Happy New Year and welcome to my first blog post! I have decided to step out on faith and start this journey of writing my thoughts and feelings about being a 40+ something, single, unmarried, Black, professional woman without children! Yep, that's me! My goals are to provide a space for older women to share openly and honestly their feelings about not having children (for whatever the reason), offer some humor to different stories and scenarios on not having children, and provide thought-provoking questions and content on what it means to be a part of this unique club. Please don't judge me just yet! I am not a mom hater! I do like kids (sometimes, lol). I have come to the conclusion that there are many women just like me who are not mothers and that NOT having the title of "Mother", "Mama", "Mommie" or "Ma" can mean something spoken and unspoken to society, family, friends, colleagues, and potential intimate partners.
My uncertainty, introvert woes, and lack of technology knowledge kept me from writing a blog for a long time. I follow some pretty dope female bloggers and they make it look so easy! After doing my own research about blogging and the actual process of blogging, I've decided it is now or never (believe me, never almost won)! However, in this New Year, I have adopted a key phrase that will hopefully keep me evolving and challenging myself. My phrase for 2019 is "No Fear"! Fear has kept me from writing a blog. Fear has kept me from sharing my true thoughts, feelings, and doubts about not being a mother and having children. Fear has created moments of procrastination. Fear of being judged for having a comma in the wrong place or offending those who have children have kept me silent. I understand that fear can be paralyzing. However, I have decided to use my fear as a marker to create change, do something different, step outside of my comfort zone, and freely make the mistakes that I need to make in order to shift and grow. I am only human. So here it goes!
I am Dr. Angela L. Harris, also known as "Doc Sirrah"on my social media handles (Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter). I have a Psy.D.in Clinical Psychology from Wright State University. I previously worked as a therapist at a college counseling center. I currently work as an Assistant Dean of Students at a small private liberal arts college. So, now that the formalities are out of the way, where do I begin?
I am in the process of writing my first book titled,"Bibs, Burps, and Bottles: Stories of African American Women without Children". A project that is long overdue. Fear and self-doubt made writer's block my best friend. Don't worry; this project will come to fruition this year. I will tell you more about the content and the book release date in future blog posts. So why a book and blog on this subject? Honestly, I am interested in hearing if other women who fit my similar profile can relate. I personally believe there is a negative narrative about being a Black, single, older woman without children. There is the single Black male that believes something is wrong with us psychologically or questions our fertility. The grandparents that continue to ask us why we are not married and why we do not have any kids. Let us not forget the employers who think that just because we do not have children to pick up from school or daycare that we are more than happy to volunteer to work late. Lastly, those who are completely dumbfounded or even hurt when you simply state that you never, ever, wanted children. The Old Maid narrative is still alive and well!
Older, single, unmarried, Black professional women without children should be respected and valued for living their best life! We are far from Old Maids! I absolutely love dogs and I am okay with cats, lol. However, no woman should ever be downsized and labeled the "Cat Lady" just because she does not have or even wants to have babies/children, does not have an intimate partner, is not married, or what many believe, not having a fulfilled life! I hope that my blog posts will stimulate great conversations. I welcome and invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, and opinions about my content. Your personal stories are appreciated. Positive vibes here! Please know that I do respect healthy dialogue and difference of opinions. As I conclude this first blog post, I notice that my fear has decreased just a little bit. How exciting to put fear aside and just do it! I am slow to warm and appreciate your patience in advance. Yep, I have a feeling that this blog journey is going to be a trip. I truly hope you come back soon and join me for the ride.
I can relate to some of these pieces. I am a woman approaching 40, though not African American. I am unmarried, though I do have a partner. And I am childless. I have had the experience that people seem to take me ou my relationship or my life less seriously because I do not have children. And YES!!!! On more than one occasion, it was assumed that I could sacrifice evenings or weekends for me employer because there was an assumption that I didn't have anything to go home to (children, husband). And I've also had the experience of isolation. As many of my friends become wives and mothers, it feels like our worlds change and distance occurs.
I will be excited to see the development of this! Can't wait for the next post!
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