See an entire collection of women being chased by storks here.
The modern mother has been glorified, fetishized and commodified, but what happens when women say no to having kids? My So-Called Selfish Life takes on a world where femininity is tied to childbearing, where reproductive rights are under constant attack, and where society demands women have children–but only if they are the “right" kind of women.
In 2014, almost half of all American women between the ages of 15 and 44 had never had children, an all-time high. So, why are women still defined by reproduction, and why is choosing not to have children seen by so many as a threat, a decision made only by the cold, the immature, the selfish?
The film will give voice to this diverse group of women, from a teenage “birth-control nerd” to a 70-year-old trailblazing poet; experts on primate aunties and the Virgin Mary; and my own mother. This film isn't just for people without kids; resisting the motherhood imperative also means resisting the narrow definitions of what actual motherhood must look like.
Delving into pop culture, religion, history, pregnant Barbies, “MommyJacking,” and Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, we'll take an irreverent journey to discover what it means to say no thanks to motherhood in the 21st century.
The film is the third in my trilogy on women and identity. The project was mentioned in Huffington Post's recent article Positive Childfree Trends in 2016, and in this thoughtful piece by a mother trying to better understand the childfree experience.
How can I help get this thing done?
Making a documentary is tough going, but we have a large, awesome, and engaged community behind us. Here are some things you can do:
Support this film with a donation through that orange button right now. Filmmaking is ridiculously expensive, and seed money is the hardest to raise. Help make this film a reality by giving a donation towards creating an online interactive site where you can share your own stories, shooting our next round of interviews, and creating our fundraising trailer.
Join us on Facebook and share posts with your friends. It's a lively and opinionated community.
Get on our mailing list and we'll keep you posted on our progress, how to submit to our upcoming story sharing site, and other ways to stay involved. In 2017, we'll launch a large-scale Kickstarter campaign and share more info on how to support us financially or by helping spread the word.
Is this just for childfree women?
The focus is on women who are childfree by choice, but this is a big tent. Women who don't have kids by choice or by circumstance both get scorn or pity from our society. For example, did you know that having kids is the only way to reach our full feminine potential? No? Me neither. The film raises important issues for people with children as well; society's narrow (and often racist) definitions of what good and bad mothers look like can be equally oppressive and dangerous.
When will it be done?
My crew and I are shooting and fundraising right now, and that will dictate how long it will take. Think of it as writing a book that we also have to film and edit. I'll keep you all posted on the progress through occasional e-mailings.
That's a great title!
Thanks! All credit goes to poet Molly Peacock who is part of this film. It's taken from her 1998 book Paradise, Piece by Piece which is a beautiful and fierce memoir of a childfree life.
Where can I see your other work?
You can learn a more about my films, writing and interactive projects at this website.
This is a growing collection of resources for Childfree & Childless people. Please contact me with your resource suggestions. Descriptions come directly from each resource.