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Motherhood Missed

Stories from Women Who Are Childless by Circumstance
Regular price £13.99
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Many women expect to become mothers but are childless through social rather than biological reasons - perhaps they haven't met the right person or they prioritised career or education earlier in life. Featuring international interviews by grief counsellor and researcher Lois Tonkin, this collection of first-person stories provides insight into the under-discussed situation of being childless by circumstance.

Each story highlights the different aspects of being childless by circumstance, as women move through their 30s, 40s, and 50s, and beyond their ages of fertility. The book explores feelings of grief and loss, and also how women adapt positively to their changed life expectations, finding excitement in the alternative, rich and complex shapes their lives have taken.
  • Published: Sep 10 2018
  • 196 x 130mm
  • ISBN: 9781785923371
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Press Reviews

  • Jessica Hepburn, author of the The Pursuit of Motherhood, 21 Miles: swimming in search of the meaning of motherhood and Founder of Fertility Fest (

    With love and care, Lois Tonkin has weaved an incredibly important book. This is the story of what it means to be a woman today - whether or not you have children. But for those women who are childless not by choice, the stories told here will help them to realise that they are not alone - that, in fact, they are part of a social phenomenon which is changing the way the world looks today. It is something that everyone needs to understand better, and Lois' book plays a vital part in achieving that. I thank and salute her.
  • Kathleen Guthrie Woods, Life Without Baby columnist and author of The Mother of All Dilemmas

    I nodded "yes, yes" as I read the stories Lois Tonkin has collected from women, like me, who are childless by circumstance. With candor, they articulate the self-blame, social isolation, layers of intangible losses, and indescribable grief we experience. Finally, we are no longer invisible, no longer alone.
  • Stephanie Phillips, Founder, World Childless Week

    Sadness, regret, happiness, acceptance and grief are all here in equal measures. As I read each story I feel amongst those whose hearts I recognise and understand. These women may be strangers but they feel like friends. I feel safe in their circle.