12/06/2005

There I go, being oversensitive again

There's a post over at M* that I think is weird. It just is. There's a lot of weird stuff out there, but this comes from people that I thought were sort of rational. Ok, maybe that's stretching it, but still, I think the whole post is weird. It's about kids, and how many is too many. Huh? So, I posted a small little thought about how I thought this was an inappropriate topic, especially for people who are not in control of the baby situation at all. And, of course, I got slammed for being oversensitive, and some pretty seriously nasty stuff was said about how dare anybody even take their families outside, for fear of offending people who can't have kids, or even how dare we all write things, because we could even offend people who can't write! Oh, the HORROR! I responded, I think, in a very controlled way . But I think the topic of being oversensitive or insensitive calls for a little discussion. After all, haven't we all been called oversensitive at one time or another? Ok, when you are pregnant, you can not in any way hide that fact from a person who is struggling with infertility. That can be a sensitive and tricky situation. But I have a friend who is currently pregnant, and we get to talk and laugh about all the pregnancy stuff, and I feel no prickling of anger, jealousy, or anything else around her. She is fun to be with, mostly because she is my friend, and I feel great about her pregnancy and pending joy. I wholeheartedly wish her tons of it. Yet there is another woman I know who is pregnant, and she drives me so crazy to the point where I can't even talk to her. She has told me to "get busy" having babies, and wonders why we don't have more kids. I have had a woman tell me that she wondered if I was putting off having more kids because of my career (yeah, like the 8-10 hours a week I am working is just going to ROCKET me to the top!), and I get prickly a little bit with her, too. I have one woman who tells me that her 4 kids are just a handful, that if I ever want more kids I should just come over the HER house and I would be cured of that need immediately. When she says that, I just want to punch her in the face. Hmm... would that be considered oversensitive? Ok, maybe a little, but I guess my point is that it is not situations that are insensitive, or topics that are insensitive, it is people. People can be just jerks about stuff, and I get annoyed when I think somebody is being a jerk, especially about something that is painful for me. And then they tell me that I'm just being oversensitive, that I just have to deal with my pain because it's not up to them to make allowances for a painful private situation. Maybe not, but a few allowances probably couldn't hurt. I mean, after all, I don't pretend I can't walk or talk, but I don't ask my disabled friends how many marathons would be too many.

40 Comments:

Anonymous Jordan said...

I also thought that particular thread was very strange. I don't understand what point he was trying to make.

At any rate, calling others "oversensitive" can be a defensive tactic to not have to admit doing or saying something a little over the top.

I should know, as one who says "over the top" things from time to time in public settings, then accuses his wife of being "oversensitive" when she gently says "honey- are you sure that was appropriate?", only then to hours later realize, mortified, that *gasp* she was indeed right that I stuck my foot in my mouth.

And she was not just being oversensitive...

12/06/2005 03:31:00 PM  
Blogger The Wiz said...

Heather,
To the woman who tells you to "get busy" you should just start telling her intimate details about your sex life, and then ask her whether or not you're "busy enough." If she reacts in a shocked manner, just tell her she's being oversensitive.

And to the one that has 4 kids and thinks that's too many, just tell her you're horrified at her lack of gratitude, and in your humble opinion, she really needs to repent. You could help her through this process if she needs it. If she's offended by this, it's not your problem, because really, she's just being oversensitive.

I love, love, LOVE Jordan's comment that "oversensitive" is a defensive tactic so as to not have to admit to doing anything over the top. Well put.

12/06/2005 04:40:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

For the record, the post itself came from one blogger, and the others were not consulted. That said, I think it a strange question but not necessarily an inappropriate one.

12/06/2005 05:26:00 PM  
Blogger Tracy M said...

Heather, you are awsome- I love your writing, your point of view, and your incredible sense of humor.
I whole-heartedly second everything The Wiz said. Amen!

12/06/2005 06:12:00 PM  
Blogger Andrea Wright said...

