Jennifer Garner: “There’s no deeper want for a woman” than to be a mother

Jennifer Garner is in a new movie called The Odd Life of Timothy Green, which is not out until August, 2012. I will admit to being momentarily touched by this incredibly cheesy trailer for what is undoubtedly an incredibly cheesy movie. You know that glurge category on Snopes, where they debunk stories often involving little children dying somehow, but first touching another person’s life in a way that will never be forgotten? (I should label that SPOILER, because I can imagine this poor kid character dying at the end of this movie in a “he’s too good for this world” twist. Or maybe he’s from a parallel universe and needs to be sent back to it or something.) The glurge category is surely where this film belongs, but people like to switch off their brains sometimes and be force fed cliche plots, so this could be moderately successful.

Anyway Jennifer Garner and her handsome co-star that I’m only being introduced to today, Joel Edgerton, star in this Disney film about a childless couple who wishes a ten year-old boy into existence. (USA Today has him as ten years old, but he looks younger to me.) The boy comes into their lives full of wonder and hope, and transforms them, the whole neighborhood and all their friends and family probably. They did a brief interview to promote this film, which again is not out until next year so I’m not really getting it.

When The Odd Life of Timothy Green opens in August 2012, audiences will meet Cindy and Jim Green (Jennifer Garner and Joel Edgerton), a couple who have reached a point of despair: They can’t conceive. During a wine-fueled night, the Greens dream up their ideal offspring. He would score a winning goal, just once. He’d be honest to a fault. “Picasso with a pencil,” Cindy wishes.

Soon, a 10-year-old arrives at their doorstep, claiming the Greens as his own.

“He’s a boy with the qualities that his parents hope for,” says director Peter Hedges (Dan in Real Life), but “those qualities manifest in ways they never could have imagined.”

Disney is keeping the boy’s origin under wraps, but the Greens “get nothing more, nothing less” than what they wished for, Garner reveals. “He doesn’t have any emotional memories. He’s completely naïve to the way the world works … someone who’s honest to a fault is called honest to a fault for a reason.”

Garner understands her character’s yearning. “There’s no deeper want for a woman” than to be a mother, says the Hollywood mom, whose two young daughters visited the Georgia set daily in late winter with husband Ben Affleck.

In the film, the Greens must quickly adjust to parenting. It was Hedges’ experience with two teen sons that inspired him to adapt the story by producer Ahmet Zappa for the screen. “I wanted to make a film about what it means to be a parent in the 21st century,” he says.

Timothy Green puts the title role spotlight on young actor CJ Adams, whom Hedges cast in 2007′s Dan in Real Life. And Edgerton is set to have a blockbuster 2012: He soon enters F. Scott Fitzgerald territory as Tom Buchanan in Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby. Next year, “Joel Edgerton is an actor who everyone is going to be talking about,” Hedges says.

But in the world of Timothy Green, a year’s time is all too precious. The new family is “acutely aware of the passing of time,” Hedges says ominously. “We all only get our children for a very short period of time.”

[From USA Today]

The kid goes back to where he came from probably. That’s pretty much what they’re suggesting, and it seems predictable. I like how they make the kid seem kind of Jesus-y yet kid-like at the same time. I have a seven year-old and he’s also amazing, as are most kids. He just wants to know about everything and he’s starting to make his way in this world, but he’s still very much a kid and very sweet.

I do take some offense at Garner saying that “there’s no deeper want for a woman” than being a mother. That may be true for her, but for so many other women who choose not to have children that’s not the case at all. It’s very difficult to raise kids and props to women who realize it’s not for them. They want other things out of life and I’ll be honest, sometimes I do too. I mean I would never change the fact that I’m a mom, but I know that I’m not ready to have another one. I just want to focus on my one kid and be able to continue my illustrious career gossiping. Other women decide not to be moms. They have other wants that take precedence. That doesn’t mean that the urge for motherhood is somehow deeper than the urge to follow another dream. That comment bugs me. Doesn’t Garner have any childless friends?

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Jennifer Garner is shown with her oldest daughter, Violet, outside ballet class on 8/5/11. Credit: Fame.

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173 Responses to “Jennifer Garner: “There’s no deeper want for a woman” than to be a mother”

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  1. Truthful says:

    uh, yeah, I don’t think she thought about this statement, in its entirety.

    is she preparing us for her next pregnancy anouncement? LOL

  2. Onyx XV says:

    Um, not for this woman. I’ve had plenty of much deeper wants than just to spawn. Dumb thing to say.

  3. LeeLoo says:

    Well this is Jennifer Garner after all.
    I always thought she may have blocked the goalie with Ben.

  4. merski says:

    Babies, babies, babies, blah blah blaaaah… She’s so dull…

  5. Trillion says:

    Why do insist on imposing their own opinions on everyone? Do I smell of whiff of insecurity?

  6. Reece says:

    NOPE!!!
    I have a much deeper want in my life, namely any of the following…
    Pay off my student loans.
    New shoes.
    New wardrobe.
    Travel. Never been to Australia or New Zealand, Europe, South Amer, Asia Antarctica…
    Hell I’ve never been to Canada!

  7. Moneypenny says:

    Another deep want might be to be married to someone who isn’t banging the whole world.

    I also resent her statement. Having kids isn’t the sole purpose of my existence. I’m pregnant now, but believe me, I haven’t been just counting down the minutes my entire life for this to happen.

  8. Sloane Wyatt says:

    “There’s no deeper want for a woman” – yeah, that bugs the sh*t out of me. Moms who go around like they have the secret of a righteous life get on my last nerve. I chose not to have babies when I was a little girl, and now 35 years later I still have no desire to pop out a replicate.

    Being married and happily sharing my life with my husband was all I ever wanted, and I love my ‘childless’ life. If more people didn’t succumb to societal pressure to reproduce, this world would be a better place.

    Choosing to stay single or choosing to not be a breeder puts you under unwelcome scrutiny and subject to idiotic comments like Garner’s. Jen should get over her uterus and STFU.

  9. theotheryael says:

    as a woman with no interest in having children, i also take offense at garner’s comment. i already get enough shaming from my mother-in-law for not wanting kids…

    as you wrote, cb, my dreams/goals/wants in life are every bit as worthy and valid, and “deep” as a woman who chooses to have children.

    it’s thoughtless comments like this that constantly make me feel (or try to make me feel) like i’m not a proper woman.

  10. Angie says:

    Maybe this was taken out of context?

    I like her.
    I like being a mom.
    Doesn’t seem like a big deal to me.

    • Sherilynn says:

      I agree that it is possible that her remark was taken out of context. She may have been referring to her role in the movie as a childless woman. Still, the offensive remarks about her are just mean..such haters!

    • Sherilynn says:

      it is possible that her remark was taken out of context. She may have been referring to her role in the movie as a childless woman. Still, the offensive remarks about her are just mean..such haters!

    • Sherilynn says:

      She may have been referring to her role in the movie as a childless woman. Still, the offensive remarks about her are just mean..such haters!

  11. Hibiscus says:

    “There’s no deeper want for a woman than to be a mother”
    ???

    Speak for yourself, stupid Jennifer!

  12. tar says:

    gross.

  13. Happymom says:

    Hmmmm-for me this was true-I wanted to be a mother more than anything else-love having 4 kids. But I know that a lot of women don’t feel this way-including many who have kids! This seems like a really weird thing for her to say.

  14. Firecracker says:

    Truthful,
    I think you are right, she didn’t think about that statement. Just promoting a movie.

    And yeah, CB, I agree. Maybe for her, it’s her whole life but me NO. I have kids, but they aren’t the human kind. Furry only!

  15. kj says:

    I hate women like this, and unfortunately, a lot of women are like this. They think because they have some deep need to procreate that ALL women must, and in turn, they’re part of a much larger societal problem that tells women that they’re only good for bearing kids at the end of the day. You could have a successful career, a vibrant social life, and a good heart, but if you don’t have kids, you’re somehow an “incomplete” woman. F k off. I respect any and all mothers who want to be moms and work hard at raising good people, but Jennifer Garner – you and your shitty mom jeans can shove it.

  16. Boo says:

    I’m sure as hell not going to defend her statement. But maybe, just maybe, she was referring to women who WANT children–that this desire goes deeper than anything else possibly could. I know women who struggle with infertility who would agree that this want–even NEED–for a baby is the deepest thing they have ever or would ever experience(d)…and when they do have their children, it is just beyond words. So, while the way it comes across suggests all women, she doesn’t say ALL women want babies–but that a woman who wants one will never experience a deeper desire. Just a thought. Don’t maul me.

  17. Firecracker says:

    Moneypenny,
    That is hilarious!

  18. the original bellaluna says:

    I don’t think she meant that as a blanket statement for ALL women. I think maybe she meant in context to this particular movie, and maybe herself as well.

    I knew I wanted 4 kids when I was 6 years old. (Once I had 2, and became a single mom, however…) Well, when I re-married, hubs had 1 to add to my 2. Throw in the “us baby” and guess what? 4 kids!

    Kudos to the women who know they don’t want kids (just like I knew I DID) and make the right decision for them! Don’t bow to societal and/or family pressure to have kids when you know you don’t want them.

    I definitely want to see this movie.

  19. Angie says:

    See Firecracker, I don’t like dogs, but I get nasty looks and rude comments when I say that.
    People are stupid.
    I still don’t know that she meant it the way it’s being construed.
    Whatever.

  20. Lama says:

    I have a deep want too…for Gosdong

  21. dread pirate cuervo says:

    F you, Jennifer Garner. I have a uterus & I have no intentions on using it for breeding. People like you reinforce my decision to not have kids.

  22. brin says:

    She’ll blame that statement on hormonal changes when she confirms her next pregnancy.

  23. Tierra says:

    She must not know many women b/c having kids isnt something Ive ever wanted for myself. I know a few who feel the same way. Most of my friends do have kids and love them more than anything but even some of them will say if they had to do over they wouldnt have them.
    Im not offended by the comment but you shouldnt generalize such a statement or make those of us who have no desire for them feel less ‘womanly’ for not wanting them.

  24. bros says:

    im just sick of her lips and jaw.

  25. lrm says:

    oh please no NO NO NO
    now i will have to skip the comments lest i have to read a gazillion rants saying the same thing as all the other ‘womb-related threads’ on this site….
    some women don’t want children, and that is fine; the world is over populated; children are snot nosed brats, women who have children are judgemental towards those of us who dont feel they are our life purpose’etc etc

    blah blah blah….
    i love my child and really wanted to be a mom. it’s just something you know is part of your life journey, plan, etc. it had nothign to do with being socially acceptable, esp given that i have lived all over the country and in several foreign countries, am extremely free spirited and independent…..

    I once had a friend say that after one kid, she was ‘done’ [which is fine] but she had to add ‘I already feel whole and dont need children to make me feel whole’….

    huh. that is also a common misperception.
    women dont necessarily have children b/c they somehow ‘don’t feel complete’-
    nor is it simply procreation/biological. [though that biological clock hormonal feeling thing was INTENSE for me, starting at age 26, ona nd off until i decided to get pregnant at age 30, with the right guy-it really does exist as an 'urge']….

    Anyway, sometimes it is a feeling of something you ‘want to do with your life’-you know? I personally think it is a craft of sorts, and a profession, not different than being a lawyer, artist, teacher, etc.

    And, like those jobs, many mothers have other interests, as well. It is possible to do more than one thing.

    As for Garner, it’s her opinion. that is all. Don’t have to agree with it. And we already know from her PR activities, where she stands on the matter.

  26. MollyB says:

    I agree with Boo. I took it to mean (since this movie is about infertility) that for women who want children, but can’t have them, that want is the deepest. I know that’s how I felt when we were struggling with infertility.

  27. Jessica says:

    I don’t think it was a very thought out comment but I don’t think she meant harm by her comment. However, I think the comments from people not wanting children have been really horrible lately. I waited until I was 35 to have a child and I love him but I would never impose my wants and desires on anyone else. Everyone acts all offended on both fronts. You don’t want to have a kid fine but don’t just generalize them and call them names like brats and spawn. You want a kid fine but don’t act like you don’t have a life or meaning unless you have children. I think Jennifer Garner was speaking in regards to the movie so maybe it was in that context. I hope.

  28. Turtle Dove says:

    My life is unfulfilled. I have no children. My womb is empty. *sneer*

    F*ck this woman is totally nauseating. She doesn’t have that many fans and to alienate women who choose a different lifestyle than her isn’t going to endear her to anyone.

    Celebitchy, thanks for your intelligent response to this obviously idiotic and lifestyle biased comment. :)

  29. I deeply resent her sentiment.

    What a callous, superficial thing to say. Take your philosophy and cram it in your V-hole, Garner. I’m sure it’s lonely since your husband is too busy attending to the “deep wants” of other women around town.

    Bitch.

  30. xxodettexx says:

    *THIS* woman has no interest [and NEVER WILL] in being a mother… i cannot stand generalizations like these! i have a deep need to vomit now…

    thank you to the other mothers in this site who *dont* act like they are above their fellow “barren” sisters… as for all you motherless women, how SERIOUSLY annoyed where you by this??

  31. mymy says:

    Somehow I knew I could count on you gals here to get your panties all in a twist over this statement.And you didn’t let me down. One would think you all are a tad to defensive about this.It is Her opinion and she is welcome to it

  32. Thea says:

    No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. That is Jennifer Garners opinion, like we all have opinions on subjects. She likes being a mom, she has beautiful kids, and who hasnt picked a loser before in their life even if he is rich. Shit happens. Id love to have kids and cant. She has the right to feel how she feels, like others on this site do. But really, do we have to attack everyone. And if she wasnt boring and was out every night partying, who would be the first to say “why isnt she home taking care of her children?”. If Jesus was here we would find fault with him, shucks, we already have. Let people live their lives.

  33. Larissa says:

    I think she meant theres no deeper want for a woman (who wants children) than to be a mom…

    And that is exactly how I feel, as a woman who has always wanted have children, probably since I was 2!
    Why wanting to have children have suddenly turned into something BAD?
    I mean , why woman who choose not to have children have to be so offended by women who do or want to?

    I seriously could not care less if other women dont want to have children.

  34. the original bellaluna says:

    Angie – Agreed. I may think a gaggle of dogs is cute, but it doesn’t mean I want to bring ‘em all home with me!

    This is my theory, and I don’t mean any offence to anyone, but it comes from y-e-a-r-s of experience (and having been a mom to kids, cats, and dogs):

    Dogs are like the “men” of the animal species. They’re needy. They need to be fed, watered, cleaned up after; they slobber, eat stuff they shouldn’t, sometimes “miss” their target (toilet); and they need to be “exercised” regularly. ;)

  35. drunkenpixie says:

    I dont agree with Jen’s comment, but just because we choose to have children does not make us breeders. I have a life outside of having children, thats not my only thing in life.

  36. Anne says:

    Her statement could have been saved if she’d just said ‘it’s one of the deepest wants’ or ‘for a lot of women’. I think her words were simply not well thought out. On the whole I find Garner down-to-earth and likable and am willing to give her the benefit of the doubt here.

  37. Jessica says:

    And in regards to the nasty comments about kids were those that say or write them test tube babies that went from a tube to an adult in 2 seconds? Didn’t think so. You were kids and someone loved you enough to bring you into this world (or accidentally) are you going to say you regret that they did? Somehow, I think people that have the time to comment on these sites don’t have a life where they regret being in this world. My cousin was raped at 17, kept the baby and raised him to be a wonderful man. Unfortunately, she recently died from cancer but he is taking care of his grandmother now who is sick. He is a wonderful person. Just a little perspective for you all.

  38. tooey says:

    I’m a mom and I resent that statement. I hate all those “every woman” statements, as in “every woman dreams of her wedding day”. Crap; I never did any of those things. And I’m a good mom, (I only have one so that makes it easier) but I was kind of dragged to it kicking and screaming, lol. It was the best thing that ever happened *for me*; but I totally understand and respect the desire NOT to procreate…

  39. velourazure says:

    BARF!

  40. Halo says:

    Ughhhhhhhhhhh, she needs a time machine and travel to the 1950′s. The society forces these kind of views on women already enough. She has no other skill but to breed. She and Goop both promote the “I’m a better mother and wife than you peasants” and both have husbands who don’t care for them.

  41. Melissa says:

    I’m a momma, but ya, not a good statement to make. Not all women need or should want to have children.

  42. guesty says:

    i’m a mom that loves her kid. but no.

  43. Turtle Dove says:

    Missy Aggravation (29) – rotfl. Classic.

  44. Nymeria says:

    @ the original bellaluna – Right, because women are never needy.

    @ all the “Oh, you got your panties in a twist! Heehee!” comments – Garner’s little Betty Boop stupid-ism is in the same vein as “All women have a deep want to look hot in order to please men and get nailed.” Nope. Just like not all women have a deep want to reproduce. Garner’s statement is sexist. Making a sweeping generalization like that smacks of ignorance. She sounds like a frikkin Fifties marriage manual.

    Oh, wait! Haha! I forgot – this is Hollyweird. Not exactly the hotspot for intelligence.

  45. Hautie says:

    My completely bias point of view…

    I actually see the statement part of her bigger plan on keeping her husband.

    I know there is a constant reference to Blake Lively’s hustle.

    But no one beats the hustle of Jennifer Gardner.

    She home-wrecked her own first marriage to Scott Foley. By shagging Michael Vartan. Her costar.

