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Why I'm Not Having More Kids

Because I don’t want to! The end. Kidding! I really thought about ending this blog post here, but I want to elaborate because I think it’s important to share my reasons why.

I became a mom to my amazing daughter, Amelia, 2 ½ years ago. When my husband and I began talking about starting a family, we both agreed that we “only” wanted to have one child. I put only in quotations because there is so much emphasis on families having to have more than one child. I’ve definitely heard this from family, friends, and even from strangers!

Here are some of the reasons why I’ve been told that I have to have another child:

“Because your child needs a sibling.”

“Because you don’t want to put the burden on one child when you get older.”

“Otherwise your “only child” will be a brat.”

“Because it’ll make it easier on you having at least two, they’ll entertain each other.”

Let me dive into these a little…

Because your child needs a sibling.

- Does Amelia actually need a sibling? No, she doesn't. Many children exist and excel in life without siblings, just as kids with siblings do!

Because you don’t want to put the burden on one child when you get old.

- Amelia will have family and friends that will support her when I am older. Plus, I’m raising her to be one smart and powerful little girl that will be able to ask for help and support when she needs it!

Otherwise your “only child” will be a brat.

- Will she? Not if I raise her well.

Because it’ll make it easier on you having at least two.

- Will it make it easier on me? No! Is having two dogs more work than one? Yes. Is having twins harder than having one? Yes. Sure, they can play with each other and keep each other entertained at times, but that doesn’t take all of those hard parts about being a parent away.

There are so many reasons why we know that it’s best for us not to have any more children. And the main reason for me is that being a mom is stressful and really hard, and I just don’t want to sign up for that type of hard again. Being a parent takes a lot out of you physically, mentally, and emotionally. And yes, it’s rewarding, and joyful, and fun, but there are many moments that aren’t all of these things.

The first year of Amelia’s life was the hardest. I lacked sleep, I often worried about her wellbeing, and the demands of taking care of a little one while still taking care of me was incredibly draining. Almost every decision that I made each day revolved around me taking care of her. And after maternity leave, I had to figure out how to balance working full-time while taking care of an infant. And on top of all of that, navigating a marriage after having a child brings about many new and different challenges!

Okay, here are some more reasons why I chose not to have any more children:

  • Amelia is enough. She brings me so much joy, and I feel extremely fulfilled in the mom department.

  • Having a child is expensive. Some might say it’s selfish, which it’s not, but I want to spend my money on things other than kid stuff! And being financially stressed causes anxiety for me.

  • I’m an adventurer, and it’s really important to me that I’m able to go on adventures and travel. I’m not saying that you can’t have kids and be an adventurer, because you can, but it’s definitely a little trickier and a little more challenging.

  • I have many goals outside of being a mom, like helping people to overcome anxiety, panic disorder, and agoraphobia! I can’t do it all, so I very consciously choose where and what I want to dedicate my time to.

So around Christmas, my husband had a vasectomy. Yep, we made it permanent! Making a permanent decision not to have any more children when I'm perfectly able to was such a weird and hard decision to make (even though we both knew that it’s what we wanted)!

And I didn’t expect it to be, but it was super emotional! After my husband got the procedure, I immediately thought, why the heck did we just do that? I cried, and questioned myself and our choice, but deep down I felt the same way that I did before Adam got the procedure.

I don't want to have any more kids. And I know that not having another child is the best decision for me and for my family.

Whatever your decisions are, they are yours. In moments where you’re questioning yourself or your decisions, get quiet and really listen to yourself. What do you hear? What do you feel? What’s that inner voice of yours saying? Listen! Because trusting in yourself will lead to good things.

And don’t let anyone tell you that you have to have children, even if it’s “just” one more!

Ways to work with me...

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Shannon Jackson

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