Interview on Ireland AM


Here is a link for an interview on Ireland AM with myself and Jenny Barrett on the subject of life without children.

As I mentioned on the show, I am doing some research on the experiences of childfree women who are living solo and over 55 (this includes always single, separated, divorced, or in a relationship but not co-habiting). The purpose of the research is to explore both the challenges and opportunities of living solo. Up to now, there has been very little attention given to the interests and concerns of older women who are living solo in Ireland. I hope that the research will create more visibility and awareness of the issues that matter to older solo women. I also believe that the sharing of knowledge and experience will be of benefit to younger women, many of whom have questions around how to survive, adapt and thrive as they themselves age. Participation requires an interview, one to one with me, which would take about one hour. All of the information gathered in the interviews will be kept confidential and anonymous. This is part of a bigger research project which is taking place in the UK.


Christmas will be different next year…

Gateway Women

Geisha gives the finger

Having made it through yet another childless Christmas, all of us childless by circumstance women can breathe out a huge collective sigh of relief!

It’s over and we can get back to our daily lives, and the coping mechanisms and busy routines that serve to protect us, most of the time, from the feelings of isolation, sadness and loss we often feel. Now Christmas is over, we can move back into the mainstream again; we can pass for normal women again. Well, most of the time, anyway.

But there comes a day, maybe after we’ve had just one too many mediocre Christmases, when we begin to wonder if this is really all there is for us.  Are we really doomed to eat the scraps at other people’s celebrations for life? Are we not ‘enough’ as people that we too deserve a celebration where our lives are at the centre?


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Jody Day writes about Julia Gillard’s response to Tony Abbott’s comments on her childlessness



I am forwarding a link for an article written by Jody which appeared in the Comment section of the Guardian on Thursday. It addresses the issue of judgements and assumptions which are often made in relation to women who are childless. I’ve certainly experienced some of those judgements, though they are rarely articulated so directly, or they are softened or blurred…great to see them being examined and challenged by Jody!

New London workshop, 4th Nov – So You Don’t Have Kids?… Now What!

HI Everybody,

Some great news. Jody is coming to Dublin to give a two day workshop on 19 / 20 January on the theme of ‘So you don’t have kids..Now What?’ Have a look at the format for the London workshop to get an idea of the format. She is currently looking at venues and it will most likely be in Dublin city centre, so save the dates if you are interested in coming along!


Gateway Women

English Country ChurchyardJust recently I was on a residential training as part of my psychotherapy studies. I arrived at the venue, a gorgeous tumbledown old Abbey in the English countryside without having given the days ahead much thought – after all, I’ve been training with some of my fellow students for three years now. I had no real anxiety apart from whether the beds would be OK and whether I’d be able to sleep.

Turned out I was right to worry about the beds, but what did come as a great surprise to me was to feel my scar of childlessness touched anew.

There were no children present, but their absence was felt so keenly by the mothers and fathers in the room that the training room felt ‘full’ of children. At break times, parents would squirrel themselves in corners, or rush off in a pantomime of arm waving around the gardens…

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Another great post from Jodie!

Gateway Women

happy old women with catPerhaps one of the things that’s surprised me most about coming to terms with my childlessness is how it’s impacted every area of my life: my identity, my dreams and my hopes. And one of the most unexpected shifts has been in my ideas about intimate relationships.

I was with my life-partner for 16 years, and both before and after that had serious, long-term relationships. Really, from the ages of 15-45 I had sex and relationships on the brain. And now, aged 48, and four years into accepting that my quest for motherhood is over, I’m not anymore.

It’s not that I don’t want an intimate relationship anymore, that would be untrue. It’s just that I’ve outgrown what I used to want, and what I now want hasn’t fully come into focus yet. I find that I’m clearer on what I don’t want, than what I do. Now that…

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