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Voices of (M)otherhood: Listening to the Experiences of Single and Childless Women
Rebecca BL Chan (author)Mihaela Launeanu (thesis supervisor)Janelle Kwee (second reader)Faith Auton-Cuff (external examiner)Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
Single and childless women over the age of 35 constitute an expanding demographic in North America and in many parts of the world, yet we are still living in a society that places great importance on marriage and family and views them as important markers of life success. This research was designed to explore how involuntarily single (never-married) and childless women experience themselves during early midlife (ages 35-45). Eight women’s experiences were explored in this study using the feminist relational methodology of the Listening Guide. Data analysis uncovered three categories of voices: voices which conveyed the positivity of living a single and childless identity (i.e. the voices of hope, faith, gratitude, nurturance, freedom, and resilience), voices which conveyed the struggles of living a single and childless identity (i.e. the voices of invisibility, shame, confusion, loneliness, guilt, longing, and uncertain waiting), and the voice of ambivalence.
Childlessness.Single women.Middle-aged women.