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The Things People Say

"Twin Time." That's what mom Colleen Fisher says she and other twin moms have to factor into any trip they take outside the house, and it's not because of all the extra gear and difficulty of corralling two small children. What Fisher and moms Meredith Nahra and Randi Tercyak describe as Twin Time is an extra 15 minutes they need to add to any errand because of all the people who stop them to ask questions or simply comment. While many onlookers, clearly fascinated by the sight of twins, ooh and aah at the children, moms of multiples also get a double (and triple) dose of "I can't believe she/he said that!" zingers.

They quickly rattled off a list, checking with each other for anything missing as they went along:

"Are they twins?"

"Double trouble!"

"You've got your hands full."

"Are they yours?"

"Do they nap at the same time?"

"Who's older?"

"Better you than me!"

"Do they run in the family?"

"She's the [descriptive word here] one" as people point and label the kids.

Truthfully, that's not much different than the neighbor who stopped me on one of my first outings with my second son. The baby was in the Bjorn as my two-year-old and I walked around the neighborhood. The neighbor oohed at the baby, then said, "So, you gonna try for a girl next time?"

I distinctly remember tripping over my own tongue trying to answer. Not so for Nahra, who has taught her twin mom friends to give short answers that put the questioner on the defensive.

What are some of those memorable comments people have said to you in front of your kids? And what are some of your zinger comebacks?

By Stacey Garfinkle |  March 5, 2008; 7:00 AM ET  | Category:  Babies , Preschoolers
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Comments


Oh my god, did you adopt them? (my kids are mixed race)
me: no, a stork brought them. Thanks for asking!
And first!!

Posted by: Kathy | March 5, 2008 7:17 AM | Report abuse

I don't understand what is wrong with these questions. Why does there have to be a "zinger" comeback? Maybe people should just not talk anymore.

Posted by: Not THAT touchy | March 5, 2008 7:18 AM | Report abuse

I mostly get is she your real daughter. I am Asian and my husband is Caucasian. I think my daughter looks mostly Caucasian with minor Asian features. I don't get offended or anything. I simply say, "she is my biological child." I think most people can figure out Dad is white. I also only get these comments from other Asian people. Caucasians see more Asian in my daughter or just don't care. I find that funny about twins because I see them all the time now. Most are faternal anyway. So, I don't see what the big fascination is. With the onset of fertility drugs, twins are no longer the marvel they used to be. I have to say I love to see a boy and a girl twin set or indenticals. There is something miraculous about a natural clone. And I think it is nice to see a boy and girl twin set because the parents get one of each. But same sex faternal twins to me are not all that interesting. Now people with 4 or more are definitely a sight. But I find it interesting to see any kind of large family. Especially in the DC area. I still see a few families in stores with 5 or more children. I do wonder where they put them all or do they have a very big house!

Posted by: foamgnome | March 5, 2008 7:23 AM | Report abuse

I would hate to think that I was setting an example for my children by being snarky, curt and rude to strangers.

Yes, it must be annoying to constantly hear those questions, but isn't it the parent's responsibility to teach her/his children to be polite?

Posted by: mccxxiii | March 5, 2008 7:30 AM | Report abuse

Actually, I finally have something to add: a cashier at Walmart the other day asked me if both of my children were "mine" and then queried: "Same father?" I started laughing, I swear to God, I was so surprised. (My husband says "That's what you get for shopping at Walmart".) She probably thought I was a maniac, but it didn't stop her from telling me her life story, three girls from different men, all of whom had babies in their teens, one of whom has two babies by two fathers, and you know, they never come around, never pay or help, etc. I realized that this is her reality, so I guess it's no wonder she assumed my kids had different fathers. In twenty years' time, one of her daughters will probably having a similar conversation with one of my kids. Scary.

Posted by: WorkingMomX | March 5, 2008 7:36 AM | Report abuse

I'm an adult, same-sex fraternal twin and we hear it ALL the time. Trust me, at least once your kids are grown and gone you won't have to deal with it all the time like your kids will. Even for all the annoying and rude comments, I wouldn't give up being a twin for the world!

And, just my opinion, I wouldn't want to be an identical twin. Too creepy to share 100% of my DNA with someone else, even if that person is my sister.

Posted by: irishgator1 | March 5, 2008 7:37 AM | Report abuse

I sympathize that sometimes things become annoying after awhile but considering that MOST of these people are probably trying to be nice or neighborly (I'm sure perhaps they sometimes don't express themselves well... and there will always be the occasional mean spirited person) why on earth would anyone celebrate someone being snarky in reply. At the very best all you've done is sink to their level and if their intentions were good, you've just become the jerk in the situation. What a society we're becoming- no wonder neighborhoods are getting less neighborly. And in tomorrow's column we'll debate and wonder why our children are getting less polite and respectful - seems to be kinda linked to me.

Posted by: CI | March 5, 2008 7:57 AM | Report abuse

I have boy/girl twins. I get the question "Are they identical?" all the time. To some people I just say, "Think about it, not everything is the same on them!"

Posted by: Jennifer | March 5, 2008 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Wow, it's not like they are asking if they are really her husband or something equally as bad.

I don't generally like it when strangers talk directly to my child without speaking with me first, but these questions are harmless and not rude. Maybe she should get a shirt that reads "don't look, speak, or further engage me."

Posted by: Irishgirl | March 5, 2008 8:05 AM | Report abuse

As a father of three boys, I have been on the receiving end of comments like "You've got your hands full", "Better you than me", and "Are you gonna try for a girl next". But these are invariably harmless comments/inquiries by people who are just curious and/or trying to make small talk. In fact, I can't recall a situation where someone was purposely being rude to me by making these sorts of comments. So I don't see how a rude response designed to put the questioner on the defensive is necessary or desirable in most situations.

Stacey, rather than coming up with a list of snarky responses, your time might be better spent trying to figure out why you are so sensitive that these comments are bothersome in the first place.

Posted by: not that sensitive | March 5, 2008 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Some do seem to ask for a snarky response...my favorite (in England so imagine someone speaking with an accent from "Rumpole"...)

ooohh...his Dad must be very dark

While they were clearly commenting on my son's and my dramatically different coloring I responded that my husband generally is quite optimistic.

