Sunday, April 22, 2018

Earth Day isn't about us...

It's Earth Day. I keep seeing posts on Facebook asking what each person is doing to make the earth healthier. It's got me thinking about how I'm helping because, well, I've always been interested in what I can do to make the earth better. When I was small, I sent a letter to McDonalds asking them to stop using styrofoam. Still hate the stuff. I use the blue trash can for boxes, cans, and bottles. I wash some of our clothes in cool water. I only do full load of dishes and laundry. I work from home, so I don't drive much. I don't run the water while I'm brushing my teeth. You know, most of the same stuff every conscientious person does.

But each year on Earth Day, something that always seems to come up in childfree circles is how we--the childfree--are saving the earth by not having babies. Okay, yes, but also, no. It's a fact that having fewer people in your household lowers your carbon footprint, so yes, science. But, I seriously doubt that most childfree people choose to be sans kiddies just to save the environment, so... no. I mean, I can acknowledge that some do and that it's a consideration, at the very least, for others. I suppose it's just really exhausting seeing it every single year, same thing. I kind of hope we'll stop hijacking Earth Day, like it's about our choices, because it's not.

When I chose to be childfree, it wasn't because of the environment, even though I've always cared about the environment. Hell, I was 16 years old and didn't really have a good idea about carbon footprint and how having kids affected that. I made a choice not to have children because I'm not mentally healthy. I'm not mommy material. I'm not maternal and most days I can barely take care of myself. I chose not to have kids because kids make me uncomfortable. Most of all, I chose not to have kids because I did not want them and I didn't really care about societal pressures to procreate. It just happens that not having kids makes me more environmentally friendly than someone with lots of kids. It's a happy coincidence, not the cause.