Thursday, October 27, 2011


The next little member of our family will be born with a penis. Which means I will be the mother of two boys. 

(Liberal disclaimer: should either or both of my children-born-with-penises feel more comfortable as girls, I will fully support them, and depending on how our financial investments go, we might even help pay for any operations they wish to have.)

While we did sort of want a daughter - and the ladies in my husband's family are practically donning widow's weeds for lack of a princess to dote upon - I have to admit to a few reasons why I'm happy we get to have two boys: 

(Liberal disclaimer: a lot of these are non-politically correct on purpose for the sake of humor.)
  • I will never have to defend letting her play with Disney Princesses
  • No crying tantrums when she wakes up with her hair in a knotted, tangled mess
  • My husband doesn't have to reverse his stance on gun ownership for her dating years
  • I get to retain my title as Queen of the Household
  • No one in this house will ever steal my tampons
  • Three words we can all happily live without: Teenage Girl PMS
  • The uppance for my 14-year old obsession with New Kids on the Block will now never come
  • I never have to take anyone shopping for a training bra
  • I've just DOUBLED my chances of having a child of mine play for the Yankees
  • My husband now has TWO strapping young men to pass on the near-extinct family name Lopez
  • Boys love their mommies

The biggest downside right now? My husband and I can only agree on one boy's name, and we already used it for our first son. 

The second biggest downside? Now I won't get the Skywalker Family costume I've always wanted to do. Maybe that's the biggest downside, actually. 

"Oh, woe is me!"

During my last pregnancy, when people asked if I was having a boy or a girl and I'd tell them, I got the dumbest reactions. 

Pregnancy is generally a time when everyone but the pregnant woman says asinine things. I think that preggos should be allowed to punch people. Or taser them. Whether strangers in elevators told me I looked like I was "about to give birth" (at 7 months along) or co-workers shouted, "Waddle waddle waddle!" as I waddled by, what on earth makes people think it's OK to say these things to a pregnant lady? 

But the worst reactions of all came in response to my declaration that we were having a boy. OTHER MOTHERS would tell me, "Oh, good. I mean, I love my daughters, but boys are better."

Yes, someone actually said that to me.

Possibly my own mother may have confirmed this statement, though I was high on post-natal hormones, sleep deprivation, and Percocet, and she now denies it.

Forget for a second that I am someone's daughter, and let's talk about how insensitive that remark is. What if we were having a girl? Would these women then gasp, clutch their pearls, and scream, "Oh dear god in heaven, someone help me get this poor girl-bearing woman to the nearest back alley abortionist!" I get that they were trying to be nice, but a simple, "Oh, how wonderful, boys are such a joy!" would have been fine. Really.

Do we really still live in a time when people prefer boys to girls? What is this, China? Do people really still believe that all girls all the time are always manipulative, evil, back-stabbing, overly dramatic creatures? Just because I was that way? 

As a feminist I did look forward to raising a strong-willed, outspoken, kick-ass young womym who would some day grow up to be the first Jewish-Cuban female President of the United States. 

Instead, I get to raise two strong-willed, outspoken, kick-ass young men who will become part of the solution and not part of the problem, will respect women as human beings, will follow their father's example and self-identify as feminist and LGBTQ allies, and will never ever ever leave me.

So let it be written. So let it be done.


Sara Thompson said...

For me, the hardest thing about raising a boy was not knowing "boy issues". I'm so grateful that his dad is comfortable enough to help him through those weird questions and concerns that pop up (they are only weird to me because I don't have a penis - who knew they were so much work?)

Meredith L. said...

And how soon they discover THOSE...

Tricia Ballad said...

Oh I got the same comments - as the mother of three uterine-challenged persons before I gave birth to a penis-challenged one. Then the comments I got - right in front of my boys! - were "Oh, you FINALLY got your girl!"

Um....didn't know having a girl was a long-lost dream, but thanks for pointing out to my boys that they were simply practice shots!

Engage brain before mouth, people....

Meredith L. said...

Oh, no, that's awful!

We may get pregnancy brain and forget things while we're gestating another life, but other people are the ones who get dumber.

When I was still pregnant with my first son I wore a pink t-shirt one day and a cashier at the drug store said, "Oh, you're having a girl?" I said no. She said, "'re wearing pink." I didn't realize having a boy meant the color pink is now forbidden to me. *facepalm*