Surviving Sequeldom

Last weeks’ visit to Koorong afforded some interesting conversations with readers. One question that kept recurring was, “What are you going to write about next?” People seemed keen to know about the sequel for Surviving Singledom.

I have had a number of requests for a book about marriage: Surviving Marriagedom or something similar. Let me be brutally honest. The very idea of writing about marriage – let alone my own marriage – gives me the heebie-jeebies.

Not that marriage isn’t an important subject. But many books have already been written comprehensively covering various facets and interpretations of marriage. I’m not sure I’ve learned anything in my short 7 years of marriage that could add to the mountain of marital resources already available.

However, I have discovered a niche within, but not limited to, the marriage world that does require more attention. It is the subject of being childless, or childfree, depending on your perspective. A few married couples have requested a sequel from me about surviving the state of being childfree. I think this could make a worthy sequel.

The church seems to have strong views on the subject of having children, namely, that you should. Some churches teach that the sole purpose of marriage is to have children. I wonder how this feels for couples who are unable to have kids.

I was even been told by a pastor once that I was in sin unless I had kids. That’s a strong view to take. I think it’s a view that is worth further exploration. If he’s right, then I’m still living in sin because I have not had children. Again, I wonder what this would mean for couples who cannot have children, or who choose not to have kids out of wisdom or preference for serving God. I think I could write about such debates.

I would also like to include real people’s experiences in such a book, not just my own experience. Imagine picking up a book on childfreedom and reading about people’s stories of trying to have kids, not having kids, wrestling with decisions and peer pressure, and the spiritual implications of childfreedom. Every story would be different and would have a unique perspective to offer.

Koorong customers recently honoured me by sharing some of their stories of singledom and childfreedom with me. It was a great opportunity to hear how people have been impacted by their circumstances. I would love to include other peoples’ stories of childfreedom in my next book.

To that end, I invite you to contact me if you have a childfreedom story to share. You may be married, single, male, female, content or suffering, but if you have a story about having no kids, I would love to hear from you. Contact me at steph@stephpenny.com.au or on my facebook or twitter pages.

It is my hope that in writing about such challenging issues and sharing our stories, we can share one another’s burdens and encourage one another in all our circumstances.

2 thoughts on “Surviving Sequeldom

  1. Great idea. I can only imagine the heartache of not having children, whether by choice or design.
    Your first book is a gem, I love your honesty. Your second is a given Steph!
    Surviving Divorcedom is another topic for consideration (Book 3?) especially for those who have been married for many years. There is a lot of attitude about it in the church.
    Keep up the good work!
    Suz

    • Thanks Suz! I agree, divorce is another important and niche area of Christian living that needs to be spoken about.
      I’m not sure if I’m the person to write about divorce though, not having any personal experience in that regard and not planning to either! But it’s a great idea.
      Let’s prompt those with such experience to consider writing about it. Connection and conversation with each other is so important.
      Steph.

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