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When I had my hysterectomy at 35, I felt like the only person in the world whose infertility story didn’t end with a baby. I needed reassurance that it was possible to create a life I could fall in love with, even if it didn’t include children. Jody Day of Gateway Women was one of the first childless voices I found online. This isn’t surprising as she is a pioneer in and vocal advocate for the childless-not-by-choice community. Her words brought the comfort I sought, reassuring me that this was not the end of my story, but a new chapter.

Living the Life Unexpected Blog Tour

Two years later, I am thrilled to be a part of the blog tour launching the 2nd edition of her book, “Living the Life Unexpected: How to Find Hope, Meaning and a Fulfilling Future Without Children” available March 19. This book is the bible for those who are designing an unexpectedly childfree life. Which, I guess makes Jody the Patron Saint of the Childless.

Through her book, she serves as a guide; holding your hand, offering reassurance, walking with you as you take baby steps to envisioning your plan b. If you’d like a preview of the book, you can access the new introduction and first chapter here. You can also pre-order the new edition here. If you’re in the U.S., order through the Book Depository for free international shipping. I just ordered mine this morning.

About the Book

I love Jody’s beautiful quote in the new introduction:

It is my deepest wish that you find your place in this world again through the pages of this book, and that your dream of motherhood can be put to rest with the tenderness and love it deserves. Letting go of hope when you can’t see any other kind of hope ahead is terrifying, like swimming away from the shore in the dark without any idea when you’ll reach land again. Let this book be your lighthouse; let it be your hope in the dark. Those of us who’ve already made this trip are waiting for you on the other side, and many others are in the water alongside you, each feeling that they’re swimming alone. But you’re not alone. Welcome to your Tribe.

I was lucky enough to read this with a group of childless women through an online book club I hosted last year. I saw first hand the power of this book to heal and inspire. Each chapter focuses on a different aspect of childlessness, together they take you on a path to finding acceptance, working through your grief, and envisioning new possibilities for your life. Exercises are included to help you apply the information to your own life and circumstances.

Updates to the New Edition

The introduction is just the first section that’s been updated. Jody has included a number of updates in this new edition. Including:

  • New “Resources” section highlighting organizations, websites, and support groups worldwide; recommended blogs (including this one); and fifteen pages of recommended books for further reading.
  • A look at Childlessness Around the World that includes up-to-date data on both the involuntary and voluntarily childless.
  • New sections to the chapter on grief that include: childlessness after abortion; grieving while single; grieveing as a couple; grieving as a lesbian, gay or bisexual woman; grieving as a woman of faith; grieving as a woman of colour.
  • New thoughts on ambivalence about motherhood.
  • Updated list of childless role models.
  • New section on fears and myths of aging without children.

Jody’s Book Club

While I am no longer offering a book club for this book, a guided online reading group, led by Jody, is part of the Gateway Women private online community. Complete with videos to introduce each chapter and weekly discussion prompts, the group is free for all members of the Gateway Women Online Community. Members can join in wherever they are in the book,  whether it’s their first or fourth reading!

Coping with Mother’s Day Webinar

On Saturday, March 14, Jody will also be offering a webinar looking at the ways different experiences of childlessness and Mother’s Day can painfully intersect, offering insight, support and self-care tips. You can RSVP for the webinar here.

Pre-Order the New Edition

I am such a fangirl of Jody and am floored by all devotion she has shown to creating resources, support, and community for those who are childless-not-by-choice. I’ll leave you with the endorsement I wrote for the book, included in the new edition:

If you are childless-not-by-choice and are needing support, to know that you’re not alone, and guidance on how to create a plan b for your future, you need this book. Go pre-order your copy!

*For a chance to win a free autographed copy of the book, courtesy of Jody, head over to my Instagram account and on the book review post, answer the following question in the comments:

Why are you excited to read the book?

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Hope is a skilled seductress. She’ll find your deepest desires and echo them back to you, in a honey-toned voice that melts your insides. She swears she’s a seer. She’s envisioned your future and will whisper in detail the beauty that is about to unfold. She’ll capture your imagination and you’ll find yourself dreaming in vivid color of her promises. She’s enrapturing, all-encompassing. She makes you feel as though you’re the only woman in the room. When you’re together, life feels vibrant, full of possibility, magical.

Hope is a fickle mistress. She makes promises she has no intention of keeping. She’ll woo you until you can see nothing but her, until you are inflamed by desire, then flee the moment another captures her attention; leaving you yearning and unfulfilled. She’s incapable of acknowledging your pain, of witnessing the wreckage she leaves in her wake.

