Why Betty White Decided Never to Have Children

Published April 11, 2020 432,928 Views

Betty White’s career has spanned nearly a century, making her a household name. But as with any success, sacrifices have to be made. The Hollywood star has hosted Saturday Night Live, starred in The Golden Girls, Hot In Cleveland, and has authored multiple books.

Born in 1922 in Chicago, Illinois, she moved to California with her father during the Great Depression. As a child, she was friends with another comedic star, Lucille Ball. The two would later reboot a version of her late husband’s game show. At 8 Betty got her first role on the radio on a show called Empire Builders, where she played an orphan. After a break from working in the entertainment industry, White experienced her first unsuccessful marriage and joined the American Women’s Voluntary Services in WWII. After that, she returned to entertainment and started working regularly. She started off hosting TV shows before the sitcom Life With Elizabeth sitcom. She later landed the Mary Tyler Moore Show where she won two Emmys. Then there was, of course, Golden Girls.

Betty White didn’t have any kids of her own, but she is a step-mother of 3. She married thrice. Once to an army war veteran, Dick Barker. The entertainer even committed to living on his chicken farm, but they divorced just months after they were married. Years later she attempted love again and tied the knot a second time. Lane Allen, her second husband, wanted to have kids immediately but she wanted to focus on her career. This marriage also didn’t manage to last a year.

The Emmy award winner's final marriage was to TV game show host, Allen Ludden, in 1963. She met him on the game show Password, where she was a guest panelist. He spent the next year asking her out. And she repeatedly told him no. But eventually, they got together and raised Ludden’s three teens, plus a few pups, together. The couple was married for 18 years until Ludden died of stomach cancer in 1981.

Thankful for her step-children, Betty White feels like she made the right decision to not have kids of her own. She’s admittedly an impulsive individual and said that having kids of her own wouldn’t have been conducive to her impulsivity. She has not remarried since Ludden, saying Ludden was the love of her life and didn’t need anything else.

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