Childless Aunts Are The Most Underappreciated Women In America
It's the lifelong dream of many women to become a mother someday. Unfortunately, due to a whole host of reasons, sometimes this dream doesn't materialize for everyone.
Whether it be a biological or relationship issue or some other cause, some ladies don't ever end up raising children of their own.
Some women in this situation end up becoming extremely close to their nieces and nephews. In fact, they spend so much time and effort getting to know and love their brother or sister's children that they become almost like second moms. For these children, as well as their parents, having such a devoted aunt in the picture can make a tremendous impact for good in their lives.
Yet, often, society just doesn't seem to appreciate the role of a dedicated auntie. Here are five reasons why we think everyone should be more grateful for childless aunts who pour their lives into showing love and concern for their nephews and nieces.
1. They Give the Gift of their Time
Some people assume that aunts don't really invest much time in their nieces and nephew's lives. While this may be true for some aunts, it's certainly not the case for all. People may joke around about how an aunt can just give a child back to their parents when they get fussy, and they don't have to deal with dirty diapers, kids throwing up in the middle of the night, or getting kids off to school on time.
The truth of the matter is, many committed aunts have tackled all of these challenges. They're the type who are willing to keep their nephew or niece for long visits. They don't just show up to holiday gatherings and say hello a few times a year.
These are the aunts who regularly host sleepovers, show up at ballgames and recitals, call or text several times a week, and just generally give the gift of quality time.
2. They Give the Gift of their Money
Because they don't have children of their own, some of these aunts are able to contribute to their nieces and nephew's financial needs. Sometimes, this can mean helping the parents afford necessities when they fall on hard times.
It could also mean splurging on gifts and outings that mom and dad can't afford. Or, it could be a significant investment in a child's future, such as contributions to a college savings account, or giving the child a vehicle when they become an older teen or young adult.
Having a relative with the means and willingness to share their financial resources with a niece or nephew is a real blessing.
3. They Give the Gift of their Support
Aunts who have no kids of their own can provide emotional support to their nieces and nephews. They can be a shoulder to cry on in times of sorrow, or a cheerleader in times of achievement.
They can support the child's parents as well, by stepping in to provide much-needed childcare when parents have to head back to work after maternity leave, or just to give them a break for a night out as a couple.
4. They Give the Gift of their Attention
In this fast-paced world, kids are often craving one-on-one attention from someone who cares about them. Ideally, parents should fulfill this desire for their kids, but it doesn't always work out that way in real life.
Parents are often stressed out trying to divide their time between multiple kids. Between running one kid to dance class, another to sports practice, and another to music lessons, while balancing work and other responsibilities, one-on-one attention can be difficult to provide. That's where the aunt with no kids of her own can come into the picture.
She can take turns taking each of her nephews and nieces out or inviting them to her home individually. These special bonding times can work wonders for boosting a kid's self-esteem and meeting their emotional needs.
5. They can Give the Gift of a Positive Role Model
There's no guarantee that a childless aunt's nieces and nephews are ever going to have children of their own. If they don't, she can provide an inspiring example to them of how to live life to the fullest either as a single woman or a married lady without kids.
They can look at her unselfishness, kindness, and thoughtfulness and learn to incorporate these characteristics into their own lives. Perhaps some of them will be childless aunts or uncles who spoil some fortunate nieces and nephews of their own someday!
As you can see, childless aunts actually have a huge and important role to play in the lives of their nieces and nephews. Often, they have the time, energy, and motivation to become a positive influence for good in their young relatives' lives.
In some cultures, childless aunts are given a high level of respect, while in the United States they are all too often not given the appreciation they deserve. In recent years, efforts have been made to correct this problem. An Auntie Day was even established as a time to celebrate the wonderful aunts in our lives.
With recent Census data showing that close to fifty percent of fertile age women in the United States do not have children, either by choice or due to circumstances outside of their control, the childless aunt is a growing demographic. Since it seems like there are likely going to be more childless aunts in the future, perhaps it's time to start giving these unsung heroines more of the acknowledgment so many of them richly deserve!
What about you? Do you have an aunt who never had kids of her own who played a special role in your life during your childhood and continues to be close to you as an adult? Let us know about her! If you're thankful to have her influence in your life, pass along this story to her as well as your other friends and family members.