Sunday, May 24, 2020

Feeling That Motherhood Isn't For You?




Hey there, Bitchy Readers!

If you have a feeling that motherhood isn't for you, listen to it. Explore it! 

And check out my new series called Childfreeness with LeNora Faye.  
I took a hiatus to focus on the Childfree Girls web series and podcast I co-created. But now I'm back with a lighthearted, snack-able series for The Bitchy Bookkeeper Instagram & YouTube Channel. I'll also be posting the videos and transcriptions here on the blog. 
Note: The videos are fun and catchy, so it's preferable to watch over reading transcripts, but I want this accessible to everyone. 




Below is the transcription from episode 1-The Childfree Lifestyle. 
          (Intro music) 

It’s hard when you’re 20 years old and you feel strongly that parenthood isn’t for you. And yes, you don’t have anything figured out at 20 but you just know that ‘I’m not going to pursue relationships with the intention of finding a father or a mother for my child’, right? 
 I would have loved to have had this conversation when I was young, you know, with somebody who didn’t want to have kids and chose not to.  
Can we teach this in schools? Sign me up!
I’m available. I’ll travel everywhere. I mean, when the borders reopen. I’m available on Zoom. 
I’m not here to tell people not to have kids. If you want them, have them. Think about it first, but have them.
There are enough parenting things out there for people but there’s not a ton of content for childfree people. And one childfree account is not a one-size-fits-all. 
There are people who don’t resonate with my message and how I live my life, even though they are childfree. Just as I am not for everybody and that’s cool. I am for some people so I’m trying to reach as many “some peoples” as I can.
Should I talk about how I blocked this lady from church (when I used to go to church)? For two years, she’ been leaving these passive-aggressive comments on my social media and sending me DMs saying: 
“You shouldn’t be talking about being childfree and happy.” 
I think it’s funny when people say: 
“I can’t wait for your generation to die out because then my child is not going to have to grow up listening to this bullshit of being childfree.” 
Well, I hate to tell you this but the childfree community spans many generations and it’s not going anywhere. We are more vocal than ever and ten years from now this is going to be normal. 
I hope. 
I’m not saying that it’s going to stop people from having kids because if you look at any celebrity news magazine, every celebrity is giving birth right now. 
I have great hopes for the childhood future, not just for mine but for other people. Anyone my age or younger, I think this is a great time to explore. I mean if you think about it, we’re living like the most bizarre time ever.  
There’s a pandemic happening! 
Anyone who wants to start a blog or is thinking about starting a blog and you have no audience and you really don’t know what to say, just start writing. That’s how I was a couple of years ago. It takes a while to find your voice and to say the things you want to say in a manner that suits you best. 
Honestly, I am nowhere near where I want to be in being able to voice how I feel and being able to voice my hope and even just sharing my stories. When I’m 50, I want to be totally kick-ass at expressing my childfree self. 
Seriously, I’m excited about 50. I’ve got 13 years until I’m 50. 
No, wait, OMG. 13 years until I’m 50 years old??? 
Oh well, look at JLo. She looks amazing. I have to stop eating sugar. 
Wow, there’s nothing like finding out how old you really are. I don’t feel my age and that’s okay. Whatever. 
It’s important to remember that this is your life and you know not everyone’s going to agree with how you live. 
You could have all of the kids that you could possibly have to satisfy society’s expectation of you, but if your happiness isn’t there, what’s the point?
         (End music)

  

And there you have it, Bitchy Readers (Bitchy Viewers). The premiere episode of Childfreeness with LeNora Faye. It's been a busy few months, pandemic aside. My Childfree Girls co-hosts and I expanded our web series to include a podcast, and I started wearing wigs in videos. To become more at ease with being on camera. Over the years, I've amassed an assortement of wigs for fun but they were collecting dust in my closet. So now, The Bitchy Bookkeeper wears wigs in photos and videos. Episodes 2 & 3 are out now on The Bitchy Bookkeeper YouTube channel but I will be posting them on the blog next week. Stay tuned! 

Chat soon, 

LeNora Faye
The Bitchy Bookkeeper
Co-host of Childfree Girls
Author of Childfree Journals


Guest childfree blog posts submissions can be sent to INFO at LENORAFAYE dot com



Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Childfree Entertainment During Social Distancing



Hey there, Bitchy Readers! 

Childfree people can attest to the social distancing that happens when friends begin to have kids. We’ve been preparing for this moment for years! 

I began to self-isolate back in 2018 when I started this blog, so my daily life hasn't changed much with all this craziness that's unfolding. I was feeling blah about not having any immediate travel plans but it turns out, the Universe was sending me a message: "you may want to stay home."  