    Whom she abruptly dumped, when Affleck dumped Lopez.

    Left Vartan a mess. Since he thought they were a couple in love.

    So a few months later Gardner is pregnant. By a man who had just publicly lived through a PR nightmare.

    And could not afford another scandal by refusing to marry the pregnant rebound. Who had worked very hard on her girl next door… gee whiz… persona.

    The rebound who has been on a PR campaign from the start. Seriously the girl has hustle like no other.

    And Gardner has manage to keep her marriage together.

    With all the photo op’s with her dimple parade. Poor Affleck is in a marriage that he will never escape.

    Without another PR nightmare.

  46. Wilz says:

    Like some have mentioned, her words could have been taken out of context (gasp! No, that NEVER happens!). I mean, she was only quoted as saying, “There’s no deeper want for a woman.” The rest was added by the writer.

    And just to bring up a point, physiologically speaking, men impregnate and women bear the offspring in their womb. That’s just how we were created.

    I agree with thea and mymy, there sure seems to be a lot of defensive women in here today!

  47. The Original Ashley says:

    I would take offense but then again Vanilla Garner is some weird time warp 50′s Stepford wife so whatever. She’s living in a world that has passed her by.

    As for the movie so it’s like Witches of Eastwick without the humor and a kid instead of the devil? It sounds all kinds of cheese inducing.

  48. bub says:

    nothing like a comment about kids or weight to get people all riled up. hilarious.
    no kids for me!

  49. Phoenix says:

    Thanks for summing up the whole gender Jennifer. ALL of our deepest wants just involve being a mother. Please. I’m sure for a lot of women this is the case but I know a lot of women who have always known that they never want kids.

  50. Cindy says:

    That comment annoys me because it sounds exactly like something the many permanently-trapped-in-middle-school moms on my Facebook post to lord their “superiority” over the childless, whether they are childless by choice or infertility. I respect that may be how Jennifer Garner feels, and I really would like to have children myself someday, but the vote that elected her Spokesperson For All Women Everywhere must have been held in Florida.

  51. JaneWonderfalls says:

    I’m sure she didn’t mean that literally for every women, because I myself have no desire to have or raise a child. I have a strong desire to be a pet parent to my dogs, but not in the traditional since of a mother, Anyone can nurture, whether you are a mother, father, sister, brother, etc. Nurturing is always equated to motherhood which is annoying and yes most mothers I know especially this generation of mothers act like their shit don’t stink because they carried a human being around for months, In the words of a comedian who I forgot his name made a statement ” The requirement for being a parent should be a little bit more than the condom broke”

  52. girl says:

    The desire to have a child is an intensely deep one but not everyone has it. That said, snotty comments like calling it “just spawning” are pretty thoughtless in the other direction and no better than what JG said. Both types of comments demean whatever you decide your vocation is.

  53. madpoe says:

    still stinks like salt on a wound from a woman (moi) that can not have kids.

  54. Bobbie says:

    Reading some of these comments is helpful to me, as a mom of four kids, because it shows me how sensitive people without kids are to these kind of comments. I don’t know what she meant, but I agree that it’s insulting to act like women must be mothers or they are missing the deepest purpose of life. That being said, if you don’t have kids, you don’t know how much work and love it requires to do the job well. A little respect for the hard work of motherhood would be nice. What would this planet be like without mothers and children?

  55. Atticus says:

    For the love of crap, she’s talking about a movie in which her character can’t have a baby. I would venture a guess this comment was related to that topic and not a blanket statement for all females everywhere in the world. Get a grip, people.

  56. Lee says:

    All those things they want for the child are supposed to be cute, parental type desires. But it comes across as them wanting the perfect child, don’t ya think?

    Then again, Jennifer Garner has always given me the impression that she treats her children the same! She is trying to be the perfect mom so she can say she has perfect kids!

    Remember, Martha Stewart is her idol. And I agree the statement is about women who want kids and she used the wrong words and people took it out of context. I think it grates because she seems so much like ‘public image mom’ if it came from some other actress we’d me like, “Meh, whatever.”

  57. Embee says:

    The comment irks me because it both narrowly defines women as mothers, first and foremost (deepest want) and broadly applies this definition to the entire female population.

    Women, like men, come in all different shapes, sizes, ambitions and priorities. Statements like this perpetuate the damaging myth that women should do most of the childcare because you know, we’re so f-ing NURTURING. It’s GENETIC, you see. It’s a woman’s deepest want? Then the woman can change its diaper. So the women do the childcare at great expense to their own careers and personal health.

    B.S.

    But I agree heartily with Hautie that this is Garner’s hustle. Ick.

  58. Angie says:

    @ Bobbie…respect is a hard thing to come by these days. Lots of people demand it, but don’t wish to give it.

  59. ZenB!tch says:

    I guess I’m not a woman because I was born without the “want” to be a mother. I never even played with baby dolls. I liked Barbie who was independent at least as I played her.

    I have nothing against my friends kids but I.CAN.GIVE.THEM.BACK. and I never had to change a diaper.

  60. ZenB!tch says:

    @madpoe I didn’t even think about women who can’t have kids – since avoiding the situation has been my thing for the last 20 years.

    Her comment is beyond insensitive to women who can’t have children and want them. It reminds me of Gisele’s breast feeding comment that really hurt one of my closest friends who was then the mother of an infant that she TRIED to breast feed but couldn’t. Gee? Does that mean she’s a bad mom?

  61. DreamyK says:

    I can’t even wrap my mind around that statement. I’m a mom of 2. They are the joy of my life, but they don’t define me as a person.

    Actually, my deepest want was a college degree. Call me crazy, but I needed that to be able to support the kids I eventually wanted.

  62. carrie says:

    good for her and someone can explain me why she photographied every day by paps ! Photo ops?

  63. curleque says:

    #45 Hautie: You nailed it. Motherhood is the only way she, like a lot of women, keep their husbands. It’s easier and cheaper to stay together than divorce.

  64. fizXgirl314 says:

    ummmm no bitch… whenever I think about having children I get anxiety. Not everyone is cut from the same effing cloth. I probably will have children because I think not having children might be a decision that is more susceptible to regret than not having them. If you think about it, when you’re old and the kids are out the house, it’s nice to have the occasional company without all the hassles. It’s probably one of those things that have a decent return in the long term but with lots of start up costs. In any case, my point is that I will probably have to convince myself to have children, it’s not something that seems to be “instinctive”. If I don’t have them, I probably won’t cry about it that much… so yeah she’s just an idiot. Stop perpetuating these stupid stereotypes that are already bringing women down. YOU want to have children, go ahead but don’t attribute it to everyone. Some people want to have a career… ever heard of Oprah? Stupid bitch…

  65. bren says:

    What is the big deal? She didn’t say that all women should have kids.
    I don’t have kids and it is not my deepest want but I not offended by this comment. She is entitled to her feelings.

  66. journey says:

    the comment raised my hackles too, but as egocentric as hollywoodites are, if she were making a movie about cheese, she’d probably say that EVERYONE has a deep deep longing to put on one of those Wisconsin cheese hats and parade around in public. if her movie were about gerry butler, she’d say that every man, woman, animal and inanimate object on the planet lusts after the newly skinny gerry. whatever movie an actor is making is the MUST see movie because it taps into EVERYONE’S deepest psyche. they get tunnel vision. and they’re stupid.

  67. WOM says:

    “There’s no deeper want for a woman” than to be a mother, says the Hollywood mom…

    As much as I like a celebrity gang bang, I’d like to see the non-truncated version of this quote. It’s very possible that Garner’s words are more measured and less inflammatory than the way they’re presented in the article.

    Personally I do think that at their end of their lives many, many childless women AND MEN, regret not having children. Recently I was at a family reunion, and a group of my older relatives (ages 65 and up) were lamenting not having children. It makes me weepy just thinking about it.

  68. You don't say says:

    Even if she is promoting a movie, it is still not the right thing to say as it is not qualified with “for me or most women”. She made it sound like “all women”.

    I respect women who want to be mothers and the work it takes, but it is not for all women and she does not acknowledge that. It may be her life and that is fine as she has to keep that image of perfect mom, perfect family alive and well.

  69. jc126 says:

    Even though some women make offensive statements all the time about motherhood and non-motherhood, I wouldn’t take this comment from JG as necessarily offensive; she might just mean that if you do want children, and don’t have them, that want is deep and burning. Didn’t say that all women SHOULD or DO want them. I guess if you take it as “it’s a deeper want than any childfree woman could ever feel for what she wants in life” it could be offensive, but it’s presented that way.
    I agree that certain moms make obnoxious comments to those without kids. ALL the time, sometimes without meaning to, sometimes very much meaning it. For instance, it’s offensive and wrong to say things like how selfish people are until they have kids. Maybe true for YOU, not for everyone.

