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Kid Me Not: An anthology by child-free women of the '60s now in their 60s

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Whatever became of the youth of the ‘60s, the turbulent era of sex, drugs and rock & roll? Kid Me Not, a new collection of intimate stories by women from the first generation ever to have access to The Pill, offers a unique perspective on the decade before Roe v. Wade, when free love wasn’t always free. As the women’s movement spread, these women faced a future of extraord Whatever became of the youth of the ‘60s, the turbulent era of sex, drugs and rock & roll? Kid Me Not, a new collection of intimate stories by women from the first generation ever to have access to The Pill, offers a unique perspective on the decade before Roe v. Wade, when free love wasn’t always free. As the women’s movement spread, these women faced a future of extraordinary possibilities – possibilities seen by today’s youth as commonplace. These writers’ stories are universal – they fell in love, most married, some divorced. Others divulge, for the first time, details kept hidden nearly five decades. Each recognized early the irresistible urge to defy tradition. They no longer felt obligated to follow in the footsteps of their mothers. Indeed, they no longer felt obligated to be mothers. In Kid Me Not – with Foreword by Elizabeth Gilbert – you’ll discover how everyday women, childfree by choice or circumstance, created an array of fascinating, fulfilling lives.


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Whatever became of the youth of the ‘60s, the turbulent era of sex, drugs and rock & roll? Kid Me Not, a new collection of intimate stories by women from the first generation ever to have access to The Pill, offers a unique perspective on the decade before Roe v. Wade, when free love wasn’t always free. As the women’s movement spread, these women faced a future of extraord Whatever became of the youth of the ‘60s, the turbulent era of sex, drugs and rock & roll? Kid Me Not, a new collection of intimate stories by women from the first generation ever to have access to The Pill, offers a unique perspective on the decade before Roe v. Wade, when free love wasn’t always free. As the women’s movement spread, these women faced a future of extraordinary possibilities – possibilities seen by today’s youth as commonplace. These writers’ stories are universal – they fell in love, most married, some divorced. Others divulge, for the first time, details kept hidden nearly five decades. Each recognized early the irresistible urge to defy tradition. They no longer felt obligated to follow in the footsteps of their mothers. Indeed, they no longer felt obligated to be mothers. In Kid Me Not – with Foreword by Elizabeth Gilbert – you’ll discover how everyday women, childfree by choice or circumstance, created an array of fascinating, fulfilling lives.

30 review for Kid Me Not: An anthology by child-free women of the '60s now in their 60s

  1. 5 out of 5

    Carmen

    Nearly half a century has not erased the terror I felt on learning I was pregnant. Oh-kay. On one hand, I love this book's message, which is: it is perfectly fine if you choose not to become a mother. I find this to be a positive message, as so many females get, "When are you going to get a baby? Why don't you have kids? When are you going to start having kids, you're getting old. Don't you want to be a mother?" Blah blah blah ad infinitum. These are stories of women who 'came of age' in the 1960 Nearly half a century has not erased the terror I felt on learning I was pregnant. Oh-kay. On one hand, I love this book's message, which is: it is perfectly fine if you choose not to become a mother. I find this to be a positive message, as so many females get, "When are you going to get a baby? Why don't you have kids? When are you going to start having kids, you're getting old. Don't you want to be a mother?" Blah blah blah ad infinitum. These are stories of women who 'came of age' in the 1960s, and why now, as women in their 60s, they are childless. We've got a wide spectrum here. Married, divorced, re-married, lesbian, single, women who have gotten abortions and women who have never gotten pregnant. I enjoyed the variety of stories. I also like how this isn't an "anti-kids" book, everyone in the book respects others who have chosen to have children. It's not defensive or angry. How you feel after getting an abortion. Why some women were getting their tubes tied and hysterectomies as young as age 26. How to face your mother's confusion and despair when you tell her you're never having kids. How some men leave you when you tell them you are never having kids. How, as a childless woman, you fret that no one will take care of you in your old age. All these are fascinating to explore. However, the book has some weaknesses. One: Many of these women are not writers by trade. And it shows. Some of the stories are atrociously written. o.O Two: It's really not modern - the struggles of women who were choosing not to have children in the 1960s are great to read about - but have different problems and issues than the struggles of women today. Three: Some of these women have abusive parents, alcoholic parents, or end up married to abusive and/or alcoholic men, and this can be difficult to read about (at least for me). Overall, a educational, quick read that can reassure a childless reader that the choice they are making is A-OK. It also has the effect of bonding you to another generation (if you are too young to remember the 1960s). But the story quality is not consistent, and it's not very contemporary. ETA: I have changed my mind. I do actually think it is good that these women are 60+, because no one can say to them: "you'll change your mind." They are beyond childbearing years and are confirmed in their childless lifestyle. This is important, so that people can't doubt that they "really mean it." But I still hold that the problems faced by women in the 60s who were choosing to be childless are somewhat different than current ones.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Benee

