Chelsea Handler said she’s grateful her mother encouraged her to have an abortion at 16: ‘She was right. I was not ready’

Chelsea Handler talks about not having kids on the
Chelsea Handler talks about not having kids on the Race to 35 podcast. (Photo: Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

Chelsea Handler isn’t interested in becoming a mom now — and she’s grateful she was never encouraged to be one as a teen.

The Chelsea Lately alum, 47, spoke to hosts Monica Padman and Liz Plank on their fertility-focused podcast Race to 35 about living a child-free lifestyle. She shared that there was a point, when she became inadvertently pregnant at 16, that she seriously thought about having kids.

“I was like, ‘Oh, yes, I’m going to be a mom.’ I was hoping for twins. I was 16 and an a*****e.” Handler explained. “I had names picked out for the twins. There weren’t twins, but in my mind, I was going to have twins. And my mother was like, ‘You’re not going to be a mother, you’re having an abortion, and you’re going to thank me many years later.’ And she was right. I was not ready. But that was the only time I had the hubris enough to be like, ‘Oh, this is a good idea.’’”

Handler said that now, if she got pregnant, she would choose to have an abortion.

Earlier in the podcast, the talk show host said she feels she can better help the world if she does not have kids of her own. She noted that parents will often focus on getting the best for their own children, exclusively — but as someone without children of her own she can “contribute to my own family, my nieces and nephews, by being available to them.”

Handler explained, “A lot of people who think that they’re woke and liberal and have their s**t together are really thinking about their nuclear family more than they’re thinking in a broader perspective … Of course there are people who aren’t like that, I have plenty of friends who are more well-rounded than that, but it’s a pretty tricky endeavor.”

One other perk of not having kids? Never having to go to Disneyland.

“I went to Disneyland when I was 5 or 6 — I felt like my intelligence was under assault because I couldn't believe what a racket that place was,” she said. “And I made a vow to myself that I would never have a child so I would never have to go back. I don't know if I knew that [at the time]. But I had an instinct and that instinct stayed with me.”

Handler previously spoke about the benefits of not having kids with the hosts of the Lady Gang podcast on her own podcast, called Dear Chelsea.

“I have so much availability for not only my nieces and nephews … but for other children in the world, because I don't have my own. If I had my own I would be all about them,” she said at the time. “I look at it like this — because I don't have my own children, I'm able to send strangers to college. I'm able to support kids that I'll never meet, in countries that I'll never even visit. But I'm able to give so much because I don't have my own family and to me, that is my purpose. I would be a s***y mother. I would be selfish. I would want everything to be great for my kid and forget about all the other kids in the world.”

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