on the screen

On the Screen

View All



View All


Helping those in need

Visit Site

MP3 Audio Sample

goodreads logo

Short Synopsis
In hilarious prose, comedian Jen Kirkman defends her decision to not have children, providing a beacon of hope to anyone whose major life decisions have been questioned by their family and friends.

Full Synopsis
"You'll change your mind."

That's what everyone says to Jen Kirkman—and countless women like her—when she confesses she doesn't plan to have children. But you know what? It's hard enough to be an adult. You have to dress yourself and pay bills and remember to buy birthday gifts. You have to drive and get annual physicals and tip for good service. Some adults take on the added burden of caring for a tiny human being with no language skills or bladder control. Parenthood can be very rewarding, but let's face it, so are margaritas at the adults-only pool.

Jen's stand-up routine includes lots of jokes about not having kids (and some about masturbation and Johnny Depp), after which complete strangers constantly approach her and ask, "But who will take care of you when you're old?" (Servants!) Some insist, "You'd be such a great mom!" (Really? You know me so well!)

Whether living rent-free in her childhood bedroom while trying to break into comedy (the best free birth control around, she says), or taking the stage at major clubs and joining a hit TV show—and along the way getting married, divorced, and attending excruciating afternoon birthday parties for her parent friends—Jen is completely happy and fulfilled by her decision not to procreate.

I Can Barely Take Care of Myself is a beacon of hilarious hope for anyone whose major life decisions have been questioned by friends, family, and strangers in a comedy club bathroom. And it should satisfy everyone who wonders if Jen will ever know true love without looking into the eyes of her child.

"Jen Kirkman has written an excellent---and very funny---guide to promote not having children. Thanks girl, for saving me the time." ---Chelsea Handler

"With the novelist's penchant for self-flagellation and exploitation, and jokes punctuating at least every page, this book is ideal for the woman who needs a quick comeback for those who criticize her about not having kids, or for those just looking to laugh." ---Publishers Weekly

"Kirkman reads in a friendly, humorous tone, provides voices for the rude and insistent pro-procreation people she encounters, and perfectly delivers sarcastic one-liners about the benefits of remaining child-free." ---Publishers Weekly Audio Review

"The audiobook is narrated by the author herself, whose slightly nasal, raspy voice lends the recording the feel of a six-hour rant delivered by a friend." ---Library Journal Audio Review

"At once frank, touching, and confrontational, her writing is served well by her edgy reading and audible frustration with how rude others can be about her position on children." ---AudioFile
New York Times Bestseller
Author Interview
Jen Kirkman

I Can Barely Take Care of Myself

Tales from a Happy Life Without Kids

Author Jen Kirkman

Narrated by Jen Kirkman

Publication date Apr 22, 2013

Running time 6 hrs 20 min

Available Formats

Let us know!