Author Topic: "No kids? Lucky you!"  (Read 6641 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Winterlight

  • On the internet, no one can tell you're a dog- arf.
  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 9750
Re: "No kids? Lucky you!"
« Reply #45 on: October 07, 2012, 12:34:13 PM »
I witnessed this going really bad once

two clerks in a store, one obviously new was asked if she had kids and got the "lucky you" response and the new girl looked like she was going to cry.  She gathered herself together and said, "neither my husband nor I consider ourselves to be lucky to have lost our son. He was only a few hours old." and walked away.  No one in the very long line of Christmas returns begrudged her walking away. We all felt too badly for her.

Ouch. I would consider that an object lesson in why this is a bad, bad idea to say. Poor woman.
If wisdom’s ways you wisely seek,
Five things observe with care,
To whom you speak,
Of whom you speak,
And how, and when, and where.
Caroline Lake Ingalls

WillyNilly

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 7490
  • Mmmmm, food
    • The World as I Taste It
Re: "No kids? Lucky you!"
« Reply #46 on: October 07, 2012, 04:50:07 PM »
The reason its so bad, as demonstrated by the people who are hurt by it, is the statement is a "you" statement not a "me" statement.  The person saying it might mean "I'm having a rough day" or "I miss the freedom I had before I had kids" or "I wish [for a moment] my life was different".  But they aren't saying that, or anything about themselves.  They are making a "you" comment - "lucky you" - without knowing enough about that person's life to really make that kind of comment.  That person might not be "lucky" for not having kids.  It might be due to diligent care on their part as far as contraceptives, or it might be due to fate or tragedy, or all sorts of reasons.

Mopsy428

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1818
Re: "No kids? Lucky you!"
« Reply #47 on: October 08, 2012, 01:57:05 AM »
I witnessed this going really bad once

two clerks in a store, one obviously new was asked if she had kids and got the "lucky you" response and the new girl looked like she was going to cry.  She gathered herself together and said, "neither my husband nor I consider ourselves to be lucky to have lost our son. He was only a few hours old." and walked away.  No one in the very long line of Christmas returns begrudged her walking away. We all felt too badly for her.

Ouch. I would consider that an object lesson in why this is a bad, bad idea to say. Poor woman.
I had a friend who had a little boy. We were out having lunch, and some woman came up to us and started oohing and aahing over the baby. Then she said, "You are so lucky you had a boy! I pity anyone who has a girl! They're just awful to raise!" I was mortified. My friend yelled, "I don't! I had twins girls who died hours after I gave birth to them! I'm so sick of people telling me how sons are better than daughters, and how I'm 'lucky' to have a boy! You get what you get, and you thank G-d that your children are born healthy!!"

AngelBarchild

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 290
Re: "No kids? Lucky you!"
« Reply #48 on: October 08, 2012, 05:14:04 AM »
I don't understand how someone's comment can be rude because they said something that might have offended you, if you were a different person.

I also think some people are taking this way to serious. Yesterday alone I told my daughter to, go play in traffic, and that I was going to sell her back to the circus. It's just exasperation and hyperbole.

Sharnita

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 21375
Re: "No kids? Lucky you!"
« Reply #49 on: October 08, 2012, 10:14:22 AM »
I don't understand how someone's comment can be rude because they said something that might have offended you, if you were a different person.

I also think some people are taking this way to serious. Yesterday alone I told my daughter to, go play in traffic, and that I was going to sell her back to the circus. It's just exasperation and hyperbole.

There is a pretty significant difference in saying that to an audience who knows you and who you know.  You know your daughter's sensitivities and where you shouldn't go. The closeness of the relationship also makes it reasonable to vent your frustration, although some people would still not choose to do it the say you did.

However, we are talking about saying things to people you don't know well. People whose sensitivities you are unaware of and people who are not familiar with your humor or style of speech. Furthermore, they really have no vested interest in your frustration in your child.  You don't know them that well so suddenly dumping that on them is a bit too intimate when you didn't know they has kids two sentences ago.

aloe

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 404
Re: "No kids? Lucky you!"
« Reply #50 on: October 08, 2012, 02:04:27 PM »
I think that being sensitive to others is a big part of what etiquette is about.

I've put my foot in my mouth enough times throughout the years to learn that oftentimes making comments to strangers about their personal lives, gossiping to the wrong people, expressing anger before thinking it through, etc. are incorrect choices which can come back to bite you.

You have a good point that walking on eggshells and over-censoring yourself in fear of not offending others is not a good way to live.  It's all about balance and attempting to act respectfully towards others.

For myself, keeping my mouth shut and trying to stay out of others' business when not necessary works for me. 

AngelBarchild

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 290
Re: "No kids? Lucky you!"
« Reply #51 on: October 08, 2012, 03:01:54 PM »
I don't understand how someone's comment can be rude because they said something that might have offended you, if you were a different person.

I also think some people are taking this way to serious. Yesterday alone I told my daughter to, go play in traffic, and that I was going to sell her back to the circus. It's just exasperation and hyperbole.

There is a pretty significant difference in saying that to an audience who knows you and who you know.  You know your daughter's sensitivities and where you shouldn't go. The closeness of the relationship also makes it reasonable to vent your frustration, although some people would still not choose to do it the say you did.

However, we are talking about saying things to people you don't know well. People whose sensitivities you are unaware of and people who are not familiar with your humor or style of speech. Furthermore, they really have no vested interest in your frustration in your child.  You don't know them that well so suddenly dumping that on them is a bit too intimate when you didn't know they has kids two sentences ago.

My point was that I don't think she was really saying she regrets having her children. I don't really want  my child (she's 14) to go play in traffic (well most days anyway).

Sharnita

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 21375
Re: "No kids? Lucky you!"
« Reply #52 on: October 08, 2012, 03:19:42 PM »
I understand that. What I am saying is that it is an abrubt  leap to go from "Do you have kids" to "I am really frustrated by parenthood right now" let alone phrasong it that way.