Friday, 6 March 2009

What's so bad about boys?

Just by breeding extensively enough to spawn four children I have marked myself out as a weirdo in a world were families of 2x2 are the norm. I have no excuse for this over extension of my family; I am not a member of a religious cult that encourages excessive childbearing, nor do I come from a family over-endowed with offspring - there are just two of us in the family and if you count the siblings I actually speak to, I am effectively an only child. But even worse than daring to overpopulate the world with my four kids - all of them had the audacity to be boys. 

I often wonder to myself, do mothers trailing gaggles of girls behind them inspire the same degree of pity that I do with my brood of boys? Do they get that sad-eyed stare when they say that they have only managed produce girls when I admit that, yes, not only do I have four children, they are, whisper it, all boys

Everyone assumes that I must be desperate for a pink-flavoured baby (and OK, hypocrite that I am, I will admit that my twin boys were meant to be a girl), but how insulting is this horrified pity to my beautiful boys? The implication being that to have four boys is a curse, rather than a blessing. 

I will admit that when I trawl the aisles of Hamleys or Toys For Us (as the boys have appropriately rechristened it) - and with a husband suffering from arrested development when it comes to toy shops that is more often that I might wish - I do linger by the sparkly Barbie displays, wistfully stroking the violent pink mane of her fully adjustable pony, and coveting her frothy ball gowns. But I long ago resigned myself to a house littered with Power Rangers, Ben 10 branded bric-a-brac and lethally sharp-cornered Lego bricks. 

To be honest perhaps a penchant for mindless violence with the odd unconvincing alien thrown in for good measure is easier to cope with than a pre-pubescent obsession with blusher, bras and boys. At least my sons show no signs of wishing to dress like underage hookers the moment they cast off their school uniform (with the possible exception of my eldest who is a sucker for nice fairy frock).

But the best thing about boys is the love they shower onto their lucky mummies. Whatever romance might have exited from your marriage the moment kids arrived, is more than replaced by the adoration heaped on any woman who has birthed boys. No bunch of long stemmed roses from an ardent suitor could ever match the clutch of wilted flowers brought home from the park in a sweaty little paw just for me, no diamonds could outshine a string of poster-painted pasta painstakingly treaded into a beautiful bracelet and no words whispered in passion could make my heart contract with joy as much as my son declaring that he loves me as much as he loves chocolate (and believe me that's a lot). 

So next time someone gives me that horrified look as they breathe 'Four boys....' in terrified tones - I shall smile and say: 'Yes, lucky me'. 


  1. Firstly, I am SO pleased you are writing this blog, am in equal parts amazed you find the time (although suspect it must be a good vent) and utterly fascinated by how it all works. As a mum of two girls (for now...!) I have had similar frustrations with people's thoughtless (rude) comments. My favourite was whilst pregnant with #2 someone asked if I knew what I was having. On being told it was 'another' girl they replied (and I quote) "oh well,never mind, as long as it's healthy". WHAT??!! Some people really shouldn't be allowed to breed!

  2. Hi Ursula - Well said, as a mom of 2 boys I can HALF understand!

  3. I have 2 boys and a girl. When pregnant with the 3rd (the girl), I got SO irritated with the number of silly questions and comments from people all assuming that we were having a 3rd because we were desperate for a girl. Often they made these comments in front of my small boys. By the time I gave birth, I really wanted another boy, just to prove everyone wrong. I'd have loved to have 3 boys; I also love having 2 boys and a girl - the two are not mutually exclusive statements.

  4. Well said.
    I have 3 boys and feel the same way. I have twinges of wondering if we'd like a girl. Our boys keep us on our toes. Wouldn't have it any other way.
    I know people mean well. I'm probably the one saying all those twin things and wondering how they came out my mouth.... It's amazing how your brain and mouth disconnect so quickly. I don't know if I prefer the inane smile instead though. Don't mind the banter.....if they give me a chance to stop for a chat.