My focus remains on building The Bitchy Bookkeeper as a childfree entertainment brand. 

When I was starting my blog, I had zero audience and no social media presence. I searched for other childfree platforms that could help promote my blog, discovering a lot of inactive childfree blogs and websites along the way. Over the last two years, some of my favorite CF podcasts and blogs have become dormant.
                                       
childfreejournals.com


I haven't had a day job since I began blogging. Between developing content for The Bitchy Bookkeeper, creating Childfree Journals and producing & co-hosting Childfree Girls, who has time for a job?


One day I will go into great detail about the financial adventure I've had.

It is one thing to start a blog or a social media account or a podcast. It's another thing to maintain and grow it into something bigger beyond your imagination. It's going to test your tenacity and passion. 

On top of surviving a global pandemic. 




While I recognize the archive of previously active childfree blogs and podcasts, I want to shine a light on a few that are currently active and resonate with me. To encourage the continuation of childfree content creation. 

I know how challenging it is to continue when faced with uncertainty about the future. This increases my desire to support other childfree creators and hopefully be able to offer financial sponsorship in the future. 

So without further ado, for your childfree listening and reading pleasure: 

(The podcast links will send you to Spotify, FYI)


Chill & Grace  - Episode "Disrupting the Norm with Holly Krivo".  Host Holly gets personal in this episode, as she is the one being interviewed. She discusses moving to Norway with her wife, her choice to not have kids, and how she's helping other childfree women. I love personal episodes where you get to know the backstory. 

The Honest Uproar - Episode "Dr. Amy Blackstone", author of Childfree by Choice and "We are not having a baby" blog. This episode is full of insights on advocating for the childfree lifestyle. Hosted by Isabel Firecracker, this podcast features a diverse range of childfree women from around the world. I've also been on this podcast three times. It's a great experience from a guest POV and a listener's. 

Unchained. Unbothered. - Episode "Armani: A Magnificent Millennial". This podcast features black women who live with intention. Hosted by Keturah Kendrick, a childfree woman. I'm a half-black Canadian woman but I don't know much about black culture in the States. I can’t even tell you what black culture is like in Canada. This podcast is opening my eyes to different experiences and inspires me to continue seeking freedom. 

Choosing Not to Mom Blog - Shout-out to fellow Canadian Caprice who has started a blog about her decision (and her husband’s) to not have children. I live as a single woman but I’m curious about the married-without-children lifestyle.

Childfree Girls Behind-the-Scenes Blog - Childfree relationships, dealing with pro-lifers, lifestyle tips and more can be found on this blog. Contributed by the co-hosts of Childfree Girls, of which I am one. 

My Guest Appearances - As I said before, I like learning people's backstory. It helps me connect with their content. I speak freely about my life and love having the childfree conversation. This is a list of the few interviews I've done. Oh yes, and of course, the Childfree Girls web series

Diversity exists in the childfree community. Life experiences, ethnicities, sexual orientation, marital status, you name it. There is a lot we can learn from one another.

Let's all support the further spread of childfree content. While still washing our hands! 


Chat soon, 

LeNora Faye
The Bitchy Bookkeeper
Co-host of Childfree Girls
Author of Childfree Journals


Guest childfree blog posts submissions can be sent to INFO at LENORAFAYE dot com

                                     
childfreejournals.com


Friday, February 28, 2020

Will You Have Regrets?



Greetings, Bitchy Readers!

This week's guest post comes from Leana Delle -- author, speaker, and host of the podcast "Girlfriend, We Need to Talk".  

You’re just not feeling that instinct (of the maternal variety), and you’ve mentioned to your friends that you don’t think you’ll have children. Or, God forbid, you’ve told your parents. Reactions? They can vary, but most often you’re subjected to eyebrow raises and some pretty bazaar questioning:


Aren’t you being selfish?

Don’t you want someone to look after you when you’re old?

Won’t your parents/friends be disappointed?
Aren’t you afraid you’ll regret it someday?


Most of these questions can be fielded with little effort, in part because logic didn’t go into the formation of them. But the one about regrets? That one can inspire agonizing reflection and lingering self-doubt.

I’m here to tell you that the odds of regrets showing up to haunt you later in life are slim, and I’m speaking from experience.

As a teen, I knew that if I were to have kids, it wouldn’t happen until my thirties. When I reached my thirties, I knew I wouldn’t have them at all. I’m now in my late fifties, and nothing about not having children has been a disappointment to me.

It’s also important to note that my parents didn’t pressure. And it is exactly that, my friends. “Pressure” to provide them with something they want. Let’s call a spade a spade. 