UUUGGGH, Heather, I'm always amazed that so many of us are still so clueless in what we say and do. My first instinct is to jump all over these women for not knowing better and for being so incredibly insensitive, but then I get this pit in my stomach and know that I've probably uninentionally tortured people by my own cluelessness and insensitivity. You're a saint for not having slugged them yet!

12/06/2005 06:28:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"And again, aren't you all,like, lawyers who went to Ivy league schools, have deemed yourselves worthy of being Gods of the universe and internet and masters of your domain?"

Well said Heather. That is exactly why I stay away from M* and BCC, a bunch of men who come across as overly intellectual and will only tolerate comments from others who have the necessary credentials to deem them intellectual.

If you want to talk about oversensativity and when its ok or not to say things that may offend people. Tkae a look at where our society is headed...we can't say Merry Christmas because our non Christian firends might be offeneded, we can't say Happy Chaunnakuh (sp?) for the same reason, yet our society decries the over commercialization that has become Christmas (what do you expect when we take God out of it). I think just maybe, we need to become a tougher skinned people. We need to trust in the good of humanity- that most people truely do not mean to offend (situations like Jordan described). Perhaps I say this as a way of obsolving myself of all the accidental (and there are many) ofeendings I have commited.

12/06/2005 06:38:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

""And again, aren't you all,like, lawyers who went to Ivy league schools, have deemed yourselves worthy of being Gods of the universe and internet and masters of your domain?"

Well said Heather. That is exactly why I stay away from M* and BCC, a bunch of men who come across as overly intellectual and will only tolerate comments from others who have the necessary credentials to deem them intellectual."

Wow, there's some "pride from the bottom." It's not even accurate. M* has but two lawyers, and used to have two women bloggers before one defected to BCC, as chronicled by the Snarker.

12/06/2005 07:44:00 PM  
Blogger Julie M. Smith said...

Well, I hope everyone has their food storage in order because I am going to defend Matt Evans, and you know what that means . . .

I think Matt was attempting an interesting and completely appropriate intellectual exercise. The premise was: IF you had complete control, how many children would your choose to have before you would choose zero. Now, people who are familiar with Matt's other pro-natal views (which I don't like one bit) read way more into what he wrote. I didn't read all of the comments; many were way over-the-top. But as I engaged in the intellectual exercise, I thought it was a worthwhile thought experiment because it forced me to evaluate my thoughts on whether and when providing adequately for my children would be trumped by the simple desire to have children. Again, this is about Matt's original post, not the comments.

Heather, you missed the hypotheticalness of the question. The fact that you can't live out the question makes you no different from any other participant in the discussion.

That said, I am very sorry if the conversation was hurtful to you.

12/06/2005 09:16:00 PM  
Anonymous Jordan said...

Ha!

I can't speak for Heather, but I understood that much, Julie. What I didn't get is (1) why it is a useful exercise, and (2) why it's even interesting.

Then again, most of what we say on these blogs is not particularly useful or interesting...

12/06/2005 10:07:00 PM  
Blogger fMhLisa said...

Julie, you're killing me. My food storage is so not in order and I'm just scared, because you do realize that you just defended M.A.T.T. E.V.A.N.S. I'm frightened. Honestly.

I haven't read the thread referred to. I'm just blown away by the *idea* of Julie's defense is all. Not the merits.

And now having admitted to not having read the thread, I will say thing.

Heather, smack those women. Well, okay don't smack them. But as a person who has been insensitive a time or two in my life (who me?), I think a good smack is in order when people say stupid things.

If people don't tell me I'm being stupid, how will I ever learn to stop. You see? If you smack 'em with a good "I'd like to have more kids, but I can't" And if they're the good hearted type, introspective at all, and open to making themselves better . . . they may react defensively at first (as in "you're being too sensitive") but when given a chance to reflect, they'll probably stop being such idiots.

