I should be completing my mass casualty incident training online right about now, but I'm feeling a little stir crazy. I have one week of school to go, and I just want to be done already!!! So, I'm taking a break to open the windows and talk to you, my online comrades! Ok, here's a topic that a lot of SMCs and SMCs in the making have had to tackle: when and how do you tell a someone or a potential someone about your TTC plans? This of course is different than when you are a single parent, which brings its own set of challenges altogether.
I have been writing lately about how I wouldn't be opposed to dating the right guy if he were to come along. Well, lately, there have been a couple of men that I have felt a connection with. And, like I told one of them, I didn't want to miss out on a good thing because I was too afraid to try, even given my circumstances. But, it doesn't always go as planned. For example: one of them was a friend of a friend. We had known each other for a few months, and I initially put my crush on hold because of my TTC plans. But, after some reflection, I decided to give it a shot. So, I started to drop some not-so-subtle hints that I was interested. Not like me at all, btw. I'm more of a school-girl crush type. Then one night, we were out with mutual friends, and he was acting kind of strange. A friend told me that he figured out my plans, and doesn't want kids. Now, I'm the type of person who likes direct communication. So, I took him aside and laid it out there. It went something like this:
Me: "So, I've been told that you are aware of certain plans of mine. I wanted to talk to you about it myself, instead of you learning more about it someone else."
Him: "Oh?" (Not helping: see below).
Me: "I mean my plans to have a child on my own."
Him: "WHAT?!?!?!?" (Shocked look on face, hands running through hair).
Me: "Wait, you didn't know?"
Him: "Uh, no."
Yeah, oops about covers it. So, actually, he didn't know. And this, children, is why you never believe what others tell you until you know for sure yourself. Well, he was very supportive of my decision, but, he doesn't want children of his own. I considered having a fling with him anyways, but then decided against it for a variety of reasons. He has a lot of his own things going on and, even though I will not be TTC for at least a couple of months, a child will eventually become part of the picture one way or another. So, he's going to stay a good friend. And, I'm ok with that.
But, another part of this conversation brings up a good point:
Me: "Well, this was in motion long before I ever met you. And, I wasn't really looking for anyone when I did. I just want to let you know that I'm not trying to mix you up in this. I'm not looking for someone to father my child or take care of a child that doesn't belong to him."
Him: "I never would have thought that about you. That never crossed my mind."
Ok, but do men seriously think of these things? Was he being polite, or was he serious? I know as a whole, this is not the typical SMC agenda. We choose to be SMCs, not "baby mommas", for a reason. I know I don't need to say this for the benefit of any SMC readers, but for everyone else, let me say that if I really didn't care where my baby came from, I would have simply counted to 13, gone to a bar, and saved the large quantity of money I'd already spent. But, do men really get that? I've dated guys with children before, and their co-parenting situations were never ideal for them or for their children. Their view of women was skewed to the point where they didn't trust many of them anymore. These were the guys that brought up birth control before I ever did. The relationships ended for reasons that had nothing to do with their children. In fact, one of the hardest parts was saying good-bye to the kids. It makes me think. And, so what if I had a child with an ex-partner, as I nearly did once? (The father of my child had no offspring, btw). How does that automatically make me any less of a mother or a human being for that matter? I never thought twice about being with a man who had children before he met me, regardless of the circumstances. Why are all single moms lumped into the same category of being just "baby mommas?" Can't we just be moms? And, are there men out there that understand that?
Just some food for thought on this nice spring day. I'd love to hear from all of you. How did dating while TTC work out, if you chose to try it? Am I really paranoid, or do you think there's some truth to my thoughts?