DEAR ABBY: I am a female who is almost 38 years old. Most of my adult life has been spent in school, working or traveling. It is only in the last two years that I have met someone and settled down somewhat -- although we are not married. We are both artists, so much of our time is filled doing the things that we love and believe in. Neither of us feels a giant void in our relationship or our lives that needs to be filled by a baby.
In the past year or so, several of my co-workers and other people I barely know keep asking, "When are you going to have a baby?" or, "You only have a couple more years -- aren't you going to have a baby?" or, "Don't you want kids?"
Abby, my family doesn't even ask me these questions! I think they are extremely rude and intrusive, and I resent the simple-minded assumption that just because a person has a uterus and ovaries she must make a baby. How should I respond to these questions? -- CHILDLESS AND HAPPY IN TEXAS
DEAR CHILDLESS AND HAPPY: There are several ways to handle questions that are nobody's business. One is to deflect the question by asking another: "Why do you ask?" Or, "Why do you think that's any of your business?" Alternatively, if you really want the person to back down, you can reply, "If it were any of your business, you'd already know the answer to that question. Please don't ask me again!"