Wednesday, January 18, 2012

On the subject of babies

Yesterday i had a bad day.
I was depressed.
Like, without the anxiety, which i haven't had much of this year, thank god, just depressed.
The can't-get-out-of-bed-cries-for-no-reason kind of depressed.
I don't feel like that often, but it is winter and it is dark and i am a sensitive girl, so when things don't go my way, i guess it's only natural that i get sad.

But i didn't start writing a blog post about being sad, because, well, that's no fun!
I started writing this because my day got better, and because i have something on my mind.

See, i went on a journey last night. A journey that took me and Lucifer outside the city, by public transportation, no less (which by the way is crazy expensive, but that's a rant i won't bore you with here) to my brothers house where we were to properly meet my new nephew!

Little Gilbert (again, such a badass name) was asleep when we got there, and stayed that way for hours, but that was fine; he was still cute to look at, and it gave Lucifer a chance to play with Carla, and me a chance to hang out with my family. But after we'd had dinner, they finally woke him up, and boy did he get even cuter!
He was farting and pooping (loud pooping!) and sneezing and crying and making faces and all those things i assume babies normally do, that i am only now finding interesting.
And i got to hold him; something i have been looking forward to ever since he arrived.

It's weird, all of a sudden finding a baby interesting (seriously, those tiny feet are just amazing and weird and amazing!), and i don't think many girls my age would be able to sit with one that she's that closely related to without wondering... is this for me? Do i see this in my future?

I don't usually write about anything that personal... i mean, of course i write about personal stuff all the time, but to me this is like a whole other level of personal, but i'm mentioning it anyway because i am sick of people asking.
No, i am sick of people thinking it's ok to ask.
"So, when are you two gonna have some babies" is a question i have been asked by countless friends, relatives, co-workers and, oddly enough, mostly complete strangers, pretty much since the day me and Allan got married, and i have resented it every time.
What makes people think that's an ok question to ask someone?
Do you also ask strangers about their salary, medical history, whether they have an embarrassing rash, what their favorite sexual position is, if they fight a lot with their partner, if they're scared of death?
Maybe, but i sure as hell don't and i've never been asked any of those questions by a stranger, so it can't be that common. But the baby one is.

I often wonder how i would feel if i was infertile and someone asked me, in that annoying playful tone of theirs, if it isn't about time we had some kids?
Cause they don't know, do they?
I could be. For all they know, we could have been trying for years with no luck, and they could ask me that, and i could die a little on the inside every time, and i would probably go home and cry and feel like an incomplete human being, just because some stranger doesn't grasp the concept of smalltalk.
It could very well be a touchy subject, and in some ways, in my marriage, it is.
One of us is deeply undecided and confused, and the other one would be happier if the subject of children never came up again, ever. So as you can maybe guess, that question has given us some awkward moments over the years. Moments we've then been forced to share with people we don't know.
Which is just great, right?
Yeah, everyone loves having an awkward private moment in public!

So, i guess what i'm trying to say, on behalf of myself and all my childless sisters* out there, is...
it's none of your fucking business!

I don't like it when people assume i'm gonna have kids, and i think it's equally offensive when they assume i'm not gonna have kids (maybe even more because, hey, nice of you to call me old, asshole!)
Maybe it's just the reckless assumption-making that's pissing me off?
But somehow i think not.
In conclusion; people need to mind their own business.

Ok, angry rant over, back to Gilbert!
He really was a sweet and mellow little dude, who by the way looks so much like my brother as a baby it's freaky, and i really hope i'll get to see him again soon.
Those little suckers change and grow so fast and i don't wanna miss it just because we don't like in the same city anymore.
And you guys, i am gonna buy so much crap for this guy in Japan!


Getting his diaper changed was no fun

Being held by grandma, on the other hand, was totally fine

Gilbert in various stages of consciousness... and Gilbert sneezing!


*This goes out to all the single girls too. Although i have been married since forever, i understand just how sucky it must feel to be asked why you're still not in a relationship, like that's anyones business.
But i know that sadly, this is kind of a common question too.

36 comments:

  1. Jeez! I know exactly how annoying 'those' people can be; my boyfriend and I have been together for 10 years and people still ask "when are you going to get married?" "when are you going to have kids"...quite frankly never if that's what we choose! We don't want to get married, we're happy as we are and if we want to in the future we will! I have a work neighbour who asks me everyday, no joke, "has he put a ring on your finger yet?" as though I'm somehow helpless and worthless because he hasn't! Douche! I say let people lead their lives and only comment or question of they invite you too!
    So now my rant is over can I just say how cute Gilbert is and what a name!

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  2. hahaha the sneeze pictures are awesome. And yeah, that kind of thing is nobody's business. My bosses don't have kids and I hear people asking them all the time "Why not?"

    Seriously?

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  3. Awww... his so cute! I love it when they have that 'old man' look for the first month or two. Haha

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  4. Alt hvad du sagde. Gange hundrede. Er SÅ TRÆT AF DERES SPØRGSMÅL! Ugh.

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  5. oh such a subject. I'm not married (even I'm in a long relationship) and I don't have children.  Recently my friend who had one asked us too. It really annoyed me - what if I would like to have but I cant. People don't think, they think its their bloody business and sort of responsibility to ask. How stupid! Sometimes I'm cheeky and telling them that I would like to get a dog instead as I love animals. They don't like the answer :P I'm thinking to start educate people by telling them that life without children can be valuable too. Anyway the older I am the more confused I am and not sure if I would like to have one. I do love children ( only the family ones tho! hahah :)) but I can picture myself without having any. I think after I experienced anxiety I more scared than ever to have them.  
    Anyway...its a fact that there is nothing more exciting than nieces or nephews. All the best to Gilbert :)

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  6. Amen to all of that, if you guys are happy (and really, why wouldn't you be?) it's nobody's business if you wanna get married or not.
    People like your neighbor this they're so clever with their comments, they truly seem to have no idea how invasive they are.

    And thanks, i really do think he's a cute baby too!

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  7. I was so stoked i got to capture a sneeze!

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  8. Totally, the little old man phase is the best!

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  9. Det værste er at jo flere der gør det, jo mere ok tror folk det er at spørge om. Jeg prøver altid at være meget afvisende når jeg får den slags spørgsmål, men det er som om at det nogle gange gør dem endnu mere nosy. Hvis du kommer på et godt snappy comeback må du sige til!

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  10. I've tried the dog response too:)
    I agree that anxiety and other conditions makes the idea of children scarier. Knowing that we can easily pass along something like that is pretty heavy stuff, not to mention the idea of having severe anxiety while being pregnant or having a small child.
    We each have to do what we think is best for ourselves, and if you decide to never have kids, your life is definitely not any less valuable!

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  11. My 7-year-old niece asks me occasionally why I'm not married. I find it hilarious. They pick up what the "norm" is pretty quickly, don't they.

    Anyway, being an aunt is so much fun, isn't it? I love that these tiny babies have no teeth. They look funny in the cutest way.

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  12. So sick of these intrusive questions.  I think in our society there's so much emphasis on the thought that one is not complete until he or she has a child.  What nonsense!  If I choose not to have children that's my business and none of yours!  Thanks for this post!

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  13. I love this. I made a choice long ago not to have children and now being 38 yrs old, it is almost to late anyway. People still don't get that there are some people who have no desire to procreate. My boyfriend of 10 yrs has a 13 yr old son that we are raising together that's enough for me.

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  14. This is so interesting. I want to join the conversation :) I don't ask others about children and I'm on the other end of the spectrum here, I don't think people should ask why we had four kids! Or worse, give us a lesson on how to not have anymore, assuming our fourth was a mistake! Or give me uninvited feedback regarding our choice to do so! Sid and I weren't sure we'd have any kids, we were really happy just us. But it happened and we got hooked on having the little suckers with their toes and smells and noises. I have significant anxiety also, related both with social situations and digestive system illness, so sometimes parenting is extraordinarily uncomfortable for me. But my love for my kids pushes me to be strong when I want to run away to the wilderness. One of my kids so far has shown some signs of anxiety, but I'm hoping that my own issues can actually help me to really work to be a positive influence o

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  15. My comment was long and I lost the ability to edit it at some point, but I think I got the gist across. I'm so happy for Gilbert to come into your life, newborns are so mysterious and wonderful. I can't wait to see what he gets from Japan!!!!!

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  16. Good lord I swear your in my head sometimes- haha! I have had similar rants such as these, about the exact same issue! I have decided I love to make people squirm and feel like shit, so I actually have started saying "actually Matt and I are unable to have children, we really wanted them, so I really don't like talking about it". Then they feel like a total asshole- haha! Sucked in! That'll teach em for asking such intrusive questions! Is that evil? 
    But really it stresses me out because I actually don't know if I want any, I have always said never, ever. But I have gone from no fucking way, to hanging with my nephew and getting all clucky. So who knows? The issue has given me a lot of anxiety of the past year or two. I am well aware that the clock is ticking (thanks people for reminding me) and I need to make a choice at some stage but frankly I just don't want to decide right now. When people constantly bring it up, it means I go away getting all anxious about it again and freaking out that I need to make the decision and soon! In my right mind I figure if it happens, it happens. But constant barraging from people makes me anxious all over again, when I may have finally decided to let it go and not worry about it. Agh, lets face it people are fucking rude. 

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  17. Ak ja, og de bliver ved med at spørge, selvom man har fået ét barn, skulle jeg hilse og sige.
    Men nok om det. Hold nu OP, hvor er han lækker, ham Gilbert. Den der næse! Ihh! Hviin! Dåne! Hils dem mange, mange, mange gange.

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  18. Jeg går seriøst i tænkeboks, og finder et comeback der sætter punktum. Så godt at du skrev den her post, tak.

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  19. Jeg vil se frem til den ultimative samtale stopper!

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  20. It is fun! I'm already looking forward to him getting bigger and more aware. I hope i can be the cool aunt.

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  21. You're welcome!

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  22. As far as i'm concerned, people who chose not to have babies (or adopt), on this very overpopulated planet of ours, should be given an award of some kind.

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  23. I'm glad so many people feel that way, i love hearing what you all think of this!
    First of all, our anxiety sounds so similar, but that doesn't really surprise me.
    I think people meddling with your choice to have four kids is exactly the same issue; people meddling in others' very personal business. You guys have happy, healthy kids and you're great parents, so if anyone should keep having babies, it should be you! But again, nobody else is allowed an opinion about this unless asked abut it.

    I think you can be a good influence when it comes to anxiety, as long as you're honest about how you feel with the kids. I only recently learned that my mom has negative automatic thoughts to a certain degree, and i think it would have helped me a lot to know that she isn't always perfect and über strong.

    I'm really stoked about being an aunt, he really is a cute little dude!

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  24. Haha, sorry about that! No, t5hat is not evil, and i would totally do the same if i didn't already know that Danish people have no shame or boundaries, and they'd just take that as an invitation to give me advice about how to conceive easier or some shit like that.

    I always though that i would have made a decision by the time i reached the "dude, your eggs are running low" age, but now i'm not sure. I just assumed that the urge to have kids, or not, would come naturally, but now i feel, like you do, that i'm gonna have to make that decision based on practical reasons and not an emotional/biological desire. It is scary and anxiety producing! I asked my previous therapist about it once (she was about my age) and she was lie "psshh, don't sweat it! If it happens it'll happen, so don't worry, you've got years!" and she's right! We're stressing because those assholes tell us to stress, and tell us we're not normal unless we know exactly what we want, and it's not like they're perfect, they're usually just projecting their own insecurity or jealousy, so really, we shouldn't stress. but it'd sure be a lot easier without them! And yes, they are fucking rude!

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  25. Ja, de skal nok finde et eller andet galt, de mennesker.
    Han er SÅ fin, han ligner en lille Tobias! Jeg skal nok hilse næste gang jeg ser dem.

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  26. I cant wait to see those mega cute gifts too :)

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  27. gilbert is a pretty excellent name. i just started being interested in babies because a few of my friends have had them. 
    i hate the questions. my mother in law's best friend asks me if i'm pregnant pretty much every time i see her, she always says "are you sure?" when i say know and i HATE IT. so incredibly rude. and the mil herself will look at pictures of baby stuff and say things like "please tell me i'll have someone to buy this for SOMEDAY" 

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  28. Wow, what a post. Been married for 12 years next month (Yeah, another one, you guys are not alone. Most creative people I know are childless out of choice) , so, no kids here either…we never wanted any (Pretty easy...I have always looked upon it as the ultimate-ego-thing-on-a-short-leach) and I choose to spend all my energy on feeding & maintaining my ever growing love for my wife and our freedom to choose the way as two individual earthlings, while we can. Life's too short and not fair to bring in an innocent little helpless one into the mess we call "life" if you ask me (you didn't, I know, still). People, look around you…stop making so many fucking babies like it is a not too thought through tradition, it has no purpose more than feed your own egos and reproduce just another power hungry greedy generation again and again…rather have a dog…like Lucifer..or adopting some little guy or gal who's been left behind the bandwagon and teach this little innocent one, that -" You got nothing to prove to anyone, it's just a healthy choice".

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  29. Jennifer StankovitsJanuary 20, 2012 at 11:02 PM

    Hmmm, was that directed at me?  Or is that just my ego again, the one that caused me to have four kids?  Nah, you probably didn't even read my former comment, but I do feel the urge to respond to yours.  Your name is familiar, I think you know my husband, Sid?  So your ego caused you to not have kids, mine caused me to have kids. How sad that we can't get away from those damned egos and just make an intellectual decision!  Geez.  I love that people elect not to have children, and I rely on many of them for inspiration and ideas, I respect their choices and learn a lot from them, I am always impressed by what they are capable of, and I admire the personal attributes and qualities in people not fettered by the needs of little ones, and I believe their lives are as rich and fulfilling as anyone's.  Sometimes I yearn for that life myself, I long for the freedom, time, quiet and space to express myself, that's for sure, so I appreciate when others give that yearning enough value in their lives so as not to bring unnecessary responsibilities into their lives. Personally, however, I do not want my yearning for those things to dominate my life to the degree that I will forego other pursuits to protect it.  I do think it a worthy and good pursuit to bring human beings into the world and raise them up in a family.  I love the sacrifice, creativity, love, and personal growth that doing so has pulled out of me.  And I do think it's cool to have a large family, to have a little microcommunity, a positive, loving force promoting good in the lives of those around us.  I'm so glad for you to live out the life you have chosen, and for me to live out the life I have chosen.  Egos and all!  One more thing, I believe the greed and power hunger through the generations - that promote evil and suffering throughout the world - come more from government officials acting in grotesque self-interest than from families having babies.  Maybe if if those officials had been raised in healthy, loving home, they would have their needs fulfilled and not need to act in grotesque self-interest as adults?  Shout out for Attachment Parenting!!  Maybe people who don't want to take responsibility for their children shouldn't have babies, but that doesn't mean that no one should.  

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  30. It's not an issue for me to be asked around not having children...It's those things you hear afterwards!
    Here comes top 3:
     "Oh,don't worry-you still do have plenty of time"
     "You are just not ready yet,it's perfectly ok!" ( by the way,I'm 33 years old     ,married in 8 and never really wanted children, not once...)
    "It will come one day!Trust me".

    When people ask me why- I say that it's because I just don't have what it takes to be a great parent.
    Most of them don't ask what I mean. 
    They are afraid of not having it either...


    P.S.Cute kid!

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  31. Happy anniversary (almost)!
    I'm definitely on team "more people should adopt" but on the other hand, i do understand some people's need to make babies. I really do feel that most people shouldn't, but when it's a declaration of love, the same way that marriage is in a way, i can understand it.
    And if we leave it up to the shitheads to do all the reproducing, the next generations are looking pretty bad!
    But i don't know, i'm undecided, so for now, Lucifer is enough :)

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  32. Happy anniversary (almost)!
    I'm definitely on team "more people should adopt" but on the other hand, i do understand some people's need to make babies. I really do feel that most people shouldn't, but when it's a declaration of love, the same way that marriage is in a way, i can understand it.
    And if we leave it up to the shitheads to do all the reproducing, the next generations are looking pretty bad!
    But i don't know, i'm undecided, so for now, Lucifer is enough :)

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  33. Happy anniversary (almost)!
    I'm definitely on team "more people should adopt" but on the other hand, i do understand some people's need to make babies. I really do feel that most people shouldn't, but when it's a declaration of love, the same way that marriage is in a way, i can understand it.
    And if we leave it up to the shitheads to do all the reproducing, the next generations are looking pretty bad!
    But i don't know, i'm undecided, so for now, Lucifer is enough :)

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  34. Yes to more people raising their kids in loving homes! That's what i feel is sometimes missing here in Denmark; people seem to want to have kids out of habit or because of traditions and expectations, and then when they finally get those kids, they can't wait to get back to their jobs and old lives and leave the parenting to other people! Less of them, and more people like you:)

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  35. Thanks, we like him too!

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  36. (long time reader and lurker here)
    I have to agree on the whole baby issue, it seems everyone feels like it's their right to ask me when I plan on having kids when it's really none of their business... It's already quite annoying from family members and friends but the best I've ever gotten was getting asked when I plan on having kids and how many during job interviews!

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