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    IntroducingEmy's Avatar
    IntroducingEmy Posts: 87, Reputation: 12
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    #1

    Aug 1, 2008, 01:01 PM
    How to inform others that we're child-free
    My fiancÚ and I have been together for quite a few years and our marriage is coming up. When we announce the upcoming wedding at family gatherings or social events, we are peppered with questions about children in our future (to the point of being rude and prying). Neither of us want children and don't plan on having any for various reasons. I want to know how we can politely tell people that there will be no kids without us coming off as a heartless couple.

    We've tried to duck the question many times and it usually ends with one of us being asked 'What's wrong with you?' or 'You don't know what you want'. My parents and my fiance's are also being asked this question often and are comfortable with our plans of being child-free. I feel bad that our close family is being stressed over this question.
    JudyKayTee's Avatar
    JudyKayTee Posts: 46,505, Reputation: 4600
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    #2

    Aug 1, 2008, 01:04 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by IntroducingEmy
    My fiance and I have been together for quite a few years and our marriage is coming up. When we announce the upcoming wedding at family gatherings or social events, we are peppered with questions about children in our future (to the point of being rude and prying). Neither of us want children and don't plan on having any for various reasons. I want to know how we can politely tell people that there will be no kids without us coming off as a heartless couple.

    We've tried to duck the question many times and it usually ends with one of us being asked 'What's wrong with you?' or 'You don't know what you want'. My parents and my fiance's are also being asked this question often and are comfortable with our plans of being child-free. I feel bad that our close family is being stressed over this question.


    I always find that staring people who ask unwelcome questions straight in the face and asking, "Why would you ask me that?" causes them to shuffle away without any additional questions.

    Covers all sorts of inquiries about finances, children, anything else you can think of that you don't feel they have a right to ask.
    MsMewiththat's Avatar
    MsMewiththat Posts: 854, Reputation: 136
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    #3

    Aug 1, 2008, 01:20 PM
    Well said, I may try that myself. It certainly closes the door and sets the boundary.
    snowalps's Avatar
    snowalps Posts: 141, Reputation: 7
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    #4

    Aug 1, 2008, 01:21 PM
    Yes judy. Thanks for hitting the nail.. certainly very useful.:-)thnx.
    JudyKayTee's Avatar
    JudyKayTee Posts: 46,505, Reputation: 4600
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    #5

    Aug 1, 2008, 01:33 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by snowalps
    yes judy. thnx for hitting the nail..certainly very useful.:-)thnx.

    The secret is in the unblinking stare -
    Synnen's Avatar
    Synnen Posts: 7,927, Reputation: 2443
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    #6

    Aug 1, 2008, 01:36 PM
    I have no idea why people think they have the right to ask about future children of a couple. If you don't WANT kids, it's an uncomfortable question. If you WANT kids, and haven't been able to conceive, it's a hurtful question.

    I would respond with something along the lines of "We don't plan on having children, consider that to be a personal decision, and have not asked for your opinion on it."

    We get the question all the time, and are having problems with conceiving---and I've found that the answer "I guess we aren't doing it right---YOU have kids! How about you strip, hop up on the table, and show us what we should be doing?"
    JudyKayTee's Avatar
    JudyKayTee Posts: 46,505, Reputation: 4600
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    #7

    Aug 1, 2008, 01:52 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Synnen
    I have no idea why people think they have the right to ask about future children of a couple. If you don't WANT kids, it's an uncomfortable question. If you WANT kids, and haven't been able to conceive, it's a hurtful question.

    I would respond with something along the lines of "We don't plan on having children, consider that to be a personal decision, and have not asked for your opinion on it."

    We get the question all the time, and are having problems with conceiving---and I've found that the answer "I guess we aren't doing it right---YOU have kids! How about you strip, hop up on the table, and show us what we should be doing?"

    Similar situation - I have no living children. My son died in infancy; I have had a number of miscarriages. People who ask stupid questions ("Why don't you have any children? You'd be a good mother") deserve what they get as a response - including, "What's wrong with you to ask a question like that."
    MsMewiththat's Avatar
    MsMewiththat Posts: 854, Reputation: 136
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    #8

    Aug 1, 2008, 02:10 PM
    I'm sorry for the loss and the heartache. I too have had miscarriages and would love to add more to my family, but I guess it's not in the cards at this time.
    JudyKayTee's Avatar
    JudyKayTee Posts: 46,505, Reputation: 4600
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    #9

    Aug 1, 2008, 02:26 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by MsMewiththat
    I'm sorry for the loss and the heartache. I too have had miscarriages and would love to add more to my family, but I guess it's not in the cards at this time.


