Childless Defined As Useless

The words Womanhood and Motherhood are often thought of as synonymous. But to those of us who are childless-by-choice or by circumstance, these terms aren’t interchangeable.

There’s a societal shift taking place that is slowly separating and reshaping the perception of these two words. But to me, the shift often seems a bit too slow-moving.

Not A Complete Woman

For now, the expectation is for a woman to become a mother. A childless woman, specifically one who chooses to be childless, is an unfamiliar oddity.

And even though the Pill has been mainstream for half a century, the concept of being childfree by choice lags far behind in terms of acceptance.

Many of us are taught that motherhood is universally valued. In turn, a woman who is not a mother is not considered a complete woman. Therefore, a woman who would choose to forgo mothering is difficult to understand.

  • Why wouldn’t she want to be complete?
  • Why would she choose to live a useless life of no value? 

These questions have been asked about so many of us passing through our child-bearing years without children, including Heather Heyer.

Heather Heyer

Today is the one-month anniversary of the death of Heather Heyer. Her life was lost on August 12 as she stood in opposition of a “Unite the Right” rally being held in Charlottesville, VA.

Heather Heyer - Rodney Dunning (Fb)

Grateful For Hateful Words

The Daily Stormer, a hate site now removed from the web, posted this the day after her death:

“Despite feigned outrage by the media, most people are glad [Heather] is dead, as she is the definition of useless. A 32-year-old woman without children is a burden on society and has no value…

“Had she not died yesterday, hundreds of thousands of dollars would have been spent on propping-up this gross creature who had failed to do her most basic duty – her only real duty, in fact – and reproduce…

“Having no children at that age, it can be assumed that she had multiple abortions, and was thus herself a child murderer.”

Useless? Failure? … Child murderer?! Well, that escalated quickly!

These hateful words sting my soul! But I, for one, am grateful for these wretched comments posted for the world to see.

Let me explain…

Offended And Outraged

Having these statements declared so boldly and brutishly offended lots of people!

YES! Please, be offended. Be outraged. 

Joe Flood pic

These comments, these beliefs, are offensive. But unfortunately, these beliefs are more widespread than many would want to believe.

The author’s unabashed ignorance highlighted the ludicrousness of his opinions. And I’m grateful for the conversation that is happening as a result.

The Daily Stormer post going viral gives the childless/childfree a great opportunity to speak up while the country is listening. To come together against the false and oppressive mindset:
A childless woman is a useless woman failing in her only real duty of reproducing.

Definition Of Useless

Let’s look at the actual definition of useless:
Useless – not fulfilling the intended purpose; having no value or worth, no ability or skill.

Heather was a 32-year old woman … without children. She was not useless. Her life did have value. Reproducing was, in fact, not her duty. And failing to reproduce did not make her a failure.

Childbirth is not an obligation for the female gender. There is purpose to be found in mothering. But motherhood is not the sole purpose of any woman’s life.

Having a baby is a possibility, an option. However, bearing or not bearing a child has no bearing on a woman’s inherent value as a person.


Maybe Heather Heyer desired to be a mom someday. Or maybe not. Either way, her value was not, and is not, dependent on her role as a mother, or lack thereof.

Burden On Society

Heather was not a burden on society. She actually worked two jobs: as a waitress and as a paralegal. The lawyer she worked with described her as a “people person” who wanted to help others. She was a valued employee dedicated to her work. The lawyer she assisted even adjusted his office hours to accommodate her schedule!

Those who knew Heather well described her as “compassionate since she was a young child” and a “passionate advocate for the disenfranchised.”

“She always had a very strong sense of right and wrong. She always, even as a child, was very caught up in what she believed to be fair. Somehow I almost feel that this is what she was born to be, is a focal point for change.”

-Susan Bro, Heather Heyer’s mother


At Heather’s memorial service, her mom announced, “This is just the beginning of Heather’s legacy.”

Susan Bro - Mother of Heather Heyer - CNN

Yes! This is just the beginning of Heather’s legacy.

A legacy of love spurring on the continuation of the fight for justice. Generating a spark of conviction that results in action. Encouraging others to stand up for what is right.

“We’re going to preach love. We’re going to preach equality, and Heather’s death won’t be in vain.”

-Marissa Blair, friend of Heather Heyer

The person Heather was and the legacy she created was in no way deterred by her childless status. Heather’s early death only served to magnify the proof of her meaningful, useful life.

THIS is the liberating truth:
You will be recognized for the way you live your life.
And remembered far more for WHAT you produce, than for WHO you produce.


Why read when you can watch?! Click here to watch the Childless Defined As Useless Video


10 thoughts on “Childless Defined As Useless

  1. I’m sorry that you ever have to defend your choice not to have children. God has a unique plan for all of us – for me, that may very well be remaining single, and I feel as if I’m much more at peace with that thought than the rest of Christian society seems to be. …There are hateful people who try to devalue human lives or believe they can judge whose lives matter most, but all of us are created by God, and apart from any other factor, His love gives us worth that cannot be taken away or reduced. Many men and women throughout history (Jesus chief among them) prove that leaving a great legacy and living a life full of love does not have to involve marriage or parenthood. I know there is a different standard for women in our society, and I wish that at least the church would correct the error there, but our worth or completion is not defined by what people think and say anyway. And our lives can prove the beauty of following God’s path for us instead of societal pressures!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. “Having no children at that age, it can be assumed that she had multiple abortions, and was thus herself a child murderer.” This right here has me shaking mad right now. How can it be assumed, given just her age that she’s had multiple abortions? IT CAN’T! Her age alone is no proof or anything even close to proof of what these people are accusing. If you’re going to make such serious and heinous remarks about someone, at least have proof to back up your accusations, because without that, it’s just mindless, ignorant slander. The lack of common sense with some people honestly does my head in sometimes.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. For one thing- she was young, she had plenty of time to have kids- if she wanted to , or could. Another? Those of us without kids still pay taxes that support schools and other things , for other people’s kids. If you get nitpicky – we SUPPORT society.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. What an outrageous and disgusting post (from the Daily Stormer). How on earth can they imagine that someone aged 32 must have had multiple abortions!? I’m 29 and childfree and have never had an abortion and hopefully will never need to. That said, I really don’t care about the opinion of extreme-right nutters like that. If someone has a problem with you for not having kids it’s their problem really. Anyone who is that obsessed with other people’s choices (which don’t affect anyone else), clearly has some kind of issue lying behind it.


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