We always chose different paths with respect to having children. I had none and you had five. It was aok until after dad died. Then, according to you and your husband, I had no responsibility towards anyone but me. You labeled me selfish. My counter was that I knew I couldn’t responsibly care for a child, and I knew it. You mocked me. You did admit that if you had your last two first, you wouldn’t have had your first three.

Your husband died and left you with five kids. It was and is devastating. Everyone pulled together for you, because we are family. I was still somehow less, not in my mind, but by your words.

Fast forward to last Sunday. Mom fell and hit her head. You were with your boyfriend when it happened. You made it clear that mom’s accident disrupted your plans. When her CT scan read clear, you resumed your vacation and let her take care of your fourth and fifth. When they disrespected her and she tried to call you, you avoided her calls, and said you were sleeping. It is beyond me how you let your 80 year old mom be disrespected by your kids while you slept.

When mom told me that, I was prepared to throw your words back to your face. You are an absentee parent. Your kids are 17 and 14. I have so much to say, but the words remain unspoken, for now.


  1. Oof. I’m sorry, Jaded. Family… They know how to get the worst out of us sometimes.
    That being said, your words over the years show how much you care for your family. You are not less. Never were. Never will be.

    • Thank you, Matt. In a weird twist, my sis fell down the stairs at her boyfriend’s house and had to go to ER. I’ve decided to send love both their ways.

      • Love. Always the right answer even when it’s hard, even when we don’t want to. I’m sorry she fell down the stairs. I hope she is doing okay.

  2. First off, Hugs! Women are more than their ability to reproduce. We are NOT selfish when we choose not to, especially if we know we are ill equipped to be good parents. I have found it’s often jealousy disguised as (____) that leads to those comments and attitudes. We all have choices and if you are going to make the choice to bring 5 beings into this world you should be doing your level best to raise them well. It’s not a job you get to take on and then quit when the going gets tough. I’ve been there. I can’t tell you how happy I am that they are all grown. Like you, I wasn’t going to have children. Sadly I acquiesced to pressure from my then spouse and friends and family that shamed me for being selfish. Gaslighted me into believing I didn’t know my own mind and I would feel differently after giving birth. Don’t get me wrong I love my son very much. I knew being a decent parent would be particularly difficult for me given the abuse I suffered growing up. I was smart enough to get myself sterilized after only 1. Shout out to Planned Parenthood who had my back when no one else did. My journey though included 3 more children by marriage whom I also love very much. I don’t regret them either, but damn it was difficult at times. If your sister expects your 80 year old mom to deal with defiant teenagers while she sleeps in on vacation it seems to me she is the one who is indeed selfish. I’m sorry you are having to deal with this. My heart goes out to you. Your friend in the blogosphere…Dani

    • Hugs back, Dani. I’m glad you were able to raise your kiddo and step kiddos. The manipulation is uncanny. One time my late BIL sent my niece, who was three at the time, over to me. She whispered, “I want cousins,” in my ear. I gave her daddy a dirty look because how can you outright say no to someone who wasn’t old enough to know what a cousin was?

      • Wow the level of manipulation there is insane. What is wrong with people? I hate the idea of using children in adult manipulations because as you said they have no idea. WTF! I’m proud of you for standing your ground. It’s your life, your journey, no one else gets to tell you how to live it. Hugs

  3. You are not selfish for not wanting children. Don’t ever let anyone convince you otherwise. Children, like anything else you bring in to your life, are a choice. It is a TON of responsibility. I wouldn’t blame anyone for not wanting to do it.

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