Loni Love Exclusive: “I couldn’t be where I am today if I had children.”
Children prevent success or they slow down the momentum toward achieving it. This isn’t a fact. There are power ladies with multiple children, a husband, and stay fly all the time wardrobe that do “have it all.” But when women in power publicly agree with the sentiment that marriage and kids are a detriment to professional success? Mothers, single ladies, and power girls who put off kids to win – listen.
Last year, Oprah expressed it in an interview with Barbara Walters, “I could not have had the life or the career in the way that I had it if I’d chosen to have children.” This month, Wendy Williams admitted, “I also feel like marriage and babies stunt a woman’s growth career wise…” The latest to cosign is comedian and actress Loni Love. As one of the stars of Kevin James’ hit sequel Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 Love is a multitasker in nabbing successful gigs. As a cohost on The Real, she sits alongside Tamar Braxton, Adrienne Bailon, Jeannie Mai, and Tamera Mowry-Housley.
And when she’s not on set, or on a comedy stage, or discussing her 2013 Simon & Schuster book “Love Him Or Leave Him But Don’t Get Stuck With The Tab;” Love is recording her syndicated radio show “Café Mocha” with co-hosts MC Lyte and Angelique. Clear on a conscious path to fulfill dreams, Love believes children would have been an anchor. “I couldn’t be where I am today if I had children. My focus would be on my children and home. And you can do it later in life,” says the 43-year old. “I made the conscious decision to not have kids and I didn’t want to be married. I have relationships. I date. But it takes a lot to say I’m going to be married and have children.”
True. There are some power ladies who’ve consciously waited till their early to mid-40s to have a child. And with the expansion of medical technology, egg freezing, and other assorted advances in baby making, women are waiting longer to have a family by choice. “The thing is being honest with yourself,” says Love. “There’s no rule that says you have to be married and have kids.”
But that’s the thing: society. Pressures from a male driven word dictating the duties of a woman’s womb. Placing psychological pressure on children as early as birth through images on TV, in books, movies, and even in Toy stores with Susy homemaker playsets that imprint positions that females often subconsciously feel forced to fill. Yet nature does take place. Maternal instincts, springtime blossoms, and the flip of calendar pages often whisper stressful suggestions to tunnel-visioned women that their baby making “clock” is about to expire.
“I get that maternal instinct. I’ve raised children. I haven’t put myself in that position where I have to make a decision to have a baby or not because I want to entertain people. What I get is the joy to make people laugh and give them that escape,” love says honestly. “So that’s the choice I made. There are some women, they do without. Women are phenomenal and if you want to do it that way you have to balance and plan. So for me, that is the road I have to take [for] the fruits of my labor – a movie and book, a talk show – to be successful. That’s what I see.”
Raqiyah Mays is a seasoned writer, TV/radio personality, and activist. Her debut novel The Man Curse will be released by Simon & Schuster in November 2015.
MommyNoire, does marriage and children really stunt career growth?