Generally speaking, I think of myself as a fairly calm and collected person. Right? Right. I have my hot button issues (don’t we all?) but by and large I try to keep a level head about myself…unless you start trash talking and/or say something negative about my child. If that’s the case, you’ve suddenly awakened a beast the likes of which you may never have seen before. Let’s call this sudden and instant rage face the Momma Bear Phenomenon, or MBP for short.
I know, I know that people are divided about whether or not you should find out the gender of your child before they are born. I also know that when you work at a church the size of the one I work at (6,000+ families), in a job as public as the one I work in, people are bound to have even more of an opinion. What’s more, is that all of these people are even more likely to blurt out their opinions whether you ask for them or not. That’s fine and I’m getting used to that, but if you judge me, my husband or our child based on your opinion, you are bound to get a healthy dose of MBP up in your grill.
When it comes to finding out the gender, everyone is entitled to their own opinion. But here’s my reality: unless you are going to actually give birth to the child currently inhabiting MY womb, you don’t get to be the final decision on just about anything. Will we find out the gender? Will we circumcise him if it is a boy? Will we pierce her ears at birth if it is a girl? What will we name our child? Will we (well, really, will I) breastfeed? Share your opinion if you must, but recognize and accept that at the end of the day, the decision is ours as her parents. Furthermore, once we’ve made our decision, don’t insist on judging or hating on us or implying that we are horrid parents because of whatever decision we’ve made.
Case in point:
I recently had a conversation with a person that went something like this (for the sake of the post we’ll call him Marshall):
Marshall: When is the baby due?
Me: March 24th
Marshall: Do you know what you are having?
Me: A girl!
Marshall: That’s the worst thing ever.
Me: What? Why?!
Marshall: That’s the last secret ever and you’ve already ruined it by finding out. What’s left now? Why would you find out?!
Me: Her name is a secret and we chose to find out for our own reasons. I never told you if she’s a baby human, so let that be your surprise.
And then I walked away.
If you don’t want to know what we are having, or if you are staunchly opposed to people finding out the gender of their baby, then for Heaven’s sake do not ask me.
I’ve always had a bit of MBP in me since I work with kids, and, yes I do care for them as if they are my own, though it all seems different now with one of my own flesh and blood on her way. You cross my kid(s), I cross you. Don’t mess with the Momma Bear in me or you might not like what you get.*
*Again, share your opinion (solicited or not) if you must, but if you insist on judging me or saying things about my/our parenting and/or our children, I’ll be happy to lovingly (at least at first) remind you that she isn’t your child and it isn’t your decision, but thanks (?) for your opinion on the matter. I’ll tell you that I’ll take it under advisement, smile sweetly, say God Bless and then walk away. That’s your cue to not continue poking the bear.