One lovely Saturday afternoon, when the clouds cleared a small group of women got together to swap clothes and talk.
If I had known where the conversation was going to head to I probably would have stayed home and wallowed in my own estrogen-hating sorrows. I had been hesitant to go exactly for the same reason I regret attending. The discussion started with being accosted in the doorway with the question, “Do you have a boyfriend?” Normally, I fare well in this area due to having one. Except, this then turned to, “What is your feeling on marriage and kids?” Well, that’s complicated. Even though I am in a loving and stable long-term relationship it doesn’t mean I automatically want marriage and kids.
Disclaimer Note: I do want to “marry” my boyfriend, kids are still on the table. To be elaborated more later.
I managed to change the subject to pets for a bit in hopes of distracting them from their uterine discussions. It only lasted for a hot minute since I inadvertently upset someone after suggesting that kids that let their pets die kill their pets are not the smartest bulbs, and no child should have a pet if they can’t take care of it. My bad. Of course, this also led the women to discuss how I would not be a suitable parent since I would be unreasonably strict when it came to pets, and strollers. Thanks for the womanly support. They were more upset that I hated strollers with a vengeance after being ran over by several on a recent trip to the Aquarium of the Pacific with my little sister. I vowed to never buy a stroller for myself because I felt they were now being used as a weapons by frustrated mothers everywhere. If the child can’t walk they will be carried via a slang, or Baby Bjorn. Once they can walk it’s all by foot. My friend the hostess made it a point of saying she would visit me with (hypothetical) stroller and baby in tow, on purpose, to prove I was being unreasonable about strollers. She began to mimic herself banging on my door yelling for me claiming strollers help make her life easier. I was not amused by the display, and let her know I would not answer the door if this were to happen in real life.
Again, all the females were appalled by my “Anti-Motherhood” approach to things and proceeded to, again, make statements that I shouldn’t have children. Thanks gals. The hostess chimed in with the other hens in proclaiming I wasn’t motherhood material. I then proceeded to explain that children are not a forgone conclusion in my life. That yes, my boyfriend and I have discussed the possibility of having children, but it is not something we are banking on. Am a rare female in wanting to have an established life before giving birth to a child? I think not. But in this room I was. I then began my rant about how I’m always disturbed by women who “plan” on getting married, having children, and becoming a stay at home Mom. Why can’t women have a list of more challenging things? Like, finish college, find a good job, move to another city, travel all over the world, and if finding a boyfriend and getting married happen then that’s great! But planning your life around finding a husband and making babies isn’t too desirable for myself, or other women either. Maybe in the 1950 – 60’s, but women are lot more complicated these days.
I wasn’t alone in my misery. Luckily, there was one fellow female who wasn’t impressed by the lack luster conversation, and we managed to have our own little art and career conversations. She was my savior. Unfortunately, we both discovered our mutual friend had done this type of thing to us both in the past before as well, and we have now vowed to never again be lured in by free food, clothes, and alcohol in hopes of catching up with our friend. Especially if there are other women who we don’t know personally.
The worst part about all this nonsense is that Hostess, and friend of mine, is now trying to lure her current boyfriend, also a friend of ours, in to a discussion about having kids in the future. This is frustrating for everyone. Especially since she has already been informed that he does like children, nor does he want children. She knew before they started dating, before the moved in together, and now she’s still pressing the issue. This is going to be bad for all involved if she isn’t reminded about the reality of the situation that’s she in. It would be different if she were to ask these questions after 5 years of living together, but it hasn’t been half that time.
It’s great to know that the someone you’re with would like a future with you, like marriage or children, but I’ve always been one to be happy with the now in the relationship. Where ever it is now is good, and that’s good enough for me. If it wasn’t then I’d start to discuss it, not try to convince them “Everything would be better if…,” those are harder discussions to have in any relationship. I feel that too many relationships and marriages fall apart due to never having a frank discussion about these aspects of our lives with someone else. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, especially if it involves their views on marriage and kids, but it’s not an opinion any more when you try to coerce someone to change who they are and what they want in life.
Why are there so many women who are hell-bent on marriage and kids to be happy? The mysteries of that world will always elude me.
And for the record, I’ve never been an advocate of marriage. Marriage is a piece of paper that lets you get a break on taxes, and is more a legally binding piece of material more than anything. A real marriage is based on trust, love, and understanding of one another. I don’t need a piece of paper to tell me those things.