I’ve written before about a mother’s greatest critic being other mothers but having a newborn gives everyone the right to have a say in your life it seems.
Even having older children does the same.
No sooner was Boo out of the womb than people were asking if we were having another baby. Mentioning the miscarriages usually put paid to those questions-after all, no one wants to talk about that, do they?
They might not want to talk about the babies that didn’t make it, but they feel well equipped to ‘advise’ you on the ones that did.
This week I read a great post from Nikki over at Keeping Strong and Moving Forward. It was called Yes They’re All Mine and she was talking about how strangers say the same thing to her all the time, like “You have your hands full”, “Don’t you own a TV?”
It got me thinking (and having a rant in my head) that while well-meaning, what gives other people the right to make assumptions and judge you, on your kids?
It seems people have to say something. They can’t just say ‘what a lovely baby’ or ‘what beautiful children.’
In Asda for example, I’ve had people ask me (755 times in the last ten weeks), which aisle did I pick Beb up in? Now I know this is not offensive in any way but, it still grates when you’re trying to get two children around the supermarket before any kind of melt down begins.
What has really surprised me however is the comments about having had a boy.
I, of all people know how precious all babies are, not least that we have a boy and a girl.
When Beb was born though, I had people tell me, TELL ME that my family was complete.
Why, thank you for letting me know I don’t need to have any more children. I will make sure I consult you if, god forbid I dare to think about wanting another baby.
Yes, it seems having a child of each sex is the holy grail of parenting but would my family have been any less complete if Beb had been a girl? No, I don’t think it would have been.
Granted, Hubster may have beheaded me-Anne Boleyn style for not producing a son and heir but I would have been happy whatever the sex our very-much-wanted baby was.
The point is, parents have such a tough time as it is. There is an army of well-wishers out there who feel they have a right to comment on our lives-just because we have decided to add to the population.
It is up to the individual to decide how many children they have and when it is time to stop.
For us, it is early days. Unless it is a surprise, I can’t imagine any parent of a newborn can make the decision about more babies.
If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.