Thursday, May 30, 2013

Domestic Enemies of the Mom with One Kid

This is a post a lot of people have been asking for. So without further ado... 
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The Domestic Enemies of the Mom with One Kid

A little background first – I am the 30-something year old working mother of one darling five year old boy named Firebreath Slasher (I let him pick his own name) but we can call him Taco for short (I also let him pick his own nickname).

The women in my family are FERTILE.  My Grandmother used to joke that my Grandfather hung his pants on the bed and she was knocked up.  So imagine my surprise when it turned out that I wasn’t fertile.  I was the opposite.  After many years of struggle I gave birth to an amazing miracle.  Which brings me to the first domestic enemy of the mom with one child:

The “When are you going to have another one” mom. 
As any woman who has struggled with fertility knows, never think you know the fertility status of another woman.  Just don’t.  Because on some days when you ask me that question I may offer a polite “Oh, I think we might be done” but if you ask me on a bad day, I may cry my face off or snark back “Well, I was hoping to three years ago but my disease riddled uterus had another idea and I had a hysterectomy instead.”  Which will leave the asker speechless. This is good.  Because the polite answer always leads to the next enemy...

“You can’t have just one. He will be SO spoiled/bratty/lonely” 
This is often said in front of Taco.  As though having a sibling automatically means a child will be a grateful well-adjusted child.  I got news for you – only 15% of serial killers are only children that means 85% had siblings.  My child will be spoiled because I LOVE spoiling him.  And if he had siblings, they would be spoiled too.  So suck on that. And please, please, please if I tell you that I CAN’T have another one – do NOT tell me that we can always adopt.  Just don’t.  Adoption isn’t easy, people.

“Oh, I remember how easy it was when I had one”

Before you say this to someone, consider how it felt when someone said it to you when you had only one child. It's just... backhanded. And let's be honest, all parenting is relative, right? Have you ever told your child to go play with their brother or sister? Well I haven’t.  My husband and I are the sole entertainment for our son.  At seven at night when your kids are playing together so you can answer one more e-mail, I am sitting on the floor playing my 7 billionth game of Candy land. Because Taco doesn’t have a sibling to pummel so I can buy myself five more minutes of (sorta) peace. 

You must have time to do more stuff. For me.
I only have one child so of course I have time to sew all the costumes for the 4k play. Or just assume that I will be so HAPPY to watch other people's children. I have a friend who thinks she is giving me a break by dropping her children off so Taco has someone to play with. Admittedly, it is a sort of break since Taco is occupied. But I'm also watching your kids, which is also added work for me. You know what a REAL break would be? The same thing we all need sometimes. A couple of peaceful, kid free moments on a rough afternoon.

You only have one child, you must save so much money. 
Let's just not go there, OK? Having one child is still expensive. I don’t magically have more money than you because I have one kid. Besides, talking about how much money people have and how they spend it is sort of uncool, right? It's nonya business territory.

“Only the one?” 
Yes. But know this, he isn’t “only”. He is the one that completes our family totally. The end.

 (c)Herding Turtles 2009 - 2013

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