Hope has two sisters. When she leaves, one of them arrives, acting as your companion until she reappears. If you’re lucky, she’ll send Fulfillment. Fulfillment will ensure all the sweet nothings Hope sang to you come to fruition. She has the power to make every daydream, every yearning, every wish, a reality.

But, sometimes Hope sends Despair. Despair forces herself inside you, searching for the places Hope left open. The chambers of your heart that had expanded, holding space for your dream. The light pockets within your soul that were awaiting Fulfillment. She will penetrate every space with a dense, black fog that is infectious and unshakable. She will take up residence and every attempt to evict her will be in vain, because you have become her.

For as long as I can remember now, she’s only sent Despair. It wasn’t always like this. For a while, Hope and I were entangled lovers. In the rare moments she left my side, she sent Fulfillment to comfort and entertain me. Life was blissful. I was in love with Hope. 

Our relationship has become toxic, one-sided. It started when she began leaving each month, sending Despair for weeks at a time before returning. Each time Despair withdrew, she left a filmy residue that lingered and thickened. I begged, pleaded, cried for Hope to send Fulfillment. I told her I wasn’t sure how much more I could endure. She promised the next time would be different. Every time.

I’m afraid of Hope. She is God, for her power to shower you with Fulfillment is equally matched by her ability to take all of you, leaving only a crumbling husk. So I have shut her out. I hide when I hear her call. I lock the door. I try to forget her. 

Without her life is dull, but predictable. No promises means no betrayal. No love means no heartbreak. No longing means no disappointment. Here, I am safe.

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This piece was originally featured on the amazing blog, Boo & Maddie. While the blog is primarily focused on lifestyle and home, the writer is childfree after infertility and has weekly posts dedicated to sharing childfree stories. You can check them out by clicking here.

The conservative church I grew up in shaped my earliest views of motherhood. As a child, I learned that being a mother is the ultimate purpose for women on earth. That motherhood is an eternal concept. That even in heaven, women will spend their eternity birthing ethereal “spirit children”. 

Growing up, I didn’t know many women who weren’t mothers and the few I did know, I pitied. To me, womanhood equaled motherhood. I couldn’t imagine that women could have true joy, meaning, love, and fulfillment without kids.

Matt and I were young when we got married. We were 24 at the time and had no clue what we were getting into. By then, I had distanced myself from the Mormon church, but the beliefs about motherhood stuck with me. So much so, that I didn’t plan to go to college or have a career. My plan was to be a stay-at-home mom. There was no plan b. Neither of us felt ready for a baby though, so we waited. Years passed and I started taking college courses at night for fun. A decade later, I found myself with a master’s degree and an unexpected career.

After almost ten years of marriage, we finally felt ready for a baby. I couldn’t contain my excitement. I started tracking my ovulation, reading pregnancy books, dreaming of baby names, and designing a nursery. My anxiety grew as three months passed, then six, then a year, with no positive test. Nothing could have prepared me for what happened over the next four years.

If you’d like to read more about my infertility journey, you can find it by clicking here.

My life became doctor’s appointments, invasive tests, anxiety, depression, and disappointment. Each month I held a negative pregnancy test with no explanation of why I wasn’t pregnant. Everything changed when my reproductive endocrinologist (RE) told me I had endometriosis.

Endometriosis is a chronic illness where tissue similar to your uterine lining grows in other parts of your body. It affects 1 in 10 women, yet it takes an average of ten years from the onset of symptoms to diagnose. In my case, I had seen dozens of doctors over the past 20 years and every one of them dismissed my pain.

The next few years became a jumble of appointments, medical jargon, and big decisions. In the course of three years, I had three surgeries and a failed IVF cycle. I was getting conflicting advice from my RE and my endometriosis surgeon. I moved toward treatment options that would balance my need for pain relief with my desire to become a mom.

After four years of infertility, I decided I had sacrificed as much as I could to the pursuit of parenthood. I had given so much of my life, health, body, time, relationships, money, mental health, and I was done. I chose to put my health first and decided to have a hysterectomy to improve my quality of life.

I’ve spent the two years making peace with my decision. I’ve tried not to internalize the message from society that my life means less because I am not a mom. Connecting with others who are childless/childfree has helped me shift my perspective.

It’s been strange to work through grief while simultaneously embracing the benefits of a life without kids. For so long Matt and I based life decisions on the assumption that kids were in our future. With that option off the table, we wanted to explore new possibilities.