Posted by: samclare | March 5, 2008 8:46 AM | Report abuse

"Is your child medicated yet?" asked the mom at the PTA meeting. I'm pretty laid back with my responses to bizarre questions, but this one caught me off guard! I guess my gaping wide mouth and blinking eyes told her enough.

Posted by: prarie dog | March 5, 2008 8:47 AM | Report abuse

"My husband says "That's what you get for shopping at Walmart"."

Nice of him to say, and nice of you to repeat. What's wrong with shopping at Walmart?

"In twenty years' time, one of her daughters will probably having a similar conversation with one of my kids. Scary."

It's out of the realm of possibility that one of your kids could have multiple children with different partners? Why?

Your post reeks of classism. Shame on you.

Posted by: You Snotty Twit | March 5, 2008 8:55 AM | Report abuse

Maybe she is simply tired of people asking very personal questions, especially in front of her children. I can think of lots of reasons that one would want to be guarded and perhaps even a bit cold or rude.

Posted by: reader | March 5, 2008 8:58 AM | Report abuse

I'm very fair and tall and my mother was shortish with dark hair, eyes, and ruddy skin. More than once while I was growing up, someone looked at my mom when she was out with me and said in a rather condescending tone, "Are you her NATURAL mother?" (Emphasis added by them, not me.)

Unfortunately, we never came up with a good reply, although their asking tones certainly warranted one. Is that *really* any of a perfect stranger's business? And what if I *wasn't* hers "naturally"? Would/Should she love me any less if I didn't have half her DNA?

If you're going to ask the question, be sure you can handle whatever answer comes back at you. And if you can't handle strangers bristling a bit when you pry into their business, then do yourself a favor and don't pry in the first place; it's rude.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Bite me, you snotty twit! Are you really that culturally unaware? Please, do you not actually know that people have issues with shopping at Walmart?

I don't care if my post reeks of classism. History repeats itself. Do you disagree?

Posted by: WorkingMomX | March 5, 2008 9:01 AM | Report abuse

"Yes, it must be annoying to constantly hear those questions, but isn't it the parent's responsibility to teach her/his children to be polite?"

Yes, but it is also a parent's responsibility to teach their children that they don't need to respond to snarky questions. AND it is a parent's responsibility to teach their children not to ask rude or intrusive questions (or make such comments).

Just because someone is trying to be friendly (as someone else suggested), that doesn't mean I need to respond to a question that is rude or intrusive.

As an adoptive parent, with two children who don't look like me, one with an obvious congenital condition, I have gotten a very few comments. The strangest thing I ever heard was "you have more courage than I do" which a store clerk once said to me when I was shopping with my daughter. I've been asked if they were from Korea (no, China). Asked if the younger one's nose is bleeding (no). Asking what is wrong with her--not an acceptable question in any form. And children are constantly asking my daughter "what is wrong with your nose?"

When I am asked (or presen when she is asked) I respond that she was born that way--with a smile on my face--and give no further information. It is her story, not theirs. Other people do not have a right to personal inforamation about me and my family in order to satisfy their own curiosity, and I want my daughter to know that first of all. My first responsibility is to my child, not to you or your child--and certainly not to your curiosity.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 9:11 AM | Report abuse

I wouldn't expect you to care. That's what makes it so sad (well, part ot it, anyway).

Posted by: You Snotty Twit | March 5, 2008 9:16 AM | Report abuse

"Are they twins?"

"Double trouble!"

"You've got your hands full."

"Are they yours?"

"Do they nap at the same time?"

"Who's older?"

"Better you than me!"

"Do they run in the family?"

"She's the [descriptive word here] one" as people point and label the kids.

How did we go from these questions to people getting all upset about medical/race/intrusive questions? No one said it is okay for someone to ask about your kids race, nose, etc.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 9:18 AM | Report abuse

When I have my shopping cart full of kids it is inevitable that I will get some comment about every 10 feet. My new favorite response is "Oh yeah, they were on clearance in aisle 7". Then I smile and keep walking. Most of the time people giggle and also keep moving.

Posted by: Momof5 | March 5, 2008 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Why is everyone assuming that the mothers' "zinger" comebacks are rude or impolite. Perhaps they are clever lines aimed at making the questioner think about what they've just asked. Such a response is certainly not a bad example for children.

Posted by: understandingdad | March 5, 2008 9:21 AM | Report abuse

To 9:11 am - I think your response is fine and appropriate. You owe your children your first loyalty. I in no way meant to say people have to be bubbly and friendly to rude people who question, a non-response or a polite but short response that doesn't invite more conversation is, in my opinion, perfectly acceptable. My initial point was that I think it makes for a nicer society to take the high road and first not assume people mean to be rude- but then if you determine they did mean to be snarky or were even just inappropriate, to rise above it, for the sake of your child, and move on. I hardly think anyone would want to teach rudeness in response to rudeness. Two wrongs have never made a right. It is, of course, never anyone's right to demand information about your child. However, I think that a parent's response to it is more of what the child will remember and learn to emulate.

Posted by: CI | March 5, 2008 9:24 AM | Report abuse

You Snotty Twit -- Call me classist. Call me elitist. You can even call me a bloody Republican, go ahead, make my day. I would prefer that my kids:

(1) not have children while they're teenagers
(2) not have children before they're married
(3) not have to work for crap wages in Walmart, a company that has done as much as it can to keep the working class poor

I don't care. Sign me up and send me the t-shirt.

Posted by: WorkingMomX | March 5, 2008 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Understanding Dad- it's because the column says the "zinger" is meant to put the asker "on the defensive" which implies its a bit rude. A joke as a response like "they're on clearance in aisle 7", which causes giggles all around, is a different thing entirely.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 9:27 AM | Report abuse

That was me at 9:11

I should add that this sort of discussion (how to respond to rude questions) comes up all the time on adoption discussion sites. I am constantly amazed at the rude things that people say to others--in comparison, so seldom do I encounter rude people. But people really need to learn that they don't have a right to insult or question someone else, and they do have a responsibility to police the comments and questions they make--think before you speak. It is not my responsibility to determine if you have friendly intent and just bumbled your words or if you are truly as rude as you sound. That is your responsibility. My responsibility is to teach my children appropriate ways to respond regardless of the situation. I generally find that a polite, short answer delivered with a smile is sufficient--but don't suggest that the necessity for politeness goes only in one direction. Questioners and commenters are shirking their responsibility. As I tell my children, yes, it was not okay for your sister to say that to you, but what did you think she was going to say when you said what you did. Think before you speak. When in doubt, leave it out.

