Why can it be so hard sometimes for childless and childfree people to find common ground?
In this conversation between Dr Dawn Llewellyn (childfree) and Jody Day, the childless founder of Gateway Women, the two women will frame the day ahead and talk about the important, and often slippery nature of labels and definitions – and how perhaps it’s time to see the reproductive identities of ‘childless’ and ‘childfree’ as existing along a spectrum rather than as a divisive binary.
Dawn and Jody will talk about their own experiences with terminology and the crucial role that language plays in bringing groups together as well as keeping them apart. They will also explore the common ground that childless and childfree communities cover, and the essential bridge-building work needed between them to create meaningful social change for all non-parents.
As Jody says, “Although none of us want to be labelled, it serves a necessary role in creating social change because sometimes you have to be named to be counted; and if you’re not counted, you don’t count.”
Dawn Llewellyn is based at University of Chester, where she teaches and researches religion and gender. When she’s not open water swimming, or walking someone else’s dog, she’s working on her next book, Motherhood, Voluntary Childlessness and Christianity: Narratives of Choice (Bloomsbury).
Jody Day is the 57-year-old British founder of Gateway Women, the global friendship, support & advocacy network for childless women, founded in the UK in 2011 and now headquartered in Ireland. She’s the author of what many professionals consider to be the ‘go-to’ book on the topic, Living the Life Unexpected: How to Find Hope, Meaning and a Fulfilling Future Without Children (PanMac 2016/2020).