My husband and I have been married for five years and he has been in the Army for three years. We are both in our very late twenties, have a dog named Toby and no children.
Children are definitely in our future, just not the immediate future, which sometimes baffles people.
It seems as though we ‘childless couples‘ seek out one another at events and immediately latch on. There is a sense of safety in numbers and we desperately cling to each other at FRG meetings and Hail & Farewells. As we huddle in the corner and swap stories of last minute trips to Paris and staying out past midnight, we suddenly don’t feel like the freaks of the community anymore. We are constantly reassuring one another that “Yes, it’s okay that you NEVER want kids” and, “No, your biological clock isn’t ticking.”
Only a few brave souls dare to leave the safety of the group and talk to the ‘mothers’ whom we know through coffee groups or the gym. We bond and make lasting friendships with all spouses, but there are just aspects of each other’s worlds that we can’t grasp. So, as the kids begin to circle around their parents, we single couples slink off back to our own kind.
When I meet someone new at an FRG event the first question is always, “How old are your children?” and when I reply that I don’t have any the next question is always, “Oh, newlyweds?” It’s as though the only explanation for my lack of offspring is the fact that we’ve been married for less than a year.
Then begins the long and awkward conversation about how we just aren’t ready for kids, but we do want some in the future.
Typically, I’m left there feeling like a freakish anomaly that this person just can’t understand, because I don’t fit into any preconceived stereotypes of the military spouse.
My husband is currently deployed and I swear I’ve been asked by at least five different people if we are going to try as soon as he gets back. I reply with a nonchalant “probably not” and change the conversation.