One to One Coaching

I offer free 30 minute telephone/Skype consultations for people wanting to find out more about coaching on the 'baby decision'. Email me at and assistant Laura will respond and arrange an appointment with you. Visit for more information about my coaching services.

Monday, 28 March 2016

Book Review: Couldn't Wouldn't Didn't: Insights into the Lives of Women Who Never Gave Birth

A few months ago, I was sent a copy of this book -  a compilation of interviews with women who never had children.  The author Wilamina Falkenhagen describes herself as a '30-Something Australian woman doing her best to navigate the world of relationships, careers and babies.'

The main question Falkenhagen is seeking to answer - both for herself and for other people is

'What if you never have a baby? Will you live a perfectly fulfilled life or will you regret it?'

Very cleverly, Falkenhagen seeks to address this through looking at the lives of 10 woman -ranging in ages and professions who either through choice or circumstance have one thing in common; they have not had children.   It's an approach I think is a fantastic way to look at the question of regret about not having children.  I also interviewed a number of women and one of my interviewees Margaret who never had children and who was looking back on her life when she was in her 60's had a lovely and poignant story about her decision - you can read about her story here in this blog post on Looking back on a life without children 

One woman featured in the book is Freda who at 95 is still determined to lead an independent life.   Freda explains that she just never met a man she wanted to settle down with.  Did she feel like she missed out, did she regret not having children?  No says Freda, she feels she had a good life and was fortunate to have her own house and was able to make a good living.  She also was able to be involved in the lives of her nephews and nieces.

Another is Sarah who is 54 and who at different points in her life did feel flooded with hormones that did make her explore options for having a baby.  But her initial plans never worked out and when she adopted a puppy, her desire to have a child on her own also died off.  Sarah also describes her life as being lived without regret.  She is involved with the lives of the children of friends and feels very fulfilled and happy with her life choices.

A couple of the women featured did have children that they had adopted or who came via surrogate mothers.  Jade was a foster carer and an adoptive mother.  Although it was challenging, she would not change a thing and feels that there is great fulfilment in providing a loving and caring home to children who would otherwise not experience this.

At the end of the book, we hear Wilamina's own story.  Still undecided, Wilamina is still considering the issue, but it feels that she has more trust in the future, more trust that whatever happens, she will make it work.

I think that this book in an interesting addition to subject of having or not having children.  You can order the book here at Vivid Publishing.

No comments: