Despite the prevalence of so many crazy stories throughout history about artists and their bizarre or destructive lifestyles, I have never considered whether or not art would affect my relationships in a negative way. However I read an article in the latest issue of Marie Claire about comedian Jen Kirkman. She has a book out called I Can Barely Take Care of Myself: Tales From a Happy Life Without Kids. It is all about her decision to not have kids and the backlash she regularly receives from people – including complete strangers – about her lifestyle choice.
It got me to thinking about how society seeks to control people, especially women, by dictating to us how our lives are supposed to look. Unfortunately other women often become the most violent defenders of the status quo instead of defending their fellow females’ independence and agency. I am a mother and am very happy that I have kids, but it is a personal decision and it is not a good fit for everyone.
Similarly, dedicated artists regularly have to defend themselves against people who cannot understand what they do, how they do it or why. Many artists stay single because they cannot devote the kind of time and attention they give to their art to another person. Women, especially, are often expected to subordinate their life goals to the demands of marriage and family. For this reason many women in the arts postpone or eschew marriage and kids altogether. I support this decision wholeheartedly. No one should be guilted into doing something that doesn’t make sense for them or that isn’t a good fit.
This blog post is dedicated to everyone who is living a peaceful and creative life on their own terms. Don’t let the opinions and judgments of others take away from your happiness.
Have a great week and go follow your bliss.
Here are some things I have been working on this week: