I remember every year after I turned thirty, I’d get the talk from my parents, “So, when can we expect grandkids?”
Every time, I’d give the same answer, “Not anytime soon,” and I’d see the disappointment in their eyes.
It’s not a cut-and-dry situation.
Whether you want to have kids or not is entirely up to you. You should never feel that you must start a family because the people closest to you or society’s standards are pressuring you to do it.
If you’re ready, great, and if not, you’re not a failure.
For women, there’s a lot more pressure when it comes to having a family because of their age. This rule doesn’t really apply to men, especially in their thirties or forties, so many feel like they have enough time to change their minds.
Perhaps you’re here because you’re in two minds about starting a family or because you’re curious as to why your significant other just isn’t interested in kids.
To better understand their position, I investigate the 9 reasons why men are less likely to experience the regret of not having children.
1) They aren’t ready.
Very few people ever feel truly ready when it comes to having children. Some feel pressured into starting a family, while others just never get to the point where they want kids.
It was only a few years back that I met a man in his forties who was attending the same convention as I was. Somehow, the conversation steered in the direction of family, and he said, “Look, I’m over forty, married, and have a dog.” “I’m happy with my life as it is.”
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with feeling like you just aren’t prepared for children.
It’s actually better to recognize that you aren’t in a mental or financial position to manage the responsibility.
It means no regrets.
It’s an honest conversation to have with yourself and those closest to you.
It’s simple. If you aren’t ready, there’s nothing left to say about the topic.
2) They think time is on their side.
Let’s face it. Men don’t exactly have a biological clock the way women do. By the time women reach age 35, their likelihood of conceiving naturally is drastically reduced, which means that there’s far more pressure to have kids.
When it comes to men, there’s no real biological clock to worry about!
It’s more about the age that you want to become a dad, which women don’t have the luxury of considering for the most part.
Just remember that time isn’t always on your side.
If you aren’t completely certain that you don’t want to have children and you delay the process because you think that you have time, before you know it, you’re past the point of being able to enjoy a young family.
Think about your health, energy, and strength when you have to dedicate them to kids.
If you’re comfortable with “if it happens, it happens, but if not, it wasn’t meant to be,” then I guess there are no regrets.
3) They’re a work in progress.
There are so many men who adopt a mature approach to not wanting to bring kids into their lives because they still have a lot to do in terms of personal growth and experience.
For some, their focus is on developing their self-esteem and overcoming their perceived limitations before making the decision to add children to the equation.
It’s about self-improvement.
It’s not about not wanting children but rather about strengthening their confidence and abilities, and this can take a lifetime to achieve.
They want to be all they can be to teach their kids how to be the best version of themselves too.
4) They can’t afford it.
Affordability is a major issue when you talk about raising a family.
The financial responsibility that comes with having children is immense, and many men accept the fact that they simply aren’t in a position to provide for others.
There’s nothing wrong with that.
In fact, it’s admirable.
If you’re comfortable or trying to improve upon your finances and you’re covering your rent, you’re putting food on the table, and you can save for a much-needed vacation, there’s no way you’ll be able to add the medical, food, and other costs of child care.
Men who cannot afford children are a lot less likely to experience regret because they simply don’t have the means to give a large family the future that they deserve.
5) They enjoy their leisure time.
There are many people who have a structured routine that they live their lives according to. They have hobbies, and they enjoy their private time, so having anyone challenge this creates stress and anxiety.
What am I trying to say?
They don’t want to give up their freedoms because they’re fully aware of the responsibilities that come with raising children.
I happened to come across an interesting article covering the topic of being “child-free,” which seems to be a new term for choosing not to have children. Most men agreed that they simply aren’t willing to give up their leisure activities.
They could go out with friends when they felt like it or pack up and spend a few days camping and hiking, all without making any sacrifices.
Others simply enjoyed their private time and the absence of extra responsibility.
You have your hobbies and your career, and you live your life according to a routine. You’re satisfied with your life, and you have no regrets about keeping it the way it is.
6) They want to find the perfect match.
Women usually emphasize the importance of finding “the one” and working to settle down with a family of their own. It’s not unusual for men to share the same goal.
More recently, men are placing their futures on hold because they want to ensure they have found or will find a true life partner.
As they focus on building a sustainable future for themselves, they want to share their stability and dreams with someone who is driven and goal-oriented too.
Once they’ve found what they’re looking for, they’ll be better prepared for a family.
Another important aspect to consider is that certain men who experienced divorce and traumatic custody battles as children simply don’t want their children to go through the same thing.
So rather than rush into a relationship or marriage because of the pressure they place themselves under, there are men who adopt the attitude of building a strong foundation with their spouse or loved one before making life-changing decisions.
No one can guarantee the future, but for some, building a strong and loving relationship gives them a more hopeful and positive outlook should they wish to expand their family.
7) They’re concerned about their health.
There are instances where having a child has nothing to do with hobbies, finances, or whether you’re ready to be a parent.
Sometimes it’s a physical limitation.
Let’s first talk about men who don’t want to take the risk of passing certain conditions on to their children.
It is their way of protecting themselves.
Secondly, men who suffer from infertility issues find it challenging to conceive. And for some, infertility treatment is a costly process.
By considering the healthcare needs that a child might have if they inherit a specific condition, these men are quite content to let go of the idea of growing a family.
8) They don’t want to be a parent.
Not everyone has a natural paternal instinct, and they simply don’t desire to become a parent. They have no regrets about their decision because it’s just not something they want.
Who can argue otherwise?
If you don’t feel ready to take on the lifelong responsibility of parenthood, then you shouldn’t do it because of the pressure.
It will just create resentment if you do.
If it’s not an emotion or desire that comes naturally, don’t force yourself to do what others expect.
We all know that the so-called “societal norm” is to be married, have children, a home, and stability by the time you’re in your thirties.
Life isn’t linear, and things don’t always go as planned.
If, by a certain age, you don’t have the motivation to start a family, that’s fine. Do the responsible thing and always prioritize your needs.
9) They’re working on unresolved trauma.
“I deal with ongoing anxiety and debilitating panic attacks.” Bringing a child into my life while I still have a lot of unresolved issues to work through is out of the question.”
Men don’t necessarily like to talk about it, but traumatic experiences from their past affect their attitudes, perceptions, and behaviors.
It takes time and therapy to heal psychological wounds.
And if you aren’t in a good place, mentally and emotionally, to share your life with someone else, then it’s definitely a mature step toward finding balance.
For others, their trauma leaves them feeling like they wouldn’t want anyone to experience what they have. This alone gives them peace and no regrets about not having children.
Children require love, compassion, time, and responsibility. Some men focus on building their careers or living their lives to the fullest, so they simply don’t feel the need to expand their families.
There’s nothing wrong with feeling this way.
As long as you’re honest with yourself and don’t have any regrets about not having children, that’s entirely up to you.