Posted by: adoptive mom | March 5, 2008 9:27 AM | Report abuse

fr WorkingMomX:

>...Actually, I finally have something to add: a cashier at Walmart the other day asked me if both of my children were "mine" and then queried: "Same father?" I started laughing, I swear to God, I was so surprised...

I would have: (a) told that cashier it was NONE of her business, and (b) promptly reported her nosy little self to the store manager, and demand that the cashier be fired, immediately. Then I would have NEVER returned to that store.

I don't shop at wally world OR sammie's club, and won't until they allow their employees to unionize.

Posted by: Alex | March 5, 2008 9:30 AM | Report abuse

I have twins and have been asked all of the questions in the column. I figure people are just being friendly and are fascinated by the twin thing so I don't get bothered. One question I have been asked several times that does bother me is, "Did you have fertility treatments?" I just give them the standard response, "I can't imagine why you would want to know that," and go on.

Posted by: cherylinseattle | March 5, 2008 9:34 AM | Report abuse

I don't shop at wally world OR sammie's club, and won't until they allow their employees to unionize.

Nothing can stop a union if the people want it.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Alex, I know. My husband tells me the same thing (about the unions) and refuses to set foot in the store. But I'm frugal and money is getting tighter and while I would rather shop at places like Whole Foods exclusively, I cannot afford it. If I ever hit the lottery, I swear that I will put my money where my husband's mouth is, but for now, I'm shopping at Walmart for certain things.

Also, I would not have insisted that the woman be fired. That's just plain mean. She obviously has had a hard time in this life, and why would I want to make it worse? I have a tougher skin than that (though people certainly can piss me off, right, snotty twit?).

Posted by: WorkingMomX | March 5, 2008 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Same sex female twins get a LOT of comments. I hear more about people's great grandfather's cousin's in-laws than you can imagine. That said, I know people are trying to be nice and unless it's the snarky fertility question, I am nice and polite. I am trying to teach my children that every person isn't trying to be rude, some are just trying to be polite.

My third child inherited my red hair. The comments NEVER stop. Truly, it's not a shopping trip unless I hear 2-3 times "I wonder where he got that hair from?!" I smile and move on.

I have said to people "You've got your hands full," but it's meant as a compliment and in sympathy and never said meanly. Because when you have multiple toddlers roaming around, you DO have your hands full. If someone gave me a mean zinger back, I'd think they had a serious problem.

Most people are just trying to be nice.

Posted by: Andrea | March 5, 2008 9:49 AM | Report abuse

I have twins and have also received all of the above comments/questions. Recently, a total stranger, said, "did you have fertillity treatments or were they natural?" And a few weeks ago, a cashier at McDonalds said, "are you sure they aren't identical?" My twins are same sex but have completley different color hair and facial features!

I think there is a big difference between people making polite converstaion and people being rude and asking personal questions. I don't have a problem with the cashier you see every week at the grocery store asking a few "twin" questions or making the normal comments about double trouble etc. But when people ask you about fertility or trying for the other sex, that is crossing the line. Nobody but your close family and friends should know about your fertility and/or family planning. Not even the annoying aunt/uncle/cousin that bugs everyone at holiday gatherings should be asking about your baby making!

Posted by: LBH219 | March 5, 2008 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Adoptive mom- I think you make a great point, and I agree in principle 100%. I wish rude people recognized their behavior and changed when they realized how it affected others, but if that were the case we wouldn't encounter them so often. I just think that we are unlikely to change their behavior by responding in their language. The only behavior we can truly control is our own. So rather than trying to put a rude person in their place with rudeness- I just prefer to make sure that I, and my family, act in the way which we believe to be right. I'll definitely use the situation as a teaching tool - I just don't think I have to inflame the situation by pointing out how rude it is in front of the person. They aren't my child, after all.

Posted by: CI | March 5, 2008 10:02 AM | Report abuse

Nobody but your close family and friends should know about your fertility and/or family planning.

Posted by: LBH219 | March 5, 2008 09:55 AM

I absolutely agree with this statement. But the problem I see is that a rather large segment of the population DOES seem to actively broadcast their family planning details in excruciating detail to family, friends and strangers alike. So some people who have been on the receiving end of these conversations turn around and think it has become socially acceptable or even expected to ask questions in return. Unless we can come up with signs that people wear to identify themselves as either in the "it's private" camp or "I'll tell you all the details as soon as I finish telling this other person" side we're going to have people asking questions that they think are perfectly reasonable to people who think they are incredibly intrusive.

Posted by: a thought | March 5, 2008 10:10 AM | Report abuse

"I generally find that a polite, short answer delivered with a smile is sufficient--but don't suggest that the necessity for politeness goes only in one direction."

Yes, but two wrongs don't make a right. If someone queries you in a way that you find rude, do you really want to be teaching your child to be rude in return? Why not be as polite as possible (you don't have to be effusive, just say something at least neutral and extract yourself from the situation) and then talk to your child about why that person's query was inappropriate?

Don't get me wrong ... I think it's horribly rude for an adult to ask a question about a child's physical deformity. OTOH, I don't actually think it's rude to ask "oh, is your daughter Korean" or such. Maybe the person doing the asking has a neice adopted from Korea or something like that. Maybe that person is looking for a way to connect.

The level of defensiveness that you're indicating just seems like it doesn't do anybody any good. It comes off as rude to the questioner, and it models an ugly behavior for your child.

"It is not my responsibility to determine if you have friendly intent and just bumbled your words or if you are truly as rude as you sound."

Actually, it *is* your responsibility to do that -- that's part of what it takes to be a member of civil society.

I've actually been considering international adoption, but attitudes like this are one of the things that gives me pause. Do I really want to purposefully insert myself into a community of people who seem to all feel so defensive and put-upon and victimized? That's no way to live.

Posted by: mccxxiii | March 5, 2008 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Back when my identical twin sister and I were babies, my mom was often stopped by people who saw us in our double stroller and asked, "are they twins?"

