We know you’re only trying to help, we know you mean well.But please stop and actually start treating us like grown-up women again, not an embarrassing problem to be fixed. She set up the Gateway Women friendship and support network in 2011 to support, inspire and empower childless women as they develop meaningful and fulfilling lives without children.If you are someone who wants or wanted to be a mother and it isn’t or didn’t work out (for whatever reason) please come and join us in the our private, global, Gateway Women Online Community. Neither a bitter spinster nor a dried up old hag, Jody puts her heart, mind, and soul into lovingly and mischievously subverting the stereotype of the ‘childless woman’. Jody Day is a British author, trainee integrative psychotherapist and the founder of Gateway Women, the global friendship and support network for childless women.She’s a founding member at (Ageing without Children) and a former Fellow in Social Innovation at Cambridge Judge Business School.The great thing about being out the other side of my grief and rocking my Plan B is that there’s no hurry anymore.Because even if I remain single till the day I die, life looks wonderfully rich and full from here. If I had known that it were possible to feel like this, that becoming a mother were something that I could get through and recover from, it would have made a huge difference.The fact of having never been married or in the kind of long-term partnership in which the opportunity to try for a baby arose, seems to be a their stories because they don’t feel ‘entitled’ to their pain, grief and despair compared to those women who’ve suffered miscarriages, failed to conceive or who have experienced unsuccessful IVF.There is sometimes a sense of deep unworthiness, of being right at the bottom of some invisible pecking order of childless women and not quite ‘full members’ of the childless club, and so therefore not quite due Whereas just a generation ago, being an unmarried mother was to be the social outcast, now it’s the single, childless woman over 40 who carries the weight of shame.
But what I bet we hear about during the week will be about the many women suffering in silence with a type of infertility so shameful they can hardly bear to talk about it.
But there were no role models in the culture – only stories of women so desperate that they were still trying to have babies in their 50’s and beyond.
A full and meaningful life as a woman who wanted children and it didn’t work out? Which is one of the reasons that I now curate a Gallery of Childless & Childfree Role Models on Pinterest.
However, amongst those women joining the private online GW Community born in the 1970s, it seems that social infertility is increasingly prevalent.
The private and personal pain of being both single childless is so extreme that within the GW Online Community we have a special name for it – ‘Double Whammy’.