Wired Differently

There is so much that needs to be said, because disliking children is something people who love them just do not understand.

The hardest issue is trying to explain what it is like to the people you love who think differently. They just don't understand, and there is nothing you can do to make them understand.

I've never liked children. I didn't play with dolls, I refused to babysit as a teen, and I have never wanted to ever have kids. To this day, I hear the same nonsense over and over from people, and get the same looks from people when I state how I feel.  I'm now 31, and though my mother has finally come to accept it, other people still give me the same three lines :

1. It's different when it's yours
2. You'll want them some day
3. You were a child once too, you know

It frustrates me that people cannot fathom how ridiculous these 'arguments' are. No, it is not different when it is yours if you DO NOT LIKE CHILDREN. If you like kids in general but get frustrated with them when they behave badly, then yes, when it is yours and you love it because you have a bond with it, that may be true. But when a person tells you they hate kids, feeding them this line is asinine. If it were mine I would hate it even more, because it would be around me 24/7, smothering me with feelings of resentment, making me feel burdened with something I never wanted. I cannot seem to make people understand this. Would you give a dog or a cat to someone whom you know hates them, thinking that they will magically change their mind once it is 'theirs'? I should hope not. Ownership does not automatically change one's feelings toward something, and to assume it would be different because it is a child only shows your inability to see things from any perspective but your own. You have to look at having a child through the eyes of someone who does not love them to understand. Looking at the situation as a parent who loves their child more than life itself is NOT going work. I am not you. I do not love children like you do. Therefore, I would NOT love my own any differently just because it is my own. Stop telling me you know what I will feel based upon what you know you would. It doesn't work.

The argument that you will change your mind when you are older fails when you are over thirty years old. I do not even bother arguing this one anymore.

The last one, the 'you were a child once too' argument, is one of the most frustrating to receive, because the tone and smugness of those who say it make it hard to respond without getting angry. I was a child? Really? Wow, I must have forgotten! You're right, I love kids now! Honestly, the lack of relevance here is baffling. Who cares if I was a child once? No, I did not like babies or toddlers when I was one. Nor did I love myself and think, when I am older, I want more of me at this age. Kids don't think about that stuff, because they are not fully developed people. You may as well tell me that my cat was a kitten once, too. The fact that someone was once an ignorant bundle of egocentrism in no way mandates that they must forgive their own behaviour at that age and wish to engage with others who remain that way. I do not like children - that includes how I would have acted at that age. The basis of this argument stems from the whole idea of how others treated you when you were a child. The 'how would you feel if when you were a kid, people hated you the way you hate kids'. Well, I'm sorry to say that it doesn't matter. I am sure there were plenty of people who did. It in no way affects how I feel about kids now. I'm not chasing children and trying to traumatise them. I'm asking you to keep yours away from me and respect the fact that not everyone wants to see pictures of, hold, talk to, or interact with your kids. I am sure there were plenty of people who felt that way toward myself as a child, and I would have wanted my mother to respect that and keep me away from them as well.

I think the most difficult part of disliking children comes when you love someone who has kids. Yes, I am able to tolerate them. But I will never see them the way their father does, and will never love them the way parents do. I know that must be difficult for him as well, but even with older children, you still end up having things expected of you that only happen when the person does not truly understand how you feel. If I know you hate a certain television show, I would not expect you to ask me all about it when you know I have been watching it. However, even if someone knows you hate kids, you are somehow expected to ask how things went if they have some game or event. I don't think to ask because I don't care, the same way you would not think to ask who won the Miss Utah beauty pageant if you hate such things. But it's 'different' with kids. You are expected to force an effort even when you hate them, by nature of what they are. It's the old "I know you hate spiders but you will love my pet tarantula because it is mine' method of thinking. It doesn't work. This situation also happens any time friends start having babies. They know you hate them, but as soon as they have one, they assume you will like theirs. The egocentrism of children is just as strong for parents. Anything different is met with a 'how dare you' eye glare. Well, I'm sorry. I don't like children and I have made this no secret. Why you chose to assume yours would be different is not my problem.

Perhaps the worst aspect of it all when it comes to a partner with children, however, is knowing you will always be second. The house is on fire ... I will risk my life to save you. However, in a reverse situation, I will burn while you rescue your kids first. That hurts more than most people can EVER imagine. No matter how offended you may feel because I do not love your children, you will never know how it feels to know that you are less important to the one you love than they are to you.

As I stated at the beginning, the most frustrating part is the lack of understanding. After 30+ years, I have come to the conclusion that I am just wired differently. I have no maternal instincts. I refuse to hold a baby - the experience would be akin to holding a handful of spiders. As much as people may scoff, that's not a joke, nor is it an exaggeration. When my brother had a child, my mother wanted a picture of me with her and put her on my lap .. i think she was maybe 3 or 4 months old. I literally held her by her clothing with the tips of my fingers. The entire experience was jarring and uncomfortable ... I wanted nothing but to fling her off of me, and had to use all of my willpower to not drop her just to get her off. People do NOT understand that, and unless you can think of something toward which you feel the same, and can wholly imagine such a situation with said thing, then there is no hope of you 'getting it'. Even pregnancy .. the sight of it, the idea of it .. makes me nauseous. I know it is abnormal. I have stated that it was such since I was about 10 years old. However, people don't care. When it comes to kids, there is no room to be different. You are expected to like them, and if you don't, regardless of whether it is something voluntary or conscious, you WILL be treated as though it is your fault, and expected to change.

Well, this is where things fail. After 30 years and still hating kids as much as ever, I don't think I am going to magically wake up and love them one day. Expect it from me all you want. Expect that I will force myself to interact with something that infuriates me and makes me feel both sick and frustrated and angry. Expect that you would not do the same if I wanted you to interact with something you felt this way about. Nothing changes, because this world revolves around children and procreation, and for those who have kids, any ill feeling toward the child is by extension ill feeling toward them. Newsflash people - You are not your child. You share DNA, but you are not the same. I may love you, that does not mean I love them, and if I hate them, that does not mean I hate you. Adults and kids are very, very different, and some people are wired differently when it comes to how they feel about them. If you cannot respect that and accept that, no progress is ever going to be made.

Kollapse Kollapse
31-35, F
15 Responses Aug 22, 2009

You are what is known to be "Child Free" The child free do not want children ever for various reasons ranging from an acute dislike, a wish not to be tied down, or simply a desire unnamed. Some childfree have sensory issues that make children's voices painful, others have phobias about pregnancy, still more believe children are a luxury that only the very wealthy can afford dispite enjoying their company. If you do a search on Google for "child free" you will find like minded people.

i love this story it exactly how i feel

"No matter how offended you may feel because I do not love your children, you will never know how it feels to know that you are less important to the one you love than they are to you."

I understand this 100%. I never want children, and this is among the reasons why, because I know any woman I would (God forbid) have them with will turn into a mommy and suddenly that bond turns to **** as the center of the universe moves in.

It drives me insane.

I would never do that to a wife, but know, depressingly, that most women are itching to bring a stranger into the marriage that they will love and care for more than me.

**** that ****.

I hope you do not experience this pain often due to the man you are with.


i love your post really expresses how i feel

i love your post really expresses how i feel

If it were mine I would hate it even more, because it would be around me 24/7, smothering me with feelings of resentment, making me feel burdened with something I never wanted. I cannot seem to make people understand this. Would you give a dog or a cat to someone whom you know hates them, thinking that they will magically change their mind once it is 'theirs'? This is exactly how I feel people are always telling me this and it is not true. I know because I did have a child at a very young age and was not ready but due to family beliefs was made to keep the child. I did do my best to raise the child due to beliefs that it was the right thing to do but resented it. Now that the child is raised and on it's own I feel a great deal of relief.

LiquidSoul, well said. To everyone on the planet, if you are going to have sex USE A CONDOM!!!! there is nothing clever about presenting the trophy of the fact you have had a sh*g to the world and then expecting us all to idolise and respect said trophy. For what purpose? It ain't clever. This said, I think if people are in stable relationships and plan their babies, I find that a lot more acceptable. But it is not common to see this in the UK. and asymptote, it is also child centred in the UK. It's impossible for example to use the local swimming pool due to swimming clubs or parents and sodding kids. And we all pay taxes towards these facilities which we then can't use cos of someone else's irresponsibility. and then we are supposed to love the little sh*ts too!

The lower the IQ level, the more people procreate and think kids are gods. I suppose there's <br />
little gods and goddesses all over the planet. Every kid is special and no one gets their feelings hurt. I ABSOLUTELY HATE THE IDOLIZATION OF CHILDREN!!! The only beings on this planet that have maternal instincts are animals. Animals are MUCH better mommies than people can ever be. There wouldn't be so many screwed up people if there was such a thing as maternal instinct. I hate kids and people need to quit breeding for a long time.

Maybe you are jealous of the attention they get, and you wish someone would care and love you the way children are.

Oh god, I hate those three lines that people use when you tell them that you don't like kids. It makes me want to go apeshit.

I know this is an old post but this is exactly how I've felt most of my life. Thank you for saying what I was brave enough to say.

LOVE this story. Relates very much to my situation right now. Thank you for posting, this was an awesome read!!!

I didn't always hate children. In fact, I used to really enjoy them! But after many, many nieces and nephews that were treated as if the sun rose and set on them, I've had enough! ( I adore my nieces and nephews as adults, but as children they eventually starting getting on my nerves! )<br />
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My "dislike" for children began in the past 2 or 3 years when I became completely outnumbered by the reproducers! And realized that my boss valued the parents more than the nonparents by giving the parents special privileges ( sure, you can leave early to go watch Sally play t-ball!), and preferential treatment, and allowed children and spouses to visit the workplace anytime they wanted! It just woke me up to the fact that America is child-centered. Everyone else is a second class citizen....tax breaks, special government programs, even public schools now have to offer social activities and sports supported by taxpayers for other people's children! It's just so frustrating!!! Why are children so "entitled" ? Children are fine-- they are just not any more important to me than any other American citizen, and I am tired of feeling guilty about that!!

Seriously, your post helped me iterate what I've always felt, every word of it, to people I love. <br />
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It helped them understand a 'little' better, but for me at least I could say that this is exactly how I feel. <br />
<br />
Thank you!

Thank you so much for putting in words what I've always felt!!

it does change when you have them. and this is coming from experience. i didn't know i hated children until i had a couple of my own.<br />
<br />
i HATE kids. and i want to say that i love mine... but at this point i'm pretty sure that any good emotion that i feel toward them is just a string of impulses brought on by maternal hormones.<br />
<br />
i don't want anything bad to happen to them. i want them to have good lives. i voluntarily make them a priority in my life. but then again, i feel this way toward ALL people i have a close relationship with. if they weren't mine... i'd feel irritation or apathy toward them.<br />
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i'm not saying that you're wrong for feeling the way you do... or that you wouldn't hate your children if you had them. just that if you have children, your feelings do change. that's all.

I so totally understand and sympathize with you. I hate kids just like you, and I also find these three arguments you named idiotic if well-intentioned.