Why are people’s reproductive choices or family situations considered open game for small talk? As a fertility doctor, patients talk to me about this all the time. While they are struggling to complete their family with fertility treatments they are bombarded with questions from family, friends, and even strangers about their reproductive plans and choices. As a woman, I have been asked inappropriate questions from well-meaning strangers (assume best intentions), but enough already!
Just in case you can’t figure this out on your own or you know someone who just doesn’t get it – here are 5 things you should never say to someone else as small talk:
1. “When are you having kids?”
The answer is: none of your business. The person you just asked that question to could be on round 3 of IVF treatments, could have premature menopause (no more eggs left), or a partner who is shooting blanks (no sperm). That person could have just got their period after the two week wait from their 5th intrauterine insemination that morning. That person could have just gotten notice that their adoption process that was going smoothly just failed. Or that person could have decided that a child free life is the right choice for them and that’s okay. No matter what – it’s none of your business.