Feeling harrassed for wanting more kids. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 17 Old 04-04-2008, 03:23 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Has anyone else had the experience where "well-meaning" friends and family go ballistic on you for even considering having more children?

I always thought 2 kids would be my limit, much to the approval and agreement of my friends and family; but after the precious home water birth of my beautiful little girl last August, I am really becoming more open-minded to the possibility of trying for a third sometime this winter.

But since I have begun sharing the thought of having a third with friends and family I have been given an earful of fearful warnings that I don't know what I'm getting into, there's no way we can afford it, I'll "have" to drive a minivan (which I've always said I refuse to drive! ), my career will never be able to grow, I couldn't handle more than two, I'll lose my mind, I'd be spreading myself too thin, etc., etc. It's really troubling to hear these things and part of me wonders from time to time: could they be at all correct in what they're saying? Am I just getting wrapped up in emotions of falling in love with my babies, not thinking about rational things like having enough money to put everybody in soccer or ballet, if they want it?

My husband says to ignore everybody's nosey opinions, but it's really hard to do sometimes, you know? Has anyone else ever been through experiences like this?

Thanks,
joy

wild.gifJofulone: loving wife of dh, mama of dd 8yrs and dd 6yrs, angel1.gif 6/09.  waterbirth.jpg homebirth.jpgguitar.gifsuperhero.gif 
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#2 of 17 Old 04-04-2008, 03:58 AM
 
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I'm so sorry you are feeling harassed! My only advice would be to be completely honest with people and say it's your choice and not there's, You are already aware of what a third child means for your family, so if they don't have something positive to say about it, please don't say anything. You can be up front about it and not be rude.... Just be honest and let them know that you are tired of the criticism and lectures. You are obviously an intelligent woman and you know what you are getting into.

Good luck!!!
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#3 of 17 Old 04-04-2008, 06:17 AM
 
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I am in the opposite boat, but I feel your pain. It's crazy how people will stick their nose into your business.

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#4 of 17 Old 04-04-2008, 10:26 PM
 
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Yeah I got a lot of flack for wanting three too. I dont know why. Its not THAT many!!! LOL But yes I did lose my mind. lol but it was just hanging on by a thread anyway.
Do what is in your heart.
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#5 of 17 Old 04-04-2008, 11:22 PM
 
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Well, I already had one ds when I met dh and dd was a surprise and everyone was thrilled. Nine grandkids, no girls or nieces etc. And though dh and I said that after dd we would have two more, from even before her birth the harrassment started. my mother was/is the worst. I was told that I would change my mind after labour, becuase of how much it hurt and obvioulsy I must have forgotten that in the time since ds was born. After dd was born, I was told we had a boy and girl so we were done. I was told not to have more kids than I could afford etc etc. Once we convieved ds2 I was told, well, everyone was glad dh got HIS boy and NOW we could be done. That really pissed me off. I mean, throughout my pg with ds2 I was harrassed about not having more. My mom was there for the birth, when the midwife announced his weight, a whooping ten, six, I said something about hoping the next one wasnt bigger and she said how can you lay there after what you just went through and talk about the next one? Then she tried ambushing dh when I wasnt around about how if he really loved me he wouldnt put me through that again.... sheesh..... I kept quite about ttc the next one and truly considered not telling until I was showing. Even though we have said since I was pg with number two that we would have four then stop, now that we have four, I STILL get harrassed about it to the point where I almost want to have another one out of spite! NOt really, but you know what I mean.

My mom says often how she could not handle my life. And thats the point, they are all projecting thier boundries, thier limitations, thier priorities onto you. Their values are not your values. My stepsister has only two because they want to drive brand new cars and buy big screen tvs. Thats ok, those are thier choices and thier values and priorities, not mine. I'd rather drive an older car, have a smaller tv and more kids. And THATS OK TOO, though no one seems to think so.

And now I keep having thoughts about a fifth child after all and I will not even mention that to most people! Its not thier business. All my children are fed and clothed. None of them lack for anything.

Yes, three are more work than two, in some ways. Less in others (they sure do keep each other occupied!) But whatever you decide, its YOUR decision, not thiers. My advice? Only discuss is with those who support you. I only really mention it to dh and to my bf. She could care less if I have one more or not, she lets me think outloud to her, really just bouncing ideas around.

