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Assume that you've decided to go to a social event where you are likely to be asked about children. It will be helpful to do some advance preparation. In particular, you need to work out why you are attending the event, what you hope to get out of it, and have some responses ready.
The first step is to understand why you have decided to go the event, and what you hope to get out of it. Here are a few possibilities:
Sooner or later someone is going to ask:
When are you going to have kids?
Depending on your goals for the event, you need to pick an appropriate strategy for dealing with the question. Most of the time you will probably want to change the subject so that you don't open yourself to unsolicited and unhelpful advice. However, sometimes you may want to be more open. Here are some examples:
|1||Lie: Always remember – you aren't under oath, and you have no obligation to share details of your personal life with anyone.||"We're not ready for children yet"|
|2||Change the subject||"I'm not sure. Hey, did you see the news last night?"|
|3||Stop the conversation in its tracks||"It's actually a difficult topic that I'd rather not talk about."|
|4||Talk openly||"Actually, we've been trying for a while now, but sadly it hasn't happened yet. How long did it take you to conceive?"|
|5||Brutal honesty: You can demonstrate that it isn't an appropriate question by turning the tables and making the person who asked it feel uncomfortable.||"Since you asked, I have been diagnosed with a medical condition known as..."|
"I have been trying unsuccessfully for..."
|6||Brush it off with a joke||"Kids - are you crazy? I can't even keep a plant alive!"|
"I knew I forgot something!"
Preparing responses to difficult questions will help, but it isn't a guarantee that the event will go smoothly. For example, imagine that you summon the strength to go to a baby shower. Things are going well until someone says "becoming a mother is the greatest experience that life has to offer" or "I didn't know true love until I looked my baby's eyes". A comment like this, regardless of whether or not it was directed at you, can bring on a tidal wave of emotions, leaving you blind sided. It is important to plan for this as well. Here are a few things you can do:
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