Subject: General view that Mormons have towards people with no children or 1 child
Date: Jul 02, 2010
Author: Elder George Carlin

Yesterday, I had a nice conversation with an old high school buddy and college roommate who I haven't seen in 17-18 years.

When the subject of kids came up he asked "You only have one kid!?" I replied "Yeah, she's a handful but a super kid." He said "Oh, okay." He said it in a surprised way. Although he didn't say anything negative, I could tell he found that surprising that my wife and I didn't have multiple kids. He probably still thinks I'm a believing Mormon (I resigned a couple of years ago).

I was wondering if any of you, while you were TBMs [True Believing Mormons], held a negative view(s) of other Mormons with one child or none. I would love to hear your opinions, experiences, or your former views on this. Thanks!


 

Subject: No, but I experience that from my TBM [True Believing Mormon] friends.
Date: Jul 02 12:10
Author: Moniker

I just look at them and stare, then say, "You do realize I'm single, right?" Then they say dumb things like, "He needs brothers and sisters to play with! And YOU believe in artificial insemination." I just stare at them again and walk off typically when this conversation happens.

 

Subject: Re: General view that TBMs have towards people with no children or 1 child
Date: Jul 02 12:35
Author: Donna Banta

We have 2 kids and that made us suspect as TBM's. I was asked continually about when were we going to have another. I made a point of not answering and if they pressed, explaining that it was none of their business. -- A waste of time, since none of them understood. I remember how hard it was for RS sisters who had trouble conceiving, how marginalized they felt, and how eager they were to talk about their personal health problems -- something most people would prefer to keep to themselves. Before I finally left, I got in the habit of answering, "No, my husband looks at me and I get pregnant," whenever a TBM asked if we were infertile. Not that it was any of their business (sigh.) A couple of years ago Mark and I went to his old ward's reunion. We hadn't seen some of these people in 25 years or so and only one or two knew we had left the church. One of his old friends asked about our kids, then before we could ask, said, "We don't have kids." I could tell he was embarrassed. We followed up with, "We left the church." That eased the tension right away. Sheesh! What a ridiculous cult-ure. Great question, Elder Carlin.

 

Subject: Donna, I can relate
Date: Jul 02 13:05
Author: Elder George Carlin

My wife and I have been asked on several different occasions, "So when are you going to have another child?"

They assume we are even going to have another kid or are poking to find out personal details. Maybe we don't want another or maybe we physiologically can't. It's also very personal and many people have are blind to person space.

What kind of person would even ask such a private question? Hint: It's only ever been TBMs who have asked this. Perhaps, it's because these people have such a hard time realizing that not everyone shares their myopic views on kids and life.

 

Subject: I've been told that I am *nothing* because I am not a mommy.
Date: Jul 02 15:12
Author: DoxiNoMo

Even called a waste of oxygen.

And not even from Morgies... "God made women to bear children," an old Catholic lady told me. I said what about nuns? Did God do a mistake or what? She did have the sense to shaddup after that.

If I make the mistake of referring to the fact that I was abused as a child, many people assume that I purposely don't have kids because I just know that I would abuse them, sexually abuse or beat the crap out of them or whatever, since everyone KNOWS that ALL abused kids grow up and abuse their own kids.

 

Subject: Re: Donna, I can relate
Date: Jul 02 16:19
Author: Donna Banta

There really aren't ANY boundaries in Mormonism. Where else do people feel they can ask things like: "When are you going to have more kids?" or "Are you on the pill?" or "Do you wear your secret underwear?" or "Do you masturbate?" etc.

But the decision of whether or not to have children is intensely personal and of such great consequence. It makes me sad to think of the many Mormons who have them to please the church. Glad you brought this up.

 

Subject: As long-time DINKS, Beloved and I have often been on the receiving end of that nonsense.
Date: Jul 02 13:08
Author: Timothy

TBM mom who has been constantly surrounded by kids, grandkids and great grandkids since she was seventeen says our life will never be fulfilled until we have children. Funny that she's never been on the other side of the fence, at least not in her adult life. How would she know?

