“So, when are you going to have kids/another baby?” This question, should be erased from our vocabulary. I’m here to tell you, it’s the question you should never ask. I, like many other women, have been asked this question and had to fight back tears to answer. Struggling to keep from falling apart, I’d answer, “Well, we’ll see.” It was all I could manage. The truth is, it wasn’t up to me.
David and I found out in February of 2009 that I was pregnant. Though a very unexpected pregnancy, we were overjoyed at the news we would become parents for the third time. At the end of March, at one of our pre-natal appointments, our dream of adding another child to our family was taken from us, as our precious little Holden was gone. (Read more about my miscarriage HERE.) We tried for nearly a year before we were able to get pregnant again. During that time, every month was a roller coaster as I would wish, hope, and pray that THIS would be the month…Tears and disappointment filled many of my days. Watching friends become pregnant just reminded me that I wasn’t. Each time I’d see a child that was the same age as our little Holden would be, it was almost too much to bear. (It still is.) And through it all, so many would ask when we would be adding another little one to our family…..and each time they’d ask, my wounds would re-open, my frustration would swell, and a tear-soaked pillow would carry me off to sleep.
Babies aren’t something we can simply hope for, and then have show up in our arms 9 months later. 1 in 3 pregnancies end in miscarriage. My doctor told me that most women with 3 children have had at least one miscarriage. Most women with 5 children, have had two. While I have one baby waiting for me in heaven, I have friends with nearly a dozen. (And, my heart is comforted for them, knowing what a sweet reunion that will be!) Even when we do everything right, carefully monitoring our pregnancies,and receive proper medical care….babies can leave us at birth. My heart aches for those who have held their child that left them. Adoptions fall through. Birth moms change their mind. Foster parents so eagerly hoping to adopt the little one in their care are forced to turn them back over to a biological relative. Others try for YEARS, go through endless infertility treatments, and never find themselves pregnant. Some women choose not to have children, and face judgement and guilt when asked that question. This question reminds women of their pain…their disappointment…the ache they carry with them….the reminder of children lost…of children hoped for who never came….It’s the question you should never ask. So please, from one woman to another…don’t.
Thanks Lindsey. I know you understand.
This is so true. Thank you for writing about it.
You are more than welcome Nic. You were on my mind when I did.
You hit the nail on the head here. This should be a taboo topic. There are always underlying circumstances that are frankly none of anyone’s business.
As someone that suffers from infertility, my most dreaded question is “why don’t you have kids?” I get asked this on a weekly basis and it floors me just how many people are rude enough to ask this and that don’t think there is anything wrong with it. For years I told people that I either don’t like kids or it just hasn’t happened just to avoid the topic. Now I just tell them it’s none of their business. Thank you for posting this, maybe someone will read it and realize that there are some things people have no business asking.
Yes, a thousand times, yes. When will our society learn that asking about your family planning does not fall into the “polite conversation” category? So many hurts can be stirred up. Thank you for posting this.
As a mom who nearly died during pregnancy and had a horrific experience (I had Hyperemesis Gravidarum) I know how much this question hurts. The choice to have more was completely taken out of my hands. And while I know that God is in control, it still hurts. It’s not a dreamy, perfect life event for every woman. Some of us can’t even imagine what that would be like. Thanks for the post- I’m sharing!