Stuart: Hi there, and welcome to The Couples Expert Podcast. This is Stuart Fensterheim, The Couples Expert. I’m excited today to have on my show, Robyn D’Angelo. Robyn’s a therapist that I’ve known for a couple of years now, and we first met at a workshop for marketing for therapists. Robyn, actually, has been on this show before. She talked with us about anxiety and living with a partner who has an anxiety disorder, and she recently has changed the nature of her practice to working exclusively with dinks, people who are ‘double income, but no children’. And she’s put together a summit that she’s going to be sharing with all of us, to learn about how to have close, connected relationships when you don’t have any children.
So, what we’re going to do is talk a great deal with her about what’s unique about couples that are ‘double income, no kids’, and learn a little bit about her summit because I think this is very exciting. It’s an international summit and she’ll talk a lot about that.
One of the things I wanted to make sure I reminded everyone, though, is that I am putting together a cruise for couples, going to Alaska. We’re going to be going on June 3rd to a Celebrity Cruise line, and we’re going to be doing a Hold Me Tight workshop on the cruise ship. It’s going to be when we’re at sea, and it’s going to be a blast because we’re going to do something very different.
Because, as some of you may be aware, the Hold Me Tight workshops are put together to try to help couples really go through seven exercises, or seven conversations, and those conversations are designed to bring the two of you together in private settings, working on your relationship, going through the exercises, so that you truly have a relationship that’s meaningful, where your partner is responsive. And those couples that have gone through this program have walked away with an incredible feedback for me.
And we’re going to do something a little different than I have in the past, which is, not only just do the seven conversations, but we’re going to be working with Julie, who is my partner with this, who has a history as a corporate trainer. So, we’re going to be doing exercises and experiential types of a program so that your experience with your partner really is going to reinforce the love that you have for one another. So, check it out, it’s on my website at www.creatingepicrelationships.com.
So, what can I tell you about Robyn?
Robyn D’Angelo focuses on coaching and counseling married, engaged, or otherwise committed couples who are child-free. Her purpose is, she’s a Gottman therapist, and she has been working in the field for a number of years helping couples really design a relationship where they feel so important to one another, because what she wants to do is really take couples who have no children, and take your relationship really to another level.
So, she got her Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy. Since around 2009, she’s been working with individuals and teens, and helping them really deal with grief and loss, and the academic struggles, and parenting concerns. And in 2010, she really began working with those adults who are dealing with addiction and mental illness through the criminal justice system. What she then did, in around 2014, she went into a private practice in Laguna Hills, and there she focused on dealing with people who have an anxiety disorder or mental health issues that were impacting their relationship. And then, just recently, began to really understand that the area that she really loved was working with those couples that were ‘double income, no children’ because that’s the lifestyle that she’s picked.
So, I wanted to really welcome Robyn onto the show, and I think that she’s going to have a lot to offer us, to teaching us how to build that close, connected relationship. So, Robyn, thank you for coming on The Couples Expert Podcast.
Robyn: Thank you so much for having me, Stuart.
Stuart: You know, as I mentioned in the intro, we did that podcast quite a while ago on anxiety, and so, this is a little bit of a different kind of thing for you and I’m curious a little bit about…not a little bit, I guess I’m curious a lot about what got you interested in this particular angle of couples’ work.
Hidden in Plain Sight
Robyn: Sure. Well, you know, I personally am in a dink, or ‘double income, no kids’ relationship, so it’s something that really just kind of comes naturally. And then, I don’t know what it was for sure, but I started seeing more of these kinds of couples coming in to my practice, and I was noticing that there are some pretty distinct differences with the topics that they were bringing in and the stressors, and I thought, “Wow, I don’t see a lot of other people or hear of a lot of other people working specifically with this community or talking about it very publically.” So, I wanted to dig in and not only find out why, but start really focusing on this kind of work. There’s a need for it.
Stuart: Yeah, I think you’re absolutely correct, there’s a need for it, and as you’re even talking about this, what comes up is the comment about not many people talking about it. And, I think there’s a, I don’t know if we want to call it prejudice, or something about that, that I think perhaps people don’t talk a lot about this because I think they’re concerned about the reaction. Is that possible?