    Every story heartfelt and touching. This is a really great book. I myself am childless and it felt wonderful to read about other childless women in a world full of women who think that its not natural to not be a wife and mother. I'm 50 single and childless and I wouldn't want it any other way. I would love to see a sequel to this book. Every story heartfelt and touching. This is a really great book. I myself am childless and it felt wonderful to read about other childless women in a world full of women who think that its not natural to not be a wife and mother. I'm 50 single and childless and I wouldn't want it any other way. I would love to see a sequel to this book.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Shelley Free

    I feel validated... As a single, childless, 26 year old in a conservative state, this is a message I don't hear often. Much of the advice given to the women in this book about their bodies and life choices is what I've been hearing my whole life. This book was a breathe of fresh air to me. I feel validated... As a single, childless, 26 year old in a conservative state, this is a message I don't hear often. Much of the advice given to the women in this book about their bodies and life choices is what I've been hearing my whole life. This book was a breathe of fresh air to me.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Myra McIlvain

    KID ME NOT is a must read for mothers who are struggling with their roles and for the aunties who feel guilty for not being mothers. The contributors to this anthology have provided a look in the mirror. I hope young women will read this book before they jump into the socially accepted role of MOTHER.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Diana

    This was a refreshing take on a somewhat controversial subject. I think all of the women are very brave for sharing their stories with us and I hope it helped someone who needed to hear that you can have a full and happy life without having children. Also, I love that the point was addressed that it is better to not have children rather than bring them into unsafe, unstable, or undesirable conditions. I am a mother and I wouldn't change that for anything but I definitely do not think that every This was a refreshing take on a somewhat controversial subject. I think all of the women are very brave for sharing their stories with us and I hope it helped someone who needed to hear that you can have a full and happy life without having children. Also, I love that the point was addressed that it is better to not have children rather than bring them into unsafe, unstable, or undesirable conditions. I am a mother and I wouldn't change that for anything but I definitely do not think that every woman is meant to be a mother. I would have given this five stars if it had included just ONE woman of color. I am curious about why we were not included in this discussion.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Kasey

    I really enjoyed this book. I'm single and nearing the older end of my child-bearing years. I feel like I'd be fine to not have kids, but I worry that I'll regret that. And, if I were going to do it, the time would be now. This book was really inspiring to read both in terms of how different life is now for women than it was in the 50's/60's, and also how these women faced the same questions I do. And, they all went on to lead adventurous, fulfilling, creative, independent lives--without childre I really enjoyed this book. I'm single and nearing the older end of my child-bearing years. I feel like I'd be fine to not have kids, but I worry that I'll regret that. And, if I were going to do it, the time would be now. This book was really inspiring to read both in terms of how different life is now for women than it was in the 50's/60's, and also how these women faced the same questions I do. And, they all went on to lead adventurous, fulfilling, creative, independent lives--without children. These stories helped me not fear choosing what feels right for me now, and trusting the outcome.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Cheyenne Blue

    A solid collection of essays from childfree women who are now in their 60s. As a childfree woman myself (although of a younger generation than the contributors) I enjoyed the viewpoint of women who chose to be without children at a time when it was a less common choice than it is today. Many of the contributors are of a similar background (I think many of them were friends before collaborating on this collection) which made for less variety in the stories. I would have enjoyed reading the recoll A solid collection of essays from childfree women who are now in their 60s. As a childfree woman myself (although of a younger generation than the contributors) I enjoyed the viewpoint of women who chose to be without children at a time when it was a less common choice than it is today. Many of the contributors are of a similar background (I think many of them were friends before collaborating on this collection) which made for less variety in the stories. I would have enjoyed reading the recollections of women from other countries and backgrounds, rather than just white middle class Americans.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Emma Sea

    2.5 stars, rounded up.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Michele

