Questions unknown

I had a conversation with my dad yesterday where he asked what our standard responses are to the questions people are going to have about my pregnancy. He asked this in a helpful manner – Once we have good news from the ultrasound on Friday we are going to tell our siblings. This means that slowly over the next four weeks word will spread around my extended family. With a more public announcement at 12 weeks they’ll all know. Most of my family is pretty good to Lesley and I and because we live 3,000 miles away from them they won’t ask us many questions. But my family, and I sure do love them, is an extremely close knit bunch who loves to talk to each other. While we may not get the questions that doesn’t mean that my parents and siblings won’t.

This is something that Lesley and I talked about extensively before trying to get pregnant and at the beginning of that process. Neither of us have any desire to discuss the donor with other people. We have yet to order the long profile and honestly, after getting pregnant I had to look him up because I didn’t remember anything about him. We both know that we don’t want to discuss the donor and had some ideas about how to handle those situations. But now that I am pregnant I feel unprepared. I feel like the responses I had at the ready months ago aren’t right now and normally when people ask anything I end up giving more information than I planned because the questions catch me off guard.

The hardest part for me right now is that I don’t know what the questions will be. My dad seems to think they will be broke down into two parts: How did we get pregnant and who is the donor. I honestly can’t imagine people asking how we got pregnant unless they are lesbians. I think most people have assumptions about turkey basters and really don’t want to think beyond that. And those questions I can answer simple enough: We order sperm from a sperm bank and went to a doctor. I really don’t think people want information beyond that. But the donor questions are harder. I’m not sure what people ask so feel unprepared in my response. And while I’m not uncomfortable answering a question or two I really don’t want to talk about it so would rather end the conversation as soon as possible. I see a lifetime of awkward conversations ahead of me and wish I had the answer my dad was looking for – the textbook response we want to give to the questions coming our way.


Posted on February 10, 2014, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. I know how you feel about the questions catching you off guard, so you give answers that make you feel awkward after the fact. Whenever anyone asks me questions about being gay-married, I always give them a legal-type answer. Whenever anyone asks me questions about having kids, I always give them a medical-type answer. When really, these are emotional, social, family decisions, and actually have very little to do with the legal or medical construct. Afterward, I’m always like, “Why did I say that long, weird thing about the medical procedures?” but I think you have hit the nail on the head here, which is that I don’t actually want to talk about it or go into it with whoever is asking, and the legal and medical answers are ways of de-personalizing the conversation.

  2. Just be upfront and honest. You don’t need to give full details about the process or the donor, but just be comfortable with it and share only what feels right.

  3. I haven’t had too many people ask me those kinds of questions, and those who have are very close and wanted to hear my story more than be prying. I suppose it depends on people’s boundaries and social appropriateness though. I agree with Lindsay, just share what information you feel right sharing. I think your answer for “how” is completely appropriate and for questions about the donor an equally basic answer should be acceptable. Something like we chose an unknown donor from a cyrobank. I’ve heard from other pregnant women that people say the darndest things to pregnant women, so who knows maybe as I get more pregnant there will be more odd ball questions.

  4. I get this. I’ve been thinking about the same sort of stuff since 12 weeks is only days away. I’m sure people will have questions and I guess I don’t mind telling them we used a known donor, but beyond that I don’t want to share anything, especially on Facebook. But I know the words “known donor” will intrigue people and prompt them to ask more questions. I know I’m not at all obligated to share anything I don’t want to, but I’m also not looking forward to people pushing (because you know there are always those that’ll push).

  5. I’m dreading the questions part as well. I have no clue what to say and am so unprepared. We’re trying to hold out another 6 weeks to tell people which hopefully is enough time to come up with a game plan and responses. I like mom number 2’s suggestion about using the medical responses.

  6. The standard Miss Manners response to questions that are kind of rude is to smile and say “Why do you want to know?” I imagine it would shut most people up pretty quickly.

  7. I would often just say, “We’re saving that information for the baby when he/she is older” when I’d get asked about the donor. It’s pretty personal information!

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