My son Oden is ten months old. I have never loved anyone or anything more than I love him. This child of mine is literally a miracle baby! And yet all the time, I’m being asked about a second baby. Something we don’t even want to be reminded about.
You see, we were told that we “could not and would never conceive without medical assistance” – we were told that having a baby was just not going to happen without IVF. In fact, we had planned to start IVF treatment in September 2015 – coincidentally that is when my miracle child was born.
In January of that year, I kept feeling ill and I just didn’t understand it. Of course when you’ve been told that you CAN’T fall pregnant, you don’t expect your constant nausea to be morning sickness. You don’t expect the heart burn to be caused from the pressure of the growing baby in your belly and you sure as hell don’t think about the missed period as a sign of a baby and yet, in spite of it all, that’s what this was.
After much self-doubt, I decided it was finally time to take a pregnancy test and get these niggling feelings off my chest. It can’t hurt right? So imagine my surprise when that test proved positive! Well I’ll tell you this, it was only after several more tests that I actually believe what was going on.
We went in to see the gynaecologist, according to my calculations I was ten weeks along. According to her screen this baby was either 5 weeks along or it had stopped growing. I was devastated. Surely I couldn’t be carrying a baby that had already stopped growing in my belly. We were asked to come back a week later in order to see if the baby had grown at all. That was the longest week of my entire life.
When we went back a week later, there was my little baby – heart beat and all. We heard his heart beating for the first time. Like a little race horse it went thumping along… and so the journey to motherhood began.
It wasn’t an easy pregnancy, though grateful to be carrying a child that we thought we couldn’t have, it was not without challenges. I did not enjoy being pregnant for most of it.
In September I went into labour and it nearly cost me my life. In this day and age you just don’t believe that you could die giving birth. Surely we have advanced further than dying in child-birth and yet I found myself telling my husband, if anything happens to me, choose the baby.
If I’m honest, I didn’t think anything could happen really. Until it did.
I went into labour and all hell broke loose, I ended up in ICU and so did my tiny baby. Ten months later and I am finally “back to normal” but in between I’ve had 6 surgeries and I’ve got the emotional baggage to show for it.
You see, I have Endometriosis but I didn’t know about it until it nearly killed me. It had fused my colon to my uterus which had then been ripped apart during child-birth allowing the contents of my bowel to flow into my cavity and causing sepsis.
So when you ask me
“when will you be trying for a second one?”
It makes me want to scream.
I am traumatised, I am disfigured and I am lucky to be alive after having this one.
A child I thought I would never have.
It breaks my heart to think about the fact that if I did try have a second baby I might not live.
So please – before you ask me about my future children, take a moment to think about what you’re forcing me to do.
If you’re unsure, I can help clarify.
You are forcing me to admit to myself that I may never have a second baby.
You are forcing me to remind myself about how my body failed doing the one thing it should have been able to do, that so many do time and time again. It failed to safely deliver a baby into this world.
You are forcing me to acknowledge that I nearly died.
You are forcing me to consider your feelings as I mumble something about seeing what the future brings.
You are forcing me to be rude when I finally, after being asked this over and over again, I finally respond ” I can’t have anymore children or I might die”
You are forcing me to carry the burden when really, my reproduction is none of your business.
It’s not polite or friendly in any way to ask me something as intimate and personal as when will I try for the next child.
Whether you know my story, or you don’t, asking ANY WOMAN this question is so inappropriate.
YOU DON’T KNOW what struggles someone may or may not have had with trying to conceive. You don’t know if someone is barren or has had miscarriages or can’t have anymore children or simply chooses not to. Whatever the reason, whether someone doesn’t have any children or only has one or has 3, please stop asking! It simply isn’t any of your business!Please stop asking women about their plans for children! It's rude and none of your business! Click To Tweet
I love my son, you may not think that’s enough, you may think you’re being helpful to tell me that “oh you can just adopt,” you may think you’re “just making conversation” but you have no business discussing this with me. I don’t care who you are or what your role is in my life – unless you’re my husband, this isn’t a conversation we should be having!
So please, think twice before you ask me when I’m going to have a second baby!
This one I have, he is everything to me!
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