    I am so glad this was recommended to me. I found myself in pieces of a few of these women. So very glad they finally came out with their stories. I know the women aren't all writers so I need to cut them a little slack on the stories. I know mine aren't cohesive in draft form, but my editor would make sure to get me on track before publishing. I would like to see a newer edition with updates on cohesive storyline and one needs more substantial information to truly fit on this book. Overall, I wou I am so glad this was recommended to me. I found myself in pieces of a few of these women. So very glad they finally came out with their stories. I know the women aren't all writers so I need to cut them a little slack on the stories. I know mine aren't cohesive in draft form, but my editor would make sure to get me on track before publishing. I would like to see a newer edition with updates on cohesive storyline and one needs more substantial information to truly fit on this book. Overall, I would recommend this book for others like me who have chosen not to have children or women that aren't sure if motherhood is for them. If you're not sure, I recommend not having them. It is still hard, in 2000s, to fight off the questions about no babies. Annoyingly so.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Tobias

    Quick read and pretty interesting. This is a collection of stories, written by women who grew up in the 60's. What they have in common is that they are all childfree, either by choice or by circumstance. It was interesting to hear their struggles with going against the cultural norm in the 60's, 70's, and let's face it, also the 80's. Despite my 100% support for feminism and the challenges that feminists have faced, I got rather sick of hearing all the "I am woman, hear me roar" after a while, t Quick read and pretty interesting. This is a collection of stories, written by women who grew up in the 60's. What they have in common is that they are all childfree, either by choice or by circumstance. It was interesting to hear their struggles with going against the cultural norm in the 60's, 70's, and let's face it, also the 80's. Despite my 100% support for feminism and the challenges that feminists have faced, I got rather sick of hearing all the "I am woman, hear me roar" after a while, though. Also, some of these women seemed a little too hippie-ish for me. But overall, I liked the book and found it to be an interesting read.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Danni

    This was an interesting anthology about women coming of age in the 60s - a time when access to birth control and abortions was limited. These are all women who decided not to have children. Stories about the pushback they received from this decision, stories about why they didn't have children, stories about how the struggles in their relationships, stories about how they found happy, fulfilling lives. Somewhat repetitive, as after awhile many of the stories sounded so similar, but still very in This was an interesting anthology about women coming of age in the 60s - a time when access to birth control and abortions was limited. These are all women who decided not to have children. Stories about the pushback they received from this decision, stories about why they didn't have children, stories about how the struggles in their relationships, stories about how they found happy, fulfilling lives. Somewhat repetitive, as after awhile many of the stories sounded so similar, but still very interesting.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Liz Luff

    This was such a great book! I'd like to just take a minute to thank all of the women out there who grew up through the sexual revolution and fought for women's rights so that I and all other women living this day in age have the choices of what to with their lives, whether we chose to marry or not, have children or not, have a career, have it all or none of it! While we know these things took place in our history, we often forget to recognize it. Thanks ladies! This was such a great book! I'd like to just take a minute to thank all of the women out there who grew up through the sexual revolution and fought for women's rights so that I and all other women living this day in age have the choices of what to with their lives, whether we chose to marry or not, have children or not, have a career, have it all or none of it! While we know these things took place in our history, we often forget to recognize it. Thanks ladies!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Taneka Smmith

    As a childless woman As a childless woman this spoke volumes to me. I'm not saying I don't want children but at 28 I'm not longer in a rush. My clock may tick but I know that I can be happy without a baby I don't know that I'll b happy with one. Thanks ladies. As a childless woman As a childless woman this spoke volumes to me. I'm not saying I don't want children but at 28 I'm not longer in a rush. My clock may tick but I know that I can be happy without a baby I don't know that I'll b happy with one. Thanks ladies.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Nikki

    I found Kid Me Not very interesting being a person who does not, and never has, wanted children of the non-furry variety. These women all spent formative years in the 60s and they have all chosen to forego having children. You almost never hear from women who have chosen not to have children, nonetheless many years after they would even be able to still do so if they chose, at least physically. I've never doubted my lack of interest in childbearing, but it was nice to listen to those that have f I found Kid Me Not very interesting being a person who does not, and never has, wanted children of the non-furry variety. These women all spent formative years in the 60s and they have all chosen to forego having children. You almost never hear from women who have chosen not to have children, nonetheless many years after they would even be able to still do so if they chose, at least physically. I've never doubted my lack of interest in childbearing, but it was nice to listen to those that have felt the same and see how their lives turned out. I must say, most of the women who chosen to forego children appear to have lived happy, fulfilling lives with travel and such. Despite many difficult moments these women faced, I was struck by their overall happiness levels and their youthfulness. "No woman can call herself free who does not own and control her body. No woman can call herself free until she can choose consciously whether she will or will not be a mother." --Margaret Sanger-- "On my honeymoon night, a shy and embarrassed virgin, I tried to figure out where my husband's arms and legs, as well as my own, were supposed to go. Sylvia Plath's descriptive line from The Bell Jar, comparing a penis to "turkey necks and turkey gizzards" popped to mind. I silently asked myself, "For this I waited?" LOL "A friend once told me that the Chinese believe those who choose not to have children are old souls who see no need to procreate since that was accomplished in their other lives." I don't know if this is true in China, but I wish women who didn't want children weren't so scorned here in the US. "Or maybe it's just that when Mother Nature was passing out maternal instinct, I had stepped out of line to go to the bathroom." I think I was in the bathroom line as well, unless nonhumans are involved. "Women may be the one group that grows more radical with age." --Gloria Steinem--

