I'd rather answer a question about the state of my bowels than talk to strangers about my decision to marry or not. Whether someone is going to be married or have kids is an intensely personal decision. I always catch myself having this conversation:.
"Don't you want to get married?" They ask.
"Eh, maybe, maybe not. I have dishes already," I respond, trying to make this a light answer so they'll leave me alone.
"But marriage is about more than dishes" they say, as though I am stupid.
"Well, my parents' marriage was not so great. So I'm not sure it's what I want."
"That's not all marriages...You know, some people are fighting for the right to be married!"
"Yes, I understand that." ad infinitum.
The worst part is when they drag my SO into the conversation. Because CLEARLY if we are not married, it is my responsibility, because I am the woman, and all women want to be married. And if I say I'm not sure, I SECRETLY long to be married. They give him advice about this. ARRRGGGGHHHH!
I'm not sure I buy that people are just trying to make conversation. Or rather, they may be, but someone needs to get across to them that this is not an appropriate question. The only time I managed this was at my SO's grandfather's wake, where a friend of my SO's mother asked it. I was so shocked I actually just looked at her and raised my eyebrows and blinked. She apologized immediately, whereupon (oh, the shame!) I said I was sorry and it was okay, and explained my reasons (the same ones that never work in the previous conversation...) At least that time I didn't walk off feeling stupid about not being married, and contemplating how life seems so much easier for other people who have no problem sticking to societal expectations.
I can't wait for the conversations that will ensue if I ever get married and don't change my name.