Well, Scott is back at work, so it’s back to Ben and me. Maybe this will help me regain a little sanity..but I doubt it. I like having Scott home with me, it definately helps to be bi-parental most of the time, but I also like setting my own schedule and having Ben hang out with me as we make our way through the day. We have a nice routine that works for us.

Two days without crying in the shower must mean things are better, right? Hopefully. I have a doc appointment today…another blood screen to monitor my thyroid levels. Somehow I don’t think that’s what’s wrong, since they’ve already upped the dose of my medicine once, I have a feeling that I”m just blue because I’m blue. I need to bundle myself and Ben up and go outside for a walk, because I think the fresh air would be good for both of us.

I had an experience this weekend that really has been happening more frequently. We were at a wedding for some friends. We were at a table with a family we knew (parents and two grown children, we are quite close with this family…one of the grown children is Scott’s best friend from forever) and another couple we did not know. The woman of the couple we did not know (I’ll refer to her from now on as Ms. A) asks if Scott and I have any kids. I say yes, and explain we have a 10-month old son and that I’ve brought pictures. She asks his name and I tell her and she says “oh, is this the Ben I’ve heard so much about” (this happens all the time to us) I say yes, and we start talking about Ben. After a conversation about prgnosis, personality and the like she says to me (this is the pay attention part) “I’m sure Ben is difficult, but will you have more children? Because I’d really like to see you do that”. Let’s dissect this statement, shall we?

“I’m sure Ben is difficult”…what you think my kid is the spawn of the devil? Actually, he is not difficult, dealing with other people’s issues about him is difficult.

“Will you have more children”…Okay, so you saw this as a polite inquiry. I see it as you not knowing when to mind your own damn business. I JUST MET YOU. You have no right to ask me that. My mom doesn’t ask me that. And after a miscarriage and a Ben, I don’t feel like discussing it. But my good upbringing allowed me to dismiss this question with “Oh, eventually”…

“I’d really like to see you do that”…Oh you would, would you? Who the fuck are you? And why do you think I need to try to breed a little more? Because Ben is such a difficult child that you would like to see me have something normal in my life? Because you want me to know that I can have a normal child? Because Ben needs a brother or sister? Because you like to see babies? What does this statement mean?

I know, I know, there is a teensy bit of my reaction to this that is over reacting….but I think the principle of my argument here is perfectly okay. It is no one’s business if I have more kids or not, and I cannot help but think that when people ask me this it is 99% “everyone needs more kids, they are great” and 1% “oh, you have a disabled child, wouldn’t you like a normal one?” Don’t believe me? I know people ask this question all the time, but it is rarely phrased the way I get it…which includes “Are you scared to have more kids?”, “Are you scared you’ll have more disabled kids?”, “Are you even going to try again”….and this is from people who are, for all intents and purposes COMPLETE STRANGERS!

I do not, and have never, minded questions about Ben. Lots of people ask me (tenatively at first) about his health, and what is going on, and what kind of care he requires for his DS, and I don’ mind talking about that at all. But that, to me, does not seem so personal or offensive.

The rational part of my brain tells me that people say things like this because they don’t realize that it’s offensive and that I need to just back off a little. The larger part of my brain wishes people would shut the hell up and mind their own damn business…which does NOT include my uterus.

so tell me, am I overreacting here?


3 Responses to “pffffft”

  1. purlewe Says:

    I don’t think you are over reacting, but then I think that anyone asking that question of anyone should realize they are throwing in a ticking time bomb.

    I mean, I knew it when I asked you. I knew asking you was uncouth and wrong, but I also knew that you talked about staying home and I figured that meant that you probably would want more kids.. someday. I also knew it wasn’t any of my business but I wanted to ask and show my interest. If you want more kids HOORAY! if you don’t HOORAY! see? from me you get the same reaction. I am about WHAT YOU WANT. Not what society thinks you need.

    I hate when other people try to press their issues on you. That totally is a buzzkill. Screw what I am “supposed” to want. Why can’t I have what I actually truly want instead of what you lot think I need?

    People asking if you are going to have more kids is like people asking a diabetic if they are going to have that extra eclair. It is uncouth and silly. It ain’t any of their bidness. But they ask anyway. They think they are being polite they think they are making “small talk” when in reality it is the biggest talk ever. A talk that should only be for the close friends and family members, not complete strangers (like “can I touch your (obviously pregnant) stomach?) Perhaps a simple declarative statement to make it clear that the subject is closed and not open for discussion. something like “I am sure you are interested, but this really is not any of your concern. It is something my husband and I will decide. Thank you for your expressed interest but this is not up for discussion.” Or something more biting like “wow, my mother doesn’t even ask that question.” and leave it at that.

    I find that society thinks it is perfectly OK to have ideas and ideals about what a woman should do with her body that makes me see red faster than a bull in a bullring.

    • coffeemomma Says:

      There is a GIANT difference between you asking me this question and some lady I just met asking me this question. I cannot even begin to list the ways it is different.
      Another friend suggested I should have taken the words “baby” and replaced it with “anal sex” and asked the woman the new revised question as a reply. Too bad I didn’t think of that.

      • purlewe Says:

        ooh! I love to do that. Let’s meet people together and shock them with anal sex talk 🙂

        The book is yours next. I will send 🙂

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