Author Topic: "You obviously don't have children."  (Read 7937 times)

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wyliefool

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #30 on: October 04, 2012, 08:45:53 AM »
Personally, I like the mommyjacking reply. Bonus being of course that he's not a mommy.  >:D

There's also the ultra sarcastic route: ZOMG, you're right, your life sucks so bad because of those nasty little parasites! What was I thinking?!? But this would probably not really be nice.

Hollanda

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #31 on: October 04, 2012, 08:47:28 AM »
Yes, we get it, parents of young children often have their sleep interrupted. And we get that parenting is a huge amount of work. But do they get how tiresome the "You obviously don't have children" phrase is, whenever anyone without children mentions sleep, being tired, etc etc?

BG: I have been really exhausted lately. Looking after elderly parent (and yes, I am often woken up in the night with his needs). A million appointments, errands on his behalf, meals, haven't had a weekend to myself (or even a full day for that matter) in months, plus I'm trying to balance this with a new job and getting some of my own administrative needs attended to. I have also been waking up too early and never feel fully rested after a night's sleep.

So last night for some reason I got a REALLY good sleep, and posted something about it on Facebook. Immediately a parent (who doesn't know anything about my situation other than I don't have children) chimed in, "You obviously don't have children."

Now I really don't hold this against him as he didn't mean any harm and was perhaps just expressing envy that anyone can get a good night's sleep ever, but honestly, I've heard that one before, and it's getting old. The other one is when you mention being tired, and someone always chimes in that you can't possibly know what tired is until you've had children.

(By the way, my friend who is balancing children with several very elderly people plus a relative in a mental institution - I don't know how she does it - states that her children are a breeze compared to the demands of the old people).

Also, it's a good thing I'm not upset about not having children. A great many women my age are, and that kind of comment would be even more tiresome in that case.

Aren't non-parents allowed to be tired? And would it have been rude to reply with something like, "No, but just wait until your parents get old and dependent on you." ?

Before I had DS or even knew I was pregnant, that phrase was uttered to me by a co worker several times. It's dismissive and condescending...after all, how does the person saying that know whether or not there's another reason you (general you) feel tired? They don't.
 
To me, that is a classic "What an interesting assumption" to those people who don't know me. 
 
Right now, when I complain about being tired (and I have to be exhausted before I complain, ever), said co-worker just looks at me and smiles and says "Oh you wanna know what tired is? I've had x amount of sleep in y days." I didn't realise it was a competition!
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Reader

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #32 on: October 04, 2012, 12:29:13 PM »
I have chronic insomnia.  It can flare up as it has this week, haven't been to sleep before 2 am all week, and I get up at 7:30 to get ready for an 11 hour workday split between 2 jobs.  If I were to get a decent night of sleep I would probably have posted to facebook about it as well.  But thankfully my friends with kids have never responded to a post like that.  So I too think it's an interesting assumption from these types of parents who think that unless you have kids nothing else could ever compare or that it needs to be compared.  I've seen the tired looks of my friends when their kids weren't sleeping and it looks exactly to me the look I get when I can't sleep.  To me exhaustion is exhaustion no matter what the cause.

whiskeytangofoxtrot

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #33 on: October 04, 2012, 12:56:03 PM »
As tempted as I am to checkmate when someone posts a snarky one-up to my status, I generally delete their comment instead. After a couple of deletions, they seem to get the hint. Or they go away. Either way, it's good.

BeagleMommy

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #34 on: October 04, 2012, 02:41:07 PM »
My mother took care of several elderly relatives (some of whom had Alzheimer's).  I don't know how she did it while working full time and dealing with my father's health issues at the same time.  Parents don't have a market on fatigue.  We've all had occasions when sleep eluded us.  I'd say that anyone who makes a comment like that is clueless with a capital "C".

Girlie

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #35 on: October 04, 2012, 02:43:56 PM »
I would also just delete the comment.

