Even though it’s been only about a week since my husband and I spread the big news that we’re expecting our first baby, we’ve already both had our fair share of inquisitive well-wishers. I totally get that people are curious and excited when they find out that you’re having a baby. Absolutely! It’s a crazy thing to make the decision to create a whole new person. But there’s one question I’ve been getting over and over that I never expected:
Were you trying, or was it a surprise?
Yeah. Now, maybe to some of you it might seem like an innocent, innocuous question, but to me it feels pretty invasive! And it’s also worth noting that almost nobody asks my husband this question, but I’d estimate about 9 out of 10 people I talk to have asked me. Not sure if there’s something to that or if I’m adding fuel to the fire because of my fantastical hormones. But I digress.
It’s kind of crazy, because I would never in a million years dream of asking an expectant couple whether their future child was planned or an accident. Especially a couple that I don’t know very well. I’d say about half of the people who have inquired about our family-planning habits are people that I barely know, or have just met. To me, it seems too personal. It’s essentially asking, “So, are you responsible or irresponsible? What kind of sex are you having? Are you dealing with the fallout of an unexpected baby?” I mean, if you asked someone and the answer was, “No we weren’t trying and now we’re just trying to make the best of a sticky situation,” where would you take the conversation from there? Segue neatly to the weather? Awkward.
And to top it all off, I’m so taken aback every time by the question I haven’t gotten the nerve up to just say that we’re not really into sharing that information (thank you very much). I tend to err on the side of overly polite, so I’m trying to come up with a way to shut down the conversation without a lot of fuss. The closest I’ve come is to say, “Ya know, that’s the first question everybody asks — I can’t imagine why so many people want to know!” But some people just aren’t satisfied with that. They push. And I cave.
So am I being overly sensitive here? Or if you’ve been preggo, have you dealt with this one before and felt the same way? If you have a great response, I’d love to hear it — so the next time I hear the dreaded question, I’ll be prepared.
Image: Chelsea Foy