And if they don't, then you'll learn to avoid them. Since they're doh heads.

And if this post is in any way stupid, please feel free to smack me. I won't think you're being too sensitive.

12/07/2005 01:18:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

heather, perhaps you could give people the benefit of the doubt rather than becoming annoyed with them...even if what they are saying is completely frustrating to you personally. i don't think those women would have said those things to you if they thought you would be upset by them. most people are doing the best that they can--we are all learning along the way!

12/07/2005 06:43:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I mean, after all, I don't pretend I can't walk or talk, but I don't ask my disabled friends how many marathons would be too many."

I think this shows how you misunderstand the thread. A better analogy would be, say, an able person asking 'how many miles would I have to run before I'd rather be disabled rather than run them?' and getting thereby a greater appreciation for the gift of ability and for the suffering of the disabled. I see no reason why asking the disabled this question would be offensive, either. Surely they also have opinions on what kind of sacrifice would be worth the ability they lack?

Adam Greenwood

12/07/2005 11:29:00 AM  
Blogger Heather O. said...

Julie-

We will have to agree to disagree, although I am with FMHlisa--never thought I'd see you defend Matt Evans! But thanks for your comment.

Adam-

Also, thanks for your comment. That's a well thought out, very well intentioned criticism that actually does help me understand that particular thread better. (I still think it's a weird discussion, though!) Too bad those kinds of things weren't said over at M*. Instead, I get dismissed as being oversensitive, to the point of being mocked. I don't mind people pointing out that I misunderstand things (ok, actually I HATE it, but if you can't stand the heat...), and thereby engaging in a debate about something that I misunderstand. But that's not what happened. Matt apologized for being hurtful (which I think is sincere--whatever Matt may be, I don't think he's a sadist), but still dismissed the whole complaint as somebody who is being oversensitive to a particular topic.

And the comments that followed--well, let's just say I didn't feel like they were meant in good fun, or in the spirit of open debate.

Adam, I actually like your twist of my disabled analogy, which actually just proves my point I posted on M* that if Matt was really interested in just having a "too much of a good thing" or "too much of a sacrifice" debate, he could have picked a different analogy, one that isn't so obviously frought with complex and possibly painful emotions, not to mention the obvious crossfire he must have known he would get from woman who always roll their eyes when men talk about childbirth.

NOT that I'm saying that men should never talk about childbirth (sheesh!), but just saying that there are inevitably women who will blast men for doing it, and Matt frankly should have seen it coming.

12/07/2005 12:30:00 PM  
Blogger Heather O. said...

Anon---

I actually do try to give people the benefit of the doubt. That's why I haven't actually smacked anybody at church.

But when I am openly mocked and dismissed, well, it's harder not to want to smack somebody.

12/07/2005 12:33:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heather O.,

Matt Evans wasn't interested in having a generic 'too much of a good thing' debate. He wanted to know about kids, which is sui generis. Just like, in asking about running and disability, I would be specifically interested in knowing how much I and others valued ability.

No one responded the way I did to your comment because (1) the original post was pretty clear--I have yet to see a convincing alternate reading of it--so it didn't occur to me that you might not have understood it until I saw what you said over here and (2) you didn't explain that you didn't understand it, you went off on how we were arrogant lawyers who thought we were gods, or some such. This wasn't calculated to get the kind of response you were wanting.

Finally, yes, Matt Evans probably should have known that he would get a bad response from some readers. It takes a while to sink in, but eventually one should realize that males, especially ones who are known for conservative views, literally cannot say anything about marriage or children without someone taking offense. You, in fact, were pretty mild. Some other folks were practically howling at the moon.

But the real question is what Matt Evans should have done when he realized that a certain subset of readers would take offense. You seem to think its obvious that he should have not posted. I don't. Instead, I think he should have asked--will people being objectively warranted in taking offense?* The answer is 'probably not,' and, in fact, the kinds of things offended people said bore that out.

