When asked where you were born...

…do you say the town where you actually physically entered the world (in the hospital, for most people) or the town where your family home was when you were born. Assuming they’re different, of course.

I appreciate that they usually won’t be far apart, but I’m interested to know whether people consider a town to be their “birthplace” just because the hospital happens to be there, even if they have never lived there.

For example, I was brought up and lived for the first 17 years of my life in the same house in Hampshire, and certainly consider myself “Hampshire born and bred”, but I was actually born in Berkshire.

The hospital were I was born is in the city I was born so I guess I say both.

Born in Bedford at Bedford Hospital.

If that was not the case I think I would answer it with the city where my parents were living at the time of my birth.

I was born at home, in the house where we lived until I was sixteen so there’s no need to distinguish between where I was born and where I was raised.

If asked where I was born i would say Pontefract, which was the location of the hospital. If asked where I was brought up however, I would say Featherstone. If asked where I was from, it would be Featherstone again.

Yeah, simple enough for me: Chicago, both born and home for many years.

But I have a pal who was born while his father was on assignment in Yokohama with family. While he was raised and his families home was in Maryland he says he was born on a base in Japan.

In my case it was the same.

My brothers were born in my father’s ancestral hometown, although we lived someplace else by then. By character, Middlebro “belongs” more in the new place, Littlebro fits right fine in the old one. And when asked, Middlebro identifies himself as being from the new place, Littlebro and myself by the province where both sit. If someone wants more explanations, we warn them they’re in for a long one…

Spanish laws were changed a few years back to allow births to be registered wherever the family wants to: ancestral home, current home or actual birthplace. This is because there were entire provinces where people were being born only in the capital… there were even a couple where pretty much nobody was being born (hey, if you have to choose between the tiny dinky hospital in the capital which doesn’t have incubators, or spending a few days with your sister in Madrid and having the kid in the country’s biggest maternity hospital, which would you do?)

I was born in Hitchin Hospital, Hertfordshire (as that was where the maternity ward was at the time) but my parents lived (and still live) in Stevenage. Indeed if i’d been born a year or so later i’d have been born in Stevenage as by that point Lister Hospital had taken over maternity patients.

So basically my answer would be contextual - if they wanted to know which hospital i was born in, i would say:


If the context implied that they wanted to know where i spent my formative years and not just my first 24 hours on this earth, i would say:

“I’m a Stevenage kid, born and bred.”

Then i’d nick their wallet and shoes.

Hellooooo… Stevenage kid…

If I’m asked where I’m born, I’ll say India.

If asked where I’m from…well, that’s a harder question, and sometimes you can guess from the tone if they mean ethnicity or not. But if not, I’ll say “I grew up in Michigan”.

I was born in San Diego, and lived there until I was 13. So it’s easy for me.

My husband was born in Texas, where his father was stationed during his 2-year stint in the Army. They moved to Wisconsin (where his folks were from) and Kevin lived there until he joined the Navy at 17. When people ask where he was born, he says “Fort Hood.” If they ask where he is from, he says “Wisconsin.”

My son was born in Ukiah, California, where I was staying with my family while my husband was overseas. We moved to Virginia when Nick was 3 months old and lived there until he was 5. Then we were stationed in San Diego for 8 years; then back to Virginia (where we currently reside). So Nick was born in California and spent 8 years of his childhood there, and 10 years of his childhood in Virginia. He’s been in North Carolina (Camp LeJeune) for the last couple of years. He considers himself a native Virginian, though, and is somewhat sensitive about those years in California. When someone asks where he was born, he says, “California. But we moved to Virginia right away and I consider myself a native Virginian.”

He has the Virginia State Seal tatooed on his arm, BTW.

Yeah, that’s slightly harder. If people ask me where I grew up, I say upstate New York. If they ask me where I was born, I just say Iowa. No one around here really cares about towns in Iowa. But if pressed, I say Cedar Rapids, as that’s where the hospital was. One really needs to be intensely interested in me to find out that my first mailing address was in Marion.

Or they have to start a thread in IMHO. :wink:

The only time I put the focus on the town of the hospital is if someone’s asking for astrological reasons, because the few degrees of difference does put some things in a different place. When asked, “Where were you born?” for any other reason, my reply is “Palos Heights is where the hospital I was born in is located, but my folks lived in Tinley Park and I grew up there.” If I answer only “Tinley Park,” it nags at me because it isn’t literally true.

I can intentionally lie with the best of 'em, but speaking an inadvertent lie bugs me. It ain’t easy being me.

My husband does this and I find it odd- when asked where he was born he says the name of the neighboring town where the hospital was. I mean, for the most part, people are asking where he’s from- they don’t give a hoot that he was born in the next town and came home two days later.

I say I was born in Town A, which is the town I grew up in. Actually, I was born in Town B, then flew to Town A in my first few days of existence.

The reason I was born in Town B was that I was born at a Bethany Hospital for wayward 13 year olds who were giving up their child for adoption.

That’s a level of detail I don’t normally share with people, hence I say I was born and raised in Town A.

I almost always just name the state I was born in. (It is NOT the state I presently live in.) I’ve maybe once or twice actually specified the town I was born in, on a survey where it was explicit that where the hospital was located was the important thing.

I was born in the same city I grew up in, so the question wouldn’t apply to me, but my dad grew up in a small town in Arkansas. When it came time for his mom to have him, and later, my aunt, she and my grandfather drove across the river where the nearest real hospital was. So they grew up in Arkansas, but they were both born in Tennessee, and have Tennessee birth certificates.

I was born in the hospital across the street from where my parents lived in Waltham. However, if talking to someone not from Massachusetts, I say Boston, as it’s close enough and they’ve probably (through frighteningly enough not always) heard of it.

“Southern Ontario” covers it all for me.

Depends on who’s asking. I don’t expect people outside Colorado to appreciate the subtle differences between Boulder and Arvada, I doubt most people have heard of Arvada, so to them I say “outside of Denver” which is accurate for “born” as well as “grew up”
To anyone from the area, I say “I was born in Boulder, but fled as soon as they let me out of the hospital”
Where I was born and where I am from are two unrelated places (even if they are separated by a mere 20 miles), and even if my parents were living in Arvada at the time, I was born in Boulder and I have to face that.

If I’m in this area, I would give the name of the town, which is different from the town I grew up in, and clarify that I grew up in Town B. If I’m out of state, I’ll just say New York. The only time I can remember someone asking this, they wanted a specific answer. Most people just say “where are you from?”

This question has both a simple answer and a more difficult answer for me. I was born in the base hospital at Fort Bragg, NC, which is next door to Fayetteville. Both my parents’ families were from Central Alabama and Daddy was stationed at Fort Bragg during the buildup to the USA’s involvement in WWII. After my birth and for the next three years we moved from base to base in at least five Southern states and after the war went back to Alabama to live. I went to school through high school in Central Alabama then moved to Tennessee for college and have been here since then.

If pressed beyond Fayetteville for my birthplace I’ll say Fort Bragg. But I feel as if I was born in Alabama. The fact that Tennessee was once part of North Carolina doesn’t affect the basic notion that I don’t feel any connection to NC. In fact, it was 1983 before I visited Fayetteville and Fort Bragg as an adult. The hospital where I was born had been torn down years before and there was nothing about that place nor Fayetteville itself that meant anything to me.

I suspect other “army brats” may have similar stories to tell, especially if their parents were back at “home” after their service time was up.