some people get highly offended when you hold up the contraception mirror to their faces. the topic can make for very uncomfortable dinner conversation, too.
everyone seems pretty free 'n easy with the ol' "was it planned?" question upon learning of our pregnancy. and while "is that really ANY of your business?" is what i truly want to yell, it doesn't sound very ecumenical.
as you've read before my immediate reply is usually, "yes, we were having sex," because it can, said with the appropriate nonchalance, be laughed off. but when i am asked by people that i either don't know well enough or know just enough, i've tried to modify my answer. i don't know why, but the question still throws me for a loop, and my replies can be knee-jerks, so i try to have a prepared response.
at first i was saying "well, we don't contracept" as if it really was any of their business in the first place. one woman accused me of saying the word "contracept" as if it were a four-letter word. another asked why i was using a noun as a verb. touchy-touchy, see?
i tried to modify and say "we don't use contraception." more often than not this is a foreign concept and they say something like, "what do you mean?" with a brow as wrinkled as if you've just shown them a picture of a flat planet earth.
of course, if you move any further into this discussion they get very defensive and things can get ugly very quickly, "are you saying there's something wrong with being responsible about family size?" no, that's not confrontational now is it?
replying, "well, we're open to life" brings on immediate snears and an uncomfortably loud "what's THAT supposed to mean? we have to have TWENTY kids to be HOLY like you?" is it really such a no-win situation?
one friend advised that i just reply "yes, they were ALL planned" and leave it at that. sounds reasonable enough, but i must have a sadistic streak because a saccharine response like "i simply don't think children should be avoided like a disease" just sort of falls out of my mouth. though i don't recommend it, actually, that one buys enough time to excuse yourself from the conversation completely.
i have found that, said politley, "why do you ask?" stumps the other pregnant women in ob/gyn offices. but you have to be careful in these situations because they're usually as hormonal as you are and it's wise to tread softly.
this morning i was on the phone with our insurance carrier to set up our coverage on our new vehicle and, somewhere between VIN number and anti-lock brakes, just out of the blue, she asked if the twins were planned.
she repeated the question.
i stumbled out "well, uh, yes, we, uh, were having, uh, sex..."
she belted out a hearty, "that's NOT what i mean! did you PLAN to have more?"
how do you get outta that one? d'oh, i felt like an idiot -- it's too early to have this conversation, lady! i finally admitted with a heavy sigh, "i don't know what to tell you."
why is contaception so controversial? why are people so defensive about it? is it because it really is a matter of morality and people know it, even if only on a subconcious level? by the way, respond "we don't contracept/avoid pregnancy" to a self-proclaimed catholic who contracepts and ... ah-hell, katy bar the door!