When my oldest brother died horribly in 1992, it was suggested by my TBM siblings that god intended me and Beloved to finish raising dead brother's six toddlers so that we might know the joy of child rearing. Oddly enough, dead brother's TBM spouse agreed. I rather rudely informed them that that was, without a doubt, the stupidest f**king thing I'd ever heard in my life!

Standard answer for years:

TBM: "When are you two going to have kids?"

BigT: "Whenever you're willing to birth 'em, feed 'em, clothe 'em, house 'em and provide 'em a quality education, we'll be more than happy to have as many as you like!"

What I despise most is the implied notion that those who abstain from bringing more children into the world are simply being selfish. I often wonder how "selfish" it really is to say to one's self, "Well, I don't really want to, but since I'm being pressured I guess I'll bring a truckload of kids into the world and make their lives a living hell just to keep mommy, daddy and the cult happy!"

I was the fourth of five kids. My folks were so sick of child rearing by the time the third one came along that we had no choice but to look elsewhere for guidance and support. They didn't really want any of their kids, They just kept popping us out to placate their folks. When the cult came along in 1966, we were placed in its uncaring arms and taught to maintain the status quo.

Did anyone learn from that experience? ... I did! ... Its not fair at all to risk raising another generation under such circumstances.

Mormons view children as possessions rather than charges. Pretty f**king sick if you axe me!

Timothy

 

Subject: Re: As long-time DINKS, Beloved and I have often been on the receiving end of that nonsense.
Date: Jul 02 16:03
Author: Gypsy Rose

I admire people who realize they don't want to raise children and then don't have any. My daughter who is close to 30 has asked me several times if I am sad that she hasnt had any kids.

I have told her she should only have children if she wants them in her life and has the desire to stay with the project for at least 18 years.

But Mom don't you want to have grandkids? I have told her that isn't something I need. Actually, I have loved being the mom...but for some reason the idea of grandkids isn't the least bit appealing. I am feeling selfish now.

 

Subject: I'm sad to say that I did act this way
Date: Jul 02 13:14
Author: fallen_angel_blue

If people had been married for several years and didn't have kids, I would just assume that they couldn't or that they were having marriage issues. My TBM bro and his wife have been married for 6 years now and haven't had any. I stopped bugging her about it because first of all, it's not my business, and secondly, after having a kid myself, I think it's best for people to wait as long as they can. You need to be SURE about such a big responsibility.

Alas, I came from a family of 7 kids and we were always poor and quite often abused. I never wanted to have more kids than I could handle and/or afford. While I was in the church, I just assumed that I would have as many as my husband told me to have. LOL! The church has no other way to grow their numbers at this point. Missionaries aren't being as successful as they used to be.

As for the selfishness...yeah there's a little bit of selfishness involved when I say I only want my ONE child. I also want my financial security, and my sanity, and my little bit of free time here and there. So I guess that makes me selfish.

 

Subject: Having one is no more selfish than having none or 12.....
Date: Jul 02 16:09
Author: Jonny the Smoke

You aren't selfish for having one.....

I want one kid!

I want 12 kids!

I don't want any kids!

You see, it's all the same......"I want"....doesn't matter how many because its all done out of selfishness whether its zero or 100.

 

Subject: Re: General view that TBMs have towards people with no children or 1 child
Date: Jul 02 14:55
Author: Wag

Wow. This thread opens up a can of worms for me.

I'm the oldest of 10 kids. Suffered a lot at the abusive hands of both of our parents. All of us did. And yet, the kept popping them all out.

When my wife and I first married, we knew she couldn't have kids and we just figured we'd adopt, eventually. Of course, years went by and when we finally got to LDS Social Services to get the process going, they barricaded us every step of the way until we finally just gave up. We left the church a couple of years after that for other reasons entirely.

Still, there were a great many times when people would give us some kind of snarky comment about how we were missing out because we didn't have children.

One of my brothers even put in his will that his kids should go to us if he and his wife were ever to be killed together in a tragic crash. His attitude was that of a man trying to do a favor for us or something. Pompous ass that he is, my brother. Of course, after we kicked the Morg to the curb, he changed his will to remove that little clause, ostensibly to prevent us from ruining his children.

I'll have to post up that story about the LDS SS some time if I can find it.