Also, my biological clock never ticked. Not once. Not even in the presence of a pretty big snooze button. And to this day, I never look at babies and wonder what could have been – not from the perspective of a non-parent or a non-grandparent. Nothing. Nada. And I like kids! The misconception that not having them equates to some level is disdain is ludicrous.

Most women who choose not to have children have an inner knowing from the start, and it’s as natural an instinct as wanting to be a mother is for others. Ignoring either is where the problem lies, especially if it’s done on the guise of pleasing a partner. I’ve known several moms who have confided after the fact that they never felt maternal and that their children, as much as they truly do love them, have held them back. Far more common are the millions who feel that their children are their greatest fulfillment; something they knew would be the case long before conception. And I say, thank God for them! Great moms are a literal godsend, but it’s not for everyone.

It’s important to me that you know you’re not alone in potentially not wanting to be a mother. And it’s even more important that you know that there are women out there, like me, who have never regretted their decision. Maybe this will help squelch any future nights of agonizing, or ease the burden of defending your position to others. 

Maybe it will bring you peace.

Just know that your decision should be your decision, and if it’s heartfelt and genuine, you’re on your truest path. And, believe it or not, there are potential partners out there who feel the same way you do.

This is not a post aimed at discouraging women from having babies. Not even. My aim is respect for individual choice. It’s brave to admit you want to do something out of the ordinary, and I admire that strength. It’s also extremely brave to raise children, and I greatly admire that, as well.

Stand tall and claim your path, regardless of which speaks to you. As long as you’re hearing your heart’s desire and living life to the fullest, regrets won’t find you in old age.

I’m Leana Delle. I’m 58. I have no regrets.

VoyageDallas Magazine: Meet Leana Delle!
@LeanaDelle



Thank you, Leana, for these words of encouragement. To know there are other childfree women who are living fully, without regret, adds to my own peace of mind. Bitchy Readers, check out the conversation between Leana and me on her podcast!  

Girlfriend, We Need to Talk-hosted by Leana Delle
Are people who don’t have children selfish? Do they have something against kids? Are they destined for a lifetime of regret? LeNora Faye and myself are all in on answering these questions and more.



Chat soon, 


LeNora Faye
The Bitchy Bookkeeper
Co-host of Childfree Girls
Author of Childfree Journals


Guest childfree blog posts are always welcome.

Contact us at:  info at lenorafaye dot com


The Bitchy Bookkeeper Journal Vol  1


Monday, February 17, 2020

From Guilt to Peace Being Childfree




Hi, Bitchy Readers! 

I'd like to begin with a message from my Instagram inbox, shared with permission. 

"Last Christmas I met a friend that I hadn't seen for a few years. We caught up and I told her I didn't feel capable of being happy raising children. She's a mother of two and she said to me "Honey, you don't need to make your life complicated". I really appreciated her understanding and acceptance and I feel less guilty. I used to feel very guilty for feeling overwhelmed by the thought of having children. I just needed to accept that I didn't want to put up with all the things that come along with children. So, I often remind myself that it is OK to keep my life simple." 


Thank you to my friend for letting me share her thoughts. This touches on something I rarely write about: guilt for not wanting kids. 

As I grow to appreciate and connect deeper with myself, I'm grateful I didn't cave to the pressure of having kids. Guilt has not been a part of my childfree experience but I recognize that many people do feel it. 

I've been meditating a lot recently. This is something I do when I go into survival mode. Those moments when I have no clear answer or direction. Last weekend, I stood at the kitchen sink while listening to an affirmation video on YouTube. 

An idea came to me. 

What about meditations specifically for childfree people? 

Whether you are decidedly childfree or still unsure, leveling up on your confidence and inner peace is always beneficial. 


Before you tell me that meditating isn't your thing, I'll mention that these videos are super easy. I guide you through the 5 minutes. You can keep your eyes closed or watch the scenic images on the screen. 

Meditating creates a space free of judgment and worry. New ideas can flow to you and your body relaxes. 



Check out the Bitchy Bookkeeper Youtube channel for all 3 meditation videos and the Childfree Affirmations video. Don't forget to subscribe!
"This is your life. This is your choice. You can have a wonderful, loving, fulfilled and content, childfree life."

Paperback Journals for the childfree community

Chat soon,


LeNora Faye
The Bitchy Bookkeeper
Co-host of Childfree Girls
Author of Childfree Journals



Guest childfree blog posts are always welcome.
Contact us at:  info at lenorafaye dot com


Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Childfree-by-Choice Gratitude




Hi, Bitchy Readers! 

This week's guest blog is from Janine-aka JLuxe. An empowering read about her childfree awakening. Enjoy! 

