Not with a fizzle, but with a… baby?

We are expected to grow up, find the love of our life, marry this someone and have a family. But is family life really for everyone?

Everywhere women are asked “when will you have kids”, but the answer no seems to be unacceptable.

A woman who says that she doesn’t want kids are more often than not told “You´ll change your mind”, or “You will want kids when you find the right man”. Women are faced with constant pressure of giving birth, but they are also starting to get sick of it.

I can feel how the discussion is getting heated. Many, like myself, understand why people choose not to have children, others, also like me, are not sure if they want to reproduce either. Then there’s the ones saying that they definitely don’t want kids, and others who strongly argue that this is wrong. Why do people have such strong opinions about the topic and see this as an issue?

Andrea Cubells, 21, says “Many times they just stare at me like “Really? Why? As if I had just said something extremely shocking, and I guess that for some people it is.”

She continues, “As bad as it may sound for some people, I think that having kids would have a rather negative and stressful impact on my life, which I would like to avoid.

Andrea, who is a Moving Image student in Brighton, has been a babysitter for many years and says that she enjoys having kids around, but at the end of the day she wants to “go back to my normal and quiet space. You can’t leave if the children are your own.”

In times like these when life goes faster than ever, we are still stuck in the old opinions of what is important in life – to start a family. Andrea says, “Nowadays things take longer to achieve, there is so much to do and so much competition. Having children would destroy that. I like the freedom and independence.”

Although a lot is still the same, Millennials are having a more open discussion about this taboo and the subject has become slightly easier to talk about.

“We can talk about it now. When I was little it was only weird if a grown woman didn’t have children, but now we are starting to accept it.” Andrea says.

The average British woman gives birth to 1.81 children in her lifetime. This has decreased with 0.04 since 2013 when the statistic showed 1.85 children per woman (ONS).

It seems like the safest way to stay childfree is to go through a sterilisation which has proven to be more than 99% effective (NHS). But, it is very hard to get a green light on a sterilisation before the age of 30. This is due to surgeons wanting to make sure the woman doesn’t change her mind since a sterilisation is very hard to undo.

Women who don’t want children face arguments and have to explain their decision all the time, but do men go through the same thing?

Alexander Naumovich ,22, is studying film in Paris and says that he doesn’t want kids.

“Kids would be in the way for what I want to achieve in life. Also, they are annoying.”

When asked if he thinks that women and men are told the same things when asked about reproduction he says, “I feel like sex roles are getting more loose every day, so it’s probably not as bad as 10 years ago. But I’m sure women hear it more often.”

Sandra Partanen, 22, is also one of the millennials who says no to having children.

“I don’t feel the need to make sure my family genes stay alive. If I, at some point, would want kids, I would adopt. There are too many unwanted children born into this world.”

And to the people saying “You will regret this”, many women are sure of what they want and who they are.

Isabelle Foi-z is a bachelor student from Montreal. She has never had any plans of having children and stands firm at the age of 47.

“I am my own project”, she says.

My conversation with Isabelle is one of the best ones I’ve ever had. When I talk about how Millennials are not taken seriously she frowns and says “I know so many inspirational, passionate 20 year olds, I talk to them every day at university! And they all have something to contribute with. It’s an exciting future.”

Isabelle’s decision to not have children has affected her life very recently, “I was broken up with a couple of months ago because I don’t want to have children. So this is very much my life.”

When asked why she doesn’t want to have children she simply says, “I have no interest. Honestly, it’s lack of interest. It’s like I don’t want to become a veterinarian; I neither want to become a mother.”

Isabelle is actively trying to “debunk motherhood” and says, “we have to keep telling the world that we are fulfilled.”

Living an alternative lifestyle is often questioned, but I do believe that we are starting to open up about what is not the norm, and in this way we can make this into the non-issue it should be.

Hunting in the London flat jungle.

Man I hate flat hunting. It is the most exhausting thing I have ever done here in London. There are too many websites to go through, too many boroughs to consider, and too many shady agents to avoid. And I am in the middle of it, again.

Me and my boyfriend have not been lucky in the past. We have been denied, lured, and manipulated by agents. When we finally have had somewhere to live, we have had the worst luck with flat mates; a mix of drug addicts and selfish loud couples.

And now we are hunting, again.

We are both students, but only for another four months, and are considered unreliable. Which is so stupid because firstly, I am 26 (come on, I’ve been supporting myself since I was 19). Secondly, we are actively choosing not to live on campus = we are not interested in a student life and every party that comes with it. I just want an oven and a stove for myself, and not having to clean up after a whole flat share of just-out-of-the-nest students.

We are also supposed to have a guarantor which is something very new to me (we don’t have those in Sweden). It is also funny because why wouldn’t I be able to pay my rent? Again, I am 26, would I have to have a guarantor if I was 30 and a student?

I wish I could write a list of how to get a flat in London, but I think this is something I have to come back with after I am no longer a student, maybe we will be luckier then.
Until then, we will keep hunting. Wish us luck!

And, if you have any tips on how to move along in this jungle, let me know.

