Dear Society: We Don’t Owe You Children

I am a woman. I am complete. I do know love. And I don’t need children to prove this to anyone.

Alice C. Minium

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Sometimes the quest for marital solvency feels like so much work that I’m not even sure I want to deal with it. I wonder if Tinder is worth the effort. It’s like a part-time job just swiping and conversing, and really displaying the full extent of my feminine prowess and womanly wiles is so time-consuming that I don’t always feel like expending that much effort-sapping expertise just to have some unattainable thing I’m not convinced I even fully want.

I’m tired. I’m lazy. I want to go hiking and read books in my pajamas. I want to paint and talk about politics with my friends. Having to sort through all the people just for the sake of finding ‘a new one’ is exhausting, and also I just don’t really care at this point in my life.

Am I going to like, run out? Do I need to sow my oats whilst I still can? Will everyone good get married off? I read a theory on some stupid Buzzfeed-type thing about all the “Prime Contenders” of the marriage pool coupling off by their mid-twenties and then the secondary contenders (i.e., the more undesirables) were the only ones left.

I mean, I don’t want to die alone.

I do want to know that someone’s around who will smell my rotting corpse and notice if I die alone in my apartment. And I know I’ll probably never be hotter than I am now. But I’ll also probably never have so many doors open- so many chances to make a career, so many chances to learn about things, so many chances to learn about life as an individual, so many chances to grow up on my own and to forge my own path without the objective being “Another Person.”

I think, if anything, that’s the biggest gendered gap for me, and also the biggest fear. Because I’ve done it so many times. I’ve thrown away dreams, big ones, and I’ve turned down dreams, small ones, things that would have advanced my goals and happiness, because they conflicted with me being with someone else.

And honestly, that’s bullshit. I can’t claim to want gender equality and then not hold myself to the same standard as I think ought to exist. Because social change and shifts in gendered attitudes

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Alice C. Minium

Richmond-based writer, investigative researcher, and police abolitionist. Contact me at alice@openoversightva.org.