationship. Yes, I am happy and content being single, but like many, I would like to have a companion through life. I think a character in Shall We Dance? sums it up best when she says people get married so that in a world of billions, one person says they will be the witness to your life. I agree with this.
At any rate, 90 percent of me says no to kids. This is mostly a financial decision in my mind. Yes, I know you can be financially well off and have kids also, but the majority of folks are not. ...Mostly, though, this daydream life is about being able to do the things I am passionate about without any compromises or guilt feelings, such as diving tirelessly into my own businesses, having a partner who I still find sexually appealing, coming nowhere close to any variety of poop/snot/vomit, and traveling at will and on whim.'

There is so much that is WRONG with the stereotypical views of how we are supposed to be happy and fullfilled as portrayed in the media. It makes everyone wrong really! It's insulting to child-free people that their reality is somewhat less happy than those with kids.

AND, I also think it makes things difficult for those who are in the middle - trying to decide. My view is that it isn't a stark 'either you become a surbanan mum/mom' OR be a'hip, cosmopolian city girl'. Most mums I know find their way between being a mum and having a life - they are going to yoga, are environmental activities, feminist campaigners. Personally, I'm abit insulted by the stereotype that I'm either a desparate housewife or mad career woman with a team of nannies to look after her kids! Which is generally how mums are portrayed in the media - falling into one or more of these stereotypes.