Robyn: Oh yeah, absolutely I think that’s possible, and I think it’s kind of twofold. I think one part of it is, those who have chosen to remain child-free, yes, at times they feel very different from their friends and family who have chosen a different lifestyle. At the same time, dinks are everywhere. I was trying to think about this. I thought, “Okay, where are my couples that aren’t having kids, and what are they doing that’s so different?” And I thought, “Wait a minute, they’re sprinkled in everywhere.” Those of us who’ve chosen to be child-free still hang out with our friends and family who have kids. So, yes, while our challenges and the benefits of being child-free are very different than those with kids, we’re still everywhere.
Stuart: But hidden, I almost want to say, right?
Robyn: Right, hidden in plain sight. That, I think, is kind of the challenge in all of this because, yes, hidden in plain sight. While we want to say, “Hey, wait a minute!” no one’s talking about this stuff when we really want to hear about it. At the same time, no one’s talking about it because, maybe, like you said, there could be some prejudice. Maybe, those of us want to be looked at as just like everyone else. There’s a lot to it, Stuart.
Dealing with Prejudice
Stuart: Is it “just like everyone else” or is it that the belief is, for most people, that the reason behind it isn’t necessarily a healthy one, or it’s a problem like someone not able to have a baby, as opposed to it being a choice?
Robyn: I think it can be both. I think people who have always known they wanted to have families that included children simply can’t understand that being a choice. “How could someone choose not to bring people into this world if they are capable?” And yes, I also think there is this discomfort, “Well, how do we even bring it up? What if someone isn’t able to have children? Why would I say anything?” So yes, I think there’s many, many elements to this.
Stuart: And then, the whole concept of, you know, the belief that every woman has a maternal instinct and would want to have a child, and that maybe they’re not as much of a woman or they’re not as feminine. I think there’s all this different kind of hypocrisy and sort of prejudice about that choice.
Robyn: I would agree with that, and something that you’re leaving out as well, is that not every man has that paternal instinct, as well, and communities and society rarely look at and scrutinize the man who chooses to not have children. And so, I think, like you said, there’s this idea of, “Well, everyone has this innate desire to breed,” and it’s simply not true.
On the Same Page
Stuart: Right. The male issue is an interesting one, too, because I think that, as I think about it and in thinking about doing this interview with you today, I was sort of wondering a bit about how much of this is influenced by the relationship, meaning a man who doesn’t want to have children, and how much is influenced by the woman. Has there been any sort of research or anything about how those decisions get made? And maybe that would be a great question for you, is how do couples tend to make a decision like this?
Robyn: Right. Regarding the research, great question, definitely something that I’ve been trying to find and locate. So, I haven’t been too successful on that particular question, but I will tell you, just from my own gathering of data and asking couples, it’s different across the board. But, what I am finding is those that have been able to have that conversation pretty up front in their relationship, both were typically on the same page, and that’s why they are able to have really successful child-free relationships, because up front, it was a conversation that was had early on.
And this is, as you know Stuart, working with couples, I mean, there are some pretty foundational topics that you’ve got to be pretty darn close on the same page with to have and sustain successful relationships. This is one of those. So, what I found in the couples that came in, that I’ve talked to, and friends, if they’re able to have that conversation early on and they’re both on that same page, it’s a win-win. And so, it’s been rare that I’ve found that either there was a female pretty strong influence or the male pretty strong influence, because once one person finds out that their partner’s not on the same page, they typically, kind of organically, the relationship kind of falls away and opens up space for someone to come in that they are on the same page with.
Stuart: So, are you finding that most couples are having this conversation ahead of time, or that the couples, particularly the ones that come to see you, and if they’re coming to see you, it tends I’m sure, to be there’s some sort of stress going on, so are you finding that more couples who get into counseling have not had the dialogue early enough, or are you finding that it’s just not being talked about and then all of a sudden, that topic comes up and now we’re in a mix?
Robyn: It’s actually rare that “all of a sudden” we’re talking and this topic comes up. It’s typical, it’s been my experience, that the majority of the couples that come in and see me have had this conversation and that this particular topic isn’t the topic of their stressor. It isn’t the reason they’re coming in for therapy. It just happens to be, we’ve both decided not to have kids, now we’ve got all these other stressors that we would like some help with.
“So, when are you going to have a baby?”
Stuart: And how much of that is pressure from other people?
Robyn: To not have children?
Stuart: To have them.
Robyn: Oh, for their stressors!
Robyn: I think earlier on in the relationship. So, typically, if a couple’s been together five years or less, that’s when I’ll hear them talk about, “Oh my gosh, we’re still hearing from family, from people within our faith communities, ‘So, what’s next? What’s the next step? When are you going to have children?’ Not, ‘have you decided to’, it’s ‘when’.” So, yes, there’s absolutely the pressure, usually within the one- to five-year range. After that, what I’m seeing is less of that pressure and more pressure to do other things, which is, “When are you going to buy the house?” So it kind of shifts to all these societal beliefs of natural progression within successful (air quotes, “successful”) relationships.
Stuart: How about sort of the external family relationships, because, you know, I have two children and I know if I hadn’t had children, my mother particularly would be grieving incredibly because being a grandmother, for her, is an incredible part of her identity. So, here we have families that that’s not going to be the case and they’re comfortable with it, but yet, there could be that grief and loss issue for the parents. And is that something that you’re seeing a lot of, and what do you recommend for families that this is something that’s really a big issue for them?
Robyn: Right. I do see that. I also see, when couples are coming in, oftentimes they have siblings, who they will say, “Thank goodness they had children so that my parents could have grandkids,” and so that they too could experience the joys of nieces and nephews. I mean, as a dink, someone in a dink relationship, I love my nieces and nephews, and I’m really grateful for my siblings for having kids. It just wasn’t in my plan. It wasn’t in my DNA to do this.
By Choice or By Chance
And, absolutely, I am seeing that there’s that grief and loss from parents of maybe not being able to be grandparents, and what I always recommend is to just have the conversations, to open up the space to let a parent talk about what that loss is like and the loss of that dream, and being able to say, you know, “I’m so thankful that we live in a world where I do get to choose and this is what’s really best for my partner and I,” so really, being able to stand confidently in your choice to remain child-free. And that’s child-free either by choice or by chance, right, because we talk about those relationships where maybe people can’t, and they still can experience, maybe, the pressures from our families.
Stuart: Yeah, and I would think the coping mechanism for the two sets of couples, one that’s by choice and the other, obviously, for whatever reason they’re unable to have children and they make the decision to just make sort of the best of that situation, they’re going to be dealing with this issue so differently.
Stuart: What is the difference that you see, and do you have advice for those couples?
Robyn: Well, particularly what I see in couples who choose to remain child-free, there isn’t that sense of loss, of sadness.
Stuart: Because they chose to do that on their own.
Robyn: Exactly, so there’s not really anything in that realm to cope with. It’s more about, okay, empowering them and showing them how to now make choices moving forward that do align with kind of, what are their needs and how are they finding fulfillment and purpose in their life. Right? So, that is kind of the direction we go down with those couples.
And for couples who didn’t get to make this choice, it was made for them, so they’re child-free by design, or by chance is what I call it, there’s a lot there with the coping skills. So, again, it’s creating that space to at any point in time be able to talk to your partner about what that loss feels like and be able to still kind of daydream with them and feel supported by them, and know that this isn’t a topic that we can’t ever bring up because it’s too painful, but in order to heal that and move through it, how can we talk about it with one another. Do we go and find a therapist, or someone within our faith communities, or family members, and talk about this in a way that is not connected to any kind of shame or embarrassment? And you just kind of move through and heal that sadness, and it’s an ongoing process.
Stuart: And the importance, as we’ve talked about other things before, of doing it as a couple.
Robyn: Yeah, of course, as a team, because both people are experiencing a loss, a loss of a dream.
