“Your poor husband.”
Can I just go on record and say I am SO TIRED of hearing this?! Family, friends and strangers alike have hurled this phrase at me. It never fails that when I am on an outing with my 4 little girls, at least 2 or 3 people feel the need to say this to me. Why? What makes my husband someone to be pitied? What makes anyone think this is OK to say, especially in front of my girls? What type of message does this send to a child, to insinuate that they are some sort of a disappointment to their father simply because they are lacking a penis?
After the twins were born, I tried to let it roll off of me. I get it, society thinks every mom wants a daughter and every dad wants a son. Perhaps some, or even most, do. Maybe the vast majority’s idea of a “perfect family” is one with a son (no doubt the first born), a daughter, and a well behaved Golden Retriever. Fine. I figured the comments would stop eventually. When I got pregnant with #4, everyone assumed I (and more specifically, my husband) was hoping for a boy. I expected that. What I didn’t anticipate is that complete strangers would be so distraught when I announced that it was another girl. What difference does it make to them? Why is it so undesirable to have a crew of girls, or boys for that matter?
I have officially hit my breaking point and I am no longer polite to these people, well-meaning as they may be. Now when I get this comment, I give them a piece of my mind. First and foremost, I use a phrase I learned when people asked if my twins were “natural” or not. “Why do you ask/say that?” Luckily, this gets the point across to most people. However, there are still a few that press on and insist that living in a house full of girls is something to be upset about. To these people, I say that there is nothing upsetting about having 4 little girls that absolutely worship their daddy. 4 little girls that run to the door, arms wide open, the second he walks in. 4 little girls that crawl into his lap with a book. 4 little girls that love to snuggle in (as they call it) “daddy’s big girl bed”. My husband tells anyone that asks that he wouldn’t have it any other way. He knows how very lucky he is, and how special the bond between a father and daughter is.
Certainly, he has fears about raising 4 daughters, but I can assure you none of them have anything to do with hormones or boyfriends or makeup or (gasp!) paying for 4 weddings. His fears for his daughters are about how much society still views women as a lesser sex… that some people cannot accept that a woman can be just as smart, accomplished or athletic as a man, or cannot accept that a woman can, in fact, be all 3 of these things at the same time… that a relationship between a father and daughter cannot be just as fulfilling as that between a father and son.
D and I are working our hardest to raise strong, smart, independent girls that know, without a doubt, that they can conquer the world. We do not determine their value based on the sex organs they have, and neither should anyone else. When we look into each of our girls’ eyes, we do not feel sadness or disappointment, but rather pride and unconditional love. So, random stranger in the grocery store, please keep the “poor husband” comments to yourself, especially when little ears are listening. Oh, and you can take that “perfect family” image and shove it, because we have our perfect family right here.
Originally Posted on Follow the Bus.