10 Responses

  1. Dawn
    Dawn March 19, 2015 at 2:10 pm |

    I am a newly single woman without any children, who has suffered a miscarriage. Honestly I think you are being overly sensitive and ironically based on your tone very judgemental. Not everyone is great at social interaction, and while (very) awkwardly done this man was attempting conversation. It is as natural for people to ask about family plans as is it parents to talk about their kids. It is not the job of everyone we interact with to consider all our life options, health status or possible emotional responses to each comment before attempting to speak to us. On a side note there are many conditions that effect social interaction. Is your unknown fertility status more worthy of consideration then anyones possible mental health issues (social anxiety, Autism Spectrum Disorder)? I think the bigger issue here is we live in a society where we expect others to modify their behaviour to avoid any chance at offending us but by the nature of that expectation not considering modifying our own. I live my day trying to be kind and, unless I am willing to share the entire story of why I feel bad about something someone asked/said to me, I just let it go. I think the world would be a better place if people talked their grievances out with people directly instead of passive aggressively (and almost always negative and in a judgmental way) using social media to complain.

  2. Caitlin Rascelles
    Caitlin Rascelles March 19, 2015 at 6:26 am |

    I saw your story on Huffington Post and wanted to respond. After years of trying to have a baby, my husband and I got the devastating news that it’s just not in the cards for us. I’m 34 and have been married for 7 years. It’s amazing to me how many people think it’s their business to know “when I’m having kids?”. I used to lie and say “soon”, but now I just tell people very abruptly that we cannot have kids. It amazes me even further how most people then think it’s their business to talk to me about whether or not we are adopting, surrogate, sperm donor, etc. The line of questioning is hurtful, insensitive, and quite frankly, rude.
    My aunt struggled with fertility issues as well, and I have a bright and beautiful 29 year old cousin who is an only child. I remember talking to my aunt a few years ago about how it upset me when people asked about my child status, and she told me she went through the same thing. She said people to this day ask her why she only had one, and how much that bothers her.
    I think your story brings up a great point and I’m happy to see it getting good press. You’re not being hypersensitive at all.

  3. Jan Seeley
    Jan Seeley March 19, 2015 at 4:12 am |

    I understand where you’re coming from. I had fertility issues, too, and only had one child. She’s 34 now, and has a 10 month old son of her own, who will be an only, since she also had fertility issues. I was always upfront with people. If they asked if I was going to have more, I simply explained that no, I had had fertility issues , and she was going to be an only. I realize that I don’t have to explain to anyone, but it was short, it answered their question, and subject was dropped.

    You brunch “friend” sounds like a jerk. And maybe needed a little lesson in how not to act. Telling him you’re not able to have any more children due to complications would have at least shut him up 🙂 Yes, easier said than done.

    Take care.

  4. FrauE
    FrauE March 18, 2015 at 5:51 pm |

    1) I don’t think you are being “too sensitive”. You get to own your own emotions and after what you have been through to get even one child, you are very justified in feeling attacked by that man’s stupidity. 2) It is pretty much not possible for people to ask how many children you plan on having without judgment. It is a loaded question—as the mother of an only child, I’ve found that if you reply that you are NOT having any more children, you get hit with all the judgment about why that is wrong for you, your child, the world, etc. I happen to think most people have far too many kids—this dying planet really does not need any more kids and if someone thinks their family is not complete, they should adopt, not give birth to another one—but what would be the response if I sat in judgment of every mother I see with more than one child? If I asked each mother why they had so many children? Why they had a 2nd or 3rd or 4th biological child instead of giving a home to an existing child who needed one? They’d be so offended and I’d be branded a crackpot. Yet people have said many offensive things to me about my one child. There are many reasons, including health reasons like yours, why I have “only” one child. My son is almost 14 and quite happy and well-adjusted and his life is much better than it would be if we had chosen to ruin my health and our finances in pursuit of more children. He has his own health challenges/special needs and the fact that he is an only child allows me to focus my time on helping him, which has really been a blessing for both of us. Lastly, my own mother told me long ago that I was born so that my sister would not be an only child. The joke was on my parents, though, because my sister never wanted to play with me and we’re still not close 40+ years later. Follow your own heart and enjoy the miracle child you DID have and don’t let people make you feel bad for that.

  5. Patty
    Patty March 18, 2015 at 2:56 am |

    I have the most amazing son and he’s an only child. This was our choice, plain and simple. I used to endure absolute strangers approaching me and asking me about when I would be having another and accosting me with remarks like “you couldn’t possibly only have one and do that to a child”.. I think that one was in a waiting room at a tire store.. I am now 55 and my son is now 26. He is smart, wise and a person that I love being with. He has also learned the joy of solitude when he needs it. He has loyal and decent friends, a great work ethic and most of all empathy and kindness. The world is huge, there are many people to be friends with and grow old with and love. Each person is an individual, they don’t come in six packs and we shouldn’t be put here just to distract someone else or as a “playmate” for another person. I’ve had people assume that I don’t like kids because I only had one. Quite the opposite, I love kids and I think we should consider very carefully every single one we make whether it be one or six. Everyone should have that choice, but make it wisely.

  6. Mother to One Child
    Mother to One Child March 17, 2015 at 3:37 pm |

    I think you are being overly sensitive. If we start putting so many rules on how one converses and everyone has to stop to wonder about someone’s story (and I am sorry for all you have been through), we will simply stop interacting as humans. We are already almost there. The most valuable lesson I have learned as a mother, if we want to look for something to be upset by, we will find it. So I don’t look. I just accept I am going to get questions and that is ok. I would rather have overbearing and interested, than no interest at all. There is nothing worse than being near someone and no one can talk to each other.

  7. Lisa
    Lisa March 11, 2015 at 12:47 pm |

    Hello there, this is Lisa from Transitions into Mommy-Hood. So glad that I found your blog. As far as your question goes I think that it is ok for people to ask how many children you are planning on having as long as there is no judgement. It was quite rude the way that man handled the question and conversation. I know how you feel and I get this a lot also. I live in Mexico where is is normal for people to have more children than they probably should. So because my husband and I only have one we are always getting the speech and being criticized. There are so many things to be considered when having a baby.

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