Sunday, May 12, 2013

They told us we could be anything when we grew up....we decided to be children....without the children

Recently I had to go to baby shower for a co-worker of mine and despite taking part in a game where one has to guess what melted candy is in the diaper I had an ok time. The best part was when no one asked me when I was going to have a baby. It's common knowledge among my family and friends that my husband and I have decided to not partake in the child have portion of life and while most people seem to be ok with that, you still get the occasional, what I can only call back handed bitch slap remark about this choice.

Take the following incident.

I recently had an interview for another job, however one doesn't go blurting that about at ones current job so I had 'a doctor's appointment'. This 'appointment' lasted over two hours and when I finally got to work one of my co-workers asked how it went.

Me-It was ok. The doctor was just running late.
Her-We were kind of hoping that you might be pregnant.
Me-Oh no...we don't want that.
Her-Well sometimes life doesn't work out how we want it.

Seriously can someone tell me how you react after someone says something like that? I suddenly regretted not telling them it was an interview maybe than they might have been less shitty. Sadly I didn't get the job and now I'm stuck with people who clearly think I have issues since I don't want children.

It's not that I don't like children, I love my nieces and nephews and other people's children. I just don't think I'm 'mommy' material and while I love my husband he does not a paternal bone in his body. It's a fight to get him up to put the dog out in the middle of the night. I doubt that will change when it's a screaming infant with a dirty diaper. When I tell people our reasoning for not having children instead of just leaving it alone the following comments have been said.

"You'll/he'll change once you have the baby."
"You really should have one so your parents/his parents can be grandparents."
"You are going to miss out on something really special in your life."
"We just really want you two to have a baby!"

Why...why is it so freaking important to you that you that we make a baby? Is my lack of baby having messing with your life in some way that I am not aware of? harassing me doesn't make me change my mind. It just makes me want to slap you.

I grew up the oldest of seven and for all intents and purposes I had children. I didn't give birth to them or go to PTA meetings, but I helped raise them and it was exhausting. My parents split up when I was 12 and my mother got custody of myself and my three younger siblings. When my father remarried, he and his second wife had three more children. My weekdays with my mother were me getting up for school, making sure the younger three were ready for school before I caught my bus, putting in an 7 hour school day and that was before I started after school stuff, coming home and making dinner, getting the younger three do their homework before doing my own homework and doing my chores before I could go to bed and start the whole thing over the next day.

My weekends at my father did not offer a break from baby care. My father's second wife realized that this baby stuff is exhausting and she GTFO'ed. Hey guess what I did on those weekends. I had many a shirt that had spit up on it and many an early Sunday morning helping with breakfast feedings and diaper changing.

I have also related this story of raising children when I was child and how exhausting it was and how I missed out on being young myself and this doesn't seem to make them understand either. The 'It's different when it's your own' remark gets tossed out than and I'm left imaging how my hands would feel wrapped around your thoughtless throat.

My husband is a different story, like I said early he really doesn't have a paternal bone in his body. He grew up with a sister ten years older than him and his mother blames his lack of child wanting on the fact that he pretty much grew up as an only child. He's stated his reasoning for not wanting children in the following statement.

"I'm selfish. I like doing what I want, when I want. I like the fact that we can spend our money on things we want to spend them on after we pay our bills and not have to worry about trying to feed/clothe/school another person."

The 'You're being selfish' remark has been thrown out after that statement and I'm trying to figure out how we're being selfish. We're being honest. It would be selfish to have a baby and than resent it because we can't go out since we don't have the funds to do so.

I don't badger people about having children so what makes it ok for others to badger me about my lack of children?

Many people in my social circle don't have children for one reason or another. Be it careers, they had horrible genes or they just opted out and we seem to be doing alright. One of my single friends opted to take herself out of the baby pool after being finding out she had Lupus. Her reasoning is perfectly sound to me. She doesn't want to take the risk of having a child that could have this illness not to mention she has a slew of other health issues and she has never wanted kids. My mother in law couldn't understand this and I could feel her biological clock ticking for me.

The 'Someday he'll need to grow up' remark was said by my mother in law when I related what her son had said about not wanting children and I don't understand why having children is equal to growing up. I have seen lots of people (my own parents included) that having children did not make them grow up. They did grow up, but it took a long time for it to happen and a lot of shit happened along the way that involved dragging a kid through the mess. 

I constantly heard (and so did a lot of the people I know) this expression or something similar to it.

"When you grow up and have your own house you can do whatever you want!"

This normally related to dinner time or how clean your bedroom was or any number of things that you wanted and your parents didn't. I'm turning 28 this month and it's Mother's Day and I'm sitting in a house that my husband and I bought. My fur baby sleeping next to me. Our house has a bookshelf filled with game books and I have a serious love of My Little Pony and stuffed animals. My husband has a room filled with minis yet to be painted and I have a lot un-finished fanfiction...and that's how it's always going to be.

 Yesterday I went out with one of my best friends who has two little boys. After we had lunch we went shopping and she was having buyer guilt about a set of mini dolls, they were of the Evil Queen and Maleficent.

"I just bought a SIMS game on sale so I really shouldn't buy these."  Plus her son has a birthday coming up. I ended up buying the set and we split the dolls. I currently have an Evil Queen that is going to go on my desk at work. It was sort of like little girls buying friendship rings and each friend getting a ring.

Even though she's a mother of two and I'm a mother of a four legged beagle we still really haven't grown up...we still want toys. I hope we never grow up.


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  2. Also, remember - the next time we go out. We are heading to either Disney store or B&N and it's my treat. I should be golden in about two weeks!

  3. You've got it right. Not selfish at all.

    I think maybe these people want someone else to experience the same sort of emotions that they have.

    If it's so important for them to see another person join this crowded world, perhaps they could adopt one of the already existing children in the foster system waiting for a home.

  4. I really like this post. It's your life, live how you want. I for one agree with you about Jason. :)


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