  70. Swanson Jakka says:

    Uh, actually some people DO think there’s more to life than getting laid and grunting out kid after kid. I can’t stand it when celebrities do something and then insist it’s how everyone should live.

  71. sbuttrflyy says:

    Why did ordinary women who choose not to have children get so offended by what this nice woman said? Every time someone mentions babies on this site you all get your panties in a knot.Good grief. And stop saying women get pregnant bc of societal pressures..that is a dumb thing to say. Most women get pregnant bc they want children and want to be mothers. I am glad that none of you self righteous baby bashing women who think like this are not mothers. God knows we do not need any more narcissistic or un-nurtured children.

  72. tiny teacher says:

    I rather make art than people- that’s my biggest want and the driving force in my life.

    I respect all the moms out there but often it feels like the respect for non-moms is not reciprocated.

  73. Calli Pygian says:

    I have three children, and her comment annoys me. Not because I regret my choice, but because her excessively broad generalization shows ignorance.

    Not all women want to be or should become mothers. Just read CNN’s justice page any given day of any week.

  74. aenflex says:

    Wow everyone’s so pissed. Maybe all you childless people can’t really have an informed opinion on this, since you don’t know how it feels to be a mother.

  75. Chismosa says:

    I think she meant that being a mother is a very primal instinct implying that cannot be satisfied any other way. Many childless women can have deep drives….adventure, career, romance etc…..but those are things that have many avenues. Being a mother pretty specifically cannot be replicated by other means. Does that make sense? I do agree that motherhood is primal for many women. Of course its ok that many women choose not to have kids and I dont think her comment implied its “less than.” There was good context to the statement, other than she was referencing her character.

  76. ally says:

    Jesus, she obviously means biologically, not mentally. Geesh.

  77. rosmarina says:

    I really, really hope this quote was taken out of context. Do we ever hear from any man, celebrity or otherwise, that “there’s no deeper want for a man” to be a father?

  78. Tiffany says:

    I don’t plan on having kids, but it is ABSURD for people to hate on her for saying this. So many women say variations of this, and it IS what females are biologically created and driven to do: reproduce.

    All of you who are so outraged about this are just looking for something to complain about. Seriously.

  79. the original bellaluna says:

    rosmarina – Nope. Their deepest want is to get laid. From a very early age.

    Now, All, see how offencive my statement was? So let’s all get our knickers in an uproar over that statement.

    ;) Smile; relax; breathe.

  80. Bamafresh says:

    Ugh, that comment is just too much pressure. Maybe that’s how she feels, but don’t put it on every other woman.

  81. Heatherrr says:

    I dont know what it is, but we are just wired to hate on each other, my sisters.

  82. Pirouette says:

    I understand the defensiveness on both sides. Neither choice for women is valued or appreciated.

    Seriously, women recieve no social credibility or reward for choosing to occupy the pre-determined space of motherhood. It is what is expected of you and, therefore, you should not be rewarded for doing your job. Further, mothers are subjected to severe scrutiny and judgement on a constant basis, leaving many feeling inadequate. In most families, the woman is the primary caretaker of the children, while also working a full time job.

    And that is why the cultural obligation to bear children has been solidified in the minds and hearts of female children since the day they were born. Sometimes, people get confused between socialization and personal choice.

    But hey, if feeling like the desire to have kids is part of your individual identity that is unhindered by outside influence makes you feel better about your situation, who am I to interrupt.

  83. Pirouette says:

    And, The Original Bellaluna, isn’t it you that stated you knew you wanted 4 kids by the time you were 6 years old? Isn’t that the same thing as wanting to get laid?

    Wink wink. Teasy-tease. All in lighthearted fun, right?!

  84. bokchoi says:

    Her daughter looks so cute and normal and happy, and it must be in part to her skills as a parent. Seriously, her glasses and bright red shoes and jumping for joy are killing me.

    That being said, “there’s no deeper want”? Lady if that was true, there wouldn’t be a single child out there waiting on adoption.

  85. junk573r says:

    @ aenflex – This is the exact kind of attitude that everyone here is getting pissed about. I don’t think it takes having a child to qualify for the right to be offended. That was kind of a shitty remark to make.

  86. Stacey says:

    I wanted kids, had them but now they are teenagers…I love ‘em…just don’t really WANT them anymore. It’s the kitten-cat thing.

  87. JaneWonderfalls says:

    @Bobbie Less traffic and less disease!

  88. the original bellaluna says:

    Oh, Pirouette, you’re a sly one! But you’re also on the money. Except for the 4 kids “by” 6 years old thing – I knew I WANTED 4 kids at age 6.

    And yes – ;) – all in good fun!

  89. lisa says:

    This movie does not come out until next year or is that a typo.

    If not why in the world are they releasing a trailer 1 year in advance.

    I love mommies.. I have one.. but I don’t want to be one. I love being a sister, friend, aunt and god mother.. but I don’t want to be a mommy.

    I hate that in the year 2011 we still don’t understand and accept that women are not all the same. And Thank you God for that.

    besides there are way too many women that though they should be mommies and found out too late that they were wrong. Problem is it is too hard and sometime near impossible to fix a child’s life when you mess it up.

  90. TG says:

    @Hautie – Your comments are funny and gave me a good laugh for the day. But, I am curious why everyone says Jen is a hustler and plans all her photos. Someone must know something I don’t. I am not arguing just that to me she seems very genuine and maybe I am just proof that her hustle is working but her photos with her children she always seems to be genuinely happy to be a mom with them. They are some of the most genuine ones I see in Hollywood. I always wish I could be that happy all the time. Maybe that in itself shows how fake she but for some reason I have never questioned her photos. Though I do agree with you about her trading up from her first marriage to Michael Vartan, who is so hot then to Affleck. Well, she got 2 kids out of him which is more than JHO managed to get.

  91. Jen says:

    I don’t have kids and am not particularly dying to have any right now, but I get what she’s saying. I know women who want to be mothers so badly, but can’t be. It’s definitely the most powerful kind of “want” I’ve ever seen, and it’s heartbreaking to see that it can’t be fulfilled.

  92. Well THAT was a clever thing to say…

    I like Jennifer Garner, I like kids, I think motherhood is fine for those who choose it, but really. I have no such want.

  93. Denise says:

    I respect all of the mothers out there, including mine and Jennifer seems to be a good one. However, I don’t have any and I probably never will and I don’t think that my life is lacking.

  94. Jenni says:

    Maybe she’s just empathizing with a friend who is struggling with a deep desire and infertility? But ugh. If she said “to have a child is the deepest desire of any PERSON” (like, because it’s a biological, evolutionary survival instinct, yadda) I’d be able to stomach her assertion a bit more. But of course, no one ever includes men in these type assertions. this is just a status quo approved thing for women to say in this “feminism isn’t necessary anymore” world we supposedly inhabit.

  95. meg says:

    I totally agree with your comment, ‘i don’t like that she’s suggesting the urge to become a mother is somehow greater than the urge to go after other life goals’ very well put and i totally agree :)

  96. Elizabeth says:

    @ Reece

    Re : Hell, I’ve never been to Canada

    Well, darling, we are waiting for you! A trip to Niagara Falls? Flashy Toronto? Out west to the Rockies for some glacier skiing? (I’ve never done that either) Or a visit to beautiful Hamilton to see me! The possibilities are endless!

  97. Jenni says:

    @Kaiser re “Doesn’t she have any friends without kids?” -I saw an interview with Garner and Jessica Biel in Marie Claire mag, where Biel is asked if she wants kids. Garner is sympathetic like “oh you must get sick of that question right?” At the time, I thought, “What a considerate friend, not smug or unthoughtful or presumptuous.” She does strike me as a nice person….but her comment is like an annoying pastor’s wife.

  98. mimi says:

    I would love to have many children, but that is how I feel, and it’s very personal.

    That is wrong to claim that for all women, and if she must- why “women”?

    Why not talk about any person- to become a parent.

    There are men who would love to have children and that’s their biggest desire.

    Why turn it into a female thing.
    It’s not. Some PEOPLE would love to be parents and that’s their deepest want, and some wish to achieve other things or take a different approach.

  99. lola says:

    EYEROLL. What a kiss ass.

  100. Jenni says:

    @Mimi ITA. @aenflex, You’re not speaking to the issue at hand. She’s talking about the desire to have a kid, which is something different from actually having one, actual motherhood. Plenty of women get pregnant having NEVER had the “desire” to be a mother. But they luckily end up loving the kid and happy to be mothers. There are plenty of other women who had the desire to have a kid, but actually hate being mothers. measuring the depth of desire is impossible and belittles the desires of women who deviate from the so-called norm. Anyway, a lot of the comments as well as original post is from women who do have kids and don’t agree with the suggestion that the “deepest” wish of every woman begins and ends with procreation. My own facts of life are that I want a child but I also want one other thing just as much, and still another thing even more. Maybe my desires are less deep than other womens, but there’d be no way to measure that.