Hey there! My name is Janine and I identify as a childfree-by-choice woman. This decision was made two years ago. Previously, I considered having children. Why? Well, it was because I wasn’t aware of alternative options. 

Deciding to birth babies appeared to be the default mode in life for many, so I assumed that I’d take a similar path. Yes, I thought about what it would be like as a mother, but it was a romanticized version of motherhood. The edited kind of motherhood that you see online in movies and on TV.

The ending of a three-year connection sparked a new thought within me. I was in a relationship with a man that thought he was being complimentary when stating that I’d be a good mother to “his” children. “That’s it? That’s all you see in me?” was my response.

He seemed puzzled. He didn’t understand why that wasn’t enough for me. My desire to be recognized for my ability to create via words and visuals was more important to me than being a good mother to “his” children. Although I enjoyed his ambition and confidence, I knew the role he envisioned for me wouldn’t suffice.
                                                        

Following that awakening, I searched for information regarding those who didn’t desire children. During that quest, I found lists that detailed the rewards of being childfree. I also stumbled upon the confessional section featured on the Scary Mommy website. This is when the veil regarding motherhood lifted for me. The confessions submitted on the site are anonymous so mothers are safe to express their real feelings. While reading the confessions, there was a sense of being overworked, unappreciated and unfulfilled. Some mothers dealt with their realities by succumbing to addictions to food and alcohol. The comments confirmed that being childfree by choice was the right choice for me. 

Fortunately, the CF bingos I have experienced are minimal. One mother exclaimed “Oh! When you meet the right guy you’ll change your mind!” This insight was offered after I shared that I didn’t want children. That situation evoked emotions of not being seen or heard by others.

Despite the occasional bingo, I am grateful to be childfree by choice. It is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. My schedule allows me to explore varied interests, study new languages and attend events I enjoy. You know what else? I’m more comfortable being myself now that I’ve embraced my decision. Accepting myself has empowered me to attend a ComicCon, a Naked Magicians show, and various Holistic Health festivals. Yep! All of the aforementioned events represent an aspect of myself.








Thankfully, I exist in a time where it is easier to learn of other CF folks; those who are willing to share their stories via various social media platforms and books. I appreciate those who have shared their truth because it has given me the courage to glorify my own!


Janine Jackson aka JLuxe
https://www.linkedin.com/in/janine-jackson/


Paperback journals for the childfree community!


Thank you, Janine, for sharing your story!  So many can identify with the desire to experience something more. I remember when I stumbled upon the mommy confession boards. Yikes. Not just the confessions about motherhood but the confessions about the state of their relationships. Nothing is easy, but if you don't feel compelled to live the status quo..follow your instincts. 

If you'd like to share your childfree story, please email 

info at lenorafaye dot com


Your story can be anonymous if desired. 


Chat soon, 


LeNora Faye
The Bitchy Bookkeeper
Co-host of Childfree Girls
Author of Childfree Journals






Wednesday, January 15, 2020

The Awkward Infertile




Hello, Bitchy Readers! 

Today I have the pleasure of introducing Casey, aka The Awkward Infertile, as our first guest blogger. Read her wonderful post below! 






Sometimes the choice to be childfree isn’t a direct path. I know most of the readers in the Bitchy Bookkeeper community have never had the desire to have kids and I commend you for knowing that. I’m here for a slightly different demographic today. Those that thought they wanted kids but ended up without (and those sitting on the fence might appreciate this too). Often we refer to ourselves as “childfree not by choice.”

That’s the category I fit in. My husband and I went through a ton of failed fertility treatments and after 3+ years, 4 losses, and an obscene amount of money we decided to move on in life childfree not by choice. It’s been just shy of 2 years since we made that decision and I couldn’t imagine my life any other way.

First, I want to take a second and talk about the “childfree not by choice” label. 


You see this term a lot in the infertility communities as a way to acknowledge we can’t have kids. I recently started an Instagram community called The Awkward Infertile. In one of my posts I mentioned, I’m childfree not by choice and immediately got a commenter saying that’s not a thing, I’m just childless. Which is also true, I am childless just like ya’ll. We use this term to show that it’s ok to end treatments without a kid. That maybe we didn’t choose to be childfree, but we’re ok with it. 

Childless implies loss and sadness. 

Childfree implies freedom and fun. 

Childfree not be choice implies I didn’t outright pick this but I’m gonna love life despite it.

I found Bitchy Bookkeeper on Instagram when we were getting near the end of our treatment options and I was rapidly facing a life without kids. I found humor and reassurance that life would be just fine without kids. I know I’m not the only infertile that follows her either.