Last summer, we made some big changes. We left our home in Atlanta and bought a cabin right outside of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. I told Matt I wanted a home that felt like a sanctuary and the cabin is everything I hoped for. It’s tucked away in the mountains on an acre of wooded forest. Here, I’m surrounded by animals, wildflowers, fireflies, and a lively stream. It’s so peaceful and quiet.

I also received a promotion at my job which I’m very proud of. I work for a nonprofit that advocates for better policies around children’s issues. It feels good to know that my work impacts the lives of children around the world. It’s amazing to see how far I’ve come in my career considering I never planned on having one.

My promotion also gave us the financial flexibility to allow my husband to follow his dream of starting his own company. After all the love and support he has poured into me these past few years, it’s been amazing to be able to offer him the opportunity to pursue his passion.

Embracing a childfree life has also forced me to redefine my identity and priorities. To explore this, I started this blog focused on designing an unexpectedly childfree life. It’s been therapeutic for me and an amazing way to connect with women in similar circumstances.

I’ve also had more energy and emotion to invest in my relationships. I’m lucky to have such an amazing partner and am grateful for the intimate connection we share. When we were planning to have a kid I was always worried we would lose the almost magical closeness we enjoy. He’s my best friend and I love the life we’ve created together. I appreciate the time I have to focus on him, as well as my relationships with family and friends. I thrive on connections and appreciate that a life without kids allows me to invest in those I love in unique ways. I have time for deep, uninterrupted, conversations. Whoever I’m spending time with has my full attention.

Another childfree perk is the freedom I have to invest my time and energy wherever I choose. I have always been full of passion and curiosity. I love the ability I have to become absorbed in whatever interests me at the moment. It could be a relationship, a conversation, a hobby, writing, reading, exploring, or traveling.  

I’m an extrovert, but over the past few years, I’ve become much more introspective and find I need time alone. Without kids, I can easily find time for this, as well as for self-care. While my health has been better since my last surgery, there is no cure for endometriosis. I appreciate having time to rest when I need it. I also love that my free time is mine. I try to be a good spouse, friend, sister, daughter, and aunt, but at the end of the day, no one is dependent on me to have their needs met.

Some may look at my story and say the term “childfree” doesn’t apply because I tried for a long time to have kids. They would say that “childless” is more fitting. But I don’t want to be defined by what I lack. For me, having a childfree mindset is aspirational. I know women who couldn’t have kids but have created such beautiful lives that they would no longer trade them for parenthood. I don’t know if I’m quite there yet but I know I’m getting closer each month. I love my current life and am enjoying the unique benefits that a life without children offers.

I wish I could tell my younger self that there is nothing here to pity. That womanhood does not equal motherhood. I wish I could tell her not to worry. That her life won’t look how she expected, but it will be full of joy, meaning, love, and fulfillment.

How about you? What do you wish you could tell your younger self? Let me know in the comments!


Infertility Storylines are Hard to Pull Off

pineapple and TV

Photo: Pineapple Supply Co.

Even the best TV portrayals of infertility fall devastatingly short in capturing what it’s like to actually experience it. Real infertility stories are too long, too painful, and include too few miracle babies to keep an audience engaged. 

Let’s say each season represents a year in the life of a character. Tell me if these are scenarios you’d want to continue watching over five seasons (five years): 

  • A woman takes pregnancy tests every month, every one of them is negative.
  • A woman tries for years to have a baby, has multiple miscarriages and never ends up with a baby in arms.
  • Infertility becomes all consuming. Relationships, interests and activities that used to bring joy are gone. Episodes focus on watching the main characters just trying to get through the day.
  • The characters experience depression, grief and anxiety as they watch their dreams crumble. They spend a lot of time not wanting to get out of bed and avoiding social situations.
  • Debt starts to pile up as characters lose their savings to invest in IVF treatments that aren’t successful.

I could go on, but you get the point. A short infertility storyline can be a cheap way to add some juicy drama to a TV show, a true portrayal of infertility can feel cruel, like the writer is relentlessly torturing the character. 

I’d guess it’s a mix of this and lazy, un-researched writing that give us so many predictable and shitty infertility storylines in TV. Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful for even the worst portrayals because infertility is still so taboo in our society that even a warped reflection is better than nothing. Very few shows take it on at all. 

Interested in reading my infertility story? Read it by clicking here.