  101. Susan O. says:

    I think she’s a good mom and truly feels that – but not every woman has those sentiments; and not all of those who do feel them so strongly.

  102. honeybunz says:

    I know its a touchy issue but I personally **and yes I’m a mother** believe that its a part of a womans purpose of being created is to have children…I know there are women who choose for whatever personal reasons to not have kids but God created man and woman to be fruitful and multiply!!! And I think a lot of excuses that some women who choose to not have kids deem to be selfish…ie career the condition of the world etc…but as I said its a touchy issue and some women feel they don’t have to have kids if they don’t want to just like some ppl don’t have to believe in God if they don’t want to and just like even those that do believe in God don’t follow His commands and statutes if they don’t want to and those who feel different about those particular topics such as myself will just have to accept that and appreciate that we don’t have that certain mentality…idk I just think that obviously reaching into 2011 the world has done away long ago with doing as God says in favor for what they want themselves **shrug** but to each his own I guess…

  103. B says:

    Yeah, I hate statements like these. I hate the notion that you’re not a complete or “real” woman if you don’t want to have a child. It’s actually a good thing that not every single woman is out there reproducing. A lot of women aren’t fit to be parents but won’t admit it or don’t realize it or don’t care, and the world is already pretty overpopulated to begin with.

    People rail on me for being “selfish” for not wanting children, but in this day and age, I think that it’s a bit selfish to want more than one or two.

    I just really resent this child-obsessed society. I’m sick of being told that I’m abnormal, selfish, misguided, self-centered, naive, immature, or that I’ll “change my mind.” Not every woman wants a child, and not everyone has to have a child…or should have a child. There’s a lot more that women can do now in the modern day, and I’d like to embrace that. Cool for anyone who wants a kid, but you’re no better than I am.

  104. kc says:

    You know-referring to women who DO have children as “breeders” or acting as if people who have kids are brainless and stupid might be considering throwing stones from a glass house.
    If you want people to respect YOUR choices, perhaps a little respect for theirs? Women can be so awful to each other.

  105. zesty says:

    You know what statement I dislike–and have read it on two different comments today? The “don’t get your panties in a wad/bunch” phrase. That sounds so condescending and gross. Ick.

    I read something on this movie yesterday and it said the boy was seven, not ten.

    Now back to your regularly scheduled programming…

  106. Valerie says:

    The irony behind all of this is that most of you have made vicious and prejudicial comments towards women who are mothers. I have never read so many bitter comments made by so many bitter people in my life! If you don’t want children then don’t have them, but don’t call it “breeding” (we aren’t dogs, cats or horses) or make an ignorant comment about how your superficial and greedy want of owning shoes is more important than a human being. And if you’re a grown adult complaining about you’re “friends” on Facebook I & every other educated person out there is judging you. Facebook is a virtual world, not the real world. I completely respect women who choose to not have children and focus on their careers. However, I do not respect women who are flippant towards motherhood. There is no harder job than raising a child–that includes being a CEO. I’m an educator. I know how hard it is to raise a child. If it were so easy, then criminals wouldn’t exist. Everyone would be perfect, but that’s not the case is it? No one knows how you will feel about being a mother until you have a child. No one. You won’t know if you want to work full time, part time, or stay home until you have that child. Choosing to not have children and focus on your career is just as valid as being a working mom or being a stay at home mom. I was under the impression that the feminist movement had given us the freedom to make our own personal choices without being attacked by other women. Clearly these bitter posts prove otherwise.

  107. ladybert62 says:

    I am with you all the way @Sloane Wyatt – ditto my life and my decisions and hubby agrees 100%! babies, babies, babies, blah, blah, blah – there is no deeper want in me than NOT to be around babies!!!

  108. mln76 says:

    Obviously Jen is happy to be a mom and is a good mom Good for her. But this statement makes me think she has the same ‘syndrome’ a lot of women with children have. She thinks having what she has will make everyone happy. In regards to her bank account she’s probably right but not everyone wants children. Not every woman who has children feels completely fulfilled or like their greatest wish was granted. That doesn’t mean a woman who is passionate about something besides her kids loves them any more or less than Garner loves her daughters or is a bad person. I hate to say it but some women who think that way end up resenting their kids as they age because they’ve lived vicariously through their kids and never developed their own identity.

  109. Atticus says:

    Good grief, people take a simple comment – that is clearly taken out of its context, which very likely relates to a specific role of a woman who can’t conceive – and just run the hell away with it. Jennifer Garner did not say “all women should have babies and if they don’t have a natural, biologically driven desire to do so, something is wrong with them and they are selfish and horrible and not real women”. But apparently that’s what some people inferred.

    I’ll be honest, I clicked on the link because I read the headline and thought, OH NO SHE DI’INT and was feeling like many of the posters. But then I read the rest of the post and realized that it was not just a blanket statement about women’s desire to have kids.

    Save your rebuke for someone like Gisele, who DID throw a mandate into the mix and said it should be a law that mothers have to breastfeed. Jennifer Garner’s comment is nowhere near that and yet some people are taking it there. She’s not making public policy on childbearing. She’s making an observation about a fictional character she plays in a movie that was made for the sheer purpose of entertainment.

    Women really do attack each other. Damned if you do, and damned if you don’t. I choose to work outside the home and I get knocked all the time for not being a real mother and staying home with the kids. I have SAHM friends who get knocked for not working a “real job” (by the way, staying home with the kids is as real as it gets). Have kids, don’t have kids…work outside the home, stay home with the kids…get married, stay single. Whatever! Live YOUR life, make YOUR decisions and let others do the same. Not really that complicated.

  110. Courtney says:

    Jen Garner is the typical modern day brain dead actress why give her press some women don’t want kids until their pregnant for the first time and then go through a miscarriage and go on to have other children whom they adore. it’s just promoting a movie what’s the harm in what she said it’s a free country

  111. marybeth18 says:

    I am a 32 year old single childless woman. I am undecided about children at this point; many factors would have to come into play before I make that decision, and I envision my life going both ways.

    I get defensive about comments like Jen Garner’s, because the implication is that I am somehow “abnormal” for not wanting what “every woman wants” and my life is thus less than.

    She probably didn’t mean this, and I imagine would be upset to realize that people interpreted her comment this way. We’re the first generation to actively choose what sort of family situation we want, and change is never easy.

  112. japangel says:

    My mother-in-law tells me that from the time my husband was a small boy his “deepest desire” (I’m paraphrasing, but that was the gist) was to be a father.

    I’d say both my husband and I had an equally strong biological urge to “breed”…as some of you like to put it. LOL.

    “Breeders” is a pretty judgmental term that sort of seems to imply that we have no other outside interests or that child-rearing is our only contribution to humanity? Well, we are artists and scientists and also manage to volunteer within out community in between f*cking and popping out children. Most parents I know seem to be just as well rounded as their “non-spawning” counterparts! HA!

    I have to agree that there seems to be a lot of bitterness on the part of women on this site who are childless by choice. If you’re so comfortable with your choice than why get so irritated by a comment made by a silly celebrity…or by anybody else, for that matter, who makes different choices/has different priorities than you?

  113. 9 out 10 experts recommend says:

    I have kids but i don’t treat women who don’t wish to have any like they are lepers. It’s a choice, perhaps Jen forgot about the feminist movement? I am not a feminist but we all have choices. Let’s face it the brunt of child rearing is on the woman.
    Also to add as a parent I still have little patience for young children who aren’t my own. I remember telling my sister that I thought having kids that I could handle any other kids screaming and throwing tantrums- but I can’t. I like older kids 5 and up.

  114. Kim says:

    She is expressing her want – i dont think she meant ALL women.

  115. HRH says:

    I think she just means that if you want it, you feel that want deeply.

  116. Sophie says:

    Yeh, we read a lot that she is a great mother and blah, blah. Like other hollywood mothers or regular mothers are not great. In my opinion only a very small percentage of mothers are not the perfect ones and I use the word “perfect’ if we go by the books. Every family is different and uses different methods to educate and raise their children. So JG is not an exception at all to be applauded for being a perfect mother.
    That statement of hers is just stupid and even more it reinforces the fact that only motherhood makes her happy – not marriage and not Ben Affleck.

  117. Tazina says:

    They are asked questions. They spout something off without thinking too much about how limiting and dumb it was. Maybe that’s what she did. Because one person’s want is not another’s.

  118. LBeees says:

    Read the header and thought “ruh roh”, the ladies will be out in force for this one!

    I’m not offended, not a mom, and am just thinking please people, don’t take everything so seriously!

    I bet if our conversations were being recorded and analyzed by thousands of people, there would be a LOT of stuff to be angry about because people love picking apart meanings and drawing their own personal conclusions. Which is okay, I guess, except when we feel it a little too personally.

