The “White Picket Fence” Dream

You know the “White Picket Fence” dream? The ideal huge house in the suburbs with a big garden, a dog and swings. The home where everyone is supposed to want to live with their husband or wife and their kids. Working long hours at a probably soul-crushing yet high-paying job to provide for your family and travelling for a week once a year to some exotic country to see the tourist attractions.

You may notice be the description above that I’m not one of the people that desire this lifestyle. What happens if your dreams and expectations for the future are different? What happens if you have an “Apartment in the City” dream?

Today talking to some grown ups, I was asked what I want to do after finishing high school at the end of this year (in my country the school year goes from March to November). When I started talking about going to the University and travelling, they stopped me laughing and said that I should save some time to get married and have kids. You should have seen their horror faces when I said I don’t believe in marriage and have no interest whatsoever in having children. Someone watching us might have thought I had just admitted murdering puppies or something.

I know many people -specially young urban people- that are not interested or postpone having kids because they want to do other things first (like travelling, finding the right partner, having a good job, etc). Yet many people don’t accept this way of thinking. It is even further criticised when talking about a woman. I can’t count how many times I’ve been told I will want to be a mother when I grow up and that I’m just saying I’m not interested because I’m too young to understand.

I’m tired of people thinking that they know more about the lifestyle I want than myself. I personally don’t want to be a mother because I want to travel and I’m not interested in having a particularly stable job (writing is perfectly unstable). Since I believe being a parent is a responsibility you must dedicate many years to, I prefer not assuming that kind of long-term responsibility.

Yet it left me thinking…

Why are people willing to accept most things, but not a person that doesn’t want what is viewed as normal or socially acceptable behaviour? I mean, there’s nothing wrong about wanting something different from the traditional life if you choose an honest life. But many people don’t see it this way and I can’t understand why.

If you have an opinion about it, please share it in the comment section down below.

Have a great day!

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