Sunday, July 1, 2012

Sunday Blues...

Thanks for all the nice notes after yesterday's post.  In hindsight, I shouldn't have let anything overshadow what I wrote about our trip to the shore.  I regret that.  I was so proud of both Gavin and Brian for so many reasons while we were on vacation.  How they bravely tried new things:  Gavin was MUCH more daring in the water and Brian took on some new rides ALL. BY. HIMSELF. which were both HUGE feats!!  How good they both were:  Gavin was so patient and slept so well even though we stuck him in a crib WITH a crib tent!  And Brian was such a good listener and kept us laughing all week.  And how well they slept being that we kept them out partying on the boardwalk until the stars were out!!

But that recent incident of rudeness was heavily on my mind.  As are many things these days.  Not to beat a dead horse, but I want to make a plea to all of you.  Please don't joke about paternity - or even question it in any way, shape or form.  I'm going out on a limb and speaking for many people.  This isn't a new thing for me - I've been getting rude comments and "winky" looks and jokes since Gavin was an infant when we were surprised to see him with strawberry blonde hair and blue eyes.  I've never appreciated it...not one time.  And I'm ashamed for feeling a need to defend myself (when there's nothing to defend).  I'm done.  And I hope everyone else is, too.  Soon (maybe even now!) my children will be aware of what you are saying.  If they overhear something and misunderstand, it could leave them confused and hurt.  Your "joke" could have lasting repercussions.  It has affected both of us so much over the years that it prompted me to ask our geneticist for her thoughts.  She not only said to not be ridiculous - going on to point out obvious features that Gavin has that are 100% from Ed... but she said that Gavin's obvious genetic syndrome (yet to be named!) could be to blame for his light hair - his light skin - and many other of his features that, frankly, neither of us have.  Whatever - I don't need to explain this to anyone.  But this is not only my problem.  I've heard from many of you that have been victim to this type of "insinuation" and "nosiness".  What if you make what you think is an "innocent joke" - and the child you're talking about was adopted?  Or the product of an egg donor?  And what if, for whatever good reason, the parents haven't told that child?  It's always best to keep your mouth closed - you just never know what your words can stir up.  And once you say something - you just walk away and live your life.  You never look back to see the shambles behind you.

Anywhoooo...

I could write so much more, but I don't want to overwhelm you with negativity in one sitting.  I do have a lot on my mind, though.  Tomorrow I'll write about Gavin and Brian's changing relationship and how it may land me in therapy.  Sounds like fun, right?? 



3 comments:

  1. I am always so amazed at the absolute rudeness and audacity of people. From comments made to you, which are hurtful, uncalled for, and CLEARLY untrue to comments I hear myself like well you have twins so you must be done, or oh you have twins are they natural, etc. I wish we still lived in a time when people had better manners and I can tell you I am doing my best to raise my boys the way I was raised!

    I can't believe people would even question their parentage! To me both Gavin and Brian look like such a lovely mix of you and Ed (with Gavin's Irish coming out just a little bit more!) so as to make it obvious who their mommy and daddy are!

    I am so very sorry that people have made such rude comments particularly during this difficult time. I have found that having some "canned" responses to such ridiculous comments helps a bit and makes the rude commenter (works for in person, not so sure about online) feel as stupid and rude for making the comment as they should. (Ex. when asked "Were they natural" I might respond "And what sexual position did you use to make your children?") The look of shock on the persons face makes it worth it!

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  2. I don't find what you're writing negative at all Kate, I find it assertive & educational. I think you're probably preaching to the choir here for the most part, but hopefully it will educate someone!

    I was 41 when I had my son, and have a lot of gray/white in my hair. When he was an infant, people sometimes assumed I was his grandmother, I'd have these peculiar conversations that didn't make sense, and only later realize, OH, that was a grandma thing! One time someone asked me, oh what does he call you, I said, "Mama" (wondering what the heck?) and put him on my breast to nurse. My husband saw the shocked look on the person's face and we finally figured out what they were talking about (as in what's his special grandma name.) This isn't the same, but it hurt me that my hair color blinded people to my relationship with my son.

    I like N & Z Mom's mention of having a standard response ready for invasive, nosy, rude comments. I read somewhere to use "Why do you ask?" to turn such questions around on the asker. Truly, those types of questions say so much more about THEM.

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  3. Hi Kate,
    I just read this
    http://moms.today.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/06/28/12284310-no-im-not-the-nanny-when-you-dont-look-like-your-kids?lite and it totally reminded me of you. Unfortunately a lot of people don't think before they speak or just plain don't have any common sense.

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