    Oh whatever. Never mind. Everyone, carry on!

  119. Flim says:

    Ah, no. She doesnt have any childless friends. Childless friends do not provide playdates, free babysitting, or countless hours of rhapsodizing about the joys of having children.

  120. labikina says:

    I remember reading some blind item gossip when Garner was on Alias that she had an abortion. The baby was Vartan’s not Foley’s even though she was still married to the latter. Her career was just taking off and apparently she was not ready to risk her career success at the time to be a mom, so this all seems really hypocritical now. She should just admit that people change as do their priorities and not every woman has that deep need.

  121. Becky says:

    @Atticus-I completely agree with your comment re: women being “damned if you do, damned if you don’t”…it’s so true-no matter what choice you make there will be other women criticizing you. It gets really old and tiresome. Men don’t get into doing this to each other.

    As someone who does not have kids for reasons that are complicated, I get tired of having to defend/explain my “childfree” (or “childless”) status. I think that’s why many of us who are without kids sometimes sound so defensive…when you live in a world where people question why you don’t have kids on a regular basis it wears on you. Quite frankly, as dramatic as it sounds it hurts sometimes-it really does. I know there are people out there who think I am “not really a woman” because I don’t have kids (someone actually told me this once!). I love kids-I just get tired of women who act like my life isn’t valid or important because I’m not a mother. Live and let live, people. Let’s not put each other down for making different choices.

  122. Sugar says:

    Oh, Atticus. I never comment, because you always word my thoughts better than I can. (see how awful that sentence is? seriously though, I always agree with you. haha )

  123. Ashley says:

    I get confused as to why this must erupt into a mud-slinging, demeaning, and judgemental war. It would take a lot more than a (possibly out-of-context) statement like this to rile me up to such levels.

    I don’t see kids in my future, but you never know how plans change. Some women see children as vitally important, some don’t, and some are in between. Who cares? Their views have no bearing on how I choose to live my life. That was supposed to be the beauty of the feminist movement; the ability to live out (and yes, openly express) our multifaceted views and opinions free from condemnation and retaliation.

  124. Anonny says:

    Other people’s children are my birth control.

  125. Ella says:

    Anyway, Joel Edgerton – another hot Aussie boy! He is a fine actor as well.

  126. MorticiansDoItDeader says:

    @japangel, yes! And thank you.

    @Bobbie, well said :)

    @thea, @madpoe, as someone who struggled with infertility, but went on to have two healthy boys, I say with all sincerity that I hope you will someday get what you desire.

    @Becky, You owe no one an explaination. Perhaps those nosey people inquiring about the state of your uterus should be ashamed of themselves for asking such personal questions.

  127. original kate says:

    i have a deep want for martinis, meals that don’t come with a plastic prize, a house that doesn’t reek of diapers and vacations that don’t involve mickey mouse.

    call me selfish but i am happy as a clam without kids and have never questioned my decision.

  128. ViktoryGin says:

    @ japangel,

    refer to Becky’s comment.

    Do not think Joel Edgerton is cute. At all.

  129. Atticus says:

    Thanks Sugar! :)

    Becky, I hope you told off whoever said you weren’t a real woman for not having kids! You do not have to justify yourself or defend yourself to anyone. It is YOUR life. You don’t have to explain your choices to anyone. Nobody does! I totally understand how it could be wearing and how it could hurt…HUGS to you…keep on keeping on!

    I have two kids and I get “why aren’t you having more”. Um, yeah. I had cancer and no longer have a uterus, that’s why. So put that in your pipe and smoke it, asshole! (that’s what I say when people get too nosy/pushy with me)

  130. DetRiotgirl says:

    I have no deep want for kids at this point in my life either, but I have to take some mild offense at those of you who are throwing out such harsh words towards women who do want children. I know I would not like my mother to be described as simply being a “breeder”.

    My mother is a complex, well rounded human being with many thoughts and interests outside of me and my life. She also worked very hard while I was growing up to keep up with me, a more than full time job, the cooking and the majority of the housework. My mother deserves all the respect in the world. No one in my life has tried harder to be everything at once, or impressed more life lessons upon me. I would hope that you all have similar feelings about your own mothers too.

    I agree that Jen’s blanket statement is untrue and slightly offensive. But, before you trash all women who want children as “not having their own identity”, please think of your own mothers. Maybe some of you had stepford wife parents with zero personality outside of being your mom. But, I think the majority of us did not.

  131. Sucker for the Corps says:

    I only got thru the first 30 comments. Some of yall seriously need to chill. I hardly doubt she was directing those comments to YOU PERSONALLY. Jeez….get over yourself.
    If you want a child, great! If you dont, thats fine too. But judging by all these “Im proud to be kid free and f you for thinking I should be otherwise” kind of leads me to believe that maybe youre a little unhappy with yourself and your supposed wonderful lives. I mean, youre taking a D list celebrity’s comments to heart and you genuinely think its about you.

  132. G says:

    When did Jennifer Garner turn into a right-wing conservative suburban motherhood-is-everything type of chick? She used to be Elektra, remember? I’m pretty sure all the women have covered it already, so I’m just not going to bother with debunking her statement. I just want to say, I miss the old Jen, you know? But when I really think about it, maybe this was her all along… remember Dude, Where’s My Car?

  133. Melancholy says:

    @sbuttrfly
    “And stop saying women get pregnant bc of societal pressures..that is a dumb thing to say.”

    That actually is true of MY mother, so it can be true of some people.

    What bugs me is the people that say becoming a mother is what makes a woman complete and fulfilled. That implies that all the daughters they had are worthless humanoids unless and until they churn out a baby too. It’s just a cycle of pressure, and the only way to be worthwhile is to keep it going.

  134. Erm says:

    Her kid is really cute.

    @LBeees, “ruh roh” indeed! I respect a woman’s (or man’s) choice not to have children, but sometimes the language used to defend that choice is just offensive. “Breeders”, seriously? It’s hypocritical to ask for respect for your personal choices, and then act really disrespectful towards others for their personal choices.

    I get that women who choose not to have kids are harassed quite often, but so are mums (my God, mums are judged from the moment of conception probably to the moment of their death), and so is everyone else who ever goes out into society. We’re all judged… it’s how we deal with it that shows us whether we deserved to be judged in the first place.

  135. Amanda G says:

    Ugh, I hate when women say stuff like this. I have NO desire to be a mother.

  136. Trashaddict says:

    Damn, and I thought I took myself way too seriously.
    Everyone knows the deepest want for a woman is CHOCOLATE. (yes, I have kids. yes, I love them. Yes, I love my job).

  137. Miss Thang says:

    Wow! This is such an inflammatory topic!

    I can only offer my own experience, I guess.

    I agree with her. Not every woman wants to be a mother, not every woman SHOULD be a mother. I have friends who want to be mothers and those who do not, and in my experience the desire for a child goes deeper than any desire I’ve ever seen in a woman. My friends who don’t want kids are passionate about things, some of them are VERY passionate about them, but that’s not depth.
    To be frank, I found several things listed above as “deep wants” laughable. Paying off loans? Traveling? Really? You think you want those things as deeply as a woman wants a child? Maybe you only don’t know better because you have no way of knowing how deeply a woman who wants a child really wants one. If that’s the case, you’re not paying attention to the women around you.
    It doesn’t make a woman less of a woman or less of a human or less important or less valuable in any way if she doesn’t want a child. Again, not every woman should want children and I love and value my friends who don’t want children every bit as much as those who do.

    Why do we always have to think that someone with different values from us thinks their better? It’s not better to want children, and she didn’t say it was. It’s a difference and there are (clearly) many of us women on both sides of this difference.
    I’m certain she didn’t mean what most of the women here are reading from what she said. I’m also certain that she’s 100% right.

  138. hairball says:

    @hunnybunz, I know this comment sounds b*tchy, but I’m not saying it to be one. You believe your statement and that is fine. It’s when you add the judgment and I’m someone more ‘Christian’ that irritates me.

    Your statement where God made men and women to be faithful and multiply and if the ‘woman’ (I notice you only said woman) doesn’t do this she is selfish. You also threw in how this also shows no one believes in God anymore because women are not having tons of babies.

    This is exactly why my husband and I are not raising our daughter Christian or any religion in particular. We raise her to believe in God, that everyone is worshipping the same God, how to be a good person and God is Love and not hate.

    With your logic, a woman is also forsaking God by not obeying her husband’s every word as well I suppose? I just can’t with the Christianity brainwashing, I just can’t.

    @Celebitchy: I completely hear you. My daughter will be 6 soon and we have decided she will definitely be our only child. I no longer care nor feel agonized about her being “an only child”.

    I love her to death, would never want to be without her, but I also want and need more to my life then raising children. I can’t tell you how many parents look absolutely miserable these days or disconnected with their texting and smart phones. They look miserable. Their lives are not their own.

