Things Women Only Think About Other People’s Kids
If you’re not currently a parent, then you’ve probably had some experiences with children that made you say, “I’m never having kids.” And who can blame you? As of now, you only get to see, hear and smell the struggles of parenthood without reaping any of the rewards. You probably also only notice children when they’re misbehaving—a screaming baby on an airplane certainly gets plenty of attention, meanwhile, a sleeping one can go totally unnoticed (not matter how cute she is). If you’re not a parent then you aren’t obligated to watch a child 24 hours a day, so you don’t see all the adorable and sweet things they do when they aren’t eating something they’re not supposed to or crying bloody murder. But when you have your own kids, you’ll get it. Here are things women only feel about other people’s kids.
The smells they make
Children can produce some pretty horrendous smells. If you don’t have kids, and you go over to the home of a friend who does have kids, you may walk in and have to mask a quick gag. Your friend lives in this stench? But when you have children, the smell of diapers (clean and dirty), formula and play dough will be the smell of love, family, and home.
The incessant questions
Children never stop asking questions, at least that’s what it seems like to people who don’t have children. When it’s not your child asking you a dozen questions, then it’s just some child interrupting your conversation. You don’t get the reward of thinking, “Look how adorably curious my child is” and “I’m so glad my child wants to learn things.”
How much stuff they lug around
When you get in your mom-friend’s car, you have to push aside four stuffed animals, hope you don’t sit on a crayon or finger paint and pick a few cheerios out of the seat before even settling in. And let’s not get started on how long it takes your friend to pack a bag before leaving the house. But when you have your own children, you’ll just take great joy in what an expert planner you are—you’ll be very proud of the state-of-the-art diaper bag you found and how perfectly you portion out gold fish.
The messes they make
When you don’t have kids, you’re still accustomed to having nice things. So when your friend’s kid paints on your new designer shoes or tries to chew (for some reason) your new loveseat, you see red. Once you have children, you realize you’d rather have the experience of parenthood than nice things any day.
How clingy they are
Wherever you turn, there they are. You try to pee, and they follow you into the bathroom. You try to make out with your boyfriend, and they stand between your legs, staring up at you. You try to nap, and they sit in front of you and just…observe you. When this isn’t your child, it’s very irritating. When it is your child, it’s an incredible feeling. This little creature feels so bonded to you and is so fascinated by the simplest things you do, that he follows you everywhere.
Their inability to pronounce things
If you don’t have children, there will be times you don’t think you can spend one more second around a tiny toddler who cannot pronounce the letter “R.” If you hear someone say “wemember” or “wabbit” one more time, you’re going to lose it. But when those are your kids, you not only think the way they speak is adorable—you start to speak just like them.
Their slimy skin
What is that grime on a child’s skin? That incessant sliminess that just seems impossible to clean off? Is it jelly? Some layer of film that stays on them until their teens? Eek! But when you have your own kids, you’ll love nothing more than the feeling of their sticky, grubby little arms around your neck.
They can’t go to the bathroom alone
There’s nothing fun about helping your friend’s child go to the bathroom. You barely want to spend much time in the bathroom yourself and now you have to hold this kid’s hand while he tries to poop. Oh, and now he’s describing his poop to you—how lovely. But when it’s your child, you’ll feel a great sense of accomplishment when you help him of a bowel movement and when he pees without missing the toilet bowl.
Their brutal honesty
Kids call out whatever is going on in front of them. If you aren’t a parent, you probably don’t appreciate it when children tell you you’ve gained weight, your nose is weird, your laugh is funny or your boyfriend is poor. When you are a parent, most of your vanity goes out the window. You’ve given up on the idea of looking or being perfect, and you just laugh when your children tell you things you already accepted about yourself.
Their prominence in every photo
Can’t your friend just post one photo without the baby? Did she cease being one person after having this child? Well, yes, pretty much. And you’ll see when you have kids—after you’ve grown this little human inside your body for nine months—how you can’t stomach the idea of taking out the camera and not snapping a photo of your little munchkin.
Their prominence in conversations
Babies, babies, babies—all your friends talk about anymore is babies! It’s like they’re in a club you don’t understand the appeal of. And, well, they are. When you have your own children, you’ll start to feel like most other topics and pursuits pale in comparison to that of rearing and emotionally guiding a human being.
How picky they are about food
Picking out a restaurant with your mom-friend is impossible because they don’t have the exact fish sticks her child likes. How is it possible that the restaurant choice revolves around the palate of someone who only eats four types of food? But, you’ll see. You’ll see the panic that comes when the person you love the most in the world hasn’t eaten in 16 hours and you just don’t know what she wants. And you’ll see what a tremendous victory it is when you determine what your child does like to eat. You’re not going to mess with that magic by bringing her to the Tapas place.
Their minuscule achievements
Using the toilet alone, pronouncing a word correctly and finishing the little toy block puzzle may not seem like anything special to you now, but when you have your own child, it will seem like the most genius thing you’ve ever witnessed.
When you don’t have kids, you just wish your friend could come with you to see “Dark Tower” or “Get Out.” The movie options she throws out there seem very limited. When you do have kids you realize, “Pixar and Disney movies are actually, like, really good. ‘Inside Out’ was the most inspiring film I’ve ever seen!”
Non-parents see tiny princess chairs as huge eyesores on an otherwise lovely home. Parents love the little evidence of children around their house, from tacky furniture to toys to binkies to training potties. They like that their children take over their home the way they take over their lives and wouldn’t have it any other way.