Posted by: Shanie Matthews | February 24, 2010

Happiness…With or Without Children by Dawn Weinberger

Dawn Weinberger, a Portland, Oregon freelance writer and guest author on Exercising Happiness, broaches the subject of being happy without having kids...

I am 37, married to a great guy for going on 10 years and … childless. It is just me, Carl and the cat. And I am happy, very happy, with our situation.

I’ve met people who just don’t understand how it is possible. Children, they say, bring so much joy. Surely we can adopt, or see a fertility specialist (assuming we need help) or do something to bring a little one into our lives. Because how can a life, a marriage, a family, be complete without a child?

Well, for me, it is simple. You see, I don’t view parenthood as a requirement or an entitlement. I see it as a blessing. If at some point my husband and I are blessed with a child, I will be happy. If not, I will be happy. I choose to be happy, in spite of my circumstances. Not because of them.

Right now, my circumstances do not involve children. And I am happy. I am happy that I can sleep through the night (no crying baby to wake me up). I am happy that we can go out at a moment’s notice. I am happy that we can afford a sailboat and a personal trainer (if we had a child, extra money would likely go toward music lessons and private school). I am happy that my house is quiet, clean and organized. I am happy that I have time to work, time to volunteer, time to hang out with friends and time for me. Never for a moment have I regretted, nor do I resent, the fact that I don’t have a child.

Someday, perhaps my circumstances will involve children? If and when that occurs, I will be happy. Happy that I can hold my child and comfort her when she cries. Happy to stay home and read bedtime stories instead of going out at a moment’s notice. Happy to spend money on music lessons and private school instead of my own luxuries. Happy to give up the quiet, clean and organized home I am used to. Happy to cut back on working, volunteering, socializing and ‘me’ time in favor of caring for a son or daughter. While I know parenthood is full of challenges and surprises, I will never regret or resent it because I know it is an incredible gift.

Either way, my family is complete.

Lucy Lui Weinberger



  1. […] out my latest contribution to Exercising Happiness, a blog consciously activating a happy path to life. In this post, I […]

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