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Pregnancy can be explained as parting gift from marriage

Pregnancy can be explained as parting gift from marriage

Q: I am 30, and going through a divorce.

Against my better judgment but still employing two forms of birth control, the husband I'm divorcing and I were intimate. I am now pregnant.

I can't make a logical argument for having this child. I still want a divorce and my husband is still engaging in the same behaviors that drove me to leave. I think the logical decision would've been to have an abortion but, though I tried, I never could stomach the thought.

Now I am starting to show and have no idea how to tell people. Those closest to me know, but co-workers, clients, people at church and acquaintances don't. I feel like I should say something because looking more and more pregnant without saying anything seems weird.

At the same time, while I've made peace with it, it seems hard to announce my pregnancy as most people would: joyous, exciting, etc. I understand the difficult task I'm undertaking and don't want to appear too happy and therefore glib. But I also don't want to present it as news to be mourned.

And I am dreading the question about who the baby's father is. If I got this news from a friend who was divorcing, that question would immediately spring to mind. I hope I'd have the sensitivity to not ask. But it's a legitimate question. What do you think?

Better a baby than . . . leprosy . . .

A: You chose not to end your pregnancy, so this is a wanted baby. That's joyous news. Period.

As for logical arguments for having the child, you don't have to make any. It happened, you decided how to deal with it, and you're dealing with it. The rest is watercooler Olympics, and not your problem.

As for how to tell, you don't have to: Your belly will announce your pregnancy, civility will pre-empt many questions, and a Mona Lisa smile is all you need for the questions that slip through.

That is, if that's the mountain you want to climb. There's an argument to be made for satisfying what you regard as legitimate curiosity, and for offering the truth as an inoculation against speculation, which tends to get unruly.

If you choose this route, keep it short, and keep it wry: "As you see, I'm expecting — a parting gift from my marriage." The "parting" answers one question, the "marriage" answers another, and the "gift" honors your child.


Money is always acceptable as a wedding present

Q: We're invited to an engagement party, a wedding shower, and then the wedding. The couple are in their 30s and currently have separate, fully furnished residences. How to determine what to buy them? If they wanted money to put toward a honeymoon or a major purchase, is there an acceptable way for them to communicate that, or is that contrary to good etiquette?


A: If you're open to giving them money, then just give them money. It's the perfect gift and there's no polite way for them to ask you for it. Otherwise, ask the couple if there's a registry.

You don't have to accept all of the lead-up invitations, but if you do, then it's okay to bring something small (from the registry, or candles, wine . . .) and save your real gift for the main event.

Pregnancy can be explained as parting gift from marriage 05/01/10 [Last modified: Friday, April 30, 2010 2:35pm]
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