Kids? No Thanks, I’d Rather be a Dink

The term ‘dink’ (dual income no kids) has been circulating around social media and catching the attention of younger generations, however, this is not a new term. The acronym was actually coined in the 1980s during the rise of ‘yuppie’ culture and economic hardships brought on by The Great Recession contributed to this social trend due to couples waiting longer to have kids, or choosing to not have kids at all.  

I have personally decided that I do not want to have children. Oftentimes, when I tell this to my family members or older adults, the response I am almost always met with is: “but you’re only 21!! You will definitely change your mind eventually when the baby fever hits!” or something similar.

My mother has also said things like “you will change your mind” and “you have to give me grandbabies!” I’ll respond with “I have given you a grandbaby, he’s just covered in fur and meows!” She just rolls her eyes and has faith in the fact that I will indeed have a change of heart. Spoiler alert: I’m not changing my mind.

With that said, I do not think there is anything wrong with having children and I have nothing against people who want them. In fact, I strongly admire those who do decide to have children because raising kids is by no means an easy task. It’s simply just a personal choice and something that I do not want to do.

There are a multitude of reasons I do not want to have children, but instead, aspire to be a dink (or even better, a dinkwac: dual income, no kids with a cat). A few reasons include: 

  • Childbirth/pregnancy is absolutely terrifying to me 
  • I value my alone time
  • Children are expensive
  • I like having the freedom to go where I want, when I want
  • I want to focus on myself (call me selfish, I don’t care)
  • I find babies to be generally annoying and gross (although they are cute sometimes, just when they are not mine)
  • The mass of societal pressures to be a ‘good’ mother or to even just become a mother in general
  • Have you seen the ‘regretfulparents’ subreddit? It is discouraging and disheartening

I am not alone in the idea of not wanting to have children. Many of my friends have expressed a similar sentiment around not wanting them, and when you look at the numbers, many other women in the US seem to be on the same page as my friends and I. 

US birth rates have fallen 20% since 2007, meaning less babies are being born, meaning less women are having children, but why? The article notes that this decline cannot be explained by demographic, economic, or policy changes (which I kind of disagree with because the cost of raising children is ever increasing, but hey I’m no economist or statistician), but suggests that there has been a semi-permanent shift in priorities. Perhaps women are prioritizing themselves, their careers, and relationships instead of focusing on starting a family, which is largely expected of women in today’s society.

Business Insider published an article describing why more and more women don’t want to have kids. Many of the women who were interviewed noted that they wanted to maintain the freedom that being child free allowed them, such as the ability to pursue their careers, passions, and have the space to preserve their sense of self. Not having children makes those things much more attainable and manageable with the busy pace of today’s world. 

Additionally, one woman in the article said,

“I subconsciously recognized my mother’s struggles to juggle a career and family and decided that I would not follow the same path… I couldn’t imagine juggling work and children.”

Business Insider

This quote strongly resonated with me. Growing up I watched my mother struggle with balancing work, family, household chores, friendships, her marriage, etc. The pressure that society puts on mothers is immense, and I personally could not imagine juggling all those things and still maintaining a sense of self and my sanity.

Women are faced with so many pressures that society pushes on them and the pressure to have children is just one of many. I hope that since more and more women are deciding to not have children, that society will be more accepting of it and not shame women or try to convince them to change their mind on the matter. In the end, it is a personal choice and nobody should be telling women what to do or how to live their lives. 

4 thoughts on “Kids? No Thanks, I’d Rather be a Dink

  1. My family is also always telling me “don’t make that decision now it might change later” and it really frustrates me because I know it won’t change!


  2. I have seen that reddit thread! It’s extremely disheartening but I am glad those parents have an anonymous platform to share their feelings!


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