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Deciding on Going Childfree

Deciding on Going Childfree

A closed group setting to explore and navigate one of the biggest decisions you may ever take.

Starts 4th March, 2023

4 sessions | Conducted every Saturday 12 PM

Small group, 6-8 people

75-minute online video conversations

Led by Veena Hari

Program Fee - INR 2500 for India-based participants | INR 3500 for participants outside India

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Goals of the group

To parent or to not parent. That is one of the most important decisions you'll ever make. This group is a safe place for those who aren't sure whether they want to have kids, or not. The discussions will help you explore your own thought process. Realistically, you'll not reach a decision in 4 weeks but will have the tools to get started.

Who is the group for?

Anybody who finds themselves juggling these thoughts - men, women, non-binary, single, married, and partnered people.

“I’m afraid of losing my partner because he wants kids, and I don’t know what I want. I think I don’t want them.”
“I’m afraid of losing my identity, freedom, and comfort if I have children. Afraid of regretting it if I don’t.”
“I’ve always wanted to have a baby, but is it even ethical, knowing the environmental and political climate?”
“I need some peace and clarity from the torture of sitting on the fence for too long.”

Glimpse of the regime

Session 1: Understanding Context

• Exploring briefly the narrative around childfree and how it has evolved over time.
• Introduction to concepts like pronatalism, antinatalism and the media around the choice of being child free.
• Reflecting on how societal standards and pressure has impacted the individual narrative.
• Disentangling your desire from that of other people and the larger society: What’s yours, and what’s theirs?

Session 2: Individual Exploration

• Exploring individual narratives of what it means to be child free
• Becoming conscious of your fears - fears around becoming a parent (e.g., fears of being a bad parent, feeling overwhelmed, losing your independence) as well as fears around choosing not to be a parent (e.g., fears of future regret, being alone in old age).
• Identifying related past trauma if any (e.g., abuse as a child)

Session 3: Relationships

• Sharing the challenges and experiences of romantic relationships through the lens of being child free
• Navigating familial relationships around the choice of being childfree

Session 4: Coping

• Pooling resources to create positive counter-narratives of being child free
• Processing thoughts and emotions that may be hard to share or understand (e.g., guilt over not wanting to have children)
• Exploring strategies and steps after your decision has been made (e.g., having conversations with family and friends; finding medical professionals; finding adoption resources)
• Getting social support
• Drawing boundaries with those who aren’t supportive

  • Honestly, this session was great and after sharing it with our friends lots of people want to explore something similar.

    Kartik

    Truly confused

  • For the very first time found the validation that being confused is okay. Gave me confidence and understanding to start an objective conversation with my family.

    Ranjana

    Career-oriented jet setter

  • Loved my peers and the discussion. Veena is a star.

    Charvi

    Would want kids if I were a guy

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Meet your Facilitator

Veena Hari

Veena Hari is a Mental Health Practitioner with around 10 years of experience across the mental health and development sector. She is the founder of Bhavati Foundation, a not for profit organization working on reproductive mental health in India and host of the Mothering podcast. She describes herself as a passionate feminist and is a mother to a three and a half year old.

FAQs

What are SoulUp Groups?

At SoulUp, you'll meet people who get what you're going through and might be living some of the same realities. People looking for extraordinary conversations, just like you.

✔️ Small group, 6-8 people

✔️ Every meeting led by a world-class facilitator

✔️ Weekly 75-minute online video sessions

What happens in a group session?

While the format can vary as per topic, here’s a flow that most sessions follow

Check In. Participants check-in with each others' feelings and answer the prompt given by the facilitator if any.

Conversation. Your facilitator will guide the group in a free-flowing conversation—with the goal of sharing openly, talking honestly, and deep emotional connection.

Check Out. Participants share what they're taking away from the session.

What am I going to get out of this?

Participants say that they feel heard, understood, more in control, and a feeling that you’ve got people rooting for you. By talking about your emotions and what's going on in your life, you'll realise that you're not alone and get ideas for how to improve your situation.

How long has SoulUp been around?

SoulUp was founded in Feb 2022 by Punita Mittal and Mahak Maheshwari - a team of IIT Delhi and IIT Bombay with more than 20 years of combined healthcare experience. SoulUp is redefining mental health through groups that are effective, but also fun, social, and challenging.

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To parent or to not parent. That is the question.