*My assumption is that saying things like 'having children is good' should not be offensive to those who are childless or unable to have as many children as they wish. How much less offensive, then, is asking whether having children is good, and to what degree? Perhaps you feel that no one should say 'having children is good' without explicitly nodding toward those who have pains when it comes to having children, but this is, I suggest, a case of tunnel vision on your part.

Here is an analogy that you might find useful:

From time to time people will talk about some medical miracle they've had with their children, and how grateful they are that God kept their children alive. Now, it turns out that I have a daughter whom God did not keep alive. It is painful to hear people say these things. But it is not offensive. It should not be offensive. They are right to be grateful, and are right to share their gratitude with the rest of us. In fact, unless they have some particular reason to be aware of *me* as part of their audience (i.e., we're conversing in a small group), there is no reason for them even to nod towards my plight.

12/07/2005 01:33:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That was me, Adam Greenwood.

12/07/2005 02:16:00 PM  
Blogger NFlanders said...

I think the problem is that babies don't grow on trees. Matt is free to do any kind of thought experiment he wants, but he shouldn't be surprised that some people think he's being creepy when he completely ignores the female role (i.e. 100%) in bearing children.

Combine this with Matt's too well-known views on everything related to women and babies, and you have a big pile of ick.

12/07/2005 03:04:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Matt Evans is probably aware that babies don't grow on trees. You think?

As for his question somehow ignoring women--I did not notice that the question was targeted at one specific gender. I was not shocked when women answered. I am not horrified that both men and women have ideas about how many children they want or can put up with.

Now, if Matt Evans saidthat his male readers should have as many kids as they want, regardless of their spouse's wishes or needs, that would be on thing. But--this should be obvious to everyone, even you--he didn't. I thinks its wierdly totalitarian to say that men must not only entirely defer to their wife's wishes as far as children go, but they can't even have their own wishes. But that's what's happened--Matt Evans designed a thought experiment to elicit much people wished for children, and y'all are objecting.

-Adam Greenwood

12/07/2005 03:37:00 PM  
Anonymous Eliza said...

Heather,

Although I am disgusted at what those women said to you, I don't see how it ties in to this post. No one told you what you should do, right? It seems your only valid complaint is that the post is weird. Can't you allow for a little weirdness? I thought blogs were for simply posting the random thoughts you had and illiciting respsonses from people on the topic. To me, this post was completely harmless, or at least it was intended to be completely harmless, so I guess I just don't see why you reacted the way you did? I guess I am just always amazed at how people read into the posts and take things so freaking literally. Anyway, that is my two cents.


Adam,well said.

12/07/2005 04:58:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Combine this with Matt's too well-known views on everything related to women and babies, and you have a big pile of ick."

Ned, that's a cheap shot, and an unfounded one at that. Do you really believe you and everyone else knows that Matt's views regarding EVERYTHING related to women and babies? I think the more accurate statement would be, "I, Ned, know some of what Matt thinks from his statements, and I've filled out the rest with assumptions and caricature."

Davis

12/07/2005 06:55:00 PM  
Blogger NFlanders said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

12/07/2005 11:56:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Heather,

As one who has experienced infertility firsthand, I definetely sympathize.

I don't have to reiterate why it is so hard to be infertile *and* in a church that so lauds big families. I know there are probably people in my ward who don't know my medical history who possibly think I am too wordly, too selfish, too *whatever* to have a big family. If anything I feel sorry for them that they spend so much time judging and not enough time listening.

No, you weren't being *overly* sensitive, just sensitive. I know I am sensitive to this kind of stuff, and I find it perfectly reasonable that you would be too. Of course you would be if this has been a struggle for you. People say stupid things all the time. Even I have been known to say a stupid thing or two in my time :) I think we need to just let some things go. Be slow to take offense and quick to forgive.

Thinking of you, Hildykins

12/08/2005 01:27:00 AM  
Blogger NFlanders said...

