Q: My parents expect me to marry and have children, but I don’t have any desire for either. They tell me I will be a spinster and that I will find out what a big mistake I made later when I will not be able to correct it. Are they right?

A: First of all you have to decide if you are going to be living for your pleasure or for your parents. These are huge decisions that will have major impact on your happiness. If you do what they want, and that’s not what you want, you will be unhappy – and so will your husband and children!

But I’m also concerned that you have NO desire to marry or have children. I don’t know your age, but if you are under 25 I just think you might change your mind.

But if you are older than that, and you have never had any desire to have a partner, and you have no maternal instincts at all, I think you might have a problem related to “fear of being close.”

If you think you fear closeness and try not to share your deeper feelings with anyone, check out therapy. You could end up lonely regardless of what you decide about marriage and children.

If you don’t fear closeness, enjoy your freedom and know that your life is yours, not your parents. Also, notice any maternal instincts you do have. You have them, although they might not be strong enough to have children. But it’s a biological thing for all of us to have some degree of these feelings, even if we only use them with pets and plants.

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