March 14, 2010

The Dreaded Question

Posted by Meghan at 4:33 PM
Last night, my best friend got married! YEAH! It was such a beautiful evening - a very personal wedding, filled with little touches of the bride and groom. You know it's a great wedding when the bride sings "Ice Ice Baby" in the middle of the dance floor and doesn't.miss.a.single.word. She's nutty, and that's why I love her:) Word to yo motha...

Speaking of "mothas", the wedding really had my head spinning - because now I am in the phase of my life (and now my bestie is joining me), where, instead of asking about wedding plans, the next logical question I am constantly asked by family and friends is:

"So when are you having kids?"

Ugh. Does / has anyone else experienced this? (Salt, just you wait...)

Please understand that these next few words are in no way, shape or form, meant to sound judgmental. It's just that I am very conflicted about children, and like anyone else, am simply trying to sort through my feelings.

My response usually consists of a giggle and a "Oh, we're not sure / We'll see / We just really want to enjoy married life for the time being..." when all I really want to say is: "Seriously?KIDS? Have you SEEN how some of them act in public? I teach high school for a living! Do you KNOW what some of them become? They swear! And drink! And hit each other. And let's not even discuss childbirth OR the first 16 years of their life, thankyouverymuch."

I am so totally, without a doubt, NOT ready for children. They scare the crap out of me, and to be quite honest, many of the people in my life with children rarely share the "good stories". I typically hear about how they can never go out, how hard it is to potty train, how much it sucks to lose the baby weight, etc. Don't get me wrong - I DO want children, but right now I am at the stage in my life where the negatives outweigh the positives. So until the pendulum shifts, I DO plan to enjoy this time with the hubby and travel, check out new restaurants and live it up in the city until we're ready to take that next step. And perhaps finally learn the words to Vanilla Ice while I still have the time.

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(we heart it)

Do you want / have children? How did you know when you were ready?

40 comments:

Elle on March 14, 2010 at 6:37 PM said...

I hate, hate, hated how often we got asked this question after we got married (and still do)!! We are 99.9% sure that we're going to remain childfree, which always seems to bring controversy and more and more questions. So, my answer to "When are you two having kids?" really depends on my mood.

Sometimes it's, "Oh, we're not even going to think about it until I'm done with school." or "We're perfectly happy being puppy parents right now." Other times it's "Never! We love our life too much to ruin it with kids." And when people really really push me, with things like "it's different when they're your own" or "you'd be a great mom," I jump into how my decision to remain childfree is almost always reversible whereas the decision to have kids is not. If I end up having one and resenting it, I can't exactly give it back.

Sometimes I really think I should print out my Childfree blog post so that I can hand it out to people!

Geezees Custom Canvas Art on March 14, 2010 at 9:59 PM said...

When you get engaged it's "when are you getting married?" And then once you are married it's "When are you having kids?"
Can't anybody be content anymore on just "being" lol

Mrs T on March 15, 2010 at 12:33 AM said...

Everyone just loves this question don't they. Mr B & I adore children, and all things going to plan will have one in a few years. We just want to enjoy US and being married for a few years. People always want to rush you!

Aron on March 15, 2010 at 10:20 AM said...

In my experience, most people who ask that question have kids. Maybe they want you to experience the same limits that they do. Common suffering? ;)

Having kids seems like such a social experience. You clearly need to be ready as a couple, but it wouldn't it be nice if your group of friends had kids around the same time?

Salt on March 15, 2010 at 11:04 AM said...

Oh geez those questions started even before we got married! But at least I had the excuse of "well let's wait until we get married"...

Now we've been hitched for 2 weeks and I have heard it no less than a dozen times. I may be in my early 30's, but I am just not ready to give up my life yet for a child. There are things we still need to do and places we need to go.

Brooke on March 15, 2010 at 11:07 AM said...

Oh my gosh, I could have written this! People were asking us before the wedding cake had even been cut when we were going to try for a baby. I was amazed. Don't get me wrong, we want little ones desperately, to the point where we're counting down the months until bills are paid off to the point we'd be comfortable enough with the finances that we'd allow conception to happen. But at least let the ink dry on the marriage license before you start asking.

