Mary J. Blige on Her Decision Not to Have Children: ‘I Like My Freedom’

by Yah Yah
LOS ANGELES - JAN 02: Mary J. Blige arrives for the 2018 Palm Springs International Film Festival Awards Gala on January 2, 2018 in Palm Springs, CA
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Mary J. Blige is one of the entertainment industry’s biggest stars. She’s conquered the music world. She’s made her mark on the movie world. She’s a fashion icon.

Despite her many successes, the award-winning singer is constantly being asked about her decision not to have any children.

In a recent interview, Blige explained why she decided not to become a mother under no uncertain terms.

“I have nieces and nephews forever and I’m always watching how people are scrambling for baby-sitters. I don’t want to go through that. I like my freedom to go and move and do what I want to do. I don’t want to have to tend to someone all the time,” she told E!’s “Daily Pop” host, Justin Sylvester.

She continued, “Right now that’s where I’m at. But, I don’t think it’s [having kids] gonna happen.”

And she’s far from alone on the matter.

The nation’s birth rate had been declining about 2% each year on average since 2007. People expected a pandemic boom. However, in 2020, birth rates dropped by 4%.

Rather than stick to traditional and somewhat archaic gender roles, women are choosing their paths. Not every woman wants to become a parent. In fact, about four in 10 U.S. adults under 50 without children said they didn’t expect to become parents, according to a 2018 Pew Research survey.

“I think that people who identify as women, we get these messages from very early [on] that your destiny is [that of] wife and mother. And so, I think it involves a certain amount of privilege in order to step out of those constant messages and examine them critically,” Khiara Bridges, an anthropologist and professor of law at the University of California, Berkeley, told Harper’s Bazaar.

Camika, a professor from Maryland, told the publication: “I think I had not thought through the day-to-day of having my own child who needs me for every damn thing until the pandemic hit … and I was like, ‘I can’t do that.’ It sounds like a nice life for somebody, but not for me. It’s not what I want for me. I like being able to read. I like being able to travel when I get ready.”

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