Steph asked the community for their advice on moving forward, and there was so much love and strength in the responses. The post mentions several groups and you can find their details here
This group helps me everyday. So, mutual support and understanding. Also deciding that it just wasn't going to work for me and living with the finality of that.
I can't do anything about it so I have to live with it or drive myself insane with constant thoughts about what I don't have. This last year I finally became accepting and comfortable with the fact I'll never be a mom. Accept the things I cannot change.
Being thankful for what I have not resentful of what I don't have.
Counselling.... Support from family and friends...
Mutual support from this group...
Starting my Plan B!!!
I still have moments but in the past year I have moved on a little without realizing. It sounds silly but we had some problems with local teens causing us hassle playing outside our house. They drove me so mad and got me so angry It put Me off wanting them
In my case, I was always in a state of WHEN is this going to happen for me? WHEN am I going to meet the right person? WHEN am I going to have a family, too? WHEN, WHEN, WHEN??? And by the end of my 20’s, “WHEN” never came. Then my thirties came. So did PCOS and endometriosis, and obesity. Still no right person. Then thirty-five came along… so, I thought, well, If I’m going to have a healthy baby, I need to do something! So, I looked in to trying to have children on my own, (not ideal,) and found out that I had very low FSH and could not have children. Unfortunately, due to changing of medical providers, I was lead to believe there was still hope anyway, (there wasn’t.) By age 39 I weighed almost 300 pounds. I was living with chronic pain. I was still single with no prospects and struggling financially.
Then something happened. I lost my job! This might be devastating for some, but for me, it wasn’t. I hated my job and felt it was a sign to stop waiting around for “WHEN”. “WHEN” was something I could not control. “WHEN” was killing me.
I started looking around for things I could control and I went from there. I let go of trying to find a husband and have babies and just do what I needed to do for me and my life. I cashed out my 401K (again, not ideal,) and I got gastric bypass surgery. This solved a lot of the health issues that were holding me back. I then enrolled in nursing school. Ironically, when I decided I wasn’t waiting anymore, that’s when I found my ideal partner. I guess a watched pot never boils! Life begins at 40!
Becoming a nurse was what made me truly move on from involuntary childlessness. I feel like I am truly making a difference by caring for others. It is also very fulfilling to learn so much and be able to do so much and to educate others.
For me, yes, it’s sad that I never had children, but I don’t think it’s the end all be all. There’s so much more to life. Life is a gift. There’s a great big world out there. So much to learn about! So much to see, do explore and experience! I’m HAPPY!
The when was killing me too. Just this year I decided not to try to control everything and worry about the things within my control. I'm new to it only about 2 months in but I feel better about myself so thank you for the post!
You. Haha! And the friends I've made over the time I've been in the group. The first childless friends I've ever had that I've had something in common with. Friends that really get me. Joining various childless groups and chatting and supporting others. Making me realise not only am I not alone but my situation isn't as bad as others. Seeing others suffer in various, heartbreaking ways helped me to pull myself together and really appreciate what I have to be thankful for. The "Childless Perks" page is also an amazing little gem. I now live my life focussing on "Perks" Not just childless ones. It really lifts me and makes me appreciate my life. But I honestly don't think I'd be in the place I am now without support groups and the bonuses they bring. xxx
Every day, I try to focus on what I'm able to do because I'm childless. Dwelling on what I don't and can't have keeps me buried in grief. I'm currently trying to start my own concert photography gig. Between the hours of my two other jobs, pursuing my hobby so seriously would be impossible for me.
My dream used to be to decorate my home with photos of my family. If I had to give it up, then front row pictures of my favorite bands plus their follows/likes on social media is a decent trade... usually. It still hurts so much, but focusing on my work helps.
My Masters degree in graphic design and typography gave me a sense of purpose and restored my passion for creativity and lead to Walk In Our Shoes and my design practice. From this I've returned to drawing, print making and stained glass making which I had stopped during IVF and somewhat lost my identity. And adopting my rescue dog, Molly. In learning about positive training techniques using a clicker, we've attended workshops and classes and met some amazing people, and with Molly, I am never alone.
Friends mostly childless but surprisingly some are parents too. Journaling reading traveling...music thinking about graduate school, my best friend in the states also is childless writing, public speaking.
Becoming part of this amazing community of women and men has helped me to move forward! It has given me strength, courage, and a sense of belonging, and the strength and courage of the friends I've made is so inspiring, and I am proud to call them my friends!
My local More to Life group and the girls in it showed me life was going to be ok. Love them loads.
Making childless friends has completely changed my life. At last I can be with people who understand and respect me!!! I don't think one can go through all this without support groups, really! :)
I can honestly say that only thanks to groups like this one, Dovecote, Gateway etc. I have been able to speak my real thoughts and be myself. I really want to thank all of you for listening to my thoughts and helping me through my worst of times. I will never forget this. The level of compassion I've felt from usually total strangers is overwhelming. I think I would have done something pretty bad to myself without you x x x
Spending a fun day out with my husband. Walking past so many screaming kids, throwing full on tantrums in the gift shops. Hearing 'I WANT I WANT I WAAAANNNNT'. Getting that look from your other half and each thinking childless perk, not our circus... not our monkeys! As we start to accept our new life we can appreciate there are occasions where we get the advantage of freedom. I wouldn't be in this place without the support of the CNBC community. You all brought my positive side back. Thank you. x 💓
Making a conscious decision not to have further treatments or attempts at adoption was tough yet empowering. Before then life had been uncertain and on hold.
Hysterectomy and lifestyle choice
Fb groups like this are very helpful extremely helpful podcasts, interviews with different ppl to listen to who have struggled etc xoxox xoxox
Exercise, psychologist, meeting new ppl who are similar to me in grief, helping others less fortunate than me, prayer, celebrating at church, fresh air, going for walks, meditation, yoga & Pilates, watching comedy going to comedy performances, have had a few life coaching sessions and learning about being in the moment, being gentle on myself, being at home and allowing myself to cry / be angry / be sad, etc.
Allowing time for myself and for my husband us time, enjoying slowly my life the way I never dreamed it could be and doing my best to not judge myself or others.
It's a huge learning curve for me, as when I was a child, I used to pretend I had babies and breastfeed etc and now it's a different way what I thought would happen. Even family and friends who had struggled with fertility ALL of them EVERY single one of them had @ least one baby.
I'm working on looking after myself and the jealousy that comes with this Xox
Oh yes and enjoy deeply hobbies. I love my choir and singing....
1) Focusing on all the people in my life who don't have children. Doing this helped me realize there are more of them than I'd realized. 2) Seeking groups like this one so that I can be around the kind of people I'd like to be more like myself--people who have accepted their childlessness, who perhaps even embrace and celebrate it, and are finding fulfillment in other ways.