As I followed her and others in the childfree community something clicked for me:


Having kids vs not having kids isn’t an equation of a better vs worse life. They are just two completely different paths.








Once that really settled into my brain I became so much more at ease, and dare I say, excited about not having kids. Sure, I still grieve my miscarriages and wonder about the life we’d planned. But now we have 2 amazing dogs, I run 2 businesses I love, and we’re looking at doing a cross-country move simply because we can.

There are different freedoms and life options that come from not deciding things with tiny humans to consider.

The house we currently live in was picked thinking we’d have 3 kids and we wanted to raise them in this town. I doubt we would have bought this house if we knew we were never having kids. The freedom for me to build my businesses, nap and play with my dogs as I work from home, and for us to pick a new city to move to all would not be possible if infertility treatments had worked for us.


The grand point I’m trying to make is life will be ok no matter the outcome. If you’re still on the fence about having kids, or if you’re neck-deep in infertility treatments looking for hope when treatment options run out, I’m here to tell you: life without kids is good. 


As I have learned to embrace our childfree life, I realize there are not a lot of resources for those in the infertility world that either doesn’t end up with a baby or that mostly focused on the grief.

I want to create a space and voice for those women who made the choice to be childfree after having had other plans. I want to create a space where we can also celebrate and enjoy the perks of a childfree life. That’s my hope and plans for The Awkward Infertile

I know myself and my community don’t straight up fit in around here, but I’m so thankful to LeNora for letting me write this post. Sometimes the choice to be childfree isn’t a clear-cut decision we’ve known our whole lives, and that’s ok. Even if it took you a while to find yourself here it’s still gonna be a great life. 

 If you’ve struggled with infertility, are now childfree not by choice, or nearing the end of treatment options, please follow me over at instagram.com/theawkwardinfertile. I’m just a DM away.

Cheers to being childfree.

Casey
aka The Awkward Infertile


The Bitchy Bookkeeper Journal Vol 1 - available on Amazon now!
Thank you, Casey, for sharing your story. I'm humbled that you found some inspiration from The Bitchy Bookkeeper during a challenging time. 

Let's keep the conversation going, Bitchy Readers. Share this post on social and connect with The Awkward Infertile.

Chat soon, 

LeNora Faye
The Bitchy Bookkeeper
Co-host of Childfree Girls
Author of Childfree Journals

Guest childfree blog posts are always welcome.

Contact us at:  info at lenorafaye dot com









Monday, January 13, 2020

Seeking Childfree Voices




HAPPY 2020, Bitchy Readers! 


I feel a deep sense of relief. 2019 was the most emotionally challenging year I've had in a long time. By comparison, 2020 already feels like the best party ever. Ha! 

I've received a lot of emails from mommy bloggers who obviously have no idea what this blog is about. They keep pitching me ideas like "how to survive the holidays with young children without going batshit crazy!"

One mom pitched me ideas on what to do when you have two or three hours away from your kids. (This is what being childfree means to parents.)

I now have a ready-made email that I send in response to such requests:


 " Thank you for your inquiry. Unfortunately, your content is not relevant to my readers as they have chosen NOT to have children."

Each mom responds: "Thank you for letting me know."

I suppose they see the word "child" in "childfree" and assume my blog is about motherhood???

Anyhow, all of this got me to thinking about opening up my platform to others who wish to speak about their childfree experience. Not everyone wants to have their own blog and writing can feel intimidating. 




The Bitchy Bookkeeper Journal Vol 2 available on Amazon! 

It only feels right, as I build The Bitchy Bookkeeper into a recognized childfree brand, that I give space to other voices.

I also extend the invitation to anyone who has wanted children but cannot have them or has changed their mind about wanting them. Uplifting stories of how you are designing your life without children.

Perhaps you are a parent who felt pressured into having kids.

Posts can be anonymous or not. No need to be a professional writer.  The intent is to open the doors of expression. 

Contrary to the name, the Bitchy Bookkeeper isn't a mean brand. The point is to be entertaining and bring positive awareness to the childfree community. 

If you are happily childfree, on the fence, an antinatalist with heart, or turning tragedy into triumph, your submissions are welcome. 

I'm not looking for hate speech against children or parents. 

I mean yes, I detest the sound of crying babies. I rarely believe the fluffy, smiling social media posts of picture-perfect families. But, there are plenty of places on the internet for you to complain about that. This blog isn't one of them. 

The end game: content that demonstrates living a satisfying life without birthing/raising children. 


Submissions can be emailed to 

info at lenorafaye dot com   

Up next, the first guest post! 

Chat soon, 


LeNora Faye
The Bitchy Bookkeeper
Co-host of Childfree Girls
Author of Childfree Journals