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Jennifer Aniston: My Value as a Woman is Not Defined by Motherhood

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Jennifer Aniston - BN Relationships - August 2014 - BellaNaija.com 01
Did you catch Atoke’s Monday Morning Banter on “It’s Okay To Not Want Kids“? Well if you didn’t check it out.

It is always a “big deal ” when a woman says she doesn’t want kids.We often look at the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Angela Merkel and Helen Mirren, and wonder why these women who are so successful choose not to have children, yet they appear so fulfilled.

It goes without saying that to each his/her own.

Another celeb who is speaking out about motherhood is Jennifer Aniston. For years, tabloids have ran stories that she is expecting, or does not want kids.

In an interview in February, she said she is in deep trouble that she is not married with kids because the public always damns women, most especially public figures, who don’t have that lifestyle.

Today Wednesday 27th August 2014, in an interview with Carson Daly, she talked about the pressure she feels to start a family.

“I don’t have this sort of checklist of things that have to be done, and…if they’re not checked, then I’ve failed some part of my feminism or my being a woman or my worth and my value as a woman because I haven’t birthed a child. I’ve birthed a lot of things, and I feel like I’ve mothered many things. And I don’t feel like it’s fair to put that pressure on people.”

Jennifer Aniston is engaged to actor/script writer Justin Theroux.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

40 Comments

  1. dinga

    August 27, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    I feel you, society put too much pressure on women to bear children. When for one reason or another they cannot give birth to children, it is as if they have failed. This is not fair at all!

  2. claire

    August 27, 2014 at 8:03 pm

    Tell that to a Nigerian Mother in law!……Pshhhh…Lol!

  3. Onye

    August 27, 2014 at 8:11 pm

    That’s why Brad Pitt left your a$$

    • Khaleesi

      August 27, 2014 at 10:52 pm

      exactly
      it’s well known that he begged her for children and she refused, wanting to focus on her career. fast forward many years later, and she’s still looking for a husband, that elusive Oscar and respect as an actress in the industry

    • chimamanda's Main Squeeze

      August 28, 2014 at 5:05 am

      Onye and Khaleesi, you guys are sick. So what if Brad left her? Does that mean she is suffering or is less of a woman? She is “looking for husband”. This is the myopic crap that is making Nigeria the craphole it is today. Sad people.

    • dione ee

      August 28, 2014 at 12:38 pm

      how is it well known? were you their housekeeper in their house? just be talking without facts

    • hB

      August 28, 2014 at 10:28 am

      you are so insensitive.

  4. Kili

    August 27, 2014 at 8:15 pm

    True..

  5. Cocobutter

    August 27, 2014 at 8:40 pm

    100% truth, women who choose not to have children are not freaks and abnormal!! They are normal human beings, it is better than women bringing children into this world, that they don’t care for!!

  6. Loveisall

    August 27, 2014 at 8:42 pm

    She has a point and she’s entitled to it
    Not given birth to a child doesn’t make u less of a woman. But children are gifts from God

  7. uuiuui

    August 27, 2014 at 9:44 pm

    my heart aches over her and brad .. may she find happiness again

    • Tabula Rasa

      August 27, 2014 at 9:51 pm

      What gives you the impression she’s not happy? furthermore what gave you the impression she was happy with Brad? lol. Don’t let imagery deceive you.

    • MC

      August 28, 2014 at 9:56 am

      I suggest you find other things for you heart to ache over

    • Tee

      August 29, 2014 at 8:37 am

      lol

  8. Amh

    August 27, 2014 at 10:06 pm

    Sit your skinny arse down. No wonder brad pitt left her. With mediocre acting. Brad pitt said in several interviews that he wanted babies but she no gree. She wants to be skinny. U r irrelevant madam bony ass. You betterold on to this one before he dumps u.

  9. encore

    August 27, 2014 at 10:15 pm

    As a woman, who God used as a vessel to bring 4 children into this world, those episodes have never defined my Womanhood.
    It is the spirituality, nurturing, unconditional love, pain, that comes with it that makes you wonder SOMETIMES is this a.part of fulfilling WoMANHOOD.

    • Carliforniabawlar

      August 28, 2014 at 12:02 pm

      Errrmmmmm….nah! I don’t have kids yet, maybe I will , maybe I won’t….and since I never base my happiness or define ANY part of my being/womanhood on uncertainties, I respectfully disagree with your view.
      This view that your are defined by wether or not you CHOOSE to put your ovaries into use has always been quite foreign to me….God gave it to (almost) every WOMAN, why does the fact that you chose to use yours make you better or happier or more complete than the person who decided otherwise? I’ve seen waaaaay too many unhappy people in this life and its mostly because they let the society tell them what they should be. And it starts with the little things, until you are 60 and find yourself pinning for near ridiculous criteria you’ve been made to believe makes you who you are. You should see my mum complaining that she has only two grandkids while her mates have 5-6? Not just complaining o, she’ll be crying!! smh. i don’t even look at her when she’s on her rant . Can you just imagine? you have six successful kids, a great career, good health and to top it all, you have aged gracefully, but you are busy crying ’cause your friends and mates are “laughing at you” since you only have two grandchildren….
      Long story short? I am learning to not give a damn at this age….It would definitely make me a much better/happier person in the future.