    My husband had once had enough and said to a woman who asked me why I didn't have children (he did, from a former marriage): "We were afraid if we had children they would turn out like yours."

    She stood there and we walked away.
    Synnen's Avatar
    Synnen Posts: 7,927, Reputation: 2443
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    #10

    Aug 1, 2008, 02:30 PM
    OMG!

    I'm so using that answer from now on!
    MsMewiththat's Avatar
    MsMewiththat Posts: 854, Reputation: 136
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    #11

    Aug 1, 2008, 02:43 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by JudyKayTee
    My husband had once had enough and said to a woman who asked me why I didn't have children (he did, from a former marriage): "We were afraid if we had children they would turn out like yours."

    She stood there and we walked away.
    That's the greatest.
    ChihuahuaMomma's Avatar
    ChihuahuaMomma Posts: 7,378, Reputation: 608
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    #12

    Aug 1, 2008, 09:17 PM
    I just give the stare, no words needed. Piercing blue eyes do the work...
    linnealand's Avatar
    linnealand Posts: 1,088, Reputation: 216
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    #13

    Sep 8, 2008, 04:58 PM
    I know that this is an older thread, but I had to jump in. I get this quite a bit too. I just turned 29, and I've been living with my boyfriend for over 5 years. Everyone wants to know if and when we're getting married, and we get the kid question too. The truth is that I don't know what I want yet. I think it would be wrong of me to get married and have kids without being 100% sure that I'm ready. That sounds reasonable to me, but it's not something I want to share with everyone. I think the best strategy is to ask the same question back to the person, no matter how absurd it might be in reverse.

    I've just come up with some new ones for the occasion:

    14. "we had them but we didn't like them."
    13. "i'm trying to decide between getting a kid or getting a dog."
    12. "we just joined a cult, so we're hoping to have as many as possible."
    11. Just start crying. If someone asks you about it later, deny, deny, deny. Then call the asker a liar.
    10. "we would like to have 10 of them, and we're thrilled you'd like to babysit."
    9. "we just can't afford them right now. by the way, we were hoping you could loan us some money."
    8. "do you mean real kids?"
    7. "it turns out they just don't want us."
    6. "we've decided not to contribute to the prison problem in America"
    5. "I'm sorry, could you repeat that? I'm sorry, could you repeat that? I'm sorry, could you repeat that? I'm sorry, I still can't hear you. Could you repeat that? No, I still can't hear you. Could you repeat that?"
    4. "first I have to finish rehab."
    3. to family: "i'd love to have kids, but i've been advised not to pass down your nosy genes."
    2. "i'm allergic."
    1. drool.
    ChihuahuaMomma's Avatar
    ChihuahuaMomma Posts: 7,378, Reputation: 608
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    #14

    Sep 8, 2008, 08:55 PM
    I've used 13, 8, and 2... and I'm single.
    linnealand's Avatar
    linnealand Posts: 1,088, Reputation: 216
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    #15

    Sep 9, 2008, 03:53 AM
    Oh chihuahuamomma, you're such a charmer. I've decided that someone should give you your own reality television series.

    I think I'd like to change #5 to: stick your fingers in your ears, widen your eyes and slowly exclaim, "i can't hear you."

    This is fun. Don't get me wrong - I do love kids, and I'd like to have a lot of them. In fact, I would love to adopt at least one child one day, too. But for the people who ask the kid question, the only right answer is the answer they want to hear. It's a serious subject, but I'm much happier making light of it than fumbling all over myself to find an adaptation of my real response.
    0rphan's Avatar
    0rphan Posts: 1,282, Reputation: 240
    Ultra Member
     
    #16

    Sep 13, 2008, 12:53 PM
    I don't think you have to answer that... only to say,well lets get married first and see what the future brings... smiling sweetly.

    This leaves anyone open to think what they will...
    cozyk's Avatar
    cozyk Posts: 802, Reputation: 125
    Senior Member
     
    #17

    Oct 17, 2008, 10:04 PM

    "We had them and did not like them" I love that!

    What about...
    "When are you going to have children?"
    " I don't know, when?"

    Or just simply be honest and say, "having children is not OUR cup of tea."
    Period, end of discussion.

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