Blogs and Instagram accounts – London favourites

London life is my favourite life. I love browsing through lifestyle, photography, and good coffee accounts. Here’s three that are more lifestyle than anything else, featuring the streets of London, good quality text and pictures.

aziza

Aziza Makame is as fabulous on Instagram as she is in real life. I have the honour of studying journalism with her at Roehampton University, and she has taught me a lot. Her Instagram is filled with colour, beautiful surroundings, and the biggest smile. It always make me smile. She is also great at updating her Instastory, which I love! Visit her blog and her Instagram. 

georgina

I have very recently discovered Georgina and her Instagram. Great pictures filled with food and street life. A proper feel good account. She seems to be the sweetest person and her where-to-go-in-London-tips are awesome. I like a girl who likes good coffee. Here’s her blog! 

vixmel

Vix Meldrew is as lovely as she looks. She delivers everyday updates on her London life, her travels and what other adventures surrounds her. Her blog is filled with tips, features and lovely insights on life. Check her out and enjoy. Blog right here! 

Coco

I have just seen the new Disney Pixar movie Coco, and it was one of the greatest animated movies I have ever seen.

pixar-coco-guitar

The story of Coco is based in Mexico during the holiday Day of the Dead, and the movie’s main character, Miguel, is accidentally transported to the land of the dead where he is trying to find his ancestor in order to get back to the living world. He longs to play music, but his family thinks music is a curse after Miguel’s great great grandfather left the family to become a famous musician.

Honestly, it is so good. Full of colour, music, relatable drama and culture. Also, family comes first, always.
Go and see it, and bring tissues… (I still have to work on my pretty crying).

Blogs and Instagram accounts – Swedish talents

Yes, I am Swedish, living a London life. Still, I seek inspiration from my home country, and mostly from people I have looked up to for a long time. Here are three of them.

linnsej

I met Linn in London 4 and a half years ago. She is one of my biggest inspirations in life. She moved back to Sweden (and left me, no I’m still not over it), and chased her dream to become a photographer. And here she is, doing exactly what she loves doing, how cool is that? Her Instagram feed is a joy to go through and her pictures always make me happy. Check her out here –Linnsejphotography.  or on her Instagram.

sofiajennifer

When I first discovered this chica she went by the name Grönhandduk (green towel) and has since then made my social media much brighter. I don’t know Jennifer, but it feel like I do, at least a little. We have been following each other for so long and she is just a natural part of my daily inspirations. She writes in Swedish, but her pictures and boomerangs are worth looking at. @sofiajennifer.

nevnarien

Elin Kero aka Nevnarien is first and foremost a photographer who also blogs and runs a youtube channel. She loves winter, snow, the middle ages and archery. Her photos really portrait her personality; bright, inviting, and present. I have read her blog for ages and I love that she is just being herself, always. Here is her youtube (where she mostly speak english) and here is her blog.

 

Blogs and Istagram accounts – Inspirational women

Here comes three of my favourites on Instagram and in the blog world. Truly empowering women.

sdahlström

Sara Dahlström is the editor in cheif at the Swedish magazine Hälsa och Fitness (Health and Fitness). She encourage me to crush all kind of body shaming, to accept myself, and to dance around in my underwear more often. She created #skakamedsara, the dance challenge I wrote about, and lives for us all to accept our bodies. She also have two bad ass tattoos and lifts heavy stuff. She’s on Instagram and on FitnessFeministen.

gracelatter

Grace Latter is someone I very recently discovered on Instagram, and she has made me smile ever since. I look up to her. To the way she writes, to the way she is. Her pictures are great and she is a fan of coffee, as am I. Plus, her mum is the cutest. You can find her lovely blog here. 

mariaandrew

Maria Andrew is a writer and illustrator whowho has helped me understand America better. Her power lays in capturing strong feelings in little words in pictures. Also, her work is so damn relatable. She is bymariaandrew on Instagram, go and check out her stories!

Blogs and Instagram accounts – Photographers

I will now present some favourites in my Instagram feed. Here are some photographers who I can’t stop admiring. I follow a lot of photographers from everywhere which I love, I can dream myself away with them.
simonfass

Simon Fassbender is a German photographer and is truly amazing. His style is just wow, dark, cozy, deep and intriguing. I always want to jump into the scene. He photographs his travels and ever day life.

hobopeeba

Hobopeeba – Kristina Makeeva – is Russian and equally amazing. She takes me to the Red Square in Moscow, introduces me to her ginger cat, and enchant me with pictures from everywhere. She uses bright colours and motives that LIVE.

joshperrett

Josh Perrett is from Bristol, England and is another photographer I adore. Depth, a huge amount of feeling and warm colours is what has captured me. He portraits Britain at its best and also takes us around Europe. You can find him on Instagram or here.

 

Here’s to 2018

It is January 2018 and I am excited. Kind of. Okay, I am also terrified. I am now on my final term of my time at University, and the future is scary. And exciting. Kind of.

January is, as always, a very grey month, and I have put up some small goals for myself to stay motivated. I have a writing challenge that will continue throughout the month, and this week I am dancing every morning. I dance because one of my favourite bloggers started #skakamedsara (shakeitwithsara) and we dance for body positivity and for us to love the body we are born in.

Speaking of bloggers, I will dedicate my first couple of posts (after this one) to blogs and instagram accounts that inspire me. I have a lot of those.

January is also my birthday month, and I will make sure it is celebrated properly.

Until next time,
Hanna

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