Brooke, 39, Minnesota (US). 

I have always known I didn’t want kids since I was old enough to understand where babies come from. I don’t feel conflicted or sad about this – it’s just something I know about myself. 
I discussed this with my eventual spouse after it was clear that we were dating seriously. I was 20. He said ok me neither. I would have broken up with him if he said he did want kids since I knew I wasn’t going to change and this isn’t something one can compromise on. 
I get hassled about this by relatives, both his and mine. It got somewhat better after my niece was born. I adore my niblings but I still know that I have made the right choice for me. If they ever ask me why we don’t have kids I’m going to tell them the truth – that it isn’t something I wanted and that’s ok. Everyone gets to decide that and one option isn’t better or worse just different. 
I am very annoyed by the phrase ‘start a family’ = kids since my spouse and I are a family. I started sending a holiday card with photos of us and our cats, partly because our family is legitimate too.
I also have issues with gynecological health care. I get ignored and my concerns dismissed since my concerns are not about fertility. I wish OB/GYN was uncoupled since I can have concerns with that part of me even if I have zero interest in being pregnant. Even the euphemism ‘women’s health’ annoys me since it reduces women to our reproductive systems only. 
Most of my friends also don’t have kids and I find it interesting that we sort ourselves this way. I get asked quite frequently if I have kids and I say no without explanation. My spouse says he rarely if ever gets this question, which is also interesting. In a perfect world, I would want parents to be supported but also non-parents not treated like they are some anomaly. I think we have a long way to go. 
*author’s name changed to protect her identity