Stuart: And, I think, one of the things that I try to do with couples who either, well, I guess particularly the ones that it is not a choice, is letting, particularly, and I think the women have a harder time with this than the men do, but seeing value in both the relationship and what you can offer each other, and that you’re more than just a baby-making machine.
Different Forms of Progeny
Robyn: Absolutely, and I love this idea that you’re talking about, what we can offer each other in the relationship. I like to take that a step further and talk about, “What do we have to offer this world? How do we show up and be contributors to the wellbeing of the world?” because I think that’s what ends up happening as we look at, “Okay, our sole focus for the next 18-plus years is not going to be a little human that we’ve made. Let’s, together, choose some things that we really want to put our passion and our energy into, and find places and ways to contribute.”
Stuart: So volunteering, political movements, different things like that that you can really say that you’re making a difference. Environmental kinds of things, whatever.
Robyn: Whatever kind of speaks to you, yes.
Stuart: Right. And I guess the other piece that I think comes up a lot, and I think this is part of, I don’t know if this is why there isn’t as much being talked about this than I believe there should be, is the jealousy that comes along with this sometimes for those that do have kids, and particularly financially, and time, and being able to do the date night without having to find a babysitter which is going to cost them $100 a night. And the ability to sort of be freer almost has a negative connotation to some folks.
Robyn: I think you’re right and I think, unfortunately, I think that’s where the topic, you really see the divisiveness, right? You really see, it’s those with kids and those without. “You must have it better,” and, “You must have more time,” and, “You must have better sex and more time for that,” and all these you-must-haves, “…because you don’t have children.” And then, like you said, it sometimes can turn into a negative thing, maybe out of jealousy or envy.
But, I think what we need to keep in mind is everyone’s experience is going to be different, and whether you have the luxury, (I call it a luxury), of having kids to distract you from focusing on the relationship as a couple or you don’t, people who choose to be child-free, I’ll tell you right now, even if they don’t have a little human in their lives to put all their focus into, they do have something, and that something, whether it’s career, whether it’s philanthropic, whether it’s their pets, that something can be the proverbial baby. And, what we do is, we can get wrapped up in that, and all of a sudden, our child-free couples are complaining about the same thing. “Well, wait a minute, we don’t have time and we don’t go on date nights because you’re always working.” Right? “We don’t make time for one another anymore. We’re not making time to go see our family.” So, I think the struggles can be similar.
The Dog Comes First!
Stuart: Particularly with pets, I agree with that one totally. My dog, Ollie, is definitely my son, and sometimes my wife and I have conflict just like we might have over my daughters.
Stuart: So, it isn’t that different.
Robyn: Sometimes it’s really not, and I think what it comes down to is, the similarity, maybe not in the particular situations, but in the feelings, right, where we feel neglected or we feel our relationships are neglected, or we don’t feel that we matter or that we’re special, or we’ve just lost the ability to get our partner’s attention and feel like they’re choosing us every day.
Stuart: Right, the triggers that come up can come up in lots of different ways, and one of the triggers that I’ve seen a lot with families that have animals and maybe children, maybe no children, is the same about, “You spend more time with our dog than you do with me,” and that, “You bad-mouth me to the dog.”
Robyn: Yeah, “And the minute you get home, the dog runs up to you and you run to her.”
Stuart: Right, and, “You don’t say hello to me.” It’s really about connection anyway, I mean, all of this. And then, both of us are attachment theorists and we focus our practice based on connection and feeling important to one another, and whether you have children or not, it’s really the same type of important concept, which is making sure that you and your partner know that you matter and that you’re important to one another and you care.
Stuart: And, the thing, because I just did a podcast and I was telling you a little bit about Arthur Aron who I did a podcast on just last week, and what his research showed, more than anything, the number one thing that made the difference of long-term relationships or not was the responsiveness of their partner.
Stuart: And it just validated through multiple types of research because, you know, Susan Johnson, and you’ve got John Gottman, and all of them really saying the same thing, just helps all of us say, “This is what matters. Whether you have a child, whether you don’t have a child, you need to be responsive, you need to be there for one another, and you need to have each other’s back.”
