Tuesday, November 20, 2018

May all the kind souls be blessed

Not long ago a colleague that I know only casually – we met through work – asked: “So how come you don’t have children – you couldn’t have them or you didn’t want to have them?”.

What a silly lady. Like I am answering a rude question like this.

I replied: “I don’t have children.” and turned around to find some kinder people to talk to (it was on an event).


Another conversation that stuck with me was with a coworker. We were driving together in a car for many hours, so there was a lot of time to fill. We were talking about someone we both admire and know only through media. I told  that recently I had read an interview with this person and how lovely it was to see that she had found love of her life now, that she is already over 50. And I mentioned that I found a bit sad how she replied the journalist's question who in this world means the most to her. She replied in this order: her husband, her parents, her husband's sons and his grandchildren.

And my coworker said in disbelief: "She doesn't have any children of her own? I am so sorry for her and so terrified that I got goose bumps."

Her silly comment hurt me. Did she or somebody else also get goose bumps because of me? 

Yes, being childless when you wish to have children more then anything else is sad. But I don't want anybody's pity since pity is humiliating.


Then luckily there are kind souls around me. For example  - a mother of a boy whom I have been teaching German for the last few years. She wanted to know everything about our new house and I explained the concept of the house - everything is constructed so that it will be friendly to us also when we are very old (luckily not any time soon ;)

She complimented on our choices and said that not many people are so smart to think that much in advance. I commented that sadly we don't have any children and that's why we have to think about issues like this already now - since we really want to be independent for as long as we possibly can.

She commented very kindly that once she was taking care (she works in a nursing home) for an old lady who had ten children. She really wanted to spend the last years of her life with one of the children, but nobody wanted to take care of her. She was very heartbroken  and always kept saying: "A mother can take care of ten children, but ten children can not take care of a mother." 
Kind souls like her - saying something kind and compassionate when they notice the pain - make the world a better place.



  1. You're right. Kindness is so important. I'm glad you didn't respond to the first woman. She didn't deserve to hear your story. And the second woman's reaction seems to me because she had never given it any thought. I am thankful for the third. She also gave another example of how elderly people who always expected their children to take care of them are often very sad. Whereas we don't have those unmet expectations.

    Sending hugs.

  2. Dear Klara,
    the last story really touched me. And I think it is true for so many elderly people who don't get looked after by the their kids the way they should. There is no guarantee for that even for those who are lucky enough to have children.
    I am very sorry for the first two stories. I agree with Mali regarding the second woman who was probably just thoughtless like so many people are, unfortunately. Now the first one is an entire different story. I am glad you turned around and focused on other people.
    Wintery greetings from Switzerland!

  3. Dear Klara,
    you made a very smart decision indeed! I would advise parents to do the same, because nowadays it is rather unrealistic to think that children will always be around to help (for example because they cannot find a job in the vicinity). I would even go further and say that it is not nice to put pressure on your children, expecting them to help anytime... but that's only my personal opinion.
    I'm sorry you had to experience indelicate remarks. It is another proof, although we didn't need one, that childless persons and their feelings are completely off other people's radar.
    I send you big hugs from Germany!