How to Respond When Society Asks When You Are Having Children
Hi! Turns out, you don’t owe anybody sh!t.
If you are a woman over 25, you’ve probably heard this before:
“You don’t want to wait too long.”
“You’re running out of time.”
“Before you know it, it will be too late.”
“When are you having kids?”
“Are kids in the near future?”
“When can I expect grandkids/nieces/nephews?”
Guess what?! It’s none of their damn business. I’ve personally had these questions and comments said to me by strangers, my co-workers/employees, and family members. First of all, how I choose to live my life has no affect on them. And secondly, it’s inappropriate. Especially coming from your co-workers and/or employees. What if I had tried and tried and couldn’t have kids? What if I was pregnant before and had several miscarriages? What if I just don’t WANT to? The answer is, it doesn’t matter. Have I had a miscarriage? Yes. Is that why I don’t have children right now? No.
The stress this puts on a woman or a couple in general is unnecessary. Some people are susceptible to the opinions of our society. And those people may have a child that they were not prepared for, just because society says they should. And that’s terrible. Imagine how that must make them feel daily. Its one thing if you get pregnant unknowingly for forcibly and have the child due to your beliefs. But, to have a child or children just because somebody else thinks you should is a lifetime of stress. And it would be a decision you made based on others’ opinions of how you should live their life. This is not to say that if you are one of these people and decide to have a child because society says you should, that your child wouldn’t be loved. Or that you wouldn’t be a great parent. It just means that the decision was not yours.
Luckily, my husband and I are on the same page with this very topic. Some husbands even pressure their wives to have children. Maybe this should be something discussed before marriage. We want to enjoy our time together. We want to travel. We also don’t want to bring a child up in today’s society without being somewhat mentally prepared for all that goes along with having a child. I don’t mean the sleepless nights, and poopy diapers. I mean the depression, the worry of something happening to that child, the fear of how to not lose my sh!t if my child is bullied or hurt. It’s a lot. And not just fear for ourselves, but for the child as well.
Does this mean we don’t like children? No. Our friends and family members have children. We are great with kids and love them. They are absolutely precious, most of the time. I was deemed “selfish” for not having a child just a few months after my husband and I got married. By an employee! I think this is the one that hurt the most. “How am I selfish?” That’s what I would ask myself in the following weeks. Because I don’t want to populate an overly populated planet? Because I don’t want to live off the government? Because I am not ready to be responsible for an entire human being? Finally, I came to terms with the fact that IT DOESN’T FU$KING MATTER! It is my life. It is my family. Nobody has the right to make you feel small or less than because you can’t, won’t, or are not ready to have a child. Remember that, and don’t let today’s society get the best of you.
So How Do You Respond?
If you must respond to the nosey a-holes that feel the need to ask you very personal questions, here are a few ways you COULD respond. But, you really don’t have to.
Shut That Sh!t Down
“You’ll be the first to know when I miss my next period.”
“I’ll have kids when you mind your damn business.”
“As soon as you let me know how it affects you at all.”
“I’m not sure yet.”
“We haven’t decided.”
“When the time is right.”
“Do you not feel like society already pressures women enough?”
“How do you know I haven’t tried?”
“I’m assuming when we stop using protection.”
No matter how you decide to handle the situation, they should get the indication that it’s none of their business. I get worked up just thinking about it. Okay, so I may have forgotten to mention that I am a bit of a feminist. Like, how dare they? Especially, another woman? Like, don’t be a dick. I will have children if/when I feel like it. And so what if I don’t? I commend most women that are mothers. Its a crazy journey and I’m not sure how they go through the pregnancy alone, with their sanity in tact. Kudos to all the mothers! But, that does not mean I need to be one right now, or ever. Okay Megan, breathe.
Just remember, it is your life. You control the decisions you make in life. And this will undoubtedly be one of the biggest decisions. If you have children, know that you don’t have to let people tell you how to raise them either. But, that is a topic for another time. Ladies and gents, just remember you are not alone in whichever decision you make. If nothing else, there will plenty of love and support here. Comment below and let me know what crazy questions/statements society has thrown at you regarding children. If you don’t want to comment, please feel free to email me at the firstname.lastname@example.org. It’s nice to know you don’t have to go through this part of life on your own.