Robyn: Absolutely, and not only do you need to do that, you need to do that in a way where your partner can understand it.
Robyn: So, I really love, I love the whole “Five Love Languages” thing because if you’re not talking to your partner in a way that they understand, it’s all for nothing, and then you get frustrated and here’s that cycle, right?
Robyn: “I feel like I’m doing all of this, but you don’t appreciate it.” “Well, you’re not doing it in a way that makes sense to me, so of course I don’t.”
Creating EPIC Relationships
Stuart: Right. You know, one of the things, Robyn, that I know you’re doing, which is something sort of special, which is really taking this to the next level, which is, you’re putting together a summit of some sort. Talk about that because that, I think, is a really fascinating thing you’re doing.
Robyn: Yeah, so I created this summit, it’s called Creating EPIC Relationships, and it’s really, I’ve kind of scoured the globe, and I found 21 experts and they’re all in different fields, and what I’ve done is I’ve asked them to contribute resources, stories, their experiences, research on how to create the most fulfilling, sustaining, long-lasting, happy relationships in child-free couples, because like you said, there’s not a lot of people talking about this. So, I really wanted to get this global conversation of not just support and saying, “We’ve got your back,” to all those dinks out there, but to give resources, because I personally have found it tremendously difficult to find specific resources for those that are child-free.
So, like I said, I’ve brought together all of these different experts, ranging from sociologists talking about the research they’ve done for child-free couples, and researchers. Obviously, I have therapists like ourselves, and psychologists and relationship experts, but I’ve also got experts that are kind of, who you wouldn’t think could provide information on how to have a great relationship, like real estate agents. How do we buy a house when we don’t care about school districts? Things that those with kids don’t necessarily think of. And financial planners because those who have chosen not to have children, they’re doing things with their money very differently than people who’ve chosen to have children.
Something for Everyone
Stuart: Now, most of the couples that you’re talking about in this, are these all married couples or is the focus just cohabitating couples, or just anyone in a long-term relationship?
Robyn: Anyone in a long-term relationship, and to be quite honest, the content that’s being covered, a lot of it can really help even those with kids. I’ve actually had some of the experts… Some of the experts are dinks themselves. Some are dinks because they’re empty-nesters now, so they talk about how that’s changed for them. So, the information can really help kind of any couple in a relationship, we just have little bits sprinkled in here and there that are really dink-focused. So, it’s been a lot of fun, and I’ve learned so much and gotten resources for my own relationship through doing this, so it’s been a lot of fun.
Stuart: Yeah. What kind of resources do you feel like dinks do need?
Robyn: What I have found to be, especially through these interviews is, like I have an estate planning attorney on there, which, oh my goodness, I learned so much in one 30-minute conversation with her about how to really plan for our future when we don’t have children to (I hate to say) worry about. But, we don’t, that’s not part of our goal, you know, once we die, what happens to our millions, our empires that we build, how do we make sure we’re not leaving things undone for family members to fix for us? So, it was really helpful to hear what we should be doing now in our relationships. Same with just the financial planner, again, real estate agents talking about how to get our investments in order.
A Woman’s Prerogative
But, something else that was really interesting to me too, Stuart, is I actually brought in an M.D., he’s a Director of Family Planning at UC Davis, and he talked specifically about female sterilization, and this was huge because this is a pretty taboo topic. And as a female in my mid-30s, I experienced a lot of difficulty in talking to my specific doctors when I was asking questions about female sterilization, and I was hearing things like, “Oh no, you’re too young. Oh no, you’re going to change your mind one day. Oh, does your husband know that you’re here?” I mean, it was absurd, and to have this gentleman on board and giving advice on how to really advocate for yourself… He gave resources for those who are looking just to get information or are ready to take the steps of sterilization, he talks about how to do that.
So, this was a really, really exciting interview series that I’ve done.
Stuart: Was there any sense of when that should happen, like when the sterilization should occur?
Robyn: No. You know what? He, oh, he was so great, he talked about if someone comes to him and they’re in their mid-20s, he says, “If they come to me and they say, ‘I’ve made this choice, this is what I want,’” he said, “I help them get the resources they need to make that happen.”
