I quite often see women say that the reason they don’t want children say they don’t want their bodies to ‘be ruined’. First of all I want to stress I have no problem with women not wanting children. I get that. I didn’t want children until I did. That is your choice and no one has the right to question that. This isn’t about not wanting children.
But I want to point out how hateful that comment is. You are saying that women’s worth decrease if their bodies are less than perfect. You are insulting and hurting all women who has given birth saying they are ruined. You are hurting all women who aren’t perfect – which is pretty much all of us. Not only women who give birth have stretch marks or cellulite.
Besides simply being untrue it is the worst kind of bullying because women saying this probably don’t even realize how cruel a statement it is. It is very much institutionalized misogyny. We are taught this from a very young age. I see women who has recently given birth go on diets and talk about how fat they are and I see people talking about baby weight – and not as carrying the actual baby around which would make sense – but as something you need to get rid of as soon as possible not to be fat and disgusting.
And in that lies even more misogyny because you are saying that fat women are disgusting and wrong.
Why do we talk about ourselves and each other like that? Because we think it’s true.
I have said things like that. I am not pointing my finger at you, I am pointing it at us. We are probably all guilty of acts of misogyny and we need to admit it, because talking about it and owning up to it out is the only way to fight it and change it.
And for the record, having a baby does NOT ruin your body. As for the facts, yes your body might change. It also might not. All women are different.
And sure you might tear, you might get stretch marks but you are NOT ruined. If you don’t want children, good for you. I am glad you have made a decision you are comfortable with and that will make you happy. But don’t tear other women down in the process. That hate you carry isn’t just directed at other women, it is also directed towards yourself. You are – after all – a woman. We need to unlearn the hate we carry for the female body, the hate we carry for ourselves.
And for men saying that shit, fuck off. I have no time for you.