Talking about childlessness: a video interview with Christine Erickson, author of ‘The Mother Within’

Cover of 'The Mother Within' by Christine EriksonOne of the thing that has helped me the most in recovering from childlessness has been,  and continues to be, hearing other women’s stories.  Over the last few years I’ve got to know some amazing childless women as sisters, role models and friends and it’s been a privilege and a delight that I wanted to share with you.

This video interview, recorded in June 2015 is with Christine Erickson, the American author of The Mother Within: A Guide To Accepting Your Childless Journey, published on Amazon Kindle in May 2015 and nominated for an International Book Award.  It is the first in a new monthly series of interviews I’ll be doing called ‘Talking about Childlessness’ and I really look forward to your comments.

 

In this frank, friendly and taboo-busting discussion we discuss, amongst other things:

  • The many ways we can become a childless woman not by choice
  • The power of online communities in creating the ‘tribe’ of childless women, including the private Gateway Women online community
  • How we’re not always aware that the decisions we make as younger women, often for solid, ethical and compassionate reasons, might come to impact our chances to become mothers at a later date
  • The lack of accurate knowledge so many of us discover, too late, we have about our fertility, and what we can do to make sure that the next generation of young women aren’t so misinformed, and how the option of being childless/childfree also needs to be included in those discussions.
  • How ‘miracle baby stories’ distort the narrative for all of us, as do ‘celebrity’ late pregnancies and adoptions
  • Coming through the grief of childlessness and working out ways to express our ‘mothers hearts’ in our lives if not as mothers.
  • Jody’s model of ‘unrequited grief’ and the importance of our grief being, as Christine says, ‘witnessed in a compassionate way’
  • Systemic conversations that need to be had, such as the issues around ageing without children and Jody’s role as a Founding Member of AWOC.org (Ageing Without Children collective in the UK).
  • Realising that the childless and childfree women of the world are a powerful tribe with a great deal to offer, and what we might be able to achieve and change if we came together in an organised and compassionate way
  • How the childless liberation movement can be inspired by the work and impact of the gay liberation movement over the last 50 years.
  • How the paradigm of marriage and family is changing in the US
  • How and why Christine runs equine healing retreats in nature for childless women, and how working with horses for the last 8 years has been part of her own recovery from childlessness, and how she came to integrate horses into her coaching practice.
  • Christine’s hope to create a ‘canvas for our expression’ for childless women through her website ‘The Mother Within’ and discover and share ‘who we are as women’ to end the invisibility of childless women

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Christine’s book is an excellent read and has been nominated for an International Book Award. You can read more about it and her equine retreats on her website www.TheMotherWithin.com or go straight over to your country’s Amazon site to download it for your Kindle. If you don’t have a Kindle, you can read download the Kindle software free from Amazon and read it on your computer, tablet or smartphone. You can also find The Mother Within on Facebook.

Thank you so much Christine for such a wonderful interview and for being part of the tribe that is ready to speak our truth fearlessly and honestly so that other childless women may begin to realise that they too have nothing to be ashamed of.  Jody x

About Jody 93 Articles

JODY DAY is the British founder of Gateway Women, the global friendship and support network for childless women, and the author of 2016’s ‘Living the Life Unexpected: 12 Weeks to Your Plan for a Meaningful and Fulfilling Future Without Children’. A founding and board member at AWOC.org (Ageing Without Children), she’s a former Cambridge Judge Business School Fellow in Social Innovation, a TEDx speaker and a trainee integrative psychotherapist. Jody takes great pleasure in helping childless women get their groove back and find their tribe via the Gateway Women workshops, social media communities and live social meetups across the world. www.gateway-women.com

Contact: Website

12 Comments on Talking about childlessness: a video interview with Christine Erickson, author of ‘The Mother Within’

    • Thanks Jessica – hopefully together we’ll change the tired old narrative around ‘childlessness’ and the next generation will have a different experience. Hugs, Jody x

  1. It’s always such a pleasure to hear two such articulate, thoughtful members of our community giving eloquent voice to the complex realities of our lives as childless women. Thank you, Jody & Christine!

  2. Thankyou so much ladies. Your big smiles and words inspired me to get out my copy of rocking the life unexpected and do some grief work today. So wonderful to know there is light at the end of the tunnel, gives me so much hope for the future. This clip made my day xx

    • Hi Becks – so happy that together Christine and I were able to inspire you about what lies on the other side of your grief. I have some idea of how much seeing something like this would have been for me when I was grieving which is one of the reasons why I wanted to share the good news too! Hugs, Jody x

    • Hi Jane – what an absolutely lovely comment – I’m so happy you enjoyed it. Welcome to your tribe! Jody x

  3. Just watched this and must re-watch to catch all of the insightful comments both of you have in this issue that has literally haunted me for years. Am 60 now and have never found an outlet or a conversation about this topic, so am really hopeful that I can calm my inner voice regarding my childlessness and find others who can relate. I didn’t think of this as a grieving process, but it makes so much sense to think of it in those terms. I know several young women who are in their 30s and want to warn them that they not invincible when it comes to conception; so education a very important point. Am also interested in the Aging w/o Children issue now that I am this age. So, very happy to have found this site (a few months ago) and to get this via e-mail from Gateway. Thank you for supporting us “invisible women.”
    JDuncan

    • Hi Juanita – so glad to hear you watched it and got a lot out of it – I’m so happy to be able to share these powerful and intimate conversations in this way, and hope that they begin to fill in some of the ‘gaps’ in our cultural knowledge and support around the complex issues of childlessness. Hugs, Jody x

  4. Thanks for this interview, Jody! I look forward to watching and learn more about Christine.

    Agree with this statement most heartily: “Over the last few years I’ve got to know some amazing childless women as sisters, role models and friends and it’s been a privilege and a delight…”

    It’s validating to be among this vibrant community!

    • Hi Pamela – thanks so much for your support as always – I think you’ll love the interview! Christine’s also based in California. Hugs, Jody x

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