  15. 4 out of 5

    Ginger

    This is a great read that quickly details the lives of many women who elected to not have children - and many different details why. The unique thing about this was that they actually talked about women who like kids...and just didn't want any of their own. This is the category I fall into...for now. I also appreciated how this book talked about the fact that many of these women weren't entirely sure what they wanted. This is a great read that quickly details the lives of many women who elected to not have children - and many different details why. The unique thing about this was that they actually talked about women who like kids...and just didn't want any of their own. This is the category I fall into...for now. I also appreciated how this book talked about the fact that many of these women weren't entirely sure what they wanted.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jean

    There's not much out about this subject. No children is a kind of negative. What to say about something that didn't happen? As a member of this tribe myself, it was a reassuring read. Though my story isn't quite like these, the words and the history lessons were a pleasure. Smart women, articulate women are always a good read, weather they've reproduced or not. There's not much out about this subject. No children is a kind of negative. What to say about something that didn't happen? As a member of this tribe myself, it was a reassuring read. Though my story isn't quite like these, the words and the history lessons were a pleasure. Smart women, articulate women are always a good read, weather they've reproduced or not.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Aralyn Hughes

    Heart felt, truth, touching, historic, good read of what the sixties was really like for those with a foot in the door of the 50's and another food in the door of the 60's. These women have worked past shame, judgement, circumstances to become women you want to salute. Heart felt, truth, touching, historic, good read of what the sixties was really like for those with a foot in the door of the 50's and another food in the door of the 60's. These women have worked past shame, judgement, circumstances to become women you want to salute.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kalisha

    Invigorating I really enjoyed this book, it was interesting to read the stories of these women and the time they grew up in. I am very thankful for the choices I can make because of the women in this book and of their time. It was a great read.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kayo

    Cant imagine not having my 2 children, but everybody has free will. Surely wouldn't want anyone having a child that doesn't want one. Nice read! Cant imagine not having my 2 children, but everybody has free will. Surely wouldn't want anyone having a child that doesn't want one. Nice read!

  20. 5 out of 5

    dejah_thoris

    A good book to reinforce the truths that not all women are born to have children and that you can have a fulfilling life without them. The contributors are all second-wave feminists, so several of the pieces mention abortion as a positive option. Others featured women, like myself, who chose to not have children for various reasons. Unfortunately, all of the writers are WASP women, so the stories that emphasized all the glamourous activities the childfree writer was able to do didn't resonate wi A good book to reinforce the truths that not all women are born to have children and that you can have a fulfilling life without them. The contributors are all second-wave feminists, so several of the pieces mention abortion as a positive option. Others featured women, like myself, who chose to not have children for various reasons. Unfortunately, all of the writers are WASP women, so the stories that emphasized all the glamourous activities the childfree writer was able to do didn't resonate with me. (The relief at not having children with a particular man didn't resonate either.) On the plus side, one writer acknowledged that the reason she disliked her partner and her children was the class difference. (She didn't want to be a snooty academic, so she tried to make the relationship work for years longer than she probably should have.) Overall, a good start to collecting these stories that definitely needs to continue.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Marley

    In was pleasantly surprised by this book. I not sure what I expected,but was very happy with the old school feminism it Reading it, I felt I was akin to a CR Group experience. The contributors are mostly from the Austin area and in their 60s now, Most came up through Womens Liberation (as opposed to feminism and wanted more than their mothers had. Their reasons for remaining childfree vary from not getting around to it to simply (gasp!) not liking kids, which is my camp. Even today fcemale essent In was pleasantly surprised by this book. I not sure what I expected,but was very happy with the old school feminism it Reading it, I felt I was akin to a CR Group experience. The contributors are mostly from the Austin area and in their 60s now, Most came up through Womens Liberation (as opposed to feminism and wanted more than their mothers had. Their reasons for remaining childfree vary from not getting around to it to simply (gasp!) not liking kids, which is my camp. Even today fcemale essentialism rules, and saying you don't like kids is a social faux pas that will get you defriended om FB. These are everyday amazing women with the guts to put their truths on front street (abortion, sucky relationships)neither of which are seldom discussed in public with such candor. My only criticism is the lack of Women of Color a d blue collar women.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jay Rose