I deleted my earlier comment. You're right, Davis, I wasn't being very charitable toward Matt. I apologize for that. Life is too short to have fights over the internet.

12/08/2005 11:14:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This has been interesting to read. I haven't experienced infertility myself, but I have close friends who have and I try to be careful with what I say. I can't imagine how hard that would be.

The thing I don't get is being offended by the woman with the 4 kids who says they're a handful and you should come over to be cured of wanting more kids. Maybe she's overwhelmed. She's more than likely trying to make you feel more comfortable with the amount of children you have. She probably doesn't know the situation. I agree with one of the previous comments that you should come out and tell people the situation. More understanding would be better for everyone. Not everyone (especially fertile woman) understand that it's an issue for A LOT of women.

By the way, does it seem more prevalent nowadays or is it just because we're in that stage of our life and so we're more aware?

12/08/2005 11:45:00 PM  
Blogger Mo Mommy said...

ananymous @ 1:27, liked your thoughts
heather, When we had difficulty with secondary infertility I got all the comments,so I finally just started saying that we had put in our order and were waiting for it to be filled

It's unfair to bend for every possible little opinion, but it's also unfair to expect everyone to bend for your every possible little opinion.
I remember saying to very pregnant women "haven't you had that baby yet?" and then realizing when I was hugely pregnant how annoying that is to hear. my foot tastes lovely with ketchup though

12/09/2005 12:04:00 AM  
Anonymous JKS said...

Since I have had friends who have had to deal with infertility, I try to be very sensitive to those around me.
However, I should also point out that other women deserve just as much "sensitivity."
How about the woman who gets pregnant with baby #4 and cries because she got pregnant? What is she supposed to do in a church that celebrates children.
People hide a lot of pain. Until you actually live their life, you don't know what burdens they are dealing with.
I think that the mother of four who made that comment was being a little insensitive, but perhaps you need to remember that she might be just a little jealous of you because her problems seem overwhelming to her right now.
And if you think she has no right to be jealous of your problems because she is clueless about the pain you feel.....perhaps you have no right to be jealous of her problems either, because you don't know what struggles come with her children.
Let's try to view things from other people's perspective.
I hope this comment doesn't sound harsh, because I don't mean it that way. (I think my comments usually sound to abrupt, but I guess I don't know how to write the way I really mean it).
Just yesterday I was thinking about the fact that with ward boundary changes, plus so many of the people I know moving, there are few people left who have known me for more than a year or two.
I'm trying to make friends, but I realized that none of these new friends and acquaintances know my history. They know me now--Mom of 3 cute kids, nice house, good marriage, etc.
They don't know the postpartum depression, the breastfeeding struggles, the dh's cancer, the son who couldn't talk, the girls' night outs that I didn't order anything because I was committed to our budget.
And recently when I had some very real struggles, I had no one here to turn to. So I didn't tell anyone around me what I was going through.
At least I have a best friend out of state who I can talk to on the phone.

12/09/2005 03:27:00 AM  
Anonymous LisaB said...

I think JKS's points are really good (usually do--sorry to hear why you don't comment more on FMH!)

I wasn't in on the original discussion either, but I agree that sensitivity is not a bad thing about sensitive topics.

Even having been there I've been dumb enough to ask the question once of a couple I didn't know well enough and apologized immediately when I realized the rudeness and insensitivity of my question.

Most of the time, I've only discussed family planning decisions and fertility with very close friends (and none of them have been offended).

Our small family is a result of choice and circumstance. We were married 8 years before our first full-term pregnancy, and we had another miscarriage between the two children we have. Sometimes I tell nosey people that we think five pregancies was enough. That shuts them up. I sometimes even call my kids my "two mites" (Biblical, not the pest kind).

Most of the time I didn't want people to walk on eggshells about it around me. I still wanted invitations to baby showers, etc., though I wasn't always(emotionally)able to go.

We had friends who started responding to baby questions by saying "we're saving for a boat."

