By Jody Valley
Grandmother or mother wanna be?
Q: I will bet you that you haven’t had this one, yet. My mom wants me to have kids! I don’t mean that it’s not pretty universal that moms want their kids to have kids, but being that I’m gay, she should have gotten over it, you think?!
She just doesn’t say that she wants them; she is willing to find a surrogate mom to get pregnant with my sperm; she’ll pay her; and mom will take care of any legal work that needs to be done. She doesn’t just talk about this; she has looked into it and says that she has a woman who would be willing to do this! (She even thinks that she will be able to control the sex of the child. I am an only child and she always wanted a baby girl, not that she didn’t want me, too.) She’s doing all this, while all along I say that I am not interested. She says, “Then, I’ll raise the child!”
The other night, I was over to her house and she was on me to go along with her baby scheme. I said that I was not interested, nor was my partner interested. My partner and I are very happy with our lives and are not interested in children. My mom says that we are “selfish.” She went on and on, saying that we had plenty of money and time for a child, and that she could care for the child during the day and night, too, if we wanted that. She said that she would adopt the child if we really, after having it, didn’t want to raise it. She has even talked about going into the baby section of stores looking at clothes for babies, cribs, and other baby stuff. My mother gets on kicks and has a hard time letting go, but in all my life I have not seen anything of this magnitude.
I was really upset with all this talk about a baby, which I have no desire for. It made me mad and a bit guilty, I guess. Then, I get mad again for having to feel guilty. My partner says that he doesn’t even want to have anything to do with my mother anymore, because he is so angry with her for pushing this on us. I’m mad, too, like I said, but she is my mother and my dad and I are close and I don’t want to not see him, just because I, too, would like to avoid my mother these days. (My dad is not a part of this scheme. He sort of just ignores things and stays away when she starts talking about all this.)
I don’t know how to get my mother off this. I want things to get back to where my partner wants to come with me to my parent’s house. We spend many holidays with them and also other special times. This is going to ruin it all, if she doesn’t quit. How do I get Mom to stop all this?
Not In My Life
A: Your mother is going to have to understand that you mean what you say regarding not wanting kids, and that there are consequences for her in trying to force you to take care of her needs, not yours. (And for your guilt issues, you don’t owe grandchildren to your mother.) I think it is important that you let her know that you understand her wanting grandchildren, but it’s not something you are willing to give her, at your emotional expense. Tell her that children need to have parents who want them. There are many heterosexual couples who don’t want children and are brave enough not to have them. I’m also having a hard time understanding how your father is not involved in all this. After all, if you should have that baby and not want it, he’d be a daddy, again. So, I’m thinking that he is either going along with this idea, or hoping like hell that you stand your ground. Either way, it is up to you to let your mother know that if she continues on with trying to get you to have a baby, you and your partner will be scarce around the house – and in their lives. I would also suggest you tell your father about not sticking around if your mom continues on with her harassing behavior – which just might enlist him into talking to her about it. But don’t hold your breath that he will. Your dad’s passive behavior is probably his pattern of dealing with many issues, not just this one.