Dogs and babies

Last week, I was telling the boy about something I’d read. A piece on just how beneficial dog ownership is for mental health: it imposes routine on your life, for one thing, but also brings affection, company …

But this isn’t a post about dogs. This is a post about what I said next, when he asked, ‘Are you thinking of getting a dog, then?’

‘No,’ I said, without considering my answer, ‘I’d rather have a baby.’

There was an awkward silence and the side-eyeyist side eyes I’ve ever seen. He reached for his phone: ‘I’m *so* tweeting that!’

I lunged for it, before he could: ‘Don’t you fucking dare!’ and ended up sprawled across him, his phone still well out of my reach.

We were both laughing.

I’ve written before about how much I want children. I’m not ashamed of being honest about that. Wary, perhaps, in case it never happens and I’ve bared my deepest desires to the world only to ultimately fail at making them reality, but not ashamed.

But I do think being honest about wanting kids is still a problem for some women today. When I first started Internet dating, two of the standard questions gave me pause. The first was the one about how much I drink. The friends who watched me fill in my profile cautioned against ticking ‘Most evenings,’ or ‘Often,’ on the basis that it would make me sound like an alcoholic, and encouraged me to tick ‘Socially,’ instead. And I did, because at the end of the day, I don’t think it’s that big a deal either way.

I didn’t ask my friends what they thought I should tick for the question about children. Should I go for ‘Doesn’t have kids, but wants them’ or ‘Doesn’t have kids, but *might* want them?’ In the end, I plumped for the latter, but I do still wonder if some guys might read it and think that essentially, I’m looking to get knocked up as soon as I can.

I’m not. I haven’t reached this point just yet.

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