I should have gone with my first instinct and told our nosey wedding guests that according to my chart, my mucus and cervix position indicated I'd be ovulating in 3 days. Shoulda, woulda, coudla...

Connie on March 15, 2010 at 3:55 PM said...

Ohh yeah I know what you mean. I read a really good article once, about this young woman who always were asked at weddings if it were her turn next. She got tired of the question, and at funerals she asked some of the same ladies the same question "maybe its your turn next", and the question stopped, but I still haven't found the answer or the question for "When are you having kids", I have considered saying that we are not able to, but then again...

Helena - A Diary of Lovely on March 15, 2010 at 5:28 PM said...

oh well! I get asked THE questions and I'm not even married! hahaha, but to be honest, I ask it to myself too, Im very keen to having kids so I'm not bothered but I do understand it can be annoying to get the question all the time, especially if you are not ready.
Great post!

drollgirl on March 16, 2010 at 7:04 PM said...

christ. i don't THINk people mean to be rude with these questions, but they need to knock it off. it is just as bad as asking someone WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO GET MARRIED? it is annoying, rude, and impertinent to be so pushy!

and you will have kids if/when you are good and ready to! folks just need to wait for you to make the announcement! yeesh.

p.s. i am sans boyfriend at the moment, 39, and don't have kids, and it doesn't look like it is in the cards for me. the other thing i hate (boy, do i sound grouchy) is when folks ask you if you regret not having kids. sometimes things don't work out, but this stuff is really touchy to ask people about, and i'd advise against it!

Jordan on March 16, 2010 at 7:28 PM said...

After four years of dating, I am very tired of being asked "When are you getting married?" "Have you thought about it?" "I want grandkids." So tired in fact, that the next time I'm asked, I'm going to say "So, when were you planning on losing those last ten pounds?" or "Have you started a botox fund yet?" Because, what if some people can't get preggers and it's a touchy subject. Just like weight and wrinkles; so shove it aunt beth. :)

alissa on March 17, 2010 at 11:29 PM said...

im with you!
although the funny thing is that for being in my late 20s and married i rarely get asked that. i think its because people see the dead plants at my desk and my obese cat and asume im bad at caring for living things so they dont really WANT me to have kids.
but i digress...
i do want kids some day. i really really do. but someday. right now i enjoy sleeping in, going out and basically doing WHATEVER I WANT. a friend posted on facebook the other day "what was it like to have freetime before these kids, what did i even do with that? and i commented. YOU DO WHATEVER YOU WANT AND ITS AWESOME.
plus, i bet dragons dont poop as much.

Erin on March 18, 2010 at 7:41 AM said...

I always knew I wanted children, but we waited several years after getting married so we could enjoy some alone time together.

There's no doubt parenthood is hard. But babies grow up, potty training is temporary, and there are babysitters.

It is hard when people are nosy and put pressure on you for the next phase. You just need a snappy answer to that question, like---"when are you gonna Botox those wrinkles of yours?" or "when are you gonna give up that drinking/gambling/smoking habit?" LOL

In our case, we had to resort to fertility docs to get preggo, so every time we heard that question was especially hurtful.

Candice on March 19, 2010 at 2:06 PM said...

Congrats to your friend. Vanilla ice ROCKS!!

Anyway, I've never understood why people feel it's their business to ask someone such a personal question.

I say continue on living your life sans kids. Enjoy your lives together without the huge responsibility of kids right off the bat. You will know when you're ready.

webb on March 19, 2010 at 7:24 PM said...

I finally DID ask my nosey aunt, "Did it ever occur to you that maybe we can't have children?" and THAT was the last I ever heard. Apparently the family jungle tom-toms work very well! It was annoying and certainly none of their business. We chose to be childless and have not regretted it. I love my nieces and nephew and hope that in my old age they will still love me, but we never felt the need of children to somehow complete our family.

You have to be true to yourselves. Good luck.