So, think about it, talk to your dh and let others know if/when you are actually pregnant. And let them know that you dont need thier negativity during your pregnancy, if you go that route. I finally told my mom, when she was on a rant about how much energy another child would be (while I was already pg) and I said, "Yes, youre right, my kids do take a lot of energy and thats where my energy needs to be expended rather than all the energy I expend arguing with you" that helped.

Today it came up somehow and I said, "Im not going to aruge about this. We said we were having four, we had four, we're done, so whats the point?"

If I have another one, I wont tell my family until Im showing!!

~Me, mama to soapbox boy (1991), photo girl (1997), gadget girl (2003), jungle boy (2005), fan boy (2003) and twirly girl (2011). Twenty years of tree hugging, breastfeeding, cosleeping, unschooling, craziness
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#6 of 17 Old 04-05-2008, 02:30 AM
 
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I'm pregnant with number three, and have gotten a lot of unhelpful comments from friends and medical practitioners. I was complaining to a woman I know with six kids, and she said she got a lot of flack with her third and fourth, but after that everyone figured she was "crazy anyways" and left her alone about it.

Sorry you're dealing with this. I wouldn't mention it to those folks anymore--they obviously don't get it.

Wife to a wonderful dh and mom to four beautiful kiddos, dd (3/04):, ds1 (1/06), ds2 (10/08), and ds3 (7/10)
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#7 of 17 Old 04-06-2008, 07:35 PM
 
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I think you need to do whatever your heart wants. Do these people have to carry the baby for you? Do they have to deliver it? Do they have to raise it? NO! You do, it's your body, your decision. That's why God gave everyone their own brain. I give you good vibes :
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#8 of 17 Old 04-09-2008, 09:08 AM
 
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I can relate. We want a third and everyone is like: "But you already have one of each!" Meaning that since we have a boy and a girl, what more could we want? It drives me crazy.
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#9 of 17 Old 04-09-2008, 09:14 AM
 
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Sounds like you need to avoid that topic with those people. When they bring it up, just say, "You know, my sex life is really a private thing, I'm not up for discussing that right now."

What IS it with the "one of each"? Everyone tells us to stop because we have one of each. I don't get it. Like, one penis, plus one vagina equals a complete family? So, if we got two penises, we'd be justified in trying for another, because we wouldn't have a vagina baby yet? Or should we hope for twin girls, so the penises and vaginas have equal energy in the house?

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#10 of 17 Old 04-10-2008, 01:12 AM
 
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Last summer, I went to see a neurologist for vertigo and headaches. He was asking me a bunch of questions about my level of fatigue and activity, so I mentioned I was nursing and that I was a full-time studying, full-time working single mom. So he continues with the questions and asks if I am taking birth control pills or whatever. Thinking this is a medical question, I say no, I dont do drugs. He then says, very seriously, that I should. Still thinking he has some sort of medical logic behind it, I ask him why. He then says, with the most condescending, paternalistic tone : Well, you would not want to make the same mistake twice and have another accident.

I obviously told him off and walked out. It seems to be the general response I get from people, albeit not always as rude. Just because I am relatively young (23) and am single, people get outraged if I mention that I want more children. I think I am a f****ing excellent mother and if I want to have more kids, I sure as hell will, regardless of what anyone wants to say. I surely am more qualified to be a parent than that obnoxious neurologist. Im sorry Im getting angry, but that kind of stuff pisses me off so bad. I find it almost more offensive when people tell older or less single people that they shouldnt have more children because then I cant even try to excuse their comments by assuming that they are just ignorant.

Single mom to E (2004) and D (2010)
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#11 of 17 Old 04-10-2008, 01:48 AM
 
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I've gotten some flack from my parents too, about how we have four healthy kids B"H and we even have a boy now (um.. I hate the inference that we had to go until we got a boy but that's a whole 'nother post).

Anyway you are not alone, your life, your kids. FWIW, my mom stopped at 2 because of all the "logical" reasons, and she really regrets it to this day. In hindsight they could have afforded a third, but by the time my dad agreed to go for a third my mom felt she was too old and didn't want to start over.

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#12 of 17 Old 04-13-2008, 07:37 PM
 
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Well you know what they say about opinions.

It is hard. When I was pregnant with #3 my granny (who had 7 kids) asked me if I was going to get my tubes tied and when I said no she acted all disgusted and said "Well why not?! : She's mentioned more than once that in "today's world" no one should have more than 2 kids. Well,whatever. One of my aunts was all up in my business about getting my tubes tied after this one, too. And now that so many Catholics use birth control, I can't even use THAT as a "leave me the eff alone" excuse. My husband's Catholic aunt keeps saying "I hope the next one is a boy so you can be done!" Arrgh!

If you want more, have more.
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#13 of 17 Old 04-14-2008, 03:46 PM
 
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I am pregnant with our third and we did get a couple of comments about how we should only have two, and DH's mom said OH NO! When she found out I was pg. But we are excited, and we project that excitement onto others.

For me, I was so sure that I wanted a third, the naysayers barely entered my mind... but when I did get pg I was nervous at first, but now I'm excited!

Mama to 3 kids. We live in a yurt!
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#14 of 17 Old 04-14-2008, 03:59 PM
 
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I have two kids and lost my mind a long time ago So I am amazed and shocked when people have more than two. I hope that doesn't come across as disapproving. To me it is more the extra energy than the money.
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#15 of 17 Old 04-14-2008, 04:02 PM
 
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I totally agree 100% with that analysis!


How bizarre- I was responding to bri276's post, which is below this one. weird.
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#16 of 17 Old 04-14-2008, 05:09 PM
 
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I really don't get it. the only explanation that makes any sense, psychologically, is that somehow the people who are doing the harassing are somehow threatened. this means they're either jealous (subconsciously or otherwise), or feeling as if their choice to have X number of children is being judged as wrong by the person having more. I think honestly, a lot of times, it really is jealousy. Many people do not feel they can maintain their lifestyle with more than 2 kids. Everything is designed for 2 kids at this time in our society. Daycare is extremely pricey and people who do not wish to or can't afford to stay home are certainly going to be stretched to the max with 2 kids, financially, physically, emotionally. I truly believe that there is a huge percentage of parents out there (though I'd venture to guess mostly women) who wish deep down that they could have more than the standard 2 kids, but can't, for whatever reason. So when they see the rare 3+ child family, it must hurt, and the anger is hurt turned outwards, projected onto the families who have found a way to do something they couldn't. And from my own experience with family and friends, I think a lot of times, it's the husband or male partner who absolutely refuses to have more than 2 kids.

Or I could be way off base. But really- what other possible reason would there be for anyone to have such an inappropriate reactions? being simply surprised is one thing, but negative comments are totally uncalled for.

DD1 7/13/05 DD2 9/20/10
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#17 of 17 Old 04-29-2008, 12:58 PM
 
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well yes we were totally harrased when we talked about having #3, really bad, from friends and family, friends I dont know why, my mother and sister were the worst, they were not jealous by any means though, they were very concerned because our financial situation was really tight that we were going to add so much extra stress financially and emotionally etc to our situation, it caused my mother to not sleep at night and cry worrying about us

well baby is 1yr old now and our financial situation is MUCH MUCH better, so yes it has all worked out, and now we are talking about baby #4, well the friends and coworkers have backed off, like someone else said they all think I'm crazy anyway so they dont fight it anymore, and now that the $ part is stable I know my mother is just waiting for us to announce we are pregnant

BUT she will still be very upset, she sees it as yes baby #3 is a blessing and thank goodness things worked out but not to tempt fate and remember that they get more expensive the older they get and that with 4 it would be too too much

but like my DH said the other day when we were looking at baby "remember how long we debated on having her" and I said "yup" he says "look at her now, I cant ever imagine out lives without her" aawww and she was our most difficult newborn, colic for almost 6 months!!!!

ok done rambling!!!!!! IF its in your heart, go for it, IT WILL ALL WORK OUT

~Susan
widowed from Marc Nov. '09(love you more babe) mom to Sophia (9) Emma (8) Lily (5) :

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