My Mum is so excited about becoming a grandparent that it’s actually comical. Though she vaguely knows we are TTC, we certainly haven’t shared the gritty details with her. She’s bossy and way too demanding to be entrusted with that kind of information. Very early on, after I gave her an icy response re our TTC plans, she offered to stop asking about future kid with the assurance that I would let her know when there was actually something to know. Problem is, so much time has lapsed since those early conversations that she’s getting impatient. Hell, so am I! But now, every time we speak (which is several times a week) she manages to throw in a very loaded ‘any news?’ It’s sweet, but it’s so much pressure. Part of me wants to bare my every TTC anxiety to her but I know letting her in like that would be a mistake. She’d be bound to give me unsolicited, insensitive advice like ‘patience is a virtue’ – advice like that, from a Capricorn to an Aries would only fuel my frustration and leave me wishing I’d never said anything. Not sharing all this with my Mama though – it’s a bit strange. (Mums partner, in case you’re interested, is a fairly non-committal kinda, laid back guy. He’s got a few homophobic prejudices but essentially, he’s pretty alright. If Mum’s happy, he’s happy.) When I finally get knocked up and break the news to her, she will squeal. I can hear it already.
My Dad, on the other hand, is completely in the dark about all of this. I’m worried. I have no desire to tell him at all. Ever. I have a friend who never told her traditional Chinese mother that she was accidentally pregnant and planning on having the baby as a single mother. She just let her mother work it out. That child is now 9 and is the apple of his grandmothers eye. To this day she has never asked my friend about her sons father or his Latin American looks. It’s strange but it works for them. Anyway, I digress. My Dad has been ordinary, if not absent, my entire life. He lives an hour away, comes to the city weekly, and yet we only see him 2 or 3 times a year. We probably only speak 1 or 2 more times than that. His wife is reactionary and conservative. She still makes comments to me about having a husband. I honestly have no idea what my Dad’ll think about me having a baby, though I suspect he’ll be pretty into having a grandchild. His wife, however, will not be backwards about coming forwards, I’m sure. She’ll feel entitled to her opinions and obliged to share them with us. Like I said, I’m worried. Should I be telling them now, before I’m pregnant? Or should I tell them when I’m 8 months pregnant? I feel sick just thinking about it. Input welcome?
…meanwhile, poor Ducks is worried that her family won’t recognise her as an equal parent. It’s all so complex. But that is a discussion for another day.