Stop Asking Me if I’m A Mother
Happy Mother’s Day to the mothers! And people who are acting mothers! And people who have a deep attachment to their pets!
In spite of the title of this post, I don’t mind when people ask if I’m a mother. It’s the follow up questions after that that usually piss me off.
“Are you a mother?”
“Well, why not? Don’t you want kids? How old are you? Shouldn’t you be a mother by now?”
It takes all of my self-control not to snap when this happens. Full disclosure, I have snapped on a few people, but mostly I keep my angry responses to myself.
But to the point of I want to snap:
- Why the fuck is it your business why I don’t have children?
- I could have fertility issues and the assumptions could be breaking my heart.
- If we were close enough, you’d already know the answer to that question, and Mother’s Day is not the appropriate time to ask.
- I don’t want kids, why is that up for judgement?
When I calmly (or not-so-calmly) explain why I have no desire to be a mother, I get looks of either confusion, judgement, or pity.
The confusion confuses me. Do some people really know no women except me who are willing to stand up say, “at this point in my life, I have no desire to be a mother.”?
The judgement pisses me off because I am horrified to think of that person doing the same thing to a woman who’s only child was murdered. Or who has had multiple miscarriages. Or who is infertile. Or who also just doesn’t want kids but is emotionally affected by the judgement of strangers.
And the pity saddens me. There is so much is this world to feel badly about: climate change, poverty, childhood obesity, refugee safety, people constantly doing harm to the world in their god’s name. Being sad for me just seems like a waste of time and energy.
Knowing me, I will likely wake up one day and decide I must have children. As it stands right now, if I had a 2 bedroom apartment, I’d be filling out an application to be a foster mom. But raising a child from start to finish it outside of what I want right now.
I’ll just be happy with my own mom. And my grandmother. And my mother-in-law. And my godmother. And all the other women in my life who are like second mothers to me.
So feel free to ask me if I’m a mother, just keep the follow up questions to yourself. Thanks!