After being asked repeatedly, she started answering, "no, they're triplets," and would walk away, leaving the asker with a really confused look on their face.

Posted by: snow crash | March 5, 2008 10:14 AM | Report abuse

Rude comments don't just come for multiples. I cannot begin to count how many times I have been publicly berated for not wanting a herd of children. My child is an only by choice. I am not required to "provide" her a sibling. I am not causing her harm. It is getting better the older she gets. Eventually nosey people are going to realize that I am never having more children.
Bitter, I know. Sorry.

Posted by: 21117 | March 5, 2008 10:15 AM | Report abuse

I have a 4-year-old with Down Syndrome and have the opposite situation...people beam at him (well, he's usually happy and smiley) and often tell me they have a nephew/grandchild/kid/friend's kid with Down Syndrome who is doing great. No complaints about that! There was a period when I was pregnant and knew he'd have DS and we let people know right away (get that awkward moment over with). Quite a few people told me and/or my husband that we were so brave. We got a little tired of hearing about our bravery but appreciated that people wanted to say something positive. Turns out that he is very sweet and easy and loving and has called on very little of our bravery.

Posted by: Angela | March 5, 2008 10:19 AM | Report abuse

"So rather than trying to put a rude person in their place with rudeness- I just prefer to make sure that I, and my family, act in the way which we believe to be right."

I prefer that also. I also prefer to interact with my children in the best way possible, never yelling at them, always providing just the right amount of correction. But I fail at parenting all the time. I'm pretty sure I have managed to respond politely to all rude inquiries from overly interested parties--I'm just saying that just as I don't beat myself up when I have failed at parenting, I won't judge someone who fails to maintain politeness in the face of rudeness. AND, I am responding to some who have implied that intrusive questions of any nature are acceptable and that if anyone gets offended it is their own fault for being too sensitive.

Posted by: adoptive mom | March 5, 2008 10:19 AM | Report abuse

I think a lot of people here are projecting their own fears and insecurities onto these questions that is necessarily warranted. Sometimes a "is she your only child" is merely meant literally without any judgement that it is either desireable/undesirable or neutral. Just a thought..

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 10:20 AM | Report abuse

I can deal with the comments, what gets me is when strangers walk up and actually touch a baby that they've never even seen before. Um, hello? Would you do that to an adult? How would you like it if some stranger came up to you and started touching your hands or face?

Posted by: reston, va | March 5, 2008 10:21 AM | Report abuse

You reminded me of the time my husband's boss' wife decided to lecture me on the need for me to have a second child. She was pretty tipsy at the time, but still....she went on and on about how she had a brother and it was so wonderful to have a 'shared childhood". Finally I asked her if she and her brother were close now....uh oh, turns out they weren't and that brought that lecture to an end.
This wasn't the only time she went into an inappropriately personal lecture when tipsy and frankly it was a source of great amusement to quite a few people, including us.

Posted by: to 21117 | March 5, 2008 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Actually, I have a herd of children and believe me, you get comments for this too.

But the one that really baffles me is this one mom from school who's always going on about some variant of "gee, your kids are really small/how come your kids are so small for their age" and so forth. My youngest actually IS extremely small for her age and is a little sensitive about it and hates being treated like a baby (when she's actually ten) and I really don't feel like getting into the genetics of whether there are other people in our family who are extremely small, etc. etc. etc. I still haven't figured out what to say to this women (other than 'why would you care? How does this affect you?')

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Very true, adoptive mom, we all have bad days :o) I don't think its anything to beat ourselves up about when we're at least trying, and usually living up to, what we wish to be.

My initial reaction to the column was against the idea of setting up a ready made arsenal of rude responses that we can all use regularly with the idea that it was acceptable adult behavior.

Posted by: CI | March 5, 2008 10:29 AM | Report abuse

about small kids- I was in the pediatrician's office one day with my dd who was about 4 or 5 months old at the time, and some woman sitting there with her kids asked me how old she was. I told her, and she gave me a really snarky look and said, "isn't she really, really tiny?" In fact, at the time she was about 50th percentile for height and weight, so I have no idea what she was getting at. I just said, "actually, she's about average." The woman rolled her eyes and said, "oooooh, she's -average-," like I was making it up. I have no idea what was up with her, it was such a strange exchange. I figure she must have been somewhat mentally ill, because the whole thing just made no sense.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 10:30 AM | Report abuse

Ya'll must be yankees that don't want people to make harmless conversation with you. I guess here in the South we have more of a sense of community and friendliness. We don't take everything as rudeness.

Posted by: southerner | March 5, 2008 10:30 AM | Report abuse

My 3 year old son is half-indian (with jet black hair and eyes), and I'm caucasian (blond with blue eyes).

A few people have asked me if "he" spoke/understood spanish or was spanish. I haven't heard anybody asked me if he was adopted (YET).

Posted by: DMU | March 5, 2008 10:32 AM | Report abuse

I think there are plenty of ways to respond to rude questions in a way that lets the questioner know they are being rude without having to resort to being rude yourself.
"why do you want to know?"
"wow, that's awfully personal."
"I beg your pardon?"
"lovely weather, isn't it?"

Posted by: va | March 5, 2008 10:33 AM | Report abuse

I am a yankee and it is actually the same way in the Midwest. I am not saying that people are not rude, but I don't get offended when someone asks how old my baby is.

However, if someone tries to touch him, they may get smacked. Rude comments are just that rude, I have learned that it is better to walk away than fight with someone, especially when you have your kids. Who wants to fight with someone while holding your infant?

Posted by: Irishgirl | March 5, 2008 10:35 AM | Report abuse

My father tells a story that he was frustrated with little old ladies talking about his cute little son in the stroller (I'm female). So after a while, when people asked what my name was, my dad would just respond "Norman"

Posted by: md | March 5, 2008 10:35 AM | Report abuse

adoptive mom - Miss Manners has often argued that in etiquette, intent matters. Bumbling does not need to be treated in the same way as malice or blatant nosiness - a little kindness is in order. I agree that the merely inane comments are usually just an effort to connect - if babies (single or multiple, unusual or ordinary) didn't have such general attractive power for most humans few of us would ever make it to adulthood. The fertility questions are oafish, but I agree they probably are a side effect of our current TMI culture.

