“There are no prerequisites for worthiness.” –Dr. Brené Brown
Our wholeness is innate and our worthiness inherent. Yet, how are we able to truly value ourselves, under the weight of social prerequisites, which often fail to acknowledge, let alone embrace those of us living without children, not by choice?
Worthiness is not earned through our compliance with social constructs and normative expectations; desired or not, lived or not. However, we live in a systemic web of cultural expectations, accepted as normative defaults, regardless of the actual or changing demographics and circumstances of people’s lives. The number of people living without children is growing, and the mainstream conversation, images and institutions fall short in reflecting our reality.
As such, we are part and parcel of our respective cultural value systems. The perceived norms and expectations were imprinted on us, and reinforced emotionally, linguistically and institutionally, from the time we were born.
The assumptions of eventual parenthood were no exception. Even today, the assertions of most parents, in reference to their children of all ages, center on when, and not if they will have children.
Click here to read more