So in my previous post I babbled on about the uncomfortable small talk I wish I could avoid at every function/gathering. I am referring to the gatherings that include more than just your close friends and family. Where you are forced to introduce yourself and make polite conversation… (Cue the butterflies and anxiety) When word gets out my hubby and I do not have children, it instantly becomes the topic of conversation. In my experience most people assume it’s because of infertility issues. As I said before I have 2 choices here. I can either allow them to think that is the case (which IS in fact my reality, but the assumption is somewhat insulting) or I can let them know I do not want kids (which is also true, seeing as I never really wanted children until I realized I couldn’t have them!). Either way it is hard for anyone to know how to politely handle the conversation but here are a few things I do NOT enjoy hearing when I go with the first option (admitting my health probs)…
1) “I know how you feel. It took us ____ months to get pregnant”
Months? Oh bless your heart, call me when if you try for ANOTHER and months turns into years, you inconsiderate moron! So many things wrong with this I’m not sure where to start. Obviously (well not that obvious or it wouldn’t still be something I hear) there is NO way you know how I feel. Even if you are going through the exact same thing I am, every woman is different as well as our journeys. I try to be understanding because I know many women, and men alike, are not familiar with infertility or have a misunderstanding about it. So hey, 2 months might have been a struggle for them. Knowing that however, usually doesn’t soften my response much.
2) “If you don’t think about it, it will happen. Maybe you are trying too hard”
In most cases this response is followed by the very popular, annoying, helpful in no way story about the sister’s co-worker’s neighbor who got pregnant as soon as she adopted. While I can appreciate this story EVERY time I hear it, it sucks!!! Don’t get me wrong, I know there are some medical explanations for this sort of thing happening and I am so happy for the families that experience this but let’s get real here. I have several medical conditions that prevent me from conceiving! “Trying” is the only way it will happen for me! And how can I stop thinking about it? Seriously? The medications, side effects from meds, needles, dr appointments, blood work, ultrasound both INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL, and more…How is one supposed to just not think about it. This comment insinuates that I am doing something wrong here and if I fix it, I will conceive. At the risk of sounding like a hormonal and bitter victim…THIS IS NOT MY FAULT!
3) “You will be pregnant within a year, I just know it”
Wow, so how long have you been a psychic? Do you help the police with your ability? Can you give me the winning lottery numbers too? I would really appreciate that…. As much as I would love to believe they are correct, I have heard this one for years. At this point I usually offer some sort of deal about meeting up in a year to see if they are right. My only conditions are if they are right, they get a hug. If they are wrong, I get to smack them as hard as I can. Let’s just say, I don’t know any true psychics.
4) “It will happen when it is meant to happen”
The only reason I do not fly off the handle when I hear this one is because it is usually coming from their very supportive, positive, sincere, religious little hearts. I can’t blame anyone for trying to remind me that this is really all in HIS hands. I think I have problems with this one because it’s the response that makes me the saddest. I do not for one second want to believe that I am not “meant” to have kids, even if they just mean not right now. This is depressing when you have heard this throughout your entire journey. For me that would mean that “right now” has come and gone repeatedly for the past 8 years! Will it ever be meant to be?Not a question I’m ready to get an answer to. Also depressing is the sheer number of women (and I use that term loosely) that ARE “meant” to have children. WARNING: This is probably where most people will get offended and if so all I can say is, thank you for reading my babbling thus far! There is a certain amount bitterness I feel when I think of how many women in this world have children and do not want or deserve them! Aren’t ready for them or can’t afford them, need I go on? Many women that fall into any of the categories I just mentioned are amazing parents! If they can’t afford the baby they find a way! If they weren’t ready, that changed the second they looked into their infant’s eyes. I am not suggesting that my feelings are correct, moral, ethical, nice or even true! Call it hormonal, emotional, irrational, whatever you want to. But I can not deny my feelings and I refuse to apologize for them.
Very Important Side Note: I want to say that many of my loved ones have also been on the giving end of each of these responses and to them I want to say “I love you all so very much. I am very blessed to have such supportive family/friends around me. I wish I had the power to make this 0% uncomfortable for everyone involved but I don’t. Thank you for all of the kind words, sweet gestures, shared tears and genuine concern. My goal is to somehow, some day repay you all”