Posted by: lurker | March 5, 2008 10:38 AM | Report abuse

adoptive mom - Miss Manners has often argued that in etiquette, intent matters. Bumbling does not need to be treated in the same way as malice or blatant nosiness - a little kindness is in order. I agree that the merely inane comments are usually just an effort to connect - if babies (single or multiple, unusual or ordinary) didn't have such general attractive power for most humans few of us would ever make it to adulthood. The fertility questions are oafish, but I agree they probably are a side effect of our current TMI culture.

Posted by: lurker | March 5, 2008 10:38 AM | Report abuse

10:25-

I might respond to the "She's so small.." comments with a positive response like, "yes, she is a petite beauty."

I think kids typically have a very hard time feeling physically different from their peers in any way, and it is important for your daughter to think that you view her diffence as an asset (or, at least nothing to be anxious about). Just my two cents.

Posted by: Michelle | March 5, 2008 10:44 AM | Report abuse

This is one of the saddest posts this column has ever had. If you could only imagine what I would give to have a baby that someone could make an insensitive comment about. Sometimes, you should just count your blessings.

Posted by: onceateacher | March 5, 2008 10:52 AM | Report abuse

I am a 39 year-old mother of a two-year old. Many people assume he is my grandson and make comments to that effect; your grandson is cute, are you enjoying your grandchild. After the tenth person I began to have a panic attack, when were people in their thirties grand-parents, I have no gray hair and am quite stylish. Then I realized that if you have children in your teens you might be a grandparent in your thirties, I try not to get upset but it is alarming. Even if I think someone might be a grandparent, I don't assume it.

Posted by: Meg | March 5, 2008 10:52 AM | Report abuse

I have a friend whose adopted daughter looks very much like her -- even has her reddish hair and pale skin. She's desperate to connect with other adoptive parents. But she holds her tongue when she meets -- for example -- an Anglo parent with an Asian kid at the playground. Around here: Probably adopted. But who knows.

I've suggested she let her daughter cart around her favorite picture book about adoption so other parents might start the conversation.

Posted by: MNMom | March 5, 2008 10:52 AM | Report abuse

I have to admit that I'm a bit of a b*tch when it comes to comments people make about the size of my boys. They are small, just hit the 10% for height at age 5.

If a mother at school constantly came up to me and said your children are tiny, I'd probably ask her what her point was? Because the question was getting old. Like I said, don't mess with my kids.

Posted by: Wow | March 5, 2008 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Mom with two adoptive girls: Are the people asking if your daughter is Korean, Asian? Because Asians just ask in general. It would not be weird for an Asian person to ask a whole family of Asian people what country of origin are they from. It is just a way to bond with other Asians. Sort of like asking if they belong to the same club. I do ask some people where their Asian kids are from. I usually ask it like, " may I ask what country of origin your beautiful child is from?" 9 times out of 10, the parents are not offended and the answer is almost always China. I usually respond by saying, "Oh the big dragon (China). I am from the little dragon (Viet Nam). That usually puts them at ease and the conversation flows naturally. I obviously can tell if the child has been adopted or an amerasian. I am not so much interested in how they became a family but what country the child is from. It is just sort of an Asian thing. We also tried to adopt a child from Viet Nam and I am adopted myself. So when I tell people that, they are very open to talk about their families. But no one should ask about a child's physical attributes. That is pretty shocking. But I really don't think the people asking if your child is Korean is being rude. I would not be offended if someone came up to me and asked if I was Korean. I would simply so, "No, I am Vietnamese." I figure they are just curious and are learning in the process.

Posted by: foamgnome | March 5, 2008 11:00 AM | Report abuse

I'm with you onceateacher, as a woman struggling to conceive, I would give anything to have a baby people could talk about, Instead I get "no kids yet", "your so lucky", "take mine" haha. People just don't get it.

I can understand how frustrating it is to get the same comments day in and day out, I have naturally curly hair and everyday someone asks me "is it natural", "is it a perm", and even a couple times "are you mixed", Im a blond hair blue eyed irish girl! I can't even tell you how many people want to touch it, why they would want to touch a strangers hair is beyond me, I try to be nice about it but the zillionth time it gets annoying, but I know that most people are just looking to connect on some level.

Posted by: notaparentyet | March 5, 2008 11:05 AM | Report abuse

onceateacher -- I hear you and am right there with you {{{HUGS}}} I get the "don't you know you're running out of time" comments. I lost my first and probably only pregnancy, and these comments really hurt. What is there to say? People don't mean to be hurtful, but without knowing a person's past, why even comment?

Posted by: artsygal | March 5, 2008 11:18 AM | Report abuse

I would have: (a) told that cashier it was NONE of her business, and (b) promptly reported her nosy little self to the store manager, and demand that the cashier be fired, immediately. Then I would have NEVER returned to that store.

I don't shop at wally world OR sammie's club, and won't until they allow their employees to unionize.

Posted by: Alex | March 5, 2008 09:30 AM

I'm confused. You won't shop anywhere that isn't unionized, but in a union shop, a cashier could never be terminated for a single incident like this.

Just so we're all clear on the economic paradise to which you aspire, you seek a world in which a consumer can demand that an employer terminate the employment of a person with little means and, at most, questionable judgment, on the basis of a single customer complaint that comes down to nothing more than, "Little Missy there on Register 7 made a statement that I deemed impertinent and my widdle feelings are hurt", but you want employers to run a union shop under the terms of which the employer would never actually be able to fire an employer over a single customer complaint.

Other than the utter absence of logic, and the careless cruelty of demanding anyone's job over a casual question offered with no intent to be rude or offensive, it all makes perfect sense.

Posted by: MN | March 5, 2008 11:26 AM | Report abuse

I thought the whole point of Stacey's post was not so much the actual comments, but the fact that the moms have to build in extra time to each errand to deal with all the people who feel they just have to say something. As I am currently very pregnant with my second child, I have the same issue, whether I am toting my 17 mos old or not and it's worse when he is with me. Its as though having a kid or being pregnant demands that everyone talk to you. If I didn't have a child with me or wasn't pregnant, I don't think any of the people in the stores or on the streets would even give me a second glance. But one or both give everyone the right to stop and talk to me. Not that I always mind, but there are times when I just want to complete my errands and get on to what ever is next.