He says that the research that he’s been conducting shows that it actually goes against what popular belief is, that if someone gets a sterilization process done or procedure done early on, that they regret it later in age, later on down the road. And that is exactly the opposite of what the research is showing, that there is not that regret that’s coming up, that they, more than anything, are showing such gratitude and saying what life-changing that decision was and that they had the ability to not only make that choice, but to have someone who would complete the procedure and trust that they could make a decision for themselves.
Stuart: That they have the experience in their life to really decide. Even if you’re in your 20s, you can know that you really want this and it doesn’t have to be more of a parental kind of relationship where they say, “No, you’re not old enough to do this.”
Robyn: Yes, that is exactly what he said. He said, “It is not my job to be parental and tell you what you can and can’t do. It’s my job to give you medical information and let you make the decision for yourself.” And I can’t tell you how breathtaking it was to hear that.
Stuart: Are they requiring people to get some counseling before making a decision if they’re early in their life?
Robyn: Nope, and I asked him the exact same question, and he said, “No, it’s just like any other procedure. Do you have to get counseling to go and get plastic surgery? You don’t.” You just don’t because they trust that you can make this decision.
Stuart: And is there a sense of, I think the answer’s probably no, but is there a sense that the partner has to be in there to make the decision?
Stuart: Like, are they taking just the woman’s word?
Stuart: That’s great.
Stuart: I love that because it really is playing a role that I don’t think people, particularly people in the medical community are not prepared to play.
Robyn: I completely agree. And it was just really interesting to have so many different experts on this summit, you know. And I actually had the founder of the Gay Couples Institute, as well, and talking about the choice to remain child-free within the LGBT community, and there’s stigma there too. So, just hearing all of these experts, and not just the clinical and the research behind it, but even the personal experiences, just was absolutely remarkable to hear from all of these people. And they’re from all over the world, so it’s been a really great experience.
Stuart: So it’s an international, you’re not just having people from the United States then.
Robyn: Correct. I have some people that are not from the States and they’re talking about things, again, some of them were exciting stuff too. So they’re talking about the intimacy and how to have that deeper sexual connection with your partners, and were talking about things like Tantra and how to introduce that into our relationships. And if you don’t know what Tantra is, sign up for the summit.
Stuart: Right, so it’s not PG-rated, is what you’re saying.
Robyn: Oh no, no, I mean, they’re talking about sexual connection with your partners. It’s nothing very explicit, but I mean, it’s something that every couple in a committed relationship, I think, will definitely benefit from. I know for sure I learned a few new things, so that’s exciting.
Stuart: And what’s cool is that you have it sort of broken down in an interesting way because it sounds like it’s a two-week program, correct?
Robyn: Yeah, it’s 21 days.
Stuart: Oh, three weeks, okay.
Robyn: Yeah, it’s three weeks.
Stuart: So, how are you breaking… I know they can go on… Oh, by the way, why don’t you mention, and it’ll be in my show notes obviously, but why don’t you mention where people can find further information.
Sign Up to Create Your EPIC Relationship…For FREE
Robyn: Yeah, they can just hop over to creatingepicrelationships.com, and you’re absolutely correct, we have it broken down into three weeks where we have seven experts, obviously, per week, and they’re in different categories: Creating EPIC Adventure, Creating EPIC Success, and Creating EPIC Intimacy.
Stuart: And I want to just highlight, it is free, isn’t it?
Robyn: It’s absolutely free, you’re right.
Stuart: That’s pretty cool. How can you go wrong with free?
Robyn: Right, and you’re getting all of these experts coming together and giving you free resources, advice, support, encouragement. And, again, I really want to stress the fact that this isn’t just for the child-free couples, because a lot of the experts on the panel do have kids and they talk about kind of their experiences too. So, it’s been a really great experience so far.
Stuart: And so, what you have, from looking at the page, because I’m looking at the creatingepicrelationships.com, it’s someone different every single day.
