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The Top 10 Reasons To Cherish FWOKs (Friends Without Kids)

By Elizabeth Beller

I recently hailed friends without kids as a welcome antidote to feeling consumed with both the Mommy Wars and Generation Kid. Spending time with them is like taking a mental health day from a high stress, high stakes, high level job.

They’re coherent, they’re available. You don’t have to play the “whoever has fewer kids travels further” game when you make plans. When I’m treated to a night out with them, discussing things other than attachment parenting and Mommy and Me Zen Dance reminds me of who I was, and still am when I get a day to myself.:

  • Their chats are free of parent-speak 1 of 10
    Their chats are free of parent-speak
    1) They can have a conversation longer than two sentences without having to say things like, "Please take your brother out of the dishwasher, honey," even if you can't.
  • image 2 of 10
    2) They aren't going to sanctimoniously preach to you about either side of the Alicia Silverstone Bird Feeding Approach argument, because they don't care.
  • They’re a nostalgia trip 3 of 10
    They're a nostalgia trip
    3) They remind you of what your life used to be like, for better and worse.
  • They help you look towards the future 4 of 10
    They help you look towards the future
    4) They show you what your life will be like in (hopefully) 18 years, for better and worse.
  • They’ve got things to talk about that aren’t kid-related 5 of 10
    They've got things to talk about that aren't kid-related
    5) You won't go out and discuss the school admissions process. Again. And again. And again and again and again.
  • They don’t compare horror stories 6 of 10
    They don't compare horror stories
    6) FWOKS usually feel sorry for you when your kid has a temper tantrum, rather than shrug and say, "You haven't seen anything, last week Madison bit someone at Zen Dance Class."
  • In their eyes, all kids are equal 7 of 10
    In their eyes, all kids are equal
    7) They dislike all kids the same when they have said tantrums.
  • They won’t let you use your kid as an excuse 8 of 10
    They won't let you use your kid as an excuse
    8) FWOKs won't let you fall back on the kid excuse to get out of things you should be doing (staving off bingo wings with every ounce of willpower you possess) by sheer virtue that they do it without a thought.
  • They’re a reality check 9 of 10
    They're a reality check
    9) FWOKs won't let you fall back on the kid excuse to do things you shouldn't (buying money-pit real estate because it's close to school and has a pool for the kids to play in) by sheer virtue that they would never.
  • They affirm your choices 10 of 10
    They affirm your choices
    10) For all their urbane sophistication, surplus time, energy and cash, they remind you how happy you are that you have scrumptious little maniacs to love who lend redemption to the chaos of life.



Recent stories on The Examined Life:

The Unicef Box

The Wife’s Life: Friends Without Kids

Mother’s Day: The Aftermath

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