Amanda on March 20, 2010 at 1:23 PM said...

Please, I got it literally the second I went back to work after my honeymoon. Not only is it inappropriate, it's RUDE. I mean what if somebody can't have children? What if they plain old hate kids? What if they aren't ready? What is it about having that wedding that makes people think kids are imminent? We've been married 3 years now and I get it all the time. It's even worse now because it's not NEW. We'll have kids when we darn well please!!

xoxoKrysten on March 21, 2010 at 3:15 PM said...

I hated when we were engaged and we got all those "How's the planning going?" stuff.

Now we do get the "when are kids coming?" and "when are you buying a place?" Um. I just lost my job. Let us get back on our feet first.

Kristin on March 21, 2010 at 11:44 PM said...

You're never really ready sister. You just kinda learn along the way. : ) But wanting to have some QT with your hubs before you bring munchkins into the mix...that is a stellar idea!

Rasha on March 22, 2010 at 4:15 PM said...

im 20 (almost 21) living with my adorable boyfriend and we ALREADY get asked this questions.... ummm whats up with that.

Kelly @ Dare to be Domestic on March 22, 2010 at 4:45 PM said...

I get this question all the time. My BOYFRIEND and I have been together for 5 years. We aren't even married and we get asked this. We get asked most often from one of his guy friends. My nice answer is that we aren't ready and that we'd like to get married first.

My smarty pants answer is that I will comment on how happy the parents bugging us seem to be when their children are screaming - and that we just aren't ready to be THAT happen yet ;)

I have to say Walmart on any given day is a wonderful form of birth control for me. Screaming kids make my skin crawl.

very married on March 23, 2010 at 9:45 AM said...

wow - it seems pretty fast that you'd be asked that question already.

luckily my husband and i are SUPER busy with our careers and our parents ALL think that we shouldn't try to have kids right now. phew! bullet dodged!

dm on March 23, 2010 at 6:18 PM said...

We don't get that question a lot, thankfully, but I have to say, I also sang Vanilla Ice at my wedding, without missing a single word. ::coolkid::

Dalia (Generation X Mom) on March 23, 2010 at 7:02 PM said...

I think that is just a normal thing that people ask sometimes without even thinking. Try not to take it too seriously. You will be ready when you are ready, or not. Definitely enjoy life right now. I am not saying at all that once I had kids life isn't good, it is just a different kind of good. There are stages and right now you are in a good stage and take full advantage of it!

Chelsea Talks Smack on March 23, 2010 at 9:03 PM said...

YES, I want children...but not for a really long time...

The Owl Diary on March 24, 2010 at 2:25 PM said...

This picture is too, too cute. & Congrats to your friend!

JoeyRes on March 27, 2010 at 7:52 PM said...

It's great because after you have one child, they just keep right going and asking when to expect kid #2. You'd think they could make a Mind Your Own Business PSA or something.

We never knew that we were ready for kids. My husband and I actually thought we probably wouldn't. Then I found out I was pregnant. We'd been married for just under two years. Having our daughter is the best thing we've ever done, but I still don't think I could have made a conscious decision to do it. It was something that we just "let happen" and it was a great happening.

Kelsey @ Seattle Smith's on March 28, 2010 at 4:25 PM said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog -- love yours!

Giovanna ♥ on March 29, 2010 at 5:50 PM said...

You have an adorable blog :)
xxx
Giovanna
www.bohomarket.blogspot.com

ChristineMarie on March 30, 2010 at 2:58 AM said...

Someday (after I'm married), I want kids. Not anytime soon, though. I feel like that's such a HUGE responsibility and commitment that I better know I'm ready before I get into anything like that. On a more selfish note, I was writhing in pain from PMS cramps today and thought, "If this part is this painful, do I really want to see what pregnancy/childbirth is like?" Mmmmaybe not.

