For someone whose only "must have" is a life that I like and am interested in, the unsolicited but persistent suggestion that by not having children I'd missed some mythical boat came as quite a shock - especially when the questioner wrinkled up their nose in some badly misguided effort to empathise with the barren creature they saw before them.
Why aren't you married?
Why don't you have children?
Was it a choice you made?
She also asks why female celebrities feel the need to share so much information about their bodily functions with us.
I've read pieces by actresses, presenters, singers, and MP's - all keen to share the details of their "Battle with IVF", "Endometriosis Hell" and "Too late for a Baby!" sagas. One even regaled us with the gory details of her exploding ovary.I should think not. Perish the thought. Shelagh has also coined a new word - the "freemale".
So when Cherie Blair's book came out recently, I wasn't surprised in the slightest that it included details of her "contraceptive equipment" and menstrual cycle. A woman is now required to talk about her fertility, at work or socially - and if she's a public figure, then in interviews and books, too. It's effectively become part of her CV. A sick child is always a winner if you're looking for some profile-enhancing coverage, or some kind of emergency procedure during or just after labour.
To illustrate, here's a game you can play: Google the first well-known woman who pops into your head, the nearer to 35 the better. Then see how many times she's been in print talking about her reproductive organs. You'll be amazed. Then, Google well-known men. Nada. Not a flicker. They're not in print declaring: "I've Got No Lead in My Pencil."
She's quite a girl, is Freemale. She wants to spend her time and money as she wishes, isn't looking for love, and is "child-free not childless. She thinks relationships are increasingly irrelevant, emotionally high risk, and a lot of hard work".If you click on the full ARTICLE and scroll to the bottom there's a very entertaining sub-feature entitled 'You know you're a freemale when...'
… the idea of getting married brings you out in a cold sweat.
… you go to bed in a facemask and socks.
… your impressive collection of newly bought shoes is not hidden away at the back of the wardrobe.
… the lid of your lavatory is always down.
… the only man who tells you what to do in your bathroom is your plumber.
… the only thing that needs looking after in your life is your cat - and yourself.
… the only time you read the lonely hearts column is for a laugh.… you're not waiting for Mr Right - or even Mr Right Now.
… all of your best male friends are gay.
Did I mention Shelagh's a mate?! :)