One thing that really irritated me before my wife and I got married is when people would keep asking us when we were going to get married. I guess it was one thing when family members did it, but I'd hear it from a lot of people whom I barely even knew. I never think to ask the couples I know when they're going to get married. A coworker and friend of mine just got married, and while I'm certainly happy for him, I don't feel as though I really had anything invested in whether he married or not. Maybe when I know a couple pretty well, I might ask them out of sheer curiosity if they're going to get married, but I'd phrase it more along the lines of "Do you guys think you'll get married?" and not "When are you going to get married?"
Of course, the only thing worse than this is when people won't leave you the hell alone when it comes to when you're going to have a baby, and this tends to happen almost instantly after you get married. I was hearing it from all sides, and I really have to give my in-laws credit on this one. I know that they were ready to be grandparents the day after Kirsti and I married, but they never got on our case about having a baby. They deserve to be commended, as you could actually make the argument that they do have something at stake here. After all, my father-in-law was already looking into getting season passes to the zoo until we told him that maybe he might want to hold off for a couple of years. (Infants, I imagine, get the same thrill from the zoo as they would the backyard.)
Where I did hear it though was from a lot of people who really should have minded their own damned business. One of them was my sister's ex-husband's mother's brother. (Okay, it wasn't really that - but the actual relation to me was just as tenuous.) It was almost like some kind of weird peer-pressure thing, where it was like their best argument was, "Come on, you should have a baby." And that really isn't really an argument at all. I mean, do these people really think that the type of person who'd have a child simply to stop being nagged is the kind of person who SHOULD be having a child? Also, what is it with this issue anyway? Is the human race dying off or something? I never realized that the future of humanity rested on my shoulders, because some people pretty much acted like it did.
The thing is, I know some people who have decided that they don't want to have kids. Some of them are my age, so they still get grief from people who tell them that they ought to have them. I really don't understand that. I want my friends to be happy and do what's right for them. If they want to have children, then they should, but if they don't, then they really, really shouldn't. What better reason to not have kids than the simple fact that you don't want to have kids?
Of course, all of the above is how I used to think. Now that my wife and I are expecting, I'm asking every couple I know when they're going to have a baby. 'Cause if you think about it, they totally should.