Posted by: jp | March 5, 2008 11:38 AM | Report abuse

The worst one I ever got was a Mom at a birthday party for one of my daugter's friends. She remarked that it must have been difficult to give up my childhood. I asked her why and she said having my daughter so young. I politely told her I was 22 when I had her and didn't feel I gave up anything. I have had variations of this remark and questions about my age over the years, my daughter is 12 now. (Yes I look young) The thing that amazes me is that it usually comes from parents that were in their late 30's to early 40's when they had their kid. I would think they would know better. I have to admit to wanting to reply back with a remark about how nice it is that the grandparents are involved, but I hold my tongue and behave.

Posted by: California Mom | March 5, 2008 11:44 AM | Report abuse

I don't have twins, but I got "you have your hands full" when I had a baby and a 2 1/2 year old. I usually said "yes" -- true, too. Some moms of 3 (or more) at my son's preschool have said they get lots of comments along the lines of "wow isn't that too many"? I think there is a middle class American norm that you have one boy and one girl, about 4 years apart. Anything else tends to get comments. What do you think?

Posted by: consideringathird | March 5, 2008 11:45 AM | Report abuse

I think I have been unclear. I don't care if people ask if my children are Korean or make pleasant conversation about adoption. It is "what is wrong with her nose?" that I take issue with. And as I said, I have found that a short polite, barely informative response delivered with a smile is the best response. I have in no way advocated the use of rude responses. I have, however, acknowledged that adoptive parents, parents of twins, parents of small children, parents of children with disabilities, etc., are human beings, and do not always live up to ideal standards. I stated that I believe I have always met rude questions with politeness, but that if someone sometime gets really tired of it and responds to rudeness with a bit of rudeness of their own, I am not going to judge them. I think that you cannot go around being rude to people and expect continual politeness in return. And just as with the legal system, where "ignorance of the law is no excuse," ignorance of basic social standards does not obligate me to answer your rude questions, however well intentioned. My sole obligation to society is to meet your rudeness with civility. If you are offended that I don't welcome your questions, that is not my concern. If your question came out wrong and my response makes that clear, you are welcome to apologize for the way it came out and try again.

Perhaps those of you who think that I should answer your rude questions because they were well intentioned (but how would I know that "what is wrong with her nose" is well intentioned?) should try raising a child who is different--multiple, short, skinny, adopted, disabled, or simply looks different from you. It's easier to judge when you haven't walked that mile.

Posted by: adoptive mom | March 5, 2008 11:46 AM | Report abuse

I thought the norm was to have two kids about 2 -2 1/2 years apart.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

I think the big issue is what people say in front or directly to the children. If a child hears certain comments/questions that are poorly phrased, even if well-intentioned, it's not good for the kid. They can't possibly interpret the subtleties of that type of conversation yet. That's where an "arsenal" of replies that are meant to shut down the conversation would be very handy and appropriate.

Posted by: reader | March 5, 2008 11:49 AM | Report abuse

about small kids...

I am petite, and was a "late-bloomer". It makes looking at my middle-school photos a little painful, but que sera sera...

My daughter is also petite (she isn't yet 3, so we are hoping for a late bloomer, but don't have any indications yet). At her 2 yr well-child visit her doctor estimated her adult height and said: "It looks like she will be about 5'2". Is that all right?" At the time I thought: 1) not a surprise, I am 5'2" & both of her grandmothers are petite; 2) what a weird question. Later, I realized that this was a round-about way of asking whether or not we wanted to try HGH therapy. Once I realized this, I thought he was being very tactful.

Posted by: MIMom | March 5, 2008 11:49 AM | Report abuse

I agree that it is rude to ask questions about conception methods and physical deformities. However, I have read and re-read the remarks Stacey posted and see nothing rude about any of them. Granted, it could get annoying to constantly hear these comments, but I imagine they are being said by different people and not the same person over and over.

I recently said "you sure have your hands full" to a woman with 2 grocery carts holding 4 children. The oldest appeared to be 3-4 years old, then twins about a year younger and a baby in an infant carrier. I thought I was making a non-judgmental observation and if I was rude, please accept my apology.

I see this the same way I see asking a tall person if they play basketball - harmless comment that they have heard a thousand times.

Posted by: lurker | March 5, 2008 11:55 AM | Report abuse

First baby had very red hair, and he got commented on all the time. We both enjoyed the attention. Never calculated how much these kind words slowed us down.

Posted by: so cute | March 5, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

so cute

"First baby had very red hair, and he got commented on all the time. "

Red hair = the milk man.

Posted by: chittybangbang | March 5, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

md, that is a great response from your father. I wish I had thought of that. I always wondered how people could think a little baby all in pink with bow in the hair could be a boy!!

Posted by: 21117 | March 5, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

My brother has red curly hair. I distinctly remember how embarrassed he was when people (usually older women) would mention it. The typical comment was "what a beautiful little girl". This lasted until about age 12, when he got taller than most of them, and got a crew cut. My mom usually didn't say much, other than the occasional "he's a boy!".

Posted by: consideringathird | March 5, 2008 12:30 PM | Report abuse

A friend of mine suggests politely saying, "Why do you ask?" if a question seems really rude and out of line.

Posted by: Maria | March 5, 2008 12:33 PM | Report abuse

I have to admit that I'm a bit of a b*tch when it comes to comments people make about the size of my boys. They are small, just hit the 10% for height at age 5.

"If a mother at school constantly came up to me and said your children are tiny, I'd probably ask her what her point was? Because the question was getting old. Like I said, don't mess with my kids."

Would you feel the same if people commented on how tall your kids were? The kid in the 90th percentile deviates from the mean to the same degree as your child? If you didn't interpret comments about size to be negative, maybe your child wouldn't hear them as such.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 12:33 PM | Report abuse

it goes the other way too. I was with my 2 year old
kid and another parent with a child walked by and
was boasting about her child who was also 2 years.
According to her, the child was very mature for
her age and considered (by her) genius. I just
kept my mouth shut along with my 'stupid' child..

Posted by: Potomac | March 5, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

md,
I should have thought of that answer when my 2nd, a girl, was a baby. Her older brother had a lot of cute baby clothes, so I would occasionally dress her in a cute blue or green outfit. At the grocery store, 2 women were ooo-ing and ahh-ing over her (which is fine by me, she was really cute:)), but they were calling her 'he' throughout. They finally asked 'his' name, and without thinking I said 'her' name.

