Someone’s trying to stir up a fight.
In one corner, there’s a confident woman in her 20s, telling the world that she has no desire to be a mother.
In the other is a blisteringly honest woman of 40ish, frankly sharing her experience of infertility and regret.
This is the storm that’s circling from a newspaper column that the wonderful and witty Bianca Dye wrote this weekend, in response to comments from kick-arse singer Ricki-Lee Coulter. Ricki declared that she didn’t want kids, but if she changed her mind, “I might turn 40 and go, ‘come on let’s pop one out’.”
Bianca wrote in the Daily Telegraph:
I’ve been through a number of failed IVF rounds and I’m still going…
I’ve had two miscarriages and put on 12kg from the hormones they’ve pumped into me. I’m begging Ricki-Lee — I wish I had of thought about this more at her age.
Freeze your eggs now Ricki-Lee, while you can.
Neither of these excellent women is spoiling for a fight. They are simply speaking, publicly and honestly, from two opposite ends of the fertility spectrum of the most central of human issues – parenthood.
But Ricki-Lee has spoken about – and not for the first time – a lifestyle choice that mainstream society does not respect – the desire to NOT have children. And Bianca’s position, rightly or wrongly, is being painted as the default response that we level at any woman who challenges the idea of motherhood as all.
“OF COURSE you want children. You just don’t know it yet.”
Young women like Ricki Lee – bold enough to discount that one thing that is supposed to define their femininity above all else – have always been viewed with suspicion.