We live in a pronatalist society. That is a fact! Since the dawn of time, the world has been centred around family.
In case you were wondering what I mean. A Pronatalist policy is a policy introduced by the government to increase fertility rates of a country. It is a way of controlling the size of a population through encouraging and promoting birth. (I prefer the other C word – choice rather than Control)
So many things have evolved since the world began, except, it seems the pronatalist society that we live in.
You see everything is geared towards family. Everything! Government policy, the media bias, Hollywood, education, the church, the toys we played with and the fairy tales marketing to women, even supermarkets.
Governments reward people for having children with everything from tax rebates, baby bonuses, childcare support, additional leave and time off and even special programs and support for mothers. Childfree people get none of that. Although we do get to continue to pay a bunch of tax to support other people’s choices!
Toys & fairy tales – growing up we have babies thrust upon us in the form of dolls, when we ourselves are babies. We are ready fairy tales telling us a handsome man will rescue us and will live happily ever after with babies. Snooze!
The media – headline after headline on the front pages of magazines talking about celebs being pregnant or focused on women being mothers. I would like to see more cover stories featuring success childfree women & men.
Hollywood – So many movies pitch this theme of a women cannot possibly be happy without a husband and kids. What to expect when you’re expecting, Instant Family, Bridget Jones to name a couple. Where are all the movies & TV shows featuring confident, independent childfree women?
Schools – the topics children are taught in schools are traditional geared around how they see our roles in the home. Girls were taught homemaking skills and fluffier subjects, yet boys were taught maths, and science as they need a great career to be the breadwinners. After all a woman should be having babies not working!! This is changed, thank god, but that is how generations of women were taught.
The church has always encouraged children to the point of saying birth control was sinful. Despite people not necessarily have the means to support a large family of kids, the church still pushed the baby agenda, to the detriment of families and women’s mental health. Yet that has been socially accepted for centuries.
Marketing of women related products – how many single childfree women have you seen in an ad for some sort of household product? None!! Everything shows mums are home using some amazing new products to clean their home for their kids.
Even supermarkets are in the action. Specials are usually 2 for or 3 for products that a couple or a single person cannot consume in those quantities.
The world expects reproduction from women!
Everything in society is geared towards family. But a family these days is not mum, dad and 2.5 kids. A family can be made up of anyone, it is whoever you want to define your family to be. So, if the traditional family has changed, why hasn’t the world caught up and started to think behind families with children.
I am constantly overlooked, miss out and get discriminated against because my family isn’t deemed real. I cannot claim my dogs as dependants (even though you can claim kids), I don’t get a tax rebate and I don’t get time off work due to commitments with my husband or family.
We are all different and all make choices in life. I am simply saying why do some of the choices we make get rewarded and others punished?