While a gurgling baby is enough to make some feel broody, others know that becoming a parent is simply not for them.
On Reddit, men and women have been sharing the moment they realised they didn’t ever want to have kids.
From walking past a playground to being stuck in a car with a younger sibling, here are just a few of their stories.
1. “Walked past the ‘play area’ in a mall. The sound was deafening.”
2. “When I had to ride in a car for 45 minutes with my little sister and a five-year old she was babysitting. For the entire ride, the kid screamed, pausing only to take a breath or giggle. It took 10 years, but I kept the promise I made that day and got sterilised. No regrets.”
3. “When I was doing one of those ‘what do you want to be when you grow up’ things in school and realised, after someone asked why, that I never factored kids in there. As a girl, that’s totally what you’re supposed to do, right?
“I never could come up with an answer as to why I never factored having kids into that plan because, simply enough, I didn’t want them. I was about 10 then, and I’m 26 now - still don’t want kids and don’t think I’ll ever change my mind.”
4. “When I watched an actual video of childbirth... Something beautiful sure looks gruesome.”
5. “Every single time I walk by an obviously pregnant person. I never want my body to do that. Hard nope.”
6. “I worked very hard to lose a lot of weight, kept it off for years, and finally got some control over my body image issues. The last thing I want is to have to go through all that again just to produce a screaming child that will probably wind up hating me anyway.”
7. “When my mother, who is in obstetrics/gynaecology, sat me down at 18 and told me that having children was the worst decision she ever made.
“I am a lot like her and I could see myself repeating the same patterns of behaviour that negatively affected my own life with whatever spawn I might have. I actually really respect her for being honest with me and not perpetuating the ‘having children is your purpose and a miracle’ fallacy.”
8. “In the eighth grade I had to take care of a robot baby. The first night I had it the damn thing woke me up at 2:00am screaming as loud as it could. My mum hears this and comes into my room. All she sees is me cradling this robot, not knowing what to do and freaking out (basically crying).
“My mum takes the baby into her room and starts cradling it until she thinks to herself ‘wtf am I doing?’ She then proceeds to wrap the baby in a series of blankets and put it in her closet for the rest of the night.
“I myself would proceed to do this every night until the assignment was over. Fuck that robot. That was eight-nine years ago and I still don’t want any kids.”
9. “Sounds terrible but my nephew made me realise I wan to stay child free. I know he was a baby but he was the most pitiful kid ever. He’d cry over anything.
“I don’t have the patience for that and never will. Everyone says ‘when it’s your kid it’s different’. No, it’ll still be annoying and there won’t be a ‘my kid’.”
10. “My girlfriend and I have chosen to not have children due to mental disorders on both sides of our family. We plan on having fur babies! We already have a hedgehog, his name is Kraken and a Chinchilla named Kthulu.”
11. “I just looked around and felt that the world already had a sufficiency of children. Why add another one when we are already well over quota for population density in my area?
“Also, we don’t make enough money to support a child the way I would like to. Growing up poor was not pleasant for me and I wouldn’t want to make someone else do it. I’d rather save up and chip in for another promising kid’s college who doesn’t have the money than spend all that money doing half-assed financial stability on my own personal child.”
12. “My mother decided to have one when I was 13. We lived in a small two bedroom apartment. They put his crib in their room (thank God) but on the same wall where the top of my bed was. I could not sleep for about nine months.
“I ended up having to restart my school grade. And I could never have friends over because it was too loud for the baby. So yeah, fuck the little bastards.”