But I would be tempted to respond with, "I know! Thank goodness, right?!! Kids are such horrid little bloodsucking leeches."

Of course, I don't think kids are really that bad. But I do think that parents who are always comparing people with kids against people without kids make it sound an awful lot like THEY think that.

Bookgirl

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #36 on: October 04, 2012, 04:13:39 PM »
My mom is caring full time for my 86 year old grandma with dementia.  I have a 5 and a 9 year old. 

In some ways, our journeys have been remarkably similar in caring for the 5 and the 86 year old.  We were both dealing with diapers, temper tantrums and spilled food at the same time.  The difference is, the 5 year old grew out of diapers, and is getting better about the spilled food and the tantrums.  My Grandma is not, in fact, she's getting worse. 

As much as I love my mom and try to help her out, I would not switch places with her. 
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Piratelvr1121

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #37 on: October 04, 2012, 09:17:01 PM »
I would also just delete the comment.

But I would be tempted to respond with, "I know! Thank goodness, right?!! Kids are such horrid little bloodsucking leeches."

Of course, I don't think kids are really that bad. But I do think that parents who are always comparing people with kids against people without kids make it sound an awful lot like THEY think that.

These are usually the ones with the martyr complex.  The "I gave up everything for my child, I had no life of my own because I lived it aaaall for my children!" type that seems to expect their adult child to thank them profusely when they're grown for all that was given up.  Yeah, it's because I love my kids I'm not going to give them that lovely guilt trip.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

nuit93

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #38 on: October 04, 2012, 10:31:56 PM »
I would probably respond with "I'm too busy to even conceive one, let alone raise it!".

But that's just me.   >:D

MNdragonlady

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #39 on: October 04, 2012, 10:37:56 PM »
So, in reading through the responses I wondered: would it be polite and okay to play dumb in these situations? For instance, respond with something like "I'm sorry, I don't understand what you mean?" I thought I'd seen responses like that suggested before for face-to-face interactions where a person has said something outrageous or mean-cloaked-as-humor and thought perhaps it would work here as well.

Just wondering.

ClaireC79

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #40 on: October 05, 2012, 03:10:24 AM »
I made a similar comment on a friends facebook recently - you obviously don't have a daughter'

She was moaning about the state of her sons school uniform and said that uniforms with white shirts must have been designed with girls in mind as girls sit quitely and not wreck their clothes - was my response ok, because it is very similar wording to ones being disparraged

poundcake

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #41 on: October 05, 2012, 05:46:11 AM »
I would also just delete the comment.

But I would be tempted to respond with, "I know! Thank goodness, right?!! Kids are such horrid little bloodsucking leeches."

Of course, I don't think kids are really that bad. But I do think that parents who are always comparing people with kids against people without kids make it sound an awful lot like THEY think that.

Either that, or that they should be hailed as selfless heros simply because they decided to procreate.

kherbert05

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #42 on: October 05, 2012, 06:14:49 AM »
I made a similar comment on a friends facebook recently - you obviously don't have a daughter'

She was moaning about the state of her sons school uniform and said that uniforms with white shirts must have been designed with girls in mind as girls sit quitely and not wreck their clothes - was my response ok, because it is very similar wording to ones being disparraged

That isn't as bad because she started the comparison. I would have probably gone with what you live in a time warp were girls still sit in parlors and needlepoint, instead of playing soccer and climbing trees?
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Piratelvr1121

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #43 on: October 05, 2012, 06:44:49 AM »
I think you were fine. I have all boys but I have seen how girls their ages play and they can get just as dirty as the boys can.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

chibichan

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Re: "You obviously don't have children."
« Reply #44 on: October 05, 2012, 08:14:03 AM »
You should simply reply :

" What an astute observation ." 

Bonus points if said with raised eyebrows , a small tight-lipped smile or a slight sneer .

Personally , I would prefer to start dancing around , fist pumping and hooting  "That's right ! I don't ! " while laughing like a hyena.

I am , however , more dignified than that .... most of the time .
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