Family

PSA: My Uterus is None of Your Business

In each one of my exam rooms is a canvas 16 x 20 photo of Dusty, Wyatt and Myself. They are two of my favorite pictures of us and do the job of providing a conversation starter for times when I am doing an in office procedure and need to do small talk as well as for those appointments where I am providing nail care for the older population.

My head will be bent over someone’s feet and they will look to their right, spy the picture and inevitably ask “is that your family?”

I look up and can feel the grin splitting my face as I too look at it and say ” Yep! Those are my boys!”

I put the picture there for that exact purpose and I love talking about my family. I could talk about Wyatt for hours when invited to do so, and often times even when not, and I like the ability to connect with my patients on this level.

Unfortunately, this often times goes beyond this though. Several times a day the person will then ask “Is he your only one?”

I’ve perfected my answer over the last 3 years: “Yep! I love my little family. It is perfect”

Thankfully, most times that ends the line of questioning and we move on to other subjects or I get back to talking about their foot condition. A handful of times a day though, the person persists “you don’t want any more?”

What I want to do is look them straight in the eye and tell them “It isn’t about wanting. What I want doesn’t seem to matter in this regard. After 2 years of unprotected and very planned sex often times with pills, injections and invasive tests involved there was never a pregnancy and never an answer as to why since all tests came back perfectly normal and healthy. After we adopted there has been 4 more years of unprotected sex without a resultant pregnancy, so no wanting has nothing to do with any of it”

Instead I have learned to just repeat my above answer “I love my little family. It is perfect the way it is”.

Some persist though. “Don’t you want a daughter?”

My mind reels. Why pester a complete stranger with such personal questions? What would they say if I said “no…I would hate to have a daughter!” I’d love to tell them that getting pregnant doesn’t ensure a daughter and I don’t have another $47,000 to spend on adopting one. We still haven’t paid off half that from Wyatt.

I repeat my answer “I love my family just the way it is”

“You really should have a sibling for him. He would be happier”

Are you kidding me?! Now the person is telling me I am a bad mother for not having another child. If you don’t think this happens, guess again. I go through this multiple times a day. My answer to this one has always shut down any and all additional questions: “A lot of siblings don’t get along. He wouldn’t be better off if he hated his sibling”

I could take down the pictures. I could tell them I adopted Wyatt. But the thing is that it is none of their business. This is an extremely personal question and one I would never ask any person unless I was incredibly close to them to the point of sharing such information. I don’t like explaining that Wyatt is adopted 20 times a day and don’t feel like I should have to. People tend not to think about problems they never had to face. To many people getting pregnant just happens, whether it is wanted or not, and so they never dream that for someone else it wasn’t so and that their line of inquisition could be hurtful.

I won’t take the pictures down. I love them. I love talking about my boys and I love giving my patients an easy way to connect with me and come up with small talk which can be awkward. I don’t mind being asked if he is my only child and I don’t mind the follow up about having more, but once it gets beyond that it is crossing a line.

 

13 thoughts on “PSA: My Uterus is None of Your Business”

  1. I couldn’t agree more. I do not understand why people do this. I never ask someone why they don’t have children or more children. It’s none of my business and why should I (potentially) heap more pain someone to meet my own skewed perspective as to what the best family is?

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  2. I don’t want children. Ever. And I get constantly grilled by complete strangers asking WHY I don’t feel the need to reproduce. Like it’s their business for some reason. I’ve even had people tell me that I’m denying my eggs the right to existence (wtf?) because I am in the process of *potentially* sterilizing myself because BC doesn’t agree with me at all.

    If I was you, I would start responding with: Why are you so interested in my sex life? Or, past that: Are you offering to pay for another adoption? Sometimes I find snark gets people off your back faster than being nice. I’ve started telling people that tell me ‘accident’s happen!’ that ‘so do abortions!’ Shuts them up real quick.

    Sorry you have to go through this kind of crap 😦

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    1. I honestly don’t get it. Like would someone go around asking people what their cholesterol levels are or if they have cancer? It’s just as personal. It’s frustrating. If you don’t want kids, then that is your decision an nobody else should have an opinion let alone express it.

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  3. I don’t want kids, but I constantly get this same line of questioning. Why don’t you want kids, you’d be happier with kids, you’re missing out, you don’t know what you want. Jeez. I don’t know why people think they can comment on what anyone wants to do with their family. I think I’ll start giving them your line: my uterus is not your business.

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  4. I have always thought of parenting as a privilege and a responsibility, as opposed to a right. Explaining my reproductive choices, or being treated as a second class female because of someone else’s perception / judgement of them is so tiresome. I wonder how they would feel if I decided to weigh in on their parenting skills, which may be as lacking as their manners are…

    How do nosy people know that someone hasn’t got a painful story around reproduction – a lost child, or maybe one given up for adoption? Sorry for the rant, but this is a pet peeve of mine.

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    1. It’s so true though. What I went through to start a family was horrible. I don’t want to have to think about it or relive it. And that was not even getting pregnant. What about those who lose their child? Who knows what emotions you are stirring up with the question. Why people think it should be public domain I don’t know.

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  5. I just want to hug you for having to deal with people like that. You’ve got a lot more grace about it than I would. I know I’d say something to make them feel really uncomfortable that they ever asked. I absolutely need to take up your graceful tact when I’m asked questions people have no business asking. You should share your favorite photos that you have up with the blog sometime =)

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    1. Thank you 🙂 I need to have more tact when at work. If not, I’ll lose business and then won’t pay my bills. I’ve learned a lot by being my own boss and running an office. In my personal life, I’m not as nice.

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