MaryBeth Hughes on April 2, 2010 at 1:33 PM said...

we are getting the baby question and we're not even married yet! honestly what is the rush? i know that your chance of getting pregnant go down the longer you wait but there is so much to do before kids consume the rest of our lives. i'm with you meghan!

iheartkiwi on April 2, 2010 at 5:13 PM said...

kiwi and i have been married for about 5 months now and we get this question all the time!

i'm still finishing up school so my response is always a solid, "not until after graduation!" this answer will buy us one more year... but after that, we'll actually have to start thinking about the question in earnest!

Taylor Norris on April 5, 2010 at 6:18 PM said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Taylor Norris on April 5, 2010 at 6:24 PM said...

in general, our culture doesn't like anything that inconveniences us.

also, in reading other people's comments it's obvious that we're a very private country which is why this question is probably why some people are more irritated with being asked anything at all.

i understand why people are afraid of kids. i am married and the idea scares me to death. but i think our culture drastically lacks the respect for family that marriage is designed to withhold.

and like you said, you don't hear any good stories about having kids. it's sad to me that we've convinced ourselves that the hard parts of parenting negate the much more wonderful aspects.

Simply Me on April 5, 2010 at 7:29 PM said...

new follower :)

Giovanna ♥ on April 5, 2010 at 8:54 PM said...

Good luck with everything dear :) I love to live in different cities with my soulmate. It's an adventure, but if you don't do it now, then when? I'm with you :)
Ps: I’m having a great giveaway on my blog, it’s a lovely dress! Come visit me for details :) It’s a worldwide giveaway!
Thanks!!
Xoxo
❀ ❤ ❀
Giovanna
www.bohomarket.blogspot.com

Muse on April 9, 2010 at 1:34 PM said...

ARG - I get asked this question so often that I avoid large social functions. We've been married 7 years and for the 1st 5 or so we so weren't ready to have kids but rest assured that eventually you will feel ready. I didn't think I would but now I am. Now the problem is having the kids - we've been trying for about a year and nothing yet. On a personal note, I just found out today that my husband's sperm is "sub-fertile" and he has to decide on a surgery (guess that's why nothings been happening)...In the past when I wasn't ready to have kids and ppl would ask me it would infuriate me, now when people ask, I just want to cry. Why don't folks realize what an incredibly personal question the whole kid thing is? Why is my uterus anyone else's business??
Oh well - don't worry about others - have fun w. your Hubbie - make a bucket list of all the things you want to do pre-baby and enjoy the free time and sleep!

Courtney on April 11, 2010 at 12:28 AM said...

when my soon to be in-laws drove out to colorado for our wedding they brought with them a baby swing in a box. never opened... was it a wedding gift? not exactly. it wasn't wrapped up (because that would have been weird), but they brought it to us, and GAVE it to us the week of our wedding...
i've been married a year and a half and i get the question ALL the time. it used to be more from single friends and sounded a little sarcastic. i would naturally take offense. now it comes more from our friends with kids- which is fine. i really think (as someone else pointed out) they just want their friends to have kids around the same time. i want kids someday. i'm in my early 30s too... i guess it'll happen when it happens.

Courtney on April 11, 2010 at 12:39 AM said...

sorry- one more comment. i agree it's rude, though most people don't intend for it to be. my sister tried for years and years... they had many miscarriages and finally did ivf. she got pregnant with triplets, had all 3 babies, and within the first year, 2 of them died (from different complications). one beautiful little girl survived and is now 6 (thank god). some people still ask her "do you ever think of having more?" i agree with the above comments that it IS a very personal question. most people don't realize that though.. unfortunately.

MaryBeth Hughes on April 20, 2010 at 8:18 AM said...

congrats lady! best of luck on your new adventure. i can't wait to hear all about it.

MrsCaptKerk on April 26, 2010 at 1:44 PM said...

First of, I want to say how refreshing this post is. I can't stand when people ask this!

I do eventually want children, however my maternal clock is definitely not ticking.

Anastasia on May 6, 2010 at 11:07 AM said...

I did it backwards, Got pregnant then married. I didn;t feel like I even wanted kids. But i love the ones i have and wouldn't change anything. But I totally respect any ones decisions to wait and be sure. In fact I encourage it.

 

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