  10. bruno

    August 27, 2014 at 10:36 pm

    See the kind of comments nigerians are posting, she doesn’t want kids, that her choice, some of u have kids and can’t even raise them properly, that’s why lagos and nigeria is full of thugs and criminals, look around you,who is not doing 419, 4 in 5 nigerians are into fraud. LOL

    • justsayin'

      August 28, 2014 at 8:28 am

      am sure you are 1 of the 4…

  11. Dee

    August 28, 2014 at 12:55 am

    Better to be upfront about not wanting kids than towing the way of society and having children only to abandon them. The world would be a better place when we stop pressuring people o have children. It’s a big commitment and should only be undertaken by those with a strong desire and all the things needed to train them.

  12. SuSHi

    August 28, 2014 at 1:06 am

    Well!! Its her life, her decision and I see nothing wrong with that but she should bear in mind that a man who’d not mind her decision will definitely be a rare find, so I suggest she should just be in the dating game like cameron diaz or the eternal engagement like Oprah and not get hitched only to for the man to get snatched by a woman who’s willing to birth a football team. As for Nigerians, you can count how many Nigerian women that would truly say they don’t want kids and mean it. Apart from society and in laws frowning at it, it is a way of life for us. We don’t have old homes to retire to and social workers checking up on us when we are aged, we have our kids to do that for us that’s why you find women who are way past the age of bearing children adopting or taking in relatives who are orphans. So some things are best left for the westerns cos I know that no matter how much we agree with her we really want kids…..

    • Carliforniabawlar

      August 28, 2014 at 12:17 pm

      Yea…We want care-givers.smh. There are more reasons to want kids in life my dear. I don’t idealize the western mindset in any way, but sometimes the I feel the more Africans stay set in our ways, the more we stay stuck in our ways (pun intended). We don’t see beyond the BASIC necessities of life…i.e. food, sex, money..repeat cycle.
      Anywhoozies, back to the main point, the first time i found a different and somewhat reasonable purpose for child-bearing was after my aunty passed. She didn’t have any kids, Does that fact make me feel her life was incomplete? NOPE!! Trust me, she lived a very full albeit short life. But sometimes when I miss her, I wish she left a child behind for me to ‘replace’, some sort of way to still have her with me, someone for me to hold on to, and reciprocate all the love she had shown to me….that kinda of ‘ish. To be honest though even these reasons stated are kind of selfish.

  13. hmm

    August 28, 2014 at 1:25 am

    I respect her opinion. But I hope she doesn’t become a Hippocratic and end up deciding to have kids at 50. people love to do that. Most of the time people have autistic kids. I call that being selfish. So if you don’t want to have kids then don’t change your mind later.

    • nanciejul

      August 28, 2014 at 10:12 am

      Its her choice to decide to have kids later. Change is inevitable.

  14. Mabel

    August 28, 2014 at 7:07 am

    There truly has to be more to womanhood that the ability to bear children. The idea that the most value a woman will bring to this world is her ability to procreate says lot about the global mindset and the role of women in this world. So many women have lived and have no clue who they are, their entire identity is based on being someone’s wife and mother. There is just something about such an existence that seems utterly limited.

  15. faith

    August 28, 2014 at 8:17 am

    I av an aunt dat changed her mind n adopted 2 kids wen she turned 50yrs…..11 and 12 yrs boy n girl. they couldn’t stay with her for more dan 3 months n dey ran away…

  16. joy

    August 28, 2014 at 8:42 am

    But this weird

  17. RIFF RAFF

    August 28, 2014 at 8:47 am

    That one na mouth! There was a time when this chick was spotted going in and out of fertility clinics with that her boo, Justin Theroux. She’s saying it to save face!!! Maybe her doctor told her she may not have be able to have kids.
    I repeat she was filmed by paparazzis visiting fertility clinics.
    She’s lucky her man has kids of his own.

  18. sum1special

    August 28, 2014 at 8:52 am

    Not in this part of the world.

  19. Ojie

    August 28, 2014 at 8:59 am

    I always respect women who do not want kids!

  20. RIFF RAFF

    August 28, 2014 at 9:08 am

    I repeat NA MOUTH!!! She has difficulties in having kids , You can’t cheat nature. Even the BIble says “There is a time for everything”. Her case is not that of barreness, she waited too long and took too many pills to stay slim. Now see the result.

