Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Socially Awkward

So Bob and I have learned, really quickly, that people don't know what to say when you announce you're having a third (God forbid!) child. There are a couple standard responses:

1. I hope you don't mind my asking, but was this planned?
It is implied that either yes or no, we're idiots.

2. Wow!
In other words, they have no idea what to say, but we are probably idiots, and they're hoping we'll take their single-word response however we wish, as in, wow, that's great!, or wow, that's too bad.

3. (and I'll confess I don't really know how this gets communicated, but) Can you afford to have three kids?
Clearly, it is highly irresponsible of us.

It does take a bit of the fun out of telling people; in fact, Bob's ready to just stop telling people. I can't decide if it's better to beat people to the punch and save them the "embarassment" of asking an [unbelievably personal] question by saying, "And yes, it was planned."

Apparently, it's socially acceptable to have two children, but three is pushing it. A family at church (with three children) says that once you have your third, you've joined the "crazies". Perhaps so.

I've heard people say "I love so-and-so so much, I just can't imagine having another..." And I guess I feel the opposite. I love our girls so much, I can't wait to meet number 3. Social impropriety, and all.


ct said...

Really? People say that stuff?

I can't think of anyone I would rather see raise a big family than you and Bob.

Annie said...

Chris Trott, thank you, thank you! What a great response... And yes, people really do say those things, though they only imply the financial one, or skirt around it.

Megan said...

how sad. I find it funny (and sad) that people can't afford three children, but they can afford cable.. seriously?
"Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him.
Children born to a young man are like arrows in a warrior’s hands.How joyful is the man whose quiver is full of them! He will not be put to shame when he confronts his accusers at the city gates."
People are idiots.
I have heard that three is the tipping point, but if you are going to lose your mind--what better way!?

Kimberly said...

That's crazy! Not you. The people you're dealing with. It's so odd that a generation or so ago 5+ children was normal. Now three is nuts? I am pretty sure I want at least 3, and I really don't think I'm crazy (well, maybe, but not b/c of that).

Congratulations, again! And I'm sure you will be wonderful parents to 3:)

Hilary said...

As a child with two siblings, three is awesome! And yes, people have no tact. Kind of like how people your barely know pat your belly when you're pregnant. Special, I tell you. Don't stop telling people-it's wonderful! Our priest (who has four) said the same thing about people's reactions. And being in DC, having four is about like having 10 anywhere else!!