At the beginning of our marriage I was so naive. Previously, I thought when people asked if/when I wanted to have kids that they were looking for an honest answer. Innocent and smiling I would say “I wish I had one right now.” I’ve since learned that telling the truth often leads to exclamations of shock or negativity from the listener.
“You are so young!”
“You should wait two or three years before you do that.”
“You need to take time for yourself to enjoy your marriage!”
“Having kids, period, is a mistake.” (Seriously, people have said this!)
Frankly, the more I hear responses in this vein, the angrier I become. What right do these people have to tell me what to do with my own cervix? What right do they have to judge my desire to sacrifice my body, time, and money to bring new life into the world and the timeline in which I decide to do so? Should I text you each morning I successfully swallow the pink pill so you can rest assured I will continue to enjoy my marriage for at least one day longer?
Don’t ask me the question if there is only one reply you want to hear. Rather, whisper to your husband about the time That Husand and I are losing to enjoy ourselves, while you sleep in your lonely apartment and judge me behind my back when you hear I am pregnant 6 months into the marriage. Hold onto your views that kids are to be tolerated as an expensive inconvenience several years into the marriage after the mortgage is paid off and careers are further developed. Whatever you do, don’t take one moment to consider that I might have different priorities in my life.
Many of you say this to others and think you are doing them a service. You waited, so they should too! Or maybe you didn’t wait and now your life is ruined and you want to prevent me from making the same mistake. I’m not quite sure what I am supposed to be waiting for at this point. I have the husband (and his best swimmers), the necessary funds, the mental competence, and my body has been telling me how ready it is on a monthly basis for over 10 years now.
So tell me, other than a reason to “enjoy life” for awhile, why should I wait? Some people told me I should wait to get married also. I’m going to go ahead and say that they were wrong.
I’m going to propose something new. Let’s leave the talk of should we/shouldn’t we to the couple. Let’s stop asking if people are “trying”. You tell me that instead of desiring a child I should be exploring other areas of my life, so ask me about them.What do I like to do in my spare time? Where do I work? If I could have dinner with any three people in the world, who would it be?
Unless you want to hear me say “I’d be pregnant last week if it were completely up to me,” just don’t ask.
(In case you didn’t catch it, my deepest desire is to have a baby. Not to have people stop criticizing me for wanting to do so. Though both would be ideal.)