Well HELLLOOOOOO there! Welcome back to my blog. I’m so glad to see you! So, if you follow me on Twitter (and if you don’t, you should), you might have noticed I have some BIG NEWS! Remember in “How I Went from Dying Alone to Happily Ever After” I said my fiance and I were getting married soon? Well, WE DID IT! Matthew and I got married last Friday and we are just over the moon about it.
Indeed, newlywed life is AMAZING thus far. And as newlyweds in our (ahem) mid forties, I would have thought that Matthew and I would be immune to a certain inevitable question folks LOVE to ask of newly married folks. The inevitable question being, of course…
…DUN DUN DUN….
SO WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO HAVE CHILDREN?
My dear readers, I didn’t need Maury Povich to find out that we are NOT immune to this question.
Now, before everyone comes for me and tells me that PLENTY of couples have children late in life, let me interrupt you by referring you the title of my blog. Indeed, I am QUITE fond of saying, “I will not hold your phone or answer your baby!”
Oh no Meredith, what are you going on about now?
Le sigh. Do let me explain. I can’t tell you how many times a friend juggling groceries, their cellphone, a crying child, car keys and cantaloupes or WHATEVER has thrust either a ringing phone or crying child at me (or both) with the instructions to “hold this” and/or “answer this”. Ummm…no. Thank you. As a card-carrying germophobe, I don’t wish to get YOUR phone anywhere near MY person and as for your child? DON’T YOU PUT THAT EVIL ON ME!
What do you mean, Meredith? Don’t you like children?
Not particularly, no. Some people love children, all children; but I am not one of them. As a friend of mine once said, “I didn’t even like kids when I was a kid.” I have never been the maternal type. Trust me when I tell you that my biological clock is digital (and thereby silent). I didn’t care to play with baby dolls when I was small other than the Baby Alive doll I had when I was about four. She came with a stethoscope with which I could hear her heart beat and that’s about all that interested me about her.
So yeah, very little interest in baby dolls when I was a kid. I hated babysitting as a teenager. As an adult, babies scare the hell out of me and I find toddlers extraordinarily distasteful. You know, like spiders. In other words, GET IT OUT OF MY HOUSE! I don’t give a crap about seeing your grandkids on Instagram and just in case it isn’t blatantly obvious, I do not want and have never wanted kids of my own. Luckily for me, neither does my husband.
Hell, my MOTHER doesn’t even like kids.
What about you, Meredith? Weren’t you a child once?
Negative, Ghost Rider. I came out of the womb forty years old.
But it’s different when you have your own, Meredith!
So I hear, but I’ll pass. The idea of being pregnant and carrying a child around like an internal squirming, kicking, growing football for nine months gives me the heebie-jeebies so hard that I shudder to think about it. I got enough problems. And then upon expulsion from my lady parts, I have to CARE for that helpless, vulnerable critter? Hold it and feed it? Change its diaper? Oh, no. Case in point? I held a baby once. It was awful. I remember thinking, WHAT IF I DROP IT? OH GOD, WHAT IF I BREAK IT? THEN I’ll either have to buy it or replace it. MY CREDIT LIMIT DOESN’T GO THAT HIGH!
But God bless America if you TELL these well meaning folk asking when the stork will be dropping off a bundle of joy onto your doorstep that said doorstep is unavailable for delivery…well…
Let’s just say then? The REAL inquisition begins.
Them: So when are you having kids?
Me: Oh we’re not. We don’t want kids.
Them (happy ending): That’s cool. So, how about that Coronavirus?
Them (unhappy ending): BUT WHYYYYYY? Don’t you know that’s the circle of LIFE and the NATURAL ORDER OF THINGS? You mean that you don’t want a precious BUNDLE OF JOY to CALL your OWN? HOW can you SAY that?! A CHILD is one of the BEST EXPERIENCES YOU COULD HAVE IN THIS LIFETIME! You HAVE to have kids! Doesn’t your mom want GRANDKIDS? Who will take CARE of you when you’re old and sick? You simply HAVE to have a child! You just HAVE to!
Me (eye twitching): Listen, all I HAVE to do is be human, pay taxes, and die, eaten by cats the way the Good Lord intended. GOOD DAY TO YOU! I SAID GOOD DAY!
Spoiler alert: The “happy ending” NEVER happens.
Look, if you want to populate this planet (or have already done so or are in the process of doing so) with smelly, sticky, loud little humans, by all means, go ahead. Enjoy those little…erm…DARLINGS to the fullest. That’s your right as a reproductive human being. Please, I insist-be my guest. Just keep them the hell off my lawn.
Meanwhile, it’s my right to live in child-free bliss with my wonderful husband if I so desire and believe me honey, I DESIRE. I understand folks’ curiosity. I do. But please just know that while medically some people can’t have children; some people just don’t want to have kids. We don’t want kids for the same reason some people don’t want to say…take up golf, go vegan, or learn to skydive. These are conscious choices that we know will bring us the most happiness in the long run. And for the record? Golf is as boring as watching paint dry. There. I said it.
And I don’t mean to be a dick or anything but we don’t owe you, well meaning inquisitor, a detailed explanation of WHY we don’t intend to pop out a kid or two. Matter of fact, please, please, PLEASE do us deliberately child-free folk a favor and just smile, nod and say, “that’s cool” when we tell you that children aren’t ANYWHERE in our future. Then if you would be so kind, gracefully change the subject so we don’t have to be annoyed trotting out the patented twenty-five minute Power Point presentation comparing children and common house pests and why we hate both. Thank you for coming to my TED talk.
And thanks for reading,
This Post Has 2 Comments
All 👏🏼 of 👏🏼 this! I could not have expressed this more perfectly. We should turn the tables on the condescension that the kids inquiry inevitably brings. “Wait, YOU HAD KIDS? in THIS world?! Aren’t you worried about your carbon footprint, or saving for retirement, or living life on your own terms, or that your kids might not make enough contribution to justify their weight on society? …No? Gosh, what’s that like?”
YES!! I agree 1000000%!!