I didn't care that they were calling her a he. She was bald, and wearing something pretty gender neutral, but leaning towards boy. They thought she was cute - fine by me! But as I said her name, they were very emabarrassed and yelled at me pretty loudly about how I shouldn't dress her up like that.

Posted by: prarie dog | March 5, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

My toddler has shirley temple curls and she is mixed race. We cannot go out for a walk without someone commenting or trying to touch her hair - which really bothers my daughter. My favorite question - are those curls real? I'm always polite, but what a stupid question to ask for a toddler. I always want to say - No it's a perm. I take her once a month.

Posted by: curly girl | March 5, 2008 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Rude comments don't just come for multiples. I cannot begin to count how many times I have been publicly berated for not wanting a herd of children. My child is an only by choice. I am not required to "provide" her a sibling. I am not causing her harm. It is getting better the older she gets. Eventually nosey people are going to realize that I am never having more children.
Bitter, I know. Sorry.

Posted by: 21117 | March 5, 2008 10:15 AM

Amen, 21117! I especially like when they get so know-it-all and say "Wait 2 or 3 years and you'll change your mind." Actually, my husband and I are sure we will not be changing our minds, thank you. I had a rather difficult pregnancy that ended with a cholestasis diagnosis. We were luck y that our daughter was full-term at the peak of my cholestasis symptoms, so we could deliver (otherwise she would have been in danger of being a stillborn). The doctor told us that any consequent pregnancies would be in danger of having my cholestasis kick in earlier, so to prevent heartache and the outside-cholestasis stress, my husband and I decided that we were "one and done." Obviously, I don't feel the need to have to explain this to everyone who ask why my DD would be an only child (nor do I feel that most of them are entitled to that explanation). It's not so much the asking that irks me but the reaction of my parenting choices.

Posted by: Mother of One | March 5, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

I have a child with a noticeable physical difference and no one has ever said anything that bothered me ever. Not once. Are you people possibly overly sensitive to strangers or do you stop and allow strangers to talk to you, ask you for money, harass you in the street?

Since no one has ever said anything to upset me, I think those of you who are upset might want to look inside yourself rather than look out to society.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Good, bad, or neutral, differences are going to attract attention and comments. Having gone through childhood as one of six kids and me the only one with red hair, I got used to comments (some rude, most not) pretty early on. To add to the situation, two of my siblings are adopted, one with severe disabilities, and our last name is odd and easy to make jokes about. I learned that even the rude comments were generally not intended to be rude, and having a "zinger" comeback WAS intentionally rude. I may have heard the same comment 1,000 times before, but the person saying it doesn't necessarily realize that, or think I might be sensitive about my difference--they're just talking because that's what people do. Why on earth would you want to put the commenter on the defensive?

Now I'm adult (same red hair, same last name, same predictable comments) and the parent of a child with special needs. I get the "what's wrong with him?" question quite a lot. And again, it doesn't bother me. People are curious, and I'd MUCH rather tell them what's "wrong" with him than have them jumping to the wrong conclusion on their own. My answer to that question can lead to great conversations and can further understanding and acceptance.

Posted by: Sarah | March 5, 2008 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Alex:

"I don't shop at wally world OR sammie's club, and won't until they allow their employees to unionize."

Then you also don't shop at Wegman's, Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, Target, Costco, or any of the other hundreds and hundreds of retail establishments with non-union workforces? To be honest, it's tough if you only want to shop in unionized establishments. Giant and Safeway are about it.

Posted by: ArmyBrat | March 5, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Bite me, you snotty twit!

I don't care if my post reeks of classism. History repeats itself. Do you disagree?

Posted by: WorkingMomX | March 5, 2008 09:01 AM

so workingmomx, how are you going to make sure that your child's birth control method will never fail? be very, very careful with what you say. all it takes is one bad decision on your child's part for you to be staring at the very thing you claim will never happen to your child.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

To Angela at 10:19 a.m.:

What a breath of fresh air you are. You seem to assume the best of people, and I think that is lovely.

Posted by: Marylandmom | March 5, 2008 1:55 PM | Report abuse

I was a housedaddy to 2 year old Colin and twins Geoffrey and Sara. I usually had Sara and Geoff in the appropriate pink - blue attire for outings (Colin was old enough to clearly ID as a boy at a strangers' glance).

I could not believe how often people would point at the twins and ask "Are the identical?"

I took to responding "Not if you turn 'em over . . ."

Posted by: Kelly Fitzpatrick | March 5, 2008 2:10 PM | Report abuse

I never said it would never happen. I said I would prefer it didn't happen. And I will educate my children and prepare them to the best of my ability so that they can make good decisions -- As all parents should do with their kids.

Posted by: WorkingMomX | March 5, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Getting back to the topic: most of the things that Stacey listed in her original post are the things that I'd call "small talk". They're not overly personal; they're not intrusive or offensive in my book. (Okay, it would depend on the tone in which they were said, but then it always does.) If I said something like that to you and you gave me a snarky response, I'd probably out-snark you back and walk off calling you an a-hole. Then neither of us would be happy. So it's best that we just not do that, mm-kay?

Yes, a number of the other things listed in various posts today would be considered insensitive, rude, or overly personal in general society and probably are deserving of a snarky response. But even so, it's probably best not to. You don't HAVE to stoop to their level.

As the wise person once said, it's best not to mud-wrestle with a pig. You're getting yourself filthy and just making the pig happy.

Posted by: ArmyBrat | March 5, 2008 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Most people are bumbling dorks just trying to make conversation. I'm out of the "Are you sure that's not just a phase?" question (where "that" is some form of alternative life I enjoy) and into the "So when are you getting married?" question.

However, I live by two rules:
Pick your battles. Very little is worth making any notice over.

Someone else's lack of manners is NEVER an excuse to forget your own. This means snarky comments are out (at least spoken, it's great fun to imagine them)

So I go with either the "You must be an alien from Mars and I can't understand you" stare which makes them think about what they are doing and usually move on or rescind the question. Or I go with something facetious and hyperbolistic like "Sadly I get horrible burns on my body every time I get near a marriage license" or "Why make my life easier?" as a way to show how ridiculous the question is, without answering it and to keep the mood light.