    It irritates me to no end comments I have had to endure (but now refuse) on when (not if) we’re having another child. My mother-in-law was basically told to go to hell over her ‘comments’ over this subject.

    A friend on FB recently wrote she was a little sad that her daughter (only child) was leaving her crib for a bed. Someone posted back, “means it’s time to fill that crib with another baby!” Are we just baby machines??

    I worked hard at college and through my twenties at my career. My husband (in the same profession) continues to grow and get better. I want to return to another part of my life then being a mother.

    I can be a wonderful mother and also have a life of my own. I am not here to simply be a baby making machine and put my life on hold until they are 18.

    Notice it is the women who put their lives on hold while the men continue on with their professions / goals / adult conversation etc? It is mainly the women who deal with the kids, because the husband is at work. If a woman is ok with this – awesome. Don’t start with a woman is selfish and turning her back on God by not birthing babies every year and putting her life on hold while she is a nanny and maid for 20+ years.

    No. I am a good mom and am proud of my family. I feel sorry for women who were pressured to have kids and have lost themselves and are unhappy zombies. It is NOT fair to not ask, but expect a woman to give up her life if that is not what she wants to do. For if she does not want kids, then she is giving up her life.

    No one should be made to feel inferior if they have 0 or 8 kids – personal choice.

  139. Melancholy says:

    “Why do we always have to think that someone with different values from us thinks their better?”

    @Miss Thang, you just contradicted yourself!
    When you say
    “To be frank, I found several things listed above as “deep wants” laughable. Paying off loans? Traveling? Really? You think you want those things as deeply as a woman wants a child? Maybe you only don’t know better because you have no way of knowing how deeply a woman who wants a child really wants one.”

    you are CLEARLY stating that your wants and values are better!

  140. Miss Thang says:

    @Melancholy I’m sorry, but you are mistaken. I said nothing about it being better to want one thing over another (in fact I specifically said it’s not better, just a different want), I only said it’s a DEEPER want and I find it laughable that someone may think they want to pay off a loan as DEEPLY as the want of a woman who longs for a child.
    I did not mean that wanting a child is BETTER than wanting to pay off loans, I only meant exactly what I said.

    ALSO, I did not say anywhere in my post that I personally want or do not want a child, so there is no way you could rightly read into my post that I think my wants and values are better. I did not say what my wants or values are, only what I’ve observed in other women.

  141. HannahG says:

    On reading your headline I took offence with the quote. However, I now realise that’s not exactly what she said – I would suggest that she means that for women who desperately want a child that there is no deeper want than that.

  142. Chris says:

    Jenifer is entitled to her opinion just as those who are criticising her are entitled to theirs. However, I’d like to think we could cut her some slack and just assume that she was talking about herself, rather than going out of our way to nitpick her words to justify slagging her off.

  143. eternalcanadian says:

    I’m not sure how to take Jennifer’s comment, “There’s no deeper want for a woman than to be a mother,” because it implies all women want to be mothers and those that don’t are abnormal freaks of nature, or the only thing a woman can do with her life is to have babies not cure cancer, or that the only thing women want out of life is to be a mother not have a job or travel or read Celebitchy.

    Sometimes I think actors should just not try to act all cerebral or like they have a PhD or something because saying things like that are just going to offend a lot of people.

  144. Poppy says:

    Some women are cut out to be mothers and some are cut out to be Auntie Mames (like me).

  145. Sloane Wyatt says:

    breed·er

    1. an animal, plant, or person that produces offspring or reproduces.

    I meant in my comment “choosing to not be a breeder puts you under unwelcome scrutiny and subject to idiotic comments” that choosing to be a person who does not reproduce has as much value as a person who does choose to reproduce.

    I do not demean anyone for their choices in life. I did intend to express how tired I am of hearing a very personal and valid choice become fodder for criticism and denigrating remarks.

    Some people do have kids thoughtlessly and don’t really seem to care about them once they are here, and I do think our world would be a better place if having children wasn’t considered “a woman’s deepest want” and childlessness wasn’t deemed as less than.

  146. radiobleep says:

    Really Jen? This offends me. Thanks for setting women back about 100 years. Speak for yourself.

  147. TheNaughtyOne says:

    I normally don’t post, just lurk, but I feel compelled to throw my own two cents in.

    Jennifer Garners comment: “there’s no deeper want for a woman” than to be a mother really strikes the wrong chord with me. That might be true for her, but she certainly doesn’t speak for me or/and the thousands of women that don’t want children. I might overreact here, but I feel it’s somehow demeaning to women that don’t want to be mothers. I understand that she might have been over joyous about her own feelings, but she could’ve/should’ve phrased it differently.

    I never had this DEEP feeling to have a child. I never wanted children, never thought of having children. I admit being selfish and egotistical and never wanted to put my energy into raising a child. I never even wanted to get married. Well, that one lasted until I met my husband in my late 20s and married him when I was 33 years old. We are married almost 20 years now.

    Looking back, I never once regretted not having a child. We clarified that issue before we married and thank god my husband was on the same page with me. I can’t tell you however, how much negativity I had to deal with, because I didn’t wanted kids. In my early to mid 20s, I found excuses why I didn’t planned yet to have a child. What was easy because I wasn’t seriously dating anyway. In my late 20s I got tired of thinking up excuses and I stuck with the truth and that was when the gloves came off and I had to listen to all kind of negative comments, including that I was not a real women because I didn’t want kids. That comment came from the husband of a friend, that had 3 kids, had minimal to do with and were raised, you could say, by their mother. He didn’t even bother taking his son to ballgames with him, but he was quick passing judgment on me. Needless to say, he found himself meeting the Bee from Hell. He was not the only man that made comments back then, but his comment was by far the most insulting one. However, most negative comments sadly came from other women.

    After I got married, the questions continue. “When do you going to have kids?” “You don’t get any younger, isn’t it time for you guys to think about children?” Whenever I said: My husband and I decided not to have children, I was looked at like there is something seriously wrong with us. The funny thing is, these comments always came from outsiders, not from my family. After all they knew my stance when it came to kids. The comments after the marriage and not wanting kids, I just don’t listened anymore. A lot of them I think were born out of envy, probably a lot before my marriage too. After all I/we could do whatever we wanted, had more money to spend and didn’t had to take little humans in consideration. I always loved kids and babies. I loved babysitting them, but after the kids left, it was “out sight, out of mind”. I didn’t gave them a second thought and not once did a child make me want to have my own.

    Every woman has to make the decision child or no child for herself and shouldn’t be judged by that. Sadly we still have that negativity towards childless woman, also it’s not as bad anymore as it used to be. I say kudos to women that are honest and say: “No I don’t want children, that’s not for me.” After all, why should you rack your brain to find excuses for what/not want in your life.

    I never defined my identity as a woman by my ovaries and my womb. Just because I can procreate, doesn’t mean I have too or should. Not every woman is cut out to be a mother. The same with men. Not every man is cut out to be a father. But for some reason nobody questions their decision. There are enough people that have children that shouldn’t and for the wrong reasons. If my husband and I would’ve changed our mind about having a child, we would’ve had adopted one. There are enough children that suffer and don’t have a good home.

    Raising a child is the biggest, most important and difficult job. It’s not something that ends after a certain period of time. Motherhood is forever. Kudos to women that make the decision to take on the responsibility to raise a young human being.

    I couldn’t and wouldn’t want to do it.

    Sorry for the novel… :)

  148. Liz says:

    I miss Sydney Bristow.

  149. piedlourde says:

    26-year-old female here. I don’t want kids.

    I’M A MONSTER!!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tiv1UP-oHvs

  150. Truthful says:

    @Firecracker, I agree!

  151. Grace says:

    I not only don’t want children but I cannot have them. I’ve been appalled by how doctors have treated my health issues because they want to preserve a fertility that I’m not interested in. Comments like Garner’s are very offensive to me.

  152. orion70 says:

    @Valerie, you do realize that people become criminals for more reasons than simply that their mommies didn’t love them enough, right?

  153. hairball says:

    @thenaughtyone: very well said. I could not agree more. I love your statement that no one questions the guy over his not wanting kids. I also agree with the comment from the dad whose wife raised the kids. I’d love to hear her version.

    I can only imagine what it was like to hear those comments. People can be so f*cking ignorant and rude its unbelievable. I’m sorry you had to endure that. GOOD for you for sticking up for yourself. We have one daughter, who we wanted and has brought great joy but we only want one. The comments I (never my husband even from his own mom) were always directed to me. We met up with his old high school friends when our daughter was 15 months and some guy goes ‘so when are you going to have the next one already?’. As if we were doing something wrong.