A few other possibilities:

"I'll forgive you for asking that very personal question if you'll forgive me for not answering it."

"Hmm... so what do you think we should do--chlomid, in vitro, or adoption? Want to help raising funds for us?"

Just look up at the ceiling. This can imply "sheesh" or "it's in God's hands" depending on how you do it.

If you think they are well-intentioned but simply clueless, educate them. Something as simple as "You do realize that not everyone is able to have children whenever they want." This can be said even if one is not dealing with infertility or currently "trying."

Give them a chance to back out: "You didn't just ask what I think you just asked, did you?" or "Do you realize what a personal question that is?"

If you are simply too angry, just pretend you didn't hear what they asked or walk away.

12/10/2005 12:18:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess my problem is almost the opposite. I have alot of kids. (Going on 8) By choice. I know very few people who have big families. And even within the Church I get alot of nosey comments about whether we are done yet. Many women feel they need to tell me how they just could not handle having more that their (1, 2, 3, or 4) And how patient I must be. They feel the need to tell me how their husband has had a vasectomy, or their tubes are tied.

They don't really know me, or my husband and our reasons for our family size.

And where do you fit in when you have a college freshman and a new baby? No where. I don't fit in any of the groups.

This being said, I try to be sensitive, because I realize that not all have the abilites to make the choices I have made.

On the lighter side, my sister and her husband (parents of three)made up a list of comebacks for when people ask me if this is the last one. Some were funny, some were blunt. We had a good laugh.

I guess I'm just trying to say that all of us have different problems, choices in our lives and we need to be repectful.

12/10/2005 09:42:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous: "I agree with one of the previous comments that you should come out and tell people the situation. More understanding would be better for everyone."

I totally disagree with this. I have no desire, whatsoever, to discuss the goings-on of my vagina with rude strangers. They have no business asking, so I'm not going to engage in any type of a conversation with them about it.

Usually I just start crying...that seems to shut them up.

-maria

12/10/2005 11:54:00 AM  
Anonymous Heather O said...

Sorry, got busy, didn't have to comment.

A few thoughts:

Adam, I only accused people of being arrogant lawyers and Gods of the internet after I was repeatedly slammed for being sensitive and thinking the topic was icky. You are right, I don't think I understood exactly where Matt was going with the whole question, and yet you are the first person to explain it in such a way that doesn't make me go "What the...".

But my biggest complaint is not that Matt even posted. Ok, it's weird, but that's not a reason not to post. My biggest complaint is that instead of saying, "Wow, I had no idea that this could be so misconstrued, let's talk about how people view this whole thing," I was accused of being oversensitive, and Matt just talked about how we can't avoid topics that are sensitive, like walking and writing and talking, because hey, there's always somebody who can't do SOMEthing! That's when I got a little more defensive and bratty, but I felt that I was matching some of the cheap shots that were aimed at me. And I find it a little sad that when somebody thinks a topic is inappropriate, instead of taking the time to explain where you are coming from (which you did--Matt did not), you dismiss her as being oversensitive. That's my problem with the whole thing.

Also, I tried to convey in this original post that usually it's PEOPLE who are insensitive, not necessarily topics. Pregnancy and infertility are topics that are sensitive to me, just as I'm sure children who lose their battle with life are to you. And yet, miraculously, there are people I can talk to and be with that don't make me uncomfortable at all about the topics I find most painful, whereas there are other people that set my teeth on edge. I can't imagine you have not had similar experiences.

Clearly, I can't expect everybdoy to just STOP TALKING ABOUT BABIES! But I would hope that when somebody is uncomfortable with a certain discussion, one would try to understand why it is so offensive, and not just dismiss her reactions completely.

12/10/2005 01:36:00 PM  
Blogger Lisa M. said...

Heather. I am late to this post. If you do get a chance to read this, I just wanted to say..