Has served me well so far.

Posted by: Liz D | March 5, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

WorkingMomX, you're on he right track.

We set an example for our kids by

- having married prior to having kids

- explaining as needed that marriage means a life-long commitment to spouse and children even though Mom and Dad will NOT always agree with each other

- age appropriate and comprehensive education about all things, including sexuality and contraception

- assuring that the kids have goals and understand that early parenthood would likely short-circuit them

Still and all, some kids will NOT grow the way the twig was bent. We all do what we can, and we all adjust to, and live with, the results.

As for M'sieur Twit, Take a Hike, Sir!

Posted by: Kelly on Guam | March 5, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

FYI, Costco is at least partially unionized.

www.laborresearch.org/print.php?id=391
www.teamster.org/divisions/Warehouse/costco/costco.asp

-------------

Then you also don't shop at Wegman's, Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, Target, Costco, or any of the other hundreds and hundreds of retail establishments with non-union workforces?

Posted by: ArmyBrat | March 5, 2008 01:43 PM

Posted by: consideringathird | March 5, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

I think each of the twins should wear a tee shirt. The twin on the left would say Shut your. The one the right say pie hole. Saves time. And helps the twins grow up to be active listeners.

In fact mom should take a picture of that and post it here for some of these comment posters. What rock did we lift today?

Posted by: NYC | March 5, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Stacey- Unfortunately for the many readers who have responded passionately to your blog, you've misrepresented our conversation. I am always friendly and polite to strangers who show interest in my twins. It is only when a stranger asks an inappropriate and personal question that I imply in a subtle way that I'd prefer to focus on how wonderful my children are and how lucky I am. In fact, I gave you examples of what you mischaracterize as zingers that were not in the least bit rude or impolite. For the sake of your readers' spirited debate, I wish I was snarky, but I'm not.

Posted by: Meredith Nahra | March 5, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

"In twenty years' time, one of her daughters will probably having a similar conversation with one of my kids. Scary."

The roles may be changed, though. You never know; sometimes kids turn out the opposite of their parents for whatever reason. Just sayin'.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 5, 2008 7:07 PM | Report abuse

"In twenty years' time, one of her daughters will probably having a similar conversation with one of my kids. Scary."

And possibly the roles will be switched. Often, children work hard to end up the opposite of their parents, for whatever reason. My mom was a great mom, but I don't want to grow up like her. I love her to death and couldn't ask her for better, but her path was not right for me. Just sayin'.

And no, I don't have kids (with different fathers or at all), so that's not what I mean.

Posted by: MonaGatuna | March 5, 2008 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, Meredith, for clarifying the intention of the conversation we had with Stacy. I actually find twin attention a little fun and love it when people ask questions of them. It's the inappropriate stuff said in front of the kids ("who's smarter?" "did you use IVF?" "better you than me!!") that's sometimes just not all that cool. Now that my twins are 2, and their big brother is almost 4 (and often gets completely left out of any attention, which is another conversation entirely), I want to set a good example. Snarky need not apply!

And, considering, I've met all eight women in our Twin Mom Group BECAUSE of small talk about twins (one I met at the grocery store, two at the park, one on a listserv), I'd frankly be lost without it!

Isn't it what binds us as mothers - to share stuff about our kids?

Posted by: Colleen Fisher | March 5, 2008 7:44 PM | Report abuse

Oops. When a mom introduces me to her baby or small child, I will often bend over, say hi and touch the child's cheek or head, gently. It's kind of an instinct on my part. I'm still technically a stranger, but is that so terrible? If I walk past a toddler in a crowded venue I will often gently place my hand on the child's head in stepping around her because I know they tend to zig zag and I don't want to step on her. Do I get smacked for this?

Posted by: Katy | March 6, 2008 2:43 AM | Report abuse

Katy- when the kid (or adult) has no idea where you are, I think it makes sense to put your hand on their head or arm to gently make them aware of your presence and move on.

With introductions though, I'd say no. Some people really aren't cool with touching others or being touched, specially youngsters- why not teach them about handshakes early instead?

Posted by: Liz D | March 6, 2008 2:20 PM | Report abuse

I have fraternal twin girls who are 7 and don't really look anything alike. I still get the questions/comments all the time but it never really occurred to me to be bothered by them. I believe the people were just being friendly - which I find refreshing. Although, I have never been asked about fertility treatments or other overly personal information.... To the woman who is 39 and is mistaken for a grandparent - this utterly shocks me, don't take it personally - in this day and age, a comment like that is complete crazy-talk.

Posted by: NYC | March 6, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

"I will often bend over, say hi and touch the child's cheek or head, gently. It's kind of an instinct on my part. I'm still technically a stranger, but is that so terrible?"

Yes, it is. Would you like a stranger touching your cheek? Babies/toddlers are people, too. I appreciate that you are just trying to be friendly, but you have to remember that these are little people who have the right to their own physical space.

Posted by: Anonymous | March 6, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

I have twin boys. I don't consider friendly questions or comment about twins rude. I've occasionally gotten questions about them being identical, which amuses me as they're quite distinct in appearance. With the exception of a couple of times at Ikea (so it's not just Wally World), it's rarely more than a minimal delay and usually brightens my day. So, I think the whole "15 minute" delay is badly overstated. Perhaps it's because there are a lot of multiples in No.Va.

There is significant touchiness in the twin parent community about twins conceived with the aid of fertility treatments. Ours weren't, so it never got under my skin. I can see the parents being defensive about that particular issue.

I'm in complete agreement with those who say you should set an example for your kids. A smile and a deflection is easy enough to do.

BB

Posted by: Fairlington Blade | March 11, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Everywhere I go, people tell me how BIG my daughter is for her age...she is 2 and a half, 36 lbs. and 37" tall..that puts her in the 90% for height. It doesnt really bother me, but sometimes, people harp on it as if she was freakishly tall. My other daughter was tall as well, but now that she is 10, she remains in the 70% for height instead of 90% like when she was younger. Does anyone have any remarks i can make back to these nosy people that constantly ask why she is so tall? Usually, i just agree and smile...but at times, i wish i just had a great comment to return.

Posted by: momuv3 | March 13, 2008 2:10 PM | Report abuse

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