    Even some of my friends by what they don’t say or their expressions I know think we’re doing a wrong by not giving our daughter a sibling. I really agonized over this for a long time and now I just do not care and just think our ridiculous the person is being and what their issue is to push me into having a child. It’s not like getting a potted plant for f*ck’s sake

  154. MommaQ says:

    Ugh she said for “Women”! Not Lesbians, baby murdering abortion lovers, or feminists, so chill out. She was only referring to women. The rest of you societal outliers can just chill out.

  155. Layzo says:

    I love my two daugthers and I love being a mom. That being said, it’s very presumptuous for her to say that every woman wants to be mother. That’s simply not true.

    And I have other deep needs than being just a mom. I hate when women take their role of being a mom to be of their whole entire existence. It’s another form of vapid and vacuous mentality.

    I get the whole being in love with your children and making such silly statements out of adoration or hormone induced state but really… there’s no need to say this because some women don’t want to have children and some women can’t have children. This minimalizes their needs.

  156. Chris says:

    @MommaQ: Wow what a rhetorical flurry. I like the cut of your gib.

  157. Valerie says:

    @Orion-spend one day in a high school & then talk to me about how not having a mommy & or daddy love someone enough to teach them respect, values & consequences doesn’t effect a child and their moral compass. Not everyone is cut out to be a parent.

  158. Ava says:

    Yeah, blanket statements like this piss me off. I’m so much more than a uterus, thanks Jennifer. I never played with dolls, does that mean I don’t identify as a woman?

  159. Kelly says:

    Her comment is offensive. It is a shame because I used to like her. She had such a promising career with Alias/Juno. Now not so much. I will not be buying tickets to any more of her movies that is for sure.

  160. B says:

    Nothing to add, except: those of us who have made the conscious decision to not have children generally prefer the term “Childfree”. “Childless” implies that our lives are lacking or that we are less of a woman for having not procreated.

    I know *I* prefer not to be lumped in with women who desperately want children, but are unable to have them.

  161. John Wayne Lives says:

    @ Boo, Irm, and Susan O…Well Said!

    @Valerie… That’s what I’m saying.

    FIRST.. let me say.. (cause I think I’m gonna need a preffacing statement lol) I was not a born Susie Homemaker. And life itself has lent change and wisdom (i hope) to my life perspective.

    Personally, I think you can’t really compare getting a certain job, or a vacation to Europe as the same kind of “want” she seems to be refering to in the context of having kids. The deep, intense yearning is something that is biological. Like putting a child to your breast for the first time. It’s part of the human condition.

    I agree with the poster that expresses some sadness thinking about her older-childless relations.
    My step-moms best friend and her hubs are childless by choice, and 20 years ago when I was still a teen, I remember thinking how brave and rebellious and adventurous and daring and exciting their lives were. They were living for themselves and living in a gloriously selfish manner I found appealing and wary of at the same time. But now, 20 years later, I am a grown woman in my own right with a family of 5, and their lives, with all it’s dash and flair, seem… i don’t know what the word is…I want to say empty, but I know I will get pummeled for it (ie..” don’t pity me, my life isn’t empty” etc)
    But that’s not really what I’m saying. I just see regret, I guess. All the “I don’t do diaper” statements have been replaced by a longing in her eyes watching mine and my sisters rollypolly babie and sunshiny children in the springtime of their lives.
    It’s one thing to delclare you never want children, but it’s another flavor, when you no longer have the option.
    And a biological urge like procreation has got to be hard to watch slip out of your fingers if you realize you’ve changed your mind and it’s too late.
    I just know, that not wanting children and wanting my life to be for me, after I had my first, all other desires seemed so finite in comparison. Not that they went away, just didn’t seem so important in the grand scheme or the cosmic sense of my life.
    There is magic that happens inside a woman, and I don’t mean physically, when she becomes a mother. It’s the most sacred thing I’ve ever experienced next to the love between my husband and I.
    We are not “breeders”, we are lifegivers and magic makers. We are the giver of kisses and cuddles, and the arms that help these budding people on the road of life. That is an awesome responsibility and privalege.
    And as a previous poster said, Isn’t that what Feminism is all about? The CHOICE we get to have. And I am happy raising my little feminists to choose whether or not they want to be mothers.
    I just want them to be happy in the life they choose. And my best friend, a child-want-less woman is the example I will point to if they choose not to have them. She is the single greatest source of love my children have outside the family, and has a freedom I still envy at times.
    And on a side note, being a woman who’s entire identiy is her children and family is just as unhealthy as a man who is a workaholic, so that’s not what I’m saying.
    just saying ;)

  162. hairball says:

    The above poster: I agree with you on how it feels to be a mom. But you can’t claim to know what an older child-free couple is actually feeling. And to also say they were living selfishly because they didn’t have children is a bit much. You have no idea what they did or do to contribute good in this world. To imply they are now wistful and sad on how ‘selfish’ they were is really a bit much and arrogant of you.

    Wasn’t there a bible story saying about a selfish rich.guy who died and went to hell and when he begged God to let him warn his family to not end up as him God said no that they should know about being kind to strangers as well. It is wonderful you are a good mom to your kids but being a good person is more then being good to your own family while calling others who don’t have kids selfish.

    Also as a mom of one I actually look at parents with more then one kid and feel a little.sorry for THEM. That of course is my own projection of my.feelings and could have nothing to do with reality. Yes feminism is about choice which includes not putting a halo on your head and thinking you are a better person for having kids. Incredibly arrogant and misguided. Maybe the older couple are really watching thinking glad .its not us.

  163. Atticus says:

    Wow, hairball – very articulate and I totally agree. It seems the only way people feel good about themselves is to look at other people’s lives and not only judge but disparage them, and think, well at least I’m not like THEM. Different strokes for different folks, man…live and let live.

    I know I get judged all the time for “only having two” or “working outside of the home” or this or that. I don’t give a shit. I’m happy in my life, feel very blessed to have the two healthy, happy kids I have, feel very lucky to have found a good man to share my life with, have a good paying job that allows me to have a personal life. So if someone wants to judge that and feel sorry for me for some reason…they’re wasting their time. I don’t give it any of mine.

  164. hairball says:

    Thanks Atticus, ditto.

  165. John Wayne Lives says:

    @ hairball…I am not claiming to know what every childless couple wants or feels. I am adding in my opinion of the subject at hand based on what I have seen and experience in the life circle I live within. Which is what most of us do.. ahem. I am speaking to what I personally know and have experienced. And the good they do in the world has nothing to do with whether or not they have children.
    And so what if I said they live “selfishly”. You do not know these people. I do. They are good, wonderful people I am pleased to know, but the woman I am refering to has quite litteraly said things such as “I’m too selfish to have children!”.
    And now, in her 50′s, she says very different things.
    So, actually, I do know.

  166. jemshoes says:

    I’m very late to this party, but LOL! What a thoughtless comment. I’m a mummy, but like so many posters here who have already said this, I did not pursue marriage and motherhood as my only calling in life. In fact, I waited some years before even feeling ready to try for a baby. And like you, CB, I’m definitely sitting on the fence about the second one.

    But I’m not going to take Jennifer’s comment out of context; she’s promoting this movie (which sounds awful) so of course she’s going to talk it up and make a strategic controversial comment to get some spotlight for herself (her image is reinforced) and this movie.

  167. Layzo says:

    @ JohnWayneLives so well said. I love how you explain the sacredness of having children. For me, it was two of the most important moments of my life and I can not explain how my world shifted the moment I saw the top of my daughter’s head right after I gave birth to her. I was just thinking today how fulfilled I am to be a mother.. and I wasn’t sure if I actually wanted to be a mom until I became one.

    And I agree that biologically we have innate desire to breed. I mean we would become extinct otherwise and perhaps JG was referring to that. But I do believe that a person can have a fulfilling life without children. For some, creating art, music, empire, or some other form of passion can be just of a strong need. Or maybe it’s a spiritual path that one has to explore sans kids.

    Also, one doesn’t need to give birth to be a mother. Just ask women who adopt. I am sure they will tell you that they love their child(ren) as much as if they had given birth to them. It’s such a touchy subject, for an obvious reason. I just don’t think JG went there with this blanket and ignorant statement. Maybe it was taken out of context.

  168. smh says:

    i want to be a mother too but it’s so infuriating when mothers say shit like this. yeah the only purpose for a woman is to produce kids. women can’t have higher ideals than this. if you want children that’s but stop with this backwards nonsense please. holy shit

  169. Regi says:

    Wow, relax! I can’t believe people take so much offense and can say such mean things. She didn’t mean anything hurtful and she has a right to her opinion, whether one agrees with it or not. She didn’t say say anything like what a good majority of you seem to be reading into it. Haha. You sound ridiculous.

  170. Regi says:

    Wow, relax! I can’t believe people take so much offense and can say such mean things. She didn’t mean anything hurtful and she has a right to her opinion, whether one agrees with it or not. She didn’t say anything like what a good majority of you seem to be reading into it. Haha.