12 Brave Women Who Spoke Frankly About Why They Became Childfree and How the World Reacted to It

11 months ago

It seems like a simple thought: each person decides for themselves whether they want to become a parent or not. But unfortunately, there is still a huge number of women in the world who are pressured by society with this question. And celebrities play an important role in this case.

They show these women: “You are not alone, we are with you.” It’s okay not to have kids if you have other priorities, or if your boyfriend already has kids and that’s enough for you. We decided to listen to the opinions of stars who have openly stated that they are childfree.

Zoë Kravitz

Zoë Kravitz didn’t feel like having children at all. Listening to people around her, it seems that at a certain age, you have to have a baby and stop having fun because you’re an adult. “But I still want to go on adventures, have fun nights, and see the sunrise. Playful, mischievous behavior is something I always hope to have, even when I’m 70 years old. The point of being alive is to experience life and play with it. There’s still so much fun to be had,” says Zoë.

Betty White

The legendary actress who is often called America’s Grandma isn’t a grandmother in real life. “I love children,” she said. “The only problem with children is they grow up to be people and I just like animals better than people. It’s that simple.”

Jennifer Aniston

The Friends star wrote an open letter in which she expressed her thoughts about being childfree. “We don’t need to be married or mothers to be complete. We are complete with or without a mate, with or without a child,” she wrote. “Yes, I may become a mother someday. But I’m not in pursuit of motherhood because I feel incomplete in some way,” she added.

Miley Cyrus

The actress and singer doesn’t feel like she has to live up to someone else’s expectations. “We’re expected to keep the planet populated. If you don’t want children, people feel sorry for you,” she said. Cyrus reveals that she cares about the environment, and her choice to not have children is partly based on that: “Until I feel like my kid will be able to live on an earth with fish in the water, I’m not bringing another person in to deal with that.”

Sarah Paulson

© mssarahcatharinepaulson / Instagram, AdMedia/Starface/STARFACE PHOTO /East News

The Ratched star believes it would be hard for her to devote her time to acting and being a mother. “I don’t want to be torn,” Paulson says. “I don’t want to look at my child and say, ’You’re the most extraordinary thing that ever happened to me, but also the death knell.’ It was hard for my mother to be everywhere, to come to the school play, and to make a living.” Although the actress never wanted to have children of her own, she thinks of the characters she plays on screen as her children.

Tracee Ellis Ross

This award-winning actress says the social pressure on women is enormous. “It’s really interesting to be a woman, and to get to 45, and to not be married, and to not have kids. I look back and think about all the ways we’re told that those 2 goals: being chosen and having kids, are what makes you worthy,” she said. Ross admits it took her a while to realize her life was actually hers, and that it’s up to her to decide how to live it.

Helen Mirren

© helenmirren / Instagram, AP/Associated Press/East News

The Oscar winner says she never thought that motherhood was her destiny. “I never felt the need for a child and never felt the loss of it. I’d always put my work before anything,” she said. However, she admits that one particular movie made her doubt her decision a bit: “When I watched the movie, Parenthood, I sobbed for about 20 minutes. I sobbed for the loss of [the chance at parenthood] and the fact that I never experienced it.”

Sarah Silverman

© sarahkatesilverman / Instagram, Vince Bucci/Invision/AP/East News

The actress and stand-up comedian explained on Twitter why she chose to not have kids. “As a comic always working and on the road, I have had to decide between motherhood and living my fullest life and I chose the latter,” she wrote.

Dolly Parton

Although the legendary singer married young, she never thought she was meant to be a mother and she loves her siblings’ children just like her own. “I often think, it just wasn’t meant for me to have kids so everybody’s kids can be mine,” she says. Parton admits it was always easy for her to connect with children: “I’m like a cartoon character — my voice is little and I’m an excitable little person like them! I’m very childlike in that way, in my nature.”

Lily Tomlin

© Grace and Frankie / IMDB.com, Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP/East News

The Grace and Frankie star was first asked if she wanted to have children in 1973. “As a female, even to say you didn’t necessarily want to have a child or act out the traditional role of any kind was heavy. But even to make a public statement like that was kind of hard to do in those days,” she said. The 82-year-old actress never regretted her decision: “I’m glad I don’t have any children. I really do like kids, but there wouldn’t have been room in my life to raise children.”

Allison Janney

© allisonbjanney / Instagram, PacificCoastNews/EAST NEWS

The Oscar-winning actress played one of TV’s most famous moms on a hit sitcom, but she chose to never get married or have kids. “I wasn’t ever really confident that I wanted to have kids. I would rather regret not having kids than have kids and regret that,” she said.

Renée Zellweger

“Motherhood has never been an ambition,” Renée Zellweger said in an interview. According to her, she did not think about children either in 19, or in 25 years, and even more so now. For the actress is much more important to feel independent. But Renée does not mind spending time with the children of her boyfriend Ant Anstead. She and his baby have been seen more than once on playgrounds.

Parenthood is definitely a complicated thing. Many stars talk about it openly and unashamedly. And each person has their own way of dealing with it. Some find their happiness being a childfree, while others may change their opinion about it over the years. And it’s up to each of us to learn to respect that opinion.

Please note: This article was updated in December 2021 to correct source material and factual inaccuracies.


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