    As a young "woman" having finally reached my mid 20s, choosing to be child free is just now starting to effect me. Living as an androgynous queer fag, not many people have been asking me when I'm having children. I used to get asked this as a teen: how many, what gender, who would i marry, and when did i want to have them. This book would have been invaluable to a 20 year old me, trying to find the words to explain why i didn't want children, I just simply don't like them. Its refreshing to read As a young "woman" having finally reached my mid 20s, choosing to be child free is just now starting to effect me. Living as an androgynous queer fag, not many people have been asking me when I'm having children. I used to get asked this as a teen: how many, what gender, who would i marry, and when did i want to have them. This book would have been invaluable to a 20 year old me, trying to find the words to explain why i didn't want children, I just simply don't like them. Its refreshing to read about other capable, amazing women who have opened up about this and put to paper this truth, some women just don't like kids, and that is ok.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    A huge thanks to all the women who shared their stories. Times were much different in the 60s and some of the decisions to remain childless were very difficult, painful, or even dangerous. Even if you don't agree with everything based on a moral or religious standing you can still respect the story. Even if times have changed with easier access to #family planning, it is still a tough decision and it's great to know that these women grown and learn and find other ways to be happy without childre A huge thanks to all the women who shared their stories. Times were much different in the 60s and some of the decisions to remain childless were very difficult, painful, or even dangerous. Even if you don't agree with everything based on a moral or religious standing you can still respect the story. Even if times have changed with easier access to #family planning, it is still a tough decision and it's great to know that these women grown and learn and find other ways to be happy without children.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Christine

    Excellent book. It just has a chapter for each year of the 1960s, and each woman shares her reasons for not having kids in separate chapters. I wish they hadn't put step parents in this book. There are at least 2 of those chapters where they were actively parenting their spouse's children. To me, this means they DO have children. Also of note is that most of the women are from Central Texas/Austin area. This was a free kindle book. Excellent book. It just has a chapter for each year of the 1960s, and each woman shares her reasons for not having kids in separate chapters. I wish they hadn't put step parents in this book. There are at least 2 of those chapters where they were actively parenting their spouse's children. To me, this means they DO have children. Also of note is that most of the women are from Central Texas/Austin area. This was a free kindle book.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Victoria

    As someone who doesn't want kids of their own, several of these stories seemed especially interesting and pertinent to how I feel. I'd recommend this book to others like me and those who may wonder why someone would choose not to have children. As someone who doesn't want kids of their own, several of these stories seemed especially interesting and pertinent to how I feel. I'd recommend this book to others like me and those who may wonder why someone would choose not to have children.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Andrea

    Inspiring and moving I loved reading each woman's account of how varied backgrounds & experiences led them in different ways to childless-ness. Many comments they endured and isolation they felt resonated with me. A great collection of essays. Inspiring and moving I loved reading each woman's account of how varied backgrounds & experiences led them in different ways to childless-ness. Many comments they endured and isolation they felt resonated with me. A great collection of essays.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Tamcat

    Great inspiring read. This anthology was inspiring, mainly because it made me aware of how differently women were treated in the late 50's early 60's. A few of the women talked about how many young women today take for granted our rights. Great inspiring read. This anthology was inspiring, mainly because it made me aware of how differently women were treated in the late 50's early 60's. A few of the women talked about how many young women today take for granted our rights.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kathy Hiester

    5 Stars This books is set up as a series of shorts in which you delve into the different genres of woman with one thing in common, none of them want or desire to have children. Wonderfully written.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Donna

    Interesting collection of stories by women who came of age in the 1960's and chose not to have children. I too am happily childless by choice and it was gratifying to hear stories about a topic that is still not talked about much. Interesting collection of stories by women who came of age in the 1960's and chose not to have children. I too am happily childless by choice and it was gratifying to hear stories about a topic that is still not talked about much.

  30. 5 out of 5

    samikshya

    Great Awesome book. It is very well written. Every story pulls you in! I Ioved it! Listening to the stories gave me a new perspective!

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