My wife and I are expecting our third child. Big deal, right? A healthy Mormon couple in their thirties are having kid #3. If anything you are probably wondering why this is ONLY our third. I’ll tell you why this baby is a bit out of the ordinary. When she is born there will be an almost eight year gap between her and her brother. Eight years! It will be close to a 10 year gap between my oldest child and the youngest.
Now, I realize this isn’t really all that earth shattering. Big age gap…big deal. What’s more interesting to me about the whole situation is the question we get when people find out we are pregnant. People will look at my wife’s big belly and say, “Congratulations! I’m so excited for you!” Then, after looking at our kids and doing the mental math, they’ll quietly ask, “Was this planned?”
I always laugh when we get asked this. I’m more amused than offended. Do you realize what you are asking? You are asking me to admit that my child is a mistake, unplanned, unwanted. Every time you saw my child after that you would think to yourself ”there goes the mistake kid…” You are asking for information I wouldn’t even share with the child herself.
Like I said, when this happens this doesn’t really offend me. Rather, it makes me wonder what it is about Mormon culture that is conducive to questions like this? It’s along the same lines of people asking couples when they are going to have their first, second, third, etc. baby. For some reason questions about reproduction are fair game.
Once again I’d like to turn to my out of state brothers and sisters for an answer. Is this a Utah thing or a Mormon thing? Here’s my theory: since our church is very focused on the family and since we are all ‘brothers and sisters’ people don’t have qualms about inquiring about this sort of thing. In any event, I welcome your insights on the matter. Oh, by the way, we did plan this one.