I love this cartoon by Martin Shovel – this is what I’ve always thought every time I’ve seen one of those Baby On Board stickers. I’ve always wondered if they really are a proven crash deterrent.
This cartoon could be a metaphor for attitudes towards the childfree at the moment, what with these study findings suggesting that people feel moral outrage towards those who decide not to have children, and the shitstorm that Sarah Silverman sparked by saying that not being a mother was her way of living “her fullest life”.
It would help every category of non-parent if society found a way to stop perpetuating the notion that people without children are intrinsically less fulfilled. Why can’t our culture just respect the fact that some people can’t have children and some people just don’t want children, for whatever reason? Not to mention the people that shouldn’t have children.
I wish we could let go of this fallacy that the mere fact of producing children somehow bestows moral superiority and “completeness”, and that the childfree are lacking in comparison. The author of the Indiana study insists that “these perceptions have absolutely no basis in reality,” but what will it take to get that message out there?