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Why You Shouldn't Comment on the Size of Someone's Family

I'm So Excited to Grow Our Big Family — but I'm Sick of All the Comments I Get


Every time I leave the house, with my 5-year-old and soon-to-be 2-year-old twins in tow, I'm told ad nauseam of just how full my hands are. Normally, I just smile and nod at strangers' observations because, well, they're not wrong. Occasionally, however, if the kids are being extra demanding, I'll dole out a little snark and roll my eyes at their unwanted observations about my family. That's an easy approach to take with strangers, especially ones who comment on full your hands are and yet can't be bothered to hold the door open for you. Family and friends, on the other hand, are a little trickier. Lately, I've found myself holding my tongue quite a bit as everyone seems to have an opinion on our plans to grow our family.

I know I could have taken the easy road. When asked if we're done having children, I could have just shrugged my shoulders and simply said, "I don't know," or "We haven't really discussed that yet." Instead, I've answered truthfully. Yes, we are planning on growing our family. In fact, we've already started with the preliminary consults so that we can go ahead with a frozen embryo transfer. The fact that we have to work so hard at growing our family, that adding another child to the mix is 100 percent intentional, seems to really make people's heads explode. I can see it in their eyes: Their concern for me, and then that desire to just shake me to my senses, as they point out all of the reasons why we should reconsider.

When it comes to growing our family, everyone seems to have the same comments: My hands are already so full; more babies means more expenses; my body has already been through a couple of pregnancies, so do I really want to put it through another? And those are just the tame questions I get. I know they're not coming from a place of malice — but I'm frustrated. It's exhausting having to answer to my overly nosy friends and family when this is a personal decision between my husband and I. But because I love them, even when they annoy me, here's how I respond.

Yes, my hands are full. And as someone who, at one point in time, didn't know if I'd ever get to be a mother (take that, infertility), I am eternally grateful for the travelling circus that is my family and my incredibly full hands.

My and my husband's finances are our business. I will assure you, however, that we probably wouldn't try so damn hard to add another child to our family that we couldn't feed.

Women have been birthing children since the beginning of time. Yes, my twin pregnancy was tough on my body, but I'm ready to do it again. And plus, my doctors all gave the green light, so I'm going to run with that.

There are some people who are genuinely excited about the possibility of baby number four next year, and I love them for it. To them, I say thank you for wanting to share in this amazing experience with us. To everyone else, know that I'm making this choice because I want to — and your comments (no matter how well-intentioned) won't change my mind.

Image Source: Getty / Linda Raymond
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