Otherhood

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Penguin Canada, Mar 4, 2014 - Social Science - 304 pages
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Melanie Notkin wants to change our perceptions about childless women. The rise of childless women is one of the most overlooked and under-appreciated social issues of our time. Never previously have more women lived longer before having their first child or remained childless toward the end of their fertility. In the U.S., the level of childlessness of women age forty to forty-four has doubled, from 10 percent in 1976 to 20 percent in 2006. Society assumes that women either are mothers or choose not to be mothers, but waiting for love and marriage—or at least a committed union—before embarking on motherhood seems to be the least acceptable life choice for the modern woman. Nearly half of North American women of childbearing age are childless,a steep rise from 35 percent in 1976. Nevertheless, childless women are perceived as the exception, not the norm.

In Otherhood, Melanie Notkin explores this modern phenomenon to understand the reasons for this shift, the social and emotional impact of childlessness, and how this “new normal” will impact social structures in the decades to come. Part anecdotal storytelling, part inspirational, part reportage, and part manifesto, Otherhood sets out to get to the heart of the issues, enliven the societal consciousness, and trigger conversation. Notkin offers a very personal take on a trend that affects so many modern women.

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OTHERHOOD: Modern Women Finding a New Kind of Happiness

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

A frank, hopeful look inside the world of single, childless women facing the end of their fertility.With an increasing number of American women having a first child at a later age, the Census Bureau ... Read full review

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What an amazing lady Melanie Notkin is and what a wonderful surprise is her book! I really thought this was going to be another "C'mon girl! Get over yourself" type book that tells you to snap out of it and that wanting a man in your life is not everything. Whilst it most definitely isn't everything, this book so wonderfully provides the most intelligent, insightful supportive read ever for what so many of us are living right now. Melanie speaks from her very big, generous heart and her own personal experiences and both comforts and inspires as she does so, reminding you that you are not alone, I did not want this wonderful gem of a book to end! What it also shows you how to do is to forge bravely and positively ahead on your path in life to peace, joy, contentment, love in all its forms and enjoying it all. A real message of strength and empowerment. Melanie will no doubt make some very fortunate man very happy when they do find each other. Her writing made me feel better about where I find myself in life at this age and chapter in my life. It reassured me that perhaps it's not my fault as I've felt for most of my life, that I find myself where I am and gave me much needed peace.
So very many reasons to love this book, I will definitely be re-reading on a regular basis. Melanie perfectly captured the feelings of women who wanted to be mothers and have missed out due to circumstances beyond their control, as well as all the assumptions (many friends, family and society itself) make about you as a result, not realising the vast range of pain, heartbreak and grief we experience in this situation. Melanie, you truly do understand, thank you so much for being an amazing, gracious lady with a loving heart and for understanding and writing this very necessary book for all of us out there. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! Liz, Australia.
 

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About the author (2014)

Melanie Notkin is a Canadian-born entrepreneur, author, speaker, marketer, and the leading voice of the nearly 50 percent of American women who are childless. Notkin is the founder of SavvyAuntie.com and creator of the popular Savvy Auntie lifestyle brand—a celebration of modern, cosmopolitan aunthood. Notkin’s book on the subject, Savvy Auntie: The Ultimate Guide for Cool Aunts, Great-Aunts, Godmothers, and All Women Who Love Kids, was a Wall Street Journal bestseller. Spokesperson, author, and influencer, Melanie is a frequent contributor to The Huffington Post and a sought-after lifestyle expert.

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