What I’d Like to See

I hope infertility plotlines start to become more common and that they include: 

  • Stories that are diverse, unpredictable and well researched. 
  • More avenues to a happy ending. I mean, is it impossible to write a character whose journey doesn’t end with a baby, but they create a beautiful life anyway? 
  • An accurate portrayal of the depth of grief that accompanies infertility. 
  • A realistic timeline that can show how truly life-altering infertility can be. A show that resolves an infertility plotline in just a few episodes is using it as cheap drama.
  • Less unrealistic miracle babies that reinforce stereotypes. Think “randomly got pregnant after we stopped trying” or “a baby that needs adoption just landed in our laps.”

Let’s Take a Look

Below is a list of three shows I’ve watched that include infertility plotlines along with what I liked and didn’t like about how they handled the topic. I’ll be covering another four in a separate post. Some notable ones are missing (like Friends and Grey’s Anatomy) because I haven’t seen them. *Spoiler alert.

This is Us

This is Us - NBC Kate and Toby Infertility Office

Photo: NBC

The basics: Kate and Toby find out they’re pregnant and she’s excited but cautious. Just as she gets comfortable announcing the news to family, she has a miscarriage. Next season, they decide to pursue IVF and the first round ends in…A MIRACLE BABY!

Yays: They go pretty in-depth, giving the storyline episodes over two seasons. This allows some time to show how the miscarriage and infertility changes Kate, Toby and their relationship. They raise awareness about Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) and some of the complications that can come with IVF. 

The taboo of infertility and the emotional drain of defending your fertility decisions to family are addressed as well. Initially, Kate and Toby try to keep the IVF cycle a secret. Ultimately, they have to respond to reactions from family members including a mom who doesn’t want her to take the medical risks associated with IVF and an adopted brother who is hurt that she is pursuing IVF over adoption. 

Boos: The IVF portion of the storyline is only a few episodes and shows basically nothing. Just the initial meeting with reproductive endocrinologist and the egg retrieval. No HSG, blood draws, ultrasounds, just one or two shots. No mention is made of the financial aspect of IVF or how Kate and Toby are coming up with the dough. For most couples, the $12,000 (average) price tag per cycle would surely come up. 

Even though their RE gives her only a 10% chance of success, she gets pregnant on the first try. I wish they would have carried the infertility line through additional seasons and considered her story not ending with a baby. Kate and Toby have a strong relationship so the writers could easily write them a happy ending without kids. Kate is also just getting to know herself and take risks. She just started a career in singing (which she gives up due to the pregnancy) and went back to finish college in her late 30’s. She is blossoming! I would prefer to see her continue her journey of self-discovery and learning to accept a childfree life than for her to have a baby. I mean, can’t we just have one childfree after infertility character.

Being Mary Jane

Being Mary Jane fertility doctor's office

Photo: BET

The Basics: Mary Jane is single and works as a news anchor in Atlanta, GA. Over the course of many seasons we see her grapple with her fertility. From “stealing” her ex-boyfriends sperm, to   doing an egg freezing cycle as part of a news segment (and hearing on live TV that it didn’t go well), to ultimately pursuing IVF with donor sperm. The series finale ends with a wedding and…a MIRACLE BABY!

Yays: Gabrielle Union (the actress who plays Mary Jane) has been public about her personal struggles with multiple miscarriages and infertility. Maybe that’s why the infertility storyline in Being Mary Jane feels so complex and real. The storyline goes through all five seasons, so they are able to go deep. 

The story is unique and unpredictable. I love the portrayal of Mary Jane as a single woman having to make difficult decisions about her fertility, from freezing her eggs to going through IVF without a partner. The show takes on a lot of difficult issues which can make it uncomfortable to watch at times, due to how authentic it feels. I’m not even mad about the series ending with a baby. The screenwriters earned that baby. 

Boos: Honestly, none. 

Sex in the City

sex and the city charlotte acupuncture

Photo: HBO

The Basics: Charlotte’s lifelong dream is to have a baby. When sex isn’t leading to pregnancy, Charlotte goes through multiple rounds of IVF, gets pregnant, miscarries, tries to adopt, adoption falls through, successfully adopts a daughter, then (surprise!) she naturally has…A MIRACLE BABY!

Yays: There’s a lot to love about how Charlotte’s infertility storyline is handled. Because they kept it going for multiple years, it’s able to show how grief and devastation accumulate over years of trying with no success. They don’t treat IVF or adoption as quick or guaranteed routes to motherhood. They also shows the impact infertility has on relationships. Charlotte has to navigate ambiguous feelings toward her best friend, Miranda, who accidentally gets pregnant. We also see her struggling through baby announcements and showers. We even see her first marriage fall apart when her husband confesses he doesn’t want a child.

