Thursday, August 16, 2012

How Do You... Deal With Comments About Your Family?

How do you deal with negative comments about your family size? 

It has taken me a long time to realize that even the most ridiculous, rude, and abrasive of comments usually stems from true ignorance and surprise.  When someone says, "Five kids?!  That's crazy!"  I try to understand that while, hopefully I'm not really "crazy," sighting five kids from the same family is unusual in our society.  Maybe instead of feeling disdain, the observer is really (tactlessly) expressing surprise.  It is hard for me to have a friendly mindset because comments about my kids hurt my feelings, but I do attempt to give people the benefit of the doubt.

Secondly, regardless of the intention of the comment, I maintain a smile and friendly attitude for the sake of my children.  When someone says, "Well, you have your hands full,"  I always smile and say, "Yes, I do."  Or when someone says, "Are they all yours?"  I smile and say, "Yes, I have five."  I know my children are watching and listening and I never want them to think that I think they are a handful or a burden.  It also sends a signal to the people I encounter that I am happy and not begrudging my situation.

photo credit: Kati

How do you deal with comments about your family
?  Let us know in the comments. 

Also, if you have a question for a future "How Do You...?" post, share that in the comments, too, or send me an e-mail! I'd love to hear from you. 


  1. This post is so timely. Tim and I were just discussing how I can answer the people (especially at the grocery store) who comment about me having my hands full. (I counted 19 "you have your hands full" comments yesterday alone.)

    I always smile and say "Yes, I do." I've read how others answer these comments but their answers sound fake when I say them, especially the, "Yes, my hands are full, but so is my heart." While I may feel that way I don't talk like that :)

    However, I also find that the majority of people who say I have my hands full end up complimenting my children's behavior in the next breath. I agree that usually their comments about the number of children in our family are fueled by surprise or by their own feelings that they would not be able to handle any more children than they already have :)

  2. oh, i love this post. :) whenever someone says you have your hands full, i always answer it's a good full! because, i too, do not want my kids to think that i think they're a burden.

    it's not really those comments that drive me crazy, but the ones that ask "have you figured it out yet?" when i asked what? he pointed to my kids and said "this!" i smiled and said, "yep. and we like it." i killed him with shock by my reply. LOL! and then called my husband and said if you EVER talk like that to someone i'll punch you. ((the man's wife was with him!))

  3. I just always be prepared to bounce back with a positive statement such as "yes, I am so blessed", or "full hands, full heart", etc. Always with a smile *wink*

  4. My "favorite" comment that I get now is "ohhhh, you FINALLY got a girl! So are you done now?" UGH!!! I didn't "finally" get a girl; I was blessed with 2 wonderful boys and then a sweet girl.

    When people ask if I'm done, I shrug and smile and say we don't know but we don't think so. Lol!

    As far as response to "you have your hands full" {and I only have three!} I just smile and nod sometimes and say something like, "yep, and they are blessings" or "yep, and I love them all."


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