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A Tale of Two Baby Stories

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I know we are living in the Information Age and all, but when it comes to your babies, ladies, I sometimes feel like we are living in the Too Much Information Age.

A Tale of Two Baby Stories

Childless Bitch: It was the best of birthing stories, it was the worst of birthing stories. I know we are living in the Information Age and all, but when it comes to your babies, ladies, I sometimes feel like we are living in the Too Much Information Age. There are right ways to share news of your angelic spawn making its way through the rough and tumble world, and there are ways that will make your childless friends (and some with children) gag in the sheer horror of your unbelievable tenacity in simultaneously boring and grossing us out. Since I know you like to get all huffy and can't wait to tell me what a horrid ice bitch I am, I'll start with the latter.

As you recall, I am not a fan of status updates letting me and the rest of your friends and family know that your adorable tot went to baby yoga, likes avocado, or has gifted you the world's foulest smelling turd. And I'm not the only one. So when you are in labor, and your cervix is dilating, and you're releasing all kinds of fluids while shifting around your birthing tank, the last place I want to hear about it is through your Twitter page. In fact, those are details I NEVER want to hear about. Unless I ask. Then it's okay. But when you follow up your Tweets (Where's my Sarah McLachlan birthing mix CD? Get me my epidural!) with a three-page e-mail detailing every rip, tear, squishy noise, and vaginal secretion of your miraculous birth (it's a miracle because birth has never happened before to anyone on this planet) and send it out to EVERY person in your address book, then girl, that's a deal breaker.

So what is the right way to share the story of your kid's birth? I'll use my old friend and new mom, Kate, as a shining example. Kate and I met up for sushi not too long after she gave birth to an adorable baby girl. She didn't walk in and greet me by complaining about the stitches in her taint. Instead, Kate asked how I was doing and waited for me to practically beg her to tell her birthing story. She was actually surprised that I wanted to hear it. God bless Kate and her ability to keep her mind in the real world and not the everything-revolves-around-babies world that only new mommies actually live in. The story was endearing and heartfelt and genuine, and yes, included a few lurid details. Which again, I was fine with, because I asked about them.

In closing, dear mommies, please know your audience before launching into stories about your adventures in baby land. If it's Grandma and your other new mommy friends that you're regaling with tales, then it might be okay to rattle on and on about ripped things and what you did with the placenta. Anyone else would rather dive headfirst into a landfill of dirty diapers.

next: Journalist Reunites With Her Daughter
9 comments so far | Post a comment now
Gigohead  August 5, 2009, 9:23 AM

I have a simple solution for this self-centered author.

Don’t accept invites from moms

Don’t follow moms on Twitter

Remove the updates from moms on your facebook page.

You can live in your own bubble moving forward.

Lastly, stop complaining on a mom’s website. We would like to turn you “off”” for a change.

PlumbLucky August 5, 2009, 9:28 AM

Probably one of the few times that I’ve actually agreed with CB. And yes, I AM a Mom. You have to know your audience. And in my case, FB and my entire address book sure as sh!t didn’t need to know every detail. I have friends who I know would ask and expect every detail. I have relatives who I know would only want to know the vital stats (you know - name, weight, length, time, date, and gender if the name didn’t tell) but none of the ooey-gooey stuff. And well, I DO have a couple friends who could be CB (aka those who I don’t expect to think the world revolves around my child). And for those friends, you approach accordingly.

anon August 5, 2009, 10:52 AM

I agree with CB, myself a mother of a 3yo and 3 month old. I absolutely hate it when people ‘announce’ their baby on FB or email. I made this very clear to spouse I wanted to send a traditional announcement (took 6 weeks both times) … friends and family sent email and FB posts asking for baby pics, I just ignored them and asked husband to do although he was eager to share online.

Pamala August 5, 2009, 12:10 PM

Most of the friends on my FB are Moms and so updating about my child is what they do as well and plus my family is on FB as well and enjoy it. I update Twitter as well with what my daughter and I are doing. People can choose not to read it if they don’t want to. So that’s on them.
I do agree though, I don’t want to hear birth stories unless I ask and I don’t offer up mine unless asked. I just don’t see the point, it wasn’t all that exciting and nothing really worth talking about. And frankly I never offer up the icky details even in asked. I’m really simple, it took this long, I pushed this long, and she had complications right after birth.
I do have to say though if you don’t like reading it, the solution is really simple, don’t read it. I mean seriously people would jump my butt if I said I hated reading this or that or hated seeing this or that on TV. The solution to those problems are just not reading them.

Big Mama August 5, 2009, 5:57 PM

Seriously, who cares? If you feel that strongly about it, then I’m quite certain your friends already know not to share their stories of vaginal stretching with you. The same could be said for any topic, but the reality is is that it is kind to listen to the things that our friends have to say, it’s a way of communicating and keeping in touch. It’s respectful and a key part in having genuine friendships.

Jill (the other one) August 5, 2009, 6:03 PM

I don’t understand the compulsion so many moms have to share every details of their labors. I don’t say anything unless I’m asked, and even then I prefer to say, “it was a c-section” and leave it at that. My cervix is nobody’s dang business!

Kim August 5, 2009, 6:04 PM

CB is definitely living up to her name in this article. I agree with the part about not divulging raunchy details of labor stories unsolicited. And please, please, don’t tell pregnant women these horror stories, EVER. But griping about posts that share little details of life like my “tot went to baby yoga,” is ridiculous. I mean, let’s be honest, are there any truly fascinating and un-mundane status updates? What happened to CB at work today, I’m sure is much more fascinating and post worthy than mom anecdotes. Note the heavy sarcasm.

J. August 6, 2009, 8:15 AM

Once again CB you are dead on!! Seriously, I had one friend TEXTING througout her entire labor and delivery - dude, I think you’d maybe want to bond with your husband and new baby instead of sharing the “miracle” with everyone in your address book.

Fellow women, I implore, let us not share any birthing details unless specifically asked.

David August 7, 2009, 1:33 PM

Moms of the future, I will make you a deal: If you don’t give me the detailed breakdown of what birthing involved for you,. I will not give you a blow-by-blow description of my colonoscopy and (especially!) the night-before preparation for it. As far as texting or tweeting while giving birth, this seems so bizarre to me that it has to be an urban legend … do some moms actually use their telecommunications devices under those circumstances? Aren’t they too busy pushing and grunting and cursing the father of the soon-to-be newborn for getting them into this predicament? I hope CB stays on a moms’ website, I love seeing people getting irritated by her remarks — CB, you must be doing something right … as Oscar Wilde (I think) famously said, “Love me or hate me, but never ignore me!” Any one of us can benefit when we are occasionally teased about things we hold dear. You know what you’re getting when you read CB — if you don’t like this kind of stuff, don’t read her.

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