Oh I have been itching to blog about this for a few days, but we have been out road tripping on a short break to Savannah, Georgia. We drove just over 1000 miles round trip and saw some wonderful things. But I will tell you a short story that really got my goat.
Our first night in Charleston, South Carolina we found ourselves a small smokehouse joint for dinner. We managed to find a relaxed type bar that had a short menu of BBQ meat, meat, oh and more meat. We ordered loaded duck fat fries and a typical Southern BBQ platter, and we were not disappointed. We were just about to roll ourselves out of the bar, when Chris bumped into another Brit, a man in his 50s. Oh not just any Brit, but a Brit who also lives where we live – 400 miles away! What were the chances of that? After the Brit introduced himself, we quickly noticed how drunk he was. He asked us many questions – where we were from, what we were doing, what did we do for a living, where we were from (wait – we already answered this one – but he was drunk so ….). He looked us over and asked if we had children. No, we both politely replied. “Oh you are lucky” he winked at us. Not cool. He then wanted us to meet his wife. So we went through the Spanish inquisition again…I was beginning to get a little annoyed at this stage. It’s nice to talk with other Brits about living in the US, but clearly it is not nice to talk to a drunk Brit, it can get a bit embarrassing when they shout across the bar all the annoying things about living in America. The Brit asked us once again if we had children, because he obviously had forgotten how ‘lucky’ we are. So once again we said we did not have children, and once again he proceeded to tell us that we were lucky. At least he was consistent in his ideas about having children. After another 5 minutes of this we attempted to make our escape….but they wanted to have dinner with us! Oh no. Just as we made our excuses, he started talking about how lucky we were to not have children again, and if he were us, we should not have them. So it was definitely time to leave.
As we left we both commented on how rude it was to say such a thing: ‘You are so lucky you don’t have kids’, especially to us, going through what we are going through right now. Even if we were not going through this, in my opinion it would still be a rude thing to say. Of course everyone is entitled to a different opinion. But the manner in which the opinion was conveyed was just plain rude.
Little did he know that later that evening I would be crying as my period started once again (unexpectedly – a very short 23 day cycle) and so no, I didn’t feel lucky in any shape or form and just felt like crap.
Reflecting upon this situation, looking past my anger at the rudeness of the Brit’s statement “You are so lucky you don’t have kids”, I just felt sad. Sad that this man would say such a thing to strangers not once, but three times, unprompted. Parenting is not easy, but I hope whatever issues he has had with his children in the past he can remember the good things about being a parent, the reward, the challenge, the sacrifice, the love and I hope the future holds something a little more positive for him.