Another Southern Married Woman Problem

July 13, 2012

I've come to notice that at 26 and having been married 3 years that the baby boom is all around me. I use to wonder why on earth these people are having kids so young...but then again let's fact it, anything after 25 isn't so young for child bearing. And my just 2 weeks shy of 28 year old husband seems to nearly be an unheard of commodity. I mean seriously how many married 28 year olds don't have kids. I can't think of a single one I know. 

In the South the pressure to pop out a baby immediately after marriage, and by the time you're 25 is just as heavy as ever. In the other places I've traveled it seems as though the marriage/baby pressure is not quite as strong. Maybe it is just me, but farther north it is not looked at as odd when a person focuses on their career and education instead of babies and marriage.

To top off the when are you birthing a child pressure is the will you stay home or work debate. Plenty of women would love to stay home, but financially don't see it as an option. Others have the option, but would rather work. By the time my generation hit baby bearing age it was pretty well assumed the stay-at-home drama of our mother's and grandmother's generation would have diminished. In the 60's and 70's staying home was really the only option. Jobs for women who were expecting or had children weren't as prevalent. Even in the 80's my own mother stayed home for a few years before reentering the workforce part-time, before eventually going back to school to become a teacher. In the 2000's women have the option. So why is it women are still beating each other down for A) not having kids B) choosing to stay home and C) choosing to work. None of it makes any sense. 

There is enough beating our personal beliefs and choices down in this world. So why are we are women attacking each other's choices? 

Over the past 3 years of marriage I have come to hear a ton of reasons why I should have kids and attacks from people when they hear my reasoning for not having children. 

First and foremost is the comment from singles and people who don't have children - they always feel the need to tell me how much they would love to be married or have children. Which then turns into a slight attack because I have the life they want but haven't taken the opportunity to have the babies they want.

The next most loved comment is from well meaning grandmother types. They just want to see babies. I don't blame them, I love babies too. Just not right now. 

The comment I can honestly say I love the least is the "biblical" one. You know, the one where you're told you're not following God's will because you're not pregnant. Gotta love it. 

The whole point I am trying to make here, for the 2 of you still reading is this: before you make an off handed comment to a couple who doesn't have children think of the possibilities for why they may not have babies. 

They may be trying and unable to get pregnant.
They might have recently lost a child.
Or they have some unknown reason no one has ever thought about. 

Personally it just isn't a financially sound idea at this point in our lives. I may be done with school but my husband is in a strenuous graduate program...that actually told the girls in the program this was not the time to have a baby. Crazy right? When you are living largely off one income and thriving in the rented life it just doesn't work. I want to have a house, decorate a baby room. And actually enjoy being pregnant one day. I don't want to freak out trying to figure out what to do and miss everything that could come with having a baby. I've seen the fun pregnancies and I've seen the women who are just happy to have diapers and a hand-me-down crib. I just personally don't want that. I like having a career and traveling how and when we want. One day we will have kids, but until that day comes expect nothing short of crazy comments meant to tick off the person asking. 

Just remember, there is a rhyme and reason to everything and every season. Just because you are not in the same season of life doesn't make you or the other person wrong. Remember the golden rule.