Robyn: Every single day, correct. So when you sign up for the summit, you’ll get kind of a Welcome e-mail that says, “Hey, get ready.” Everything starts on a particular day. On that day, you’re going to start getting interviews, one a day. So, they’ll come right to your Inbox. And, you get a free gift. Every single one of the experts is giving away something free, also.
Stuart: So, each day they’re going to give, that’s the resources that you were talking about.
Don’t Miss Out!
Stuart: So, if I sign up, I’m going to get information, how to sign in, and what if I miss a day?
Robyn: Each interview stays live for three days, so I recommend, as soon as possible, to sign up for that because you want to be able to have access to these interviews, because the access is limited. So, if you miss a day, I hate to say it, if it’s three days after it went live, shoot, you’ve missed it. But, what we’re doing is, we’re putting all the experts’ information up. After their interview goes live, you’ll be able to access kind of who they are, all their information, and find out more about them.
Stuart: But, if you miss the day for the next three days, though, (I want to make sure this is clear to everyone), after the interview, for three days they’ll be able to download the video, is that right?
Robyn: So, what happens is, they’ll get an e-mail. So, if they’ve signed up, they’ll get the e-mail with that interview, and as long as they watch that and access it within three days of receiving that e-mail, that’s how long they’ll have to have access to it.
Stuart: Oh, so they’ll only have three days to see it. After the three days, so there’s no way that someone can download it to their hard drive and watch it after the three days.
Robyn: Nope, nope, it’s limited access. Yeah.
Stuart: Oh, okay. All right, so that’s clear. So, folks, you’ve got to really jump on it!
Robyn: Yes, yes. And there’s so much information here, so I’m hoping that people can make time to do this. The interview’s are 30 minutes long, so it’s not too long, and they’re all video too. So, it’s kind of great if you can just kind of pop it on and watch and listen as you go throughout your day or maybe on a lunch break. And the experts are really fun. It’s been a really fun experience.
Stuart: Yeah, and I think it really does speak to your generosity and your caring nature, Robyn, that you could put this together for folks and really give back to the community in a topic that isn’t talked about a whole lot, that needs to be talked about. And the amount of time and energy that I know that you’re putting into this is tremendous. So, folks, I really recommend, particularly the listeners of this podcast, to check it out, take a look. It really is just a nice supplement to the concepts and the guests that I have on, so I very much appreciate you doing this, Robyn.
Robyn: Oh, well thanks, Stuart. It’s been a lot of fun, and like I said, it’s something that I believe the child-free community really needs, and it’s a starting point. So, let’s get this conversation global.
Stuart: So my last question for you, because we’re pretty much out of time, is what have you learned about yourself in your own relationship with listening to all of these? Are you done taping by this point?
Robyn: I’m all done. All the interviews are done, yes.
Stuart: All right, so you’ve had the 21 different interviews already, what have you found surprised you the most, and that you’ve been saying to yourself, “Hmm, maybe I need to do this different.” Is there something in particular that sort of resonated with you?
Robyn: What a great question. You know what? I think I’m going to have to say, it’s been an opportunity for me to say I no longer want to try to blend in and not say, “Yeah, I’ve chosen to be child-free,” because it used to be, I don’t know, it used to be a little bit embarrassing. I used to worry about how someone would respond to me, and with being a part of all of these interviews, I think it’s really increased my confidence in the choice that my partner and I have made to not have children, and to be able to kind of walk with my head a little bit higher and say, “There are people out there that get this and we’re not alone.” So, it’s actually been really empowering, which, I was kind of surprised because I thought I was pretty confident in that, and I just realized that it’s really impacted our relationship in such a positive way.
Stuart: Because you’re comfortable in your own skin, it sounds like. That’s what it’s done for you.
Stuart: It’s allowed you to be proud of what you’ve done, the relationship you’ve created, and the choice that you’ve made.
Robyn: Yes, yes.
Stuart: That’s so terrific.
Robyn: Thank you.
Stuart: So, Robyn, I just want to thank you again for coming on, and remind everyone to check out the summit, check out the website and the resources, and we’ll see you all next time. Take care. Bye-bye.
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