Ran into a customer at a restaurant a few weeks ago. It was 9:30 and she was there with her daughter, and her two grandchildren, 6 and 2, both of whom were running around the restaurant like maniacs.
During the conversation, she happened to mention that her daughter was a single mom. In the same conversation, I joked that my wife and I did not have children, but we had 6 cats.
She looked down at her nose at us and said, in the most condescending tone ever:
My wife and have been DESPERATELY trying to have children for years, but got married later in life, and have come to the conclusion that unless we want to undergo some radical medical procedures, we wont have kids.
Through various circumstances we happen to have cats, who are the closest thing we will ever have to “children”. They have needs, they give us joy, and the fact that four of them are rescues and now have a better life than if we had not found and adopted them, they might be dead somewhere, gives us great satisfaction.
We know our cats shit in a litter box, don’t cry when you take them to the mall, and don’t require a college education, but its the best we got. We have never, ever implied that even 30 cats are easier to raise than one human child.
That said, if we DID ever have a child, I can guarantee you the little brat would not be running around like a maniac well past their bedtime.
Oh, and I forgot to mention that this woman who was looking down at her nose at me when she made the crack about our cats, is supposedly a devout Christian.
I know this because whenever I do email correspondance with her, I get these Christian messages at the bottom of her emails as sigs. Which doesn’t bother me BUT . . . . .
The reason her daughter is a “single mom” is because she had both of these undisciplined brats OUT OF WEDLOCK . . with TWO different men! And her “Christian” brother wont speak to her because of it!
I’m not here to judge. But don’t look down at me, and my wife, and mock us because we cant have children, and have instead taken that lost energy and devoted to raising our 6 cats, who we love just as if they were our children.
Get your house in order before looking down at your nose at us, Bitch.
I get your point. But, please; if they are indoor cats, how do you control the smell? A good friend of mine has 2 indoor cats. He cannot smell them. I can and it’s totally off-putting. it’s not enjoyable to hang out at his house. Have as many indoor pets as you please, but, also, ask a trusted friend about the smell and take his/her word for it. I’m a fellow childless pet-lover.
How awful for you. She was incredibly rude. I am not sure if I could have held my tongue in the same situation. I think I would have said something along the lines of, “…and so are your grandchildren. What was your point again?”
I have children…well I have young adults now but my pets are, always have been and always will be “my babies”. I will often tell one of my kids to “put your brother outside” or “can you watch the babies while I am out of town this weekend?” and have never had anyone either confused or suggesting that I don’t know what species my pets are.
Speaking from experience, having a dog (I wanna say especially a Lab ;)) or having a cat (or cats) is very much like having toddlers around (who will never outgrow toddlerhood). People can dispute it all they want, and it is not exactly the same in every aspect, but having pets is very much like having children and referring to them as such only shows that you “get it” and that you truly do love them.
I think your friend may have issues, either with his/her cats or cleaning habits. If there are enough litