babies and pregnancy · chronic pain/fibromyalgia · depression · parenting

LABOR DAY PAINS: MAKE IT STOP. PLEASE MAKE IT STOP.

Okay, apparently, I’ve been spending so much time in Los Angeles, I’ve forgotten how to navigate my way around Riverdale. I got lost trying to walk up from my place to Wave Hill, which was only open this particular Monday because it was Labor Day. This wouldn’t have been so embarrassing if I hadn’t been dragging one of my aunts along with me.

After about a half hour (or was it an hour or two?) of getting lost and oohing and ahhing over all those great houses along the Hudson River and imagining ourselves inside them, we actually made it to Wave Hill. But after having hiking up one too many hills, my aunt said we should turn back because she was abandoning me for an afternoon barbecue.

But what she wanted to talk about all the way home? Laboring to bring my as-yet imaginary children. As in, “you’re almost 30 when are you going to have a baby? You know you only have until 35 and then it’s….” Yes, I’m aware. Because the closer I get to 30, the more I seem to be having this conversation. Apparently, I didn’t have my aunt read “My Uterus is None of Your Business” and I’m actually debating sending it to her now.

Fun facts from my family members: It’s really cheap to rent a womb in India. Or to get a baby from China! Your eggs are going bad as we speak!

Useless ways to answer “When are you going to have a baby?” at age 29 in my family:

1. I don’t have money to have a baby.

Response: “Well, no one has the money to have a baby but somehow they make do! I mean, if it was about money, most people would never have babies.” Is it just me or isn’t it irresponsible to have children when you can’t afford them? I remember what it’s like to starve because my parents couldn’t afford to feed me.

2. I’m too sick to have a baby. Fibromyalgia, depression and babies don’t mix.

Response: “Well you don’t look sick.” Only the worst thing you can say to someone with an invisible disability.

3. Variation on #2: I’m too sick to take care of a baby.

Response: “You can pay someone else to take care of it.” Did you miss #1?

3. I’m waiting until my husband actually has a job.

Response: “Well, you can’t wait for ever. I mean, the clock is ticking. Tick tock. Just get pregnant now and I’m sure he’ll get one by the time the baby is due.”

Right because the economy isn’t in the toilet or anything right now.

4. I don’t like babies.

Response: “Well, you don’t have to like babies to have them. Besides, I’m sure everyone likes their own babies.” Sure, except for my parents.

5. Mind your own business.

Fact is, despite my peppy article, I haven’t tried this one. It sounds too rude. Yeah, I know you’re thinking but aren’t they being rude by asking? And maybe I could summon up rude when asked if it wasn’t for the fact that every time people broach this subject with me, I end up crying for hours.

Forget telling me to ignore it because that’s not possible! So, let’s go people…what would you say if you were in my position? And make it short and snappy.

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10 thoughts on “LABOR DAY PAINS: MAKE IT STOP. PLEASE MAKE IT STOP.

  1. I live my own life…. Thank you very much….

    I don't die at 30 or 35.

    Women have babies later in life all the time. Medical technology is making leaps and bounds.

    Why don't ****YOU**** have a baby if you like them so much?

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  2. It's clear that nothing you say will convince her so stop trying. And she's your aunt, so you want to maintain her relationship. Can you just agree with her? “You're right. I wonder who lives in that house over there?” This is hard, and I don't like to give in. But this technique will help diffuse many situations.

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  3. My brother and his wife waited a “good long while” (late 30s) to have their kids and I'm sure they were sick to death of this question. It's from my lovely sister-in-law that I learned the best answer to such a question.

    “When are you going to have a baby?”
    “When G-d wills it.”

    Try to hurry G-d along nosy relatives. Go ahead, I dare you! 😉

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  4. I'll offer up analogs of the answers I give to a similar situation.

    Q: When are you going to have a baby?
    A1: When a baby comes out of my uterus.
    A2: Probably around the time that I have a baby.
    A3: Should I take your asking as preparedness to help out with the intervening obstacles [or insert some here]?
    A4: God willing, soon. Of course, it is kind of up to God, so feel free to take it up with Him.

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  5. I had a woman at a Chabad house tell me my biological clock was ticking; and that I should work on getting married as soon as possible. Oh yeah, I was 26 at the time…WTF?

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  6. priceless!! I get a lot of pressure from MIL about this. I have mixed feelings about kids… they are great in theory but they are a lot of damn work and I think it's one of those things you need to be 100% committed to, excited about & prepared for (as best you can) before getting knocked up! Just my 2 cents as a therapist who have seen a lot of kids/teens/adults damaged by their parents who brought them into this world for their own (usually narcissistic) reasons.

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  7. Aliza,

    I think this is a hard one for you because unlike most women in their twenties, you actually know about the difficulties of being responsible for another person and have a realistic understanding of what that means vis-a-vis your health/economic/etc. situation. I feel for you.

    I think “when G-d wills it” is perfect. Because when/if the time is right in your life, you'll know it.

    I support you 110% on this one.

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  8. i feel your pain. people need to butt out of your reproductive life.

    I recently remarried. between us we have 7 kids, ages 7 – 14. I am constantly asked “so when are you gonna have one together”, “are you planning more kids” – “wouldnt it be great to have a kid as a symbol of your love for each other”

    my answer – we are working on it diligently every night, all night long.

    Mind your own bloody business people.

    Like

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