Thursday, August 19, 2010

How come...?

Be it right or wrong, here's my view of common perceptions regarding family sizes. Keep in mind that, as a mother of 4 children, these may or may not be my opinions.

Families with...

1 child : "Aww, how sweet. A cute young couple just starting their family."

2 children: "I'll bet that they've got the whole golden retriever/white picket fence dream too. Good for them." (This is particularly prevalent when the couple has one male and one female child)

3 children: "Ahh, the days of my youth. I always hated being the middle child but boy, was it great to have an older sibling to take responsibility and a younger sibling to lay all the blame to. That's just great. They're the average American family. Heck, she's probably got a vinyl 'soccer mom' decal on the back of her minivan."

4 children: "Sheezum! Ever heard of birth control?" Spoken to the parents: "I'll bet you have *your* hands full!! Wow!! Ha ha! Aww, beautiful family, good for you!!" ::mumbling and head shaking:: as they walk away.

5 children: "Good golly, he'd better have a good job to pay for all those kids! No, wait, **my taxes** are probably paying for all of those kids!"

6 children (or more): "Holy cow! What are they in competition with the Duggars or something?!"

So what I'm wondering is how it seems to me that we go from a positive perception of families right up until the 3rd child. All of a sudden there's a shift right around 4 kids and suddenly people seem to think that a family of 6 is freakishly huge. Not that I'm upset about it or anything because you know, I'm still on the smaller side of the freakishly huge family but I was just curious as to what it is that causes what seems to me to be fairly popular opinions.

How about you, what do you think of larger (or smaller) families? When does the number of children in a family just get to be outlandish?