I have never thought of myself as sensitive, utnil these last few years, now I see and hear things differently than I have before.

People say stupid things. Normal, everyday decent people say STUPID and HURTFUL things. UNBELEIVEABLE things.

I still am astounded. *shaking my head*

12/10/2005 03:04:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon @ 9:42- I am one of ten and my mothers fave response is: "It took us the first 8 to figure out the cause, and the last 2 to make sure"

12/10/2005 06:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think the funniest response I have ever heard to nosy questions about more kids is someone on the Nacle who says, "Oh, we're saving for a boat."

Davis

12/11/2005 02:20:00 AM  
Anonymous lisab said...

Anonymous going on eight--I completely agree that it's rude either way. I'd be curious to hear some of the funny responses you guys came up with for the reverse situation. How about "There's a way besides abstinence to prevent pregnancy?"

12/11/2005 12:56:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"My biggest complaint is that instead of saying, "Wow, I had no idea that this could be so misconstrued, let's talk about how people view this whole thing," I was accused of being oversensitive, and Matt just talked about how we can't avoid topics that are sensitive, like walking and writing and talking, because hey, there's always somebody who can't do SOMEthing! That's when I got a little more defensive and bratty, but I felt that I was matching some of the cheap shots that were aimed at me. And I find it a little sad that when somebody thinks a topic is inappropriate, instead of taking the time to explain where you are coming from (which you did--Matt did not), you dismiss her as being oversensitive. That's my problem with the whole thing."

Heather O.:

You're ignoring the context. You posted your stuff after another commenter had just completely lost it with over-the-top emotion and namecalling. You sided with her, or at least were reasonably seen to be siding with her. So naturally you didn't get the kind of measured, sympathetic response you were hoping for.

Other Commenters:
Though both are wrong, its worse to judge a woman for having *too many* kids than it is to wrongly judge someone for having too few when they are actually struggling with infertility, etc. I hope folks will avoid both.

Adam Greenwood

12/12/2005 01:31:00 PM  
Blogger Allison said...

"Though both are wrong, its worse to judge a woman for having *too many* kids than it is to wrongly judge someone for having too few when they are actually struggling with infertility, etc. I hope folks will avoid both."

I don't understand why one would be worse than the other. It's wrong to judge, period. Why do we need to give someone with a large family more consideration than someone with no children?

I agree that Matt's post was seriously wierd, and it made me uncomfortable. I think the post was well-intentioned, but somehow, I find it impossible to reduce everything that goes into making those types of decisions and all the possible variables to a list of numbers. In the same vein, I've never known what to say when people ask me how many kids I want, or if I'm finally "done." For me, it seems like the answer is situational, not numerical.

Also, as one who has many times said things I've regretted, it does help if you can tactfully tell someone if she's stepped over the line. Unless you feel she's being intentionally rude, in which case you could go ahead and smack her.

12/12/2005 07:32:00 PM  
Blogger White Man Retarded said...

That post I think (M*) seems to be for Members trying to hard to sound deep or philisophical...maybe a little pretentious? Didactic donuts? Whatever...

12/13/2005 05:13:00 AM  
Blogger White Man Retarded said...

Are there any other depressed members out there? psychichead.blogspot.com

12/13/2005 05:15:00 AM  
Blogger Ann said...

The funniest reason I've ever heard for not having more kids is to break down and sob, "My husband can't keep an erection. He's never been able to. I don't know what to do."

Bet you never get asked THAT question again.

12/13/2005 09:55:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

""Though both are wrong, its worse to judge a woman for having *too many* kids than it is to wrongly judge someone for having too few when they are actually struggling with infertility, etc. I hope folks will avoid both."

I don't understand why one would be worse than the other."

Uhhuh. Because in the one, your judgment is evil (having children is good) while in the other its just mistakenly applied (its wrong to choose not to have children, but its not wrong if a person can't help it)

-Adam Greenwood

12/22/2005 10:35:00 AM  

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