April 24, 2020,

Jealousy or pure curiosity?

What drives a mild view of scorn towards a professional, widely respected and very wealthy couple who made a decision to not have children?

They certainly appear to enjoy the finer things of life.

A dual career couple with lucrative positions of prestige. Myriads of people under them that they have power and control over. Houses in the desirable city and one or two by the lake, up in the woods or by the ocean.

They travel to some of the most exotic destinations and can pick and choose what global news making events they desire.

Is it the Super Bowl? US Open? New York Fashion Week?

It’s completely up to them.

First row seats of course.

Yet as they age, minus adult children long gone, we don’t envy them as much. Now the curiosity begins to seem in.

What happens to the other if one of them perishes?

We knew of a judge and his wife who lived a great life but decided not to have children.

As far as we know. Maybe it was not by choice.

One of the friends in our circle was in their employ.

They fit the profile to a tee.

When they were younger, they were friendly but authoritative and distant. They lived a simple but well-off lifestyle. A luxury apartment and tickets to the opera in San Francisco were one of their discretionary choices.

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Then they got older.

They became more humble and fragile. Old age has no sympathy for any of us.

He was the first to go. The she went soon after.

It was sad to observe, even from a distance.

Since they had no heirs, a very clever and wicked law firm took over their bank accounts, fired our friend without any form of severance pay and got all of their money.

Very true story.

To think. They worked all of these years to leave their money to charities and a law firm.

We didn’t envy them.

We’re just glad, even with our lesser lifestyle, that we are not them.

Just like we don’t envy the next couple that we saw on screen titled L’enfance du mal or Sweet Evil.

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The storyline goes, fifteen year-old Celine is secretly sleeping in the garden house of a luxury villa, making money on the streets with the aid of boyfriend Romain, who works at the local pet shop but whose nighttime hobby is killing dogs and stealing their collars.

What a guy.

Celine is eventually discovered by the owner of the house, local Judge Henri van Eyck, who despite his wife’s initial reluctance, takes the girl in and offers her shelter.

When this happened, we wondered, what in the world are they thinking? It is as though they are not thinking.

Celine is a foster kid with ulterior motives. A creative street hustler who knows how to con her way into people’s minds and hearts.

She does this to perfection with this prosperous childless couple. As usual the husband is attracted to her sexually and the wife, who laughs with her about possibly having a lover, sees her as a prospective daughter.

What she eventually does to the judge is pure evil and pure genius.

It is hard to feel sympathy for him because he appears to be a man who wants things in order his way but wants to taste the sugary sweets on the side and when he is done, throw the wrapper and anything inside away as well.

Well, this is one girl that he won’t throw away.

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We bring this couple up as well. Are we condemning people who chose to have a life where they can amply provide wonderfully for children and choose not to have any?

Possibly, even though we are fully aware of how self-righteous it is. In the movies, they just come across as very selfish.

In real life it is absolutely not our place to judge. We don’t know the real details of their story.

It is about life’s choices isn’t it?

“I had to make a choice at one point in my life, of missing films or missing my children. It was a very easy decision to make because I missed my children so very much.”…Audrey Hepburn

The challenge is once we make a decision to walk down certain roads, we have to accept that we can’t get off of them without severe consequences. Yes the signs say detour up ahead but heaven forbid what will you find off of the main road?

We don’t want to go on a rant about purposely childless couples because we don’t remotely know their stories and how they arrived there and certainly wouldn’t want anyone to analyze our life choices, many of them bad, and judge us.

We just wonder if you have the means, is it wise to go through life childless?

This hits close to home for us as we know of a number of young well to do but childless couples.

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The spouses have each other but there is this cautious feeling that time is not on their side, especially when their friends and siblings are having children of their own.

The usual reasons are there from they can’t afford then, they can’t afford to purchase a home and they love the freedom of their lifestyle.

Oh well, who are we to say?

Here is what huffpost.com had to say, “The study titled “Enduring Love?” found that childless married and unmarried couples reported being more satisfied in life and feeling more valued by their partners than did pairs with kids. Unmarried parents were found to be slightly happier than married parents.”

The study was funded by the Economic and Social Research Council.

The research involved intensive interviews and surveys with more than 5,000 people of all ages and sexual orientations in long-term relationships.

Interesting. Who would have thought? Not sure we believe the respondents were being honest.

Here is what another group had to say at our favorite mind meld site psychologytoday.com, “For couples without kids, the relationship serves as a mechanism for personal growth. The numbers just came out this week showing that it will take more than $245,000 to raise a child born in 2013. This does not include costs associated with pregnancy or any college expenses or other money spent on children over the age of eighteen.”

Finally some truth.

“When making your choice in life, do not neglect to live.”… Samuel Johnson

Not for everyone, but for some, it is about having more money for yourself, to do and buy the things that you want. To travel where and whenever you want. To socialize without getting a babysitter.

To not be interrupted during lovemaking.

And so it goes.

Again, for some, not all.

In this often puzzling world that we live in, where there certainly is no “one shoe size fits all” for everyone, and a constant search for meaning that appears to be ever shifting, the road purposely childless couples travel is sometimes about choice.

Their choice.

And given how miserable we have been at times, in a nest complete with children, who are we to question it? 

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