    Before some of you pour ice water on me, let me prove my point and i will use marriage as an illustration.
    Beyoncé shouted “Independent Woman”, ” Go the left, to the left Irreplaceable” and most of all “Single Ladies,” but ironically got married after pleading “Put a ring on it”

    Lola Omotayo in one past interview (i think she was pregnant with Cameron) boastfully stated marriage is overrated, and later said even without a ring, she is fine with Peter. When my Peter popped the BIG question, guess what, she said “YES!!!”

    My fave, Toke Makinwa, after fooling herself and mostly others in her Vlogs that women don’t need men to be complete, ran behind and married secretly. Then began to apologize.

    They should have given their usual “Independent,” “marriage is overrated” answers or better still “No thank you, i don’t need to be married to feel complete”. But they all said YES.

    Conclusion, It is all PR talk. Jennifer can go and make that statement in her village if she likes, me i’m not buying it. SHE’S SAVING HER ASS FROM EMBARRASSMENT.

    Thank u everybody. Sorry for the long epistle. God bless.

  21. Dayo B

    August 28, 2014 at 9:31 am

    Ah BN! Are we censoring comments now? You guys refused to post my comment because I criticized your silly decision to refer to her “former Mrs. Brad Pitt” in the earlier version of this post. I see now that you cannot take honest feedback. By referring to her, you insinuated that she was nothing but a former Mrs. – which totally defeats the whole purpose of her interview…her right to be who she wants to be. Married or not. Child-free or not. I strongly suggest you post my comment.

  22. Deebabe

    August 28, 2014 at 11:37 am

    Well, Jennifer Aniston happens to be one of my best stars. Remembering the days of “Friends”. (smile). One thing pple fail to realize is that God provides children. Jeniffer has not come out anytime to say she doesn’t want kids, infact no one knows the kinda emotional trauma she may have gone thru on this issue.

    Just funny how some pple open their mouth to say hurtful things to pple on things they are not in control of. Happens everywhere. Be sensitive pple.

  23. brownchocolate

    August 28, 2014 at 12:33 pm

    Jenny didn’t want kids, Brad wanted a house full. Two people, different desires so the union didn’t work. Only Jenny can say why she doesn’t want kids. Maybe she will change her mind later on, maybe she wont. Its her choice. Accept it or not, some women are not maternal, they don’t make good mothers and some know this. When they have kids their kids are better off being raised by other people. For some its related to their orientation and the experiences that affected them whilst growing up. Jenny’s parents split when she was nine years old and many children do not do not handle their parents’ divorce very well especially if they don’t have a solid support structure. She’s obviously taking her time and for all we know if she marries she might change her mind about having children. Being a wife or mother should not define who you are as a woman. In life you have to choose your battles and she has chosen hers. Its her life and we are not to judge. Its easy to sit in our corner of the world and sum people up when we don’t have the slightest idea what they have been through.

  24. Sere

    August 28, 2014 at 2:39 pm

    Comprehension is a big deal.
    J. Aniston did not say anywhere in this article I have just read that she didn’t want kids. She didn’t even imply that. All she ever said was birthing a child does not define or culminate her existence as a woman.
    And people have gone on to laud her decision or even suggest that she shouldn’t change her mind later.
    Hmmmm…

    • Dayo B

      August 28, 2014 at 3:32 pm

      Walahi, it is a serious problem. See daft Naija folks shouting up and down with their silly, irrelevant opinions about what she can and cannot do with her body. Even quoting scripture like she gives a damn about their silly mindset. I really do not understand why people in these parts severely restrict their thought process about what a woman should and should not do.

    • ibkay

      September 11, 2014 at 11:20 pm

      Abi o,tell dem.pple got me thinking my comprehension must be poor wit d kind of comments they post….lol.

  25. nonygold

    August 28, 2014 at 3:44 pm

    GOD please i want KIDS 2boys and 2girls AMEN. i ant wait to have kids and some people are here talking rubbish.

  26. peace

    August 28, 2014 at 3:53 pm

    Many of you have forgotten that Oprah was raped when she was younger and got pregnant and lost the child. It really affected her, and that might be the reason why she does not any children. Not that she didn’t want kids at all (btw she has so many adoptive children that she calls her children). Makes her a mother in my opinion. Helen Mirren has step children and one interview she said, she loved them like her own and that’s it (she wanted kids, but just didn’t happen for her). Jennifer aniston didn’t want kids then, Brad did, and it ruined their relationship. It’s easier said now. Please watch in the next 5 years she probably be planning to start a family.. My take is don’t marry someone who doesn’t want children and hope their view on that will change later on.
    My take is, yes having kids doesn’t define you as a woman, but at the same time children bring a different part of you out that you never thought you had.

  27. tobiloba

    August 28, 2014 at 7:16 pm

    I think (in Atoke’s words) that women have a right to decide whether or not they want kids, and they shouldn’t be made to feel less about themselves because of their decisions.
    I love J.Aniston, irrespective of whether she can/can’t have kids or would/wouldn’t want kids.
    My two kobos 🙂

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