Talking to Parents of Large Families — For Dummies


Hello there, friends and strangers!

I can sense you are feeling a bit uncomfortable about the number of small children accompanying me (or perhaps just the one who’s wearing nothing but mittens and a cut-off?). There are only three of them, but I understand that can be overwhelming and may even seem to border on reckless to an innocent bystander like yourself. Let me temporarily halt the tyke-frenzied chaos surrounding me to address your questions and concerns about the pack of baby elephants in the room that is my flagrantly giant family.

No, I don’t know how babies are made! I also don’t know how birth control works (do I really have to take it every day, or can I just crush it into a fine powder and make a wish as I blow it into the breeze?), but I would LOVE to hear your thoughts on the matter. Please, tell me more. Be as specific as possible and feel free to include your political agenda so I know who to vote for. If you could also draw me a diagram of my lady parts, I might be able to figure out what I’m doing wrong and where the hell all these tiny people keep coming from! LOL I can’t call the Pope — I don’t speak Italian!

You say the ideal number of children is one less than I already have? THANK GOD YOU SAID SO — here, take the middle one.

Yes, my hands are so full. SO. FULL. It’s probably a result of my small carnie hands. Your hands, though, look empty — and, if I may say so, devilishly idle. So pointing out my hands full o’ baby sounds to me like an offer to help. Feel free to finish my grocery shopping for me and stop by around 7 p.m. to babysit while I date my husband. Don’t worry — you can give me pointers on how to avoid having more babies after the date!

I know what you’re thinking: There’s a lady who wants some parenting advice! Thank you for your terse suggestion to give my crying baby a pretzel or perhaps my car keys. I can’t believe I didn’t think of that!

While you’re here, would you mind disciplining my children? Because I’ve obviously got more than I can handle well, and in what probably looks like a very embarrassing and high-stress moment for me, what I really need is to pause and listen to a hindsight account of how you got your kids to obey you in 1974. Could you also drive it home to my two-year-old that her emotional meltdown is cramping the day of a perfect stranger? Because you’re right; no one likes little girls who cry!

Are we done having kids yet? I’ll let you decide. It will depend entirely on how much your face looks like this while I’m considering my answer:


How will I send them all to college? In a van! Get it? I always like to start an unsolicited discussion about my financial well-being with a joke. But seriously, I knew there was a reason I brought my bank statements out with me today. PHEW!

Who are these Duggars you speak of? Tell me all about them!

You don’t know how I do it? I’ll give you a hint: it involves a dungeon and a third nipple.

I’m so glad we had this chat. I hope you now feel comfortable enough to deal with being near me and my disease — I mean, family of small children. At the end of the day, a mother is only as happy as the saddest stranger in line with her at the post office! Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some Yaz to prepare for its balloon send-off. I’ll say “Ciao!” to Francis for you!

6 thoughts on “Talking to Parents of Large Families — For Dummies

  1. I followed you over from Scary Mommy and had to comment-I loved this! So, so true. We had #4 in June, and now I’m like a magnet for comments.
    I’ve gotten a little snarky lately, thanks for the reminder I’m not the only one 😉


  2. I, like Natasha, also followed from Scary Mommy. I just wanted to share with you that I found this beautifully written piece by Google searching, “if I have to hear that I have my hands full one more time…” and it was exactly what I didn’t know I was searching for!


    • Haha it really is astounding how often people say it! And never in a “How can I help you?” kind of way, but more in a rubbernecking-a-train-wreck kind of way. I get that they’re just trying to be nice or start a conversation, but if only they knew they were the 79th person that day to use those exact words with me. At a certain point, it starts to feel like they’re daring me not to drop all the balls I’m juggling haha. CHALLENGE: ACCEPTED, cute little old man at the grocery store! Thanks for reading, Ann! xo


  3. I just found your blog and I absolutely LOVE what and how you write! This one had me giggling out loud reading it!
    Thank you for the laugh and your honesty with all things!
    You are a breath of fresh air & if I met you in life- I would give you a big hug (and an extra hand- if I had any at the time 😉!)
    Keep doing what you are doing!
    God Bless!


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