Boos: The freaking miracle baby! So after 10 years of infertility, including multiple rounds of IVF, Charlotte just gets pregnant naturally in her early 40’s? Why? An adopted baby isn’t enough? The writers just couldn’t resist that damn miracle baby. This perpetuates the “it will just happen when you relax enough and stop trying” myth. Also, part of why this storyline could be sustained so long is that Charlotte is a side character. I don’t think they could have pulled off the same storyline, over so many years, with a main character. 

How I Met Your Mother

Photo: CBS

The Basics: Robin is happily childfree by choice for seven seasons when she has a pregnancy scare. At the doctor’s office she finds out that not only is she not pregnant, she can’t have children. She then struggles with unexpected feelings of grief over the loss of her fertility. I’m on the fence about including her because she is childfree by choice but since they wrote an episode which includes infertility, I think it’s fair game.

Yays: A female character who is childfree and happy! Yay, more of this please! While infertility is a blip on the radar on this show, I’m fine with it because Robin’s character never wanted or tried for children. She just gets one episode to face ambiguity and grief upon learning she can’t have kids. She doesn’t need more than that. At the end of the episode, we learn that she became “a famous journalist, a successful businesswoman, a world traveler, and briefly a bull fighter…but she was never alone.” The screenwriters gave her a life full of depth, excitement, love, success, meaning and relationships.

Have you seen any of these TV shows? How do you think they did? What other TV shows have you seen that portray infertility?

Trauma creates change you don't choose. Healing creates change you do choose. Michelle RosenthalI suck at creating babies. Even the most advanced medical interventions available can’t convince my body to perform one of its most basic biological functions.
During my infertility, all I could do was watch months turn into years with no hint of a positive pregnancy test. I started feeling like a failure. It was devastating to know that the thing I longed for most in this world was not within my power to create. No amount of will, desire, or action was going to change the outcome.
I spent so many years focusing on what I couldn’t create that I lost sight of what I could. Since making the decision to embrace a childfree life, I’ve worked to identify and celebrate what I create in my life and the world. To see myself as the powerful source of creation I am. Here are a few of them.
  • I create loving, compassionate relationships.
  • I create a better world for children through the policy change I work toward at my job.
  • I create a healthier earth by respecting the planet and being conscious about the resources I consume.
  • I create music when I play my ukulele, sing or write music.
  • I create space for magic and play in my life.
  • I create nourishing food and a connection to the earth when I garden.
  • I create an understanding, supportive space for people to connect through my blog and social media accounts
  • I create kindness by treating those I meet with respect and courtesy.
  • I create beautiful surroundings when I take on remodeling projects at home.
  • I create a better world by donating my money and time to causes I care about.
  • I create self-love by taking care of my mind, body and soul.
  • I create compassion by opening my heart to myself and others.

If you need another reminder of how powerful you are, check out my post, “I’m not a mom, but…Life isn't about finding oneself. Life is about creating oneself. George Bernard Shaw

  • I create laughter by making those around me laugh and seeking out humor.
  • I create a more just society by voting and using my voice for social activism.
  • I create a vision for my future by developing and moving toward goals.
  • I create happiness by focusing on the positive aspects of life.
  • I create a healthier future for myself by letting go of the past.
  • I create authenticity by following my inner voice instead of trying to fulfill others expectations of me.
  • I create health and joy by cooking delicious, healthy meals.
  • I create courage by letting go of fear.
  • I create peace by practicing forgiveness.
  • I create knowledge through reading.
  • I create resiliency by accepting and adapting to the shit life throws at me.
  • I create meaning in life by defining and following my dreams.
  • I create a new future by letting go of regrets.
  • I create self-acceptance by loving myself, flaws and all.
  • I create a connection to the world through travel.
  • I create confidence by gaining new skills and recognizing my achievements.
  • I create empathetic space for others who need a listening ear.
  • I create awareness by sharing my experience with endometriosis and infertility.
  • I create my own truth by questioning the beliefs and ideas of others.
  • I create deeper connections with myself and others by living in the moment.
  • I create meaningful conversations by listening and being open.
  • I create memories by taking photos of the people and places that are meaningful to me.
  • I create a life I’m in love with.

You are also a powerful source of creation. What are you creating in your life and in the world?