--Wag--

 

Subject: we were married 5 yrs. before we had our one and only child
Date: Jul 02 15:40
Author: Helen

I miscarried my first pregnancy at the beginning of my fourth month. The Branch President told me to stop crying over the loss because I was young and could still have children. Mormon compassion eh?

The question always was, "So when are you guys going to start a family?"

Then our daughter is born and the question became, "When are you having another baby?"

My reply to their questions:- "Why would you ask such a personal question?"

And they would stand there with that look of "What did I say wrong, I just asked a simple question."

I gave no further response and left them standing there looking as if they were still trying to figure out why I wouldn't want to answer their question

 

Subject: being 9 months pregnant with my first I still get stuff like this
Date: Jul 02 15:56
Author: marm

Example: saw my uncle last week and he asked me what kind of car we had. I said we have a civic. He's like, you'll need a bigger car when you have more kids. I'm thinking, if I even have any more at all! And probably not more than 3 anyways (and that's like in a decade from now). Geez. He was so concerned about us having a small car. He also was concerned about me starting grad school (4 years until I will finish) and he's like, how old are you? Oh, okay, so you'll be 29 when your done, you're still young...

Like phew- you're still young enough to have a large family after you graduate.

Another quick note because it amuses me so much. My husband is quitting his current job and staying home with the baby for a year or so when I start school. This uncle looks shocked and says, "So is (husband) tired of working?"

This is a sacrifice for both of us, thanks- he's not staying home because he doesn't want to work ever again. (BTW he doesn't know we've resigned) Ugh!

 

Subject: Re: General view that TBMs have towards people with no children or 1 child
Date: Jul 02 15:59
Author: bb

We, too, got the same questions. It wasn't until I TOLD (rather matter of fact) one of the resident busy bodies of our ward why we couldn't have more children did the questioning stop. It really irked us that so many members (especially the sisters)assumed to know why we weren't having more children. Were we faithless? Did we not want to sacrifce like everybody else? Were we being selfish? NOT AT ALL!

There was an IRRITATING passive arrogance coming from those who asked the questions. What they were actually trying to say was..."Why don't you have more children like us so you can join in the misery that we have trying to care for all these kids that we can't afford?"

I've known people (brethren and sisters) who compete with others by the number of kids they have. They never mention, however, how they don't physically have the time to know their kids, to care for the kids, to talk with their kids, to lead and guide them, etc. Sad to say, but it's just a statistic in some bizarre kind of way. Kind of like polygamy with the number of wives that the brethren could not possibly know or have a relationship with...

 

Subject: selfish nonsense
Date: Jul 02 17:44
Author: paisley

To be selfish, there has to be another person involved. Like 2 kids playing and one won't share toys. That child is selfish. Adults who choose to limit the size of their family aren't being selfish because the nonexistent child doesn't exist.

One of the saddest things I ever heard in the Morg was at a FT meeting when a young girl about 12 with 6 younger siblings started off about the church is true bah bah and then said how she loved her parents so much and she wished she could spend more time with them but they were both busy with church callings. Suddenly the child realized what she'd said and she hastily added how happy she was that her parents were so busy. It was sick.

 

Subject: Well! Your suposed to be practicing for when you get to the CK
Date: Jul 02 16:14
Author: SisterExMo

Then your job will be to pop 'em out like a conveyor belt.

Women - you will never get off your backs.

 

Subject: I am the only child of two working parents
Date: Jul 02 16:31
Author: Hermes

I was the only "only" in the ward, and it caused a lot more grief for my mom than me.

Nosy bitches in relief society would always ask her when she would be having more (after she gave birth to me, she couldn't). Then, whenever some dingleberry in charge would lay the '70s-'80s smackdown on working moms, the same bitches would tsk-tsk and look at my mom.

She's brilliant in her field...travels around the world, and only has one child. She was called "selfish" for this.

Oh...she was also a convert...so her standing already was lower in the eyes of mormons.

I love being an only child...though it made me a freak in SLC

-H

 

Subject: I remember a couple in my ward only married a few months and people were already asking when they
Date: Jul 02 20:00
Author: Cali Sally

were going to start having kids. I thought it was rude even then. Beyond rude since some people cannot have children. I always wondered why Mormons thought it was any of their business and how they could ask such insensitive questions.

 

Subject: Infertility
Date: Jul 02 20:23
Author: RAG

My ex wife and I had fertility problems--she had one ectopic pregnancy and could not conceive again thereafter.

I had an in-law's brother come up to me at a family party--it was the first time I had ever spoken to him--and he told me that if my wife and I got married in the temple we would have kids.

I was too stunned to reply, and he walked away, having imparted his 'priesthood' message.

I should have reamed him out, my house or not. I was a different person then--I had not yet learned the value, even the necessity, of my boundaries.

I had to learn that it was okay to get mad and say "hell NO!" When I did start doing that, my marriage fell apart and I discovered that I was going to pay a high price for my own independence. I did. It was worth it.

 

Subject: Strange advice from Mormons
Date: Jul 02 21:24
Author: T-bone

People in our ward always had an FPR (faith-promoting rumor) about pregnancy.

"My cousin married a non-Mormon girl. A month after she got baptized she found out she was pregnant."

Even as a TBM that sounded stupid to me.

 

Subject: Re: General view that TBMs have towards people with no children or 1 child
Date: Jul 02 20:40
Author: Clever Pup

I was a convert with one 5-year old child when I foolishly married a TBM and joined the church. We had a baby two years later, but I heard quite an earful from various mos over the years. I was visiting teaching one woman (happened to be the bishop's wife) and she flat out asked me why the children were so far apart and why I only had two. The truth was that I had divorced when child one was 2 years old and my mo husband had six (yes six, yikes) from his first marriage so eight was enough. That seemed to satisfy her, but I resented being asked.

Had I thought about it, I would have made a snarky comment about her intrusive question, but I was busy trying to fit in - ick!

Other mormon women would comment to me that they had children as old as my two with several in between and ask if there were fertility problems or (this was the funniest) if my husband traveled a lot. My children are 16 and 23 now, the TBM and I have divorced and I'm an ex-mo. I adore both of them, but I am always grateful there are only two.

One other tidbit - I was born in the 1960's when birth control was really becoming popular. My father was from a well to do, educated family, my mother was from poor farm stock. His family really looked down on my parents for having 4 children, they believed that once it was controllable (if that's a word), that genteel people only had two children, poor farm folks had more because they didn't know any better and needed farmhands - funny but true story. None of us ended up farmhands by the way!

 

Subject: I was more likely to think, "Don't you have enough kids already?"
Date: Jul 02 20:49
Author: Stray Mutt

That attitude made me an outsider. I still have trouble faking excitement when someone announces they're pregnant.

 

Subject: Had 2 decades of experience with that
Date: Jul 02 21:10
Author: T-bone

I can sum up the ignorance that we faced with a short story. I told a woman we had been trying for 2 decades and had several miscarriages along the way. This sad, sad look came across her face and she said, "Oh, I know exactly what you're going through. It took me 3 months to get pregnant with our 4th child. I just cried and cried. My husband gave me a blessing and everything. I mean, it only took 1 or 2 months with the first 3." She had 6 children at the time.

I just looked at her and said, "No, you don't know what it's like." And I walked away. Some people say some really dumb things and don't even know they're being stupid.

Sometimes, there is nothing you can say to a couple that has no children. So it's best to say nothing at all.

Don't act like you know what it's like unless you've been there.
Don't suggest adoption.
Don't think you know about some wonderful fertility treatment that they haven't heard of. They've already heard of them all.
Don't print out the names of doctors that specialize in infertility for them.
Don't ask them who has the problem, him or her.

Yes, we had all that sh*t happen to us on an almost daily basis when living in Utah.

That's one reason we live in the Midwest now.

T-Bone

 

Subject: Re: Had 2 decades of experience with that
Date: Jul 02 21:30
Author: bb

I agree. The best thing to say is nothing at all. It got really old telling the same people over and over.

 

Subject: We have no and are not planning on any but the TBM's always
Date: Jul 02 21:30
Author: Dayna P.

get on my case! A few months after we got married, someone at my husband's work said "when are you having your first child?" Adam said: "we just got married. we're in a financial bind." He said: "that doesn't matter. haven't you ever heard of multiply and replenish the earth?"

Then when we "tried" we found out we would have to battle infertility. We decided not to try any treatments and just accept not having children.

We got: "why don't you adopt? there are so many children that need homes!" and "which one of you is the infertile one?" and "Do you want me put your name on the prayer roll?" and "have you fasted and prayed about your decision?"

Now I am 37 and NO I do not want to start a family now, so even though the chances were low, one of us got sterilized. Now I hear the endless judgments.

I have to admit that I often wonder to myself how they weaseled all this personal information out of me! They are RELENTLESS with their personal questions! I'm not in a big Mormon area anymore and even though the church is across the street, they pretty much leave me alone, but every time I go back to Utah... it starts again. It's so old now.

 

Subject: yes I used to see them negatively
Date: Jul 02 22:04
Author: QuimbyDawn

But I can't really talk anymore as I am 8 years married with no kids by (mutual) choice.

My DH has run ins like yours every once in a while and always comes away a little disturbed. I just tell him to stop facebooking with people from his past that belong in his past. :)

 

Subject: to shut up the relief society...
Date: Jul 02 22:19
Author: Hermes

...the LAST time anyone at church asked my mom why she didn't have any more kids she said,

"We've been unable to conceive ever since (Dad) was tortured in the Vietnam War

Now...

...Dad was never in the War...and I have respect for the men and women who did serve...but it took drastic measures like this to get the biddies to shut the fuck up.

 

Subject: I love that response! My fave line when asked . . .
Date: Jul 02 23:28
Author: JaneBond462

when we were going to have kids was "oh, nine months after Hell freezes over."

 

Subject: Re: General view that TBMs have towards people with no children or 1 child
Date: Jul 02 23:23
Author: Convert

This is one of the reasons I resigned. I converted in 2008. I was raised in a very large, very poor military family. Not religious at all.

Imagine growing up poor but you have no external support system. Not even one as twisted as the morg. Just you and your poor siblings and then your mom bails when you are 7. So yeah, broken home, no money. Nothing. Also no help for college or a better life.

I am a college grad but my chosen field pays crap. Its rewarding work but does not pay much money at all.

I swore when I was still in elementary school, I would NEVER EVER raise children in poverty. Growing up poor robs you of hope and joy. It is awful.

When I was still with my TBM gf and getting pressured to propose to her I knew in the back of my head this would never work since I wanted no children.

 

Subject: Re: General view that TBMs have towards people with no children or 1 child
Date: Jul 02 23:30
Author: Lid

This attitude is not exclusive to mormons. My husband and I have been married for 4 years and we get asked all the time: "When are you going to have some children". Our usual response: Never. Then we tell all the fun stuff we are going to be doing instead of raising kids like: going on tons of vacations, traveling around the world, going out anytime without toiling kids around or calling a sitter and doing whatever the hell we want with our free time (playing video games and farting around in general are very popular in our household).
After that they usually leave us alone. :) Until next time they ask, of course.

 

Subject: Would they be shocked at all the man-worshipped GAs and Apostles that have 1 or 2 children too? nt

 

Subject: Re: General view that TBMs have towards people with no children or 1 child
Date: Jul 03 00:18
Author: 9 siblings and childless by choice

If someone implies that you are being selfish for not having children, ask them "How many children am I required to have to be unselfish?" Their reply will coincidentally be equal to or more than the number they have themselves.

One of my responses has been "My father had 10 children and he is the most selfish person I know."

Conceiving children does not make one instantly unselfish. Raising a child gives a person the opportunity to learn to be less selfish if they choose to grow from it, just like doing anything for another person. My father never really learned that lesson.

 

Subject: "Starting a family"
Date: Jul 03 13:39
Author: DoxiNoMo

You know what I hate?

People who say things like it's not a family without kids!

My husband, The Best Man Everô and our doggies and I are a FAMILY! People (yeah, and dogs!) who live and love together ARE a FAMILY.

 

Subject: Just a casual look at the younger generation of LDS folks getting married it appears
Date: Jul 03 13:43
Author: SusieQ#1

that in the last 10 years or so, the families are limited to one to three children, or the old 2.5 kids per family.

This is a trend that I think will continue.

Also, more and more males and female LDS are having elective surgery to prohibit procreation.
I don't have any stats, but I hear it through the "grape vine."

 

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