How do you make new friends as an adult?

I was grappling with this question a year ago and faced some challenges as I began my quest.

  • I had recently moved to a new city.
  • I didn’t know a single person.
  • I’m not religious and don’t belong to any organizations.
  • I work from home and don’t live near colleagues.
  • I was looking for friends who weren’t parents since I was embracing my identity as a nonparent.
  • I wanted to meet people who shared my interests, hobbies, and values.

Impossible, right?

I kept seeing women at restaurants, coffee shops, and book stores who looked very friend-able. I would rehearse opening lines in my head, searching for something that wouldn’t sound weird or creepy. I would compliment her style and we’d talk about her shoes or hair for a minute and that would be it. I could never find a way to turn that initial conversation into a hangout.

For more ideas on how to expand your social circle, check out my post, “There’s More than One Way to Create a Family.”

Bumble BFF

My actual Bumble BFF profile.

Then I found Bumble BFF. If you’re not familiar with Bumble, here’s the gist. Bumble is an app that includes three settings for connecting with new people:

  • Bumble Date,
  • Bumble BFF,
  • and Bumble Bizz.

You can download the app for free, create a profile and instantly connect with people in your area.

I’m only discussing my experience with BFF mode since I haven’t tried the other two. In fact, you can disable the other platforms all together if you don’t plan to use them. In BFF mode, you’ll only see profiles of the same gender you select when setting up your account.

Spoiler Alert

I have so many new friends! After a few months, I had connected with dozens of women. Of those, I met up with about ten, and ended up with a handful of new friends that I adore! Just yesterday I met a friend for ice cream, art, and dinner (yes, in that order). I met her through Bumble almost a year ago and we’re still hanging out. Next week, I’m grabbing a drink with someone I connected with a few days ago.

For more ideas on how to embrace your unexpectedly childfree life, check out my book review of “Sweet Grapes: How to Stop Being Infertile and Start Living Again.”

Getting Started

My actual Bumble BFF profile.

  1. Create your account. If you already use Bumble Date: tap on “Bumble Date” at the top of the page. From here, you can toggle to Bumble BFF to get started. If you’re new to Bumble: select ‘New Friends’ when creating your account.
  2. Set up your profile. You can add photos, fill in the “about me” section, and basic info. You also have the option to link your Instagram account so users can view your pics.
  3. Choose your settings. In the “settings” tab, you have the option to disable Bumble Date. You also have the option to select the age range and distance of your desired friends.
  4. Start making friends! You can now view the profiles of potential friends. When a new profile pops up, look through their info to decide if you’re interested in connecting with them. If you are, swipe right on your screen; if not, swipe left.
  5. Get connected. If someone you swiped right on also swipes right on you, Bumble will notify you that you have a new match. Now you can message your new friend directly. But don’t wait too long, the match will expire after 24 hours if neither of you reaches out to the other.

So, does it work?

For me, it absolutely did! I’ve met some amazing women over the past few months and made a few new besties. I live in a small town so you don’t have to be in a big city for this to work.

Tips for Success

  • Include what makes you unique in your profile. I’m surprised at how many women don’t include any info in their profiles, just a few pics. Or, how many read exactly the same. I can’t tell you how many women only list wine and Netflix as interests. Let your personality and interests show through!
  • Make the first move. I’m not gonna lie, it’s awkward to connect with strangers. But you’re both there because you are looking to make new friends. Be brave! Send that message, set up that hangout! You’ll be glad you did.
  • If you’re looking for friends who aren’t parents, include that you’re childfree in your profile. It will help others who are also looking for childfree friends find you.
  • Be patient. Making new friends kind of feels like dating. You’ll probably have to hang out with a few people before you find the ones you connect with. Keep trying!
  • Have fun! Your new besties are waiting for you!

What does making friends have to do with embracing a childfree life?

My actual Bumble BFF profile.

Part of embracing an unexpectedly childfree life means shaping your identity as a nonparent. Making new friends is a fun way to explore that.

In the past year, I’ve met other women and couples who don’t have kids and it’s been amazing! They help me identify the benefits of a childfree life, and are so much fun to spend time with. I love my friends with kids (love you so much!) but it’s been affirming to add a few friends who can provide a different perspective. If you’re coming out of infertility, making new friends can also help you reconnect to other aspects of yourself that may have been on the backburner.

Good luck!

Click here for more posts on designing an unexpectedly childfree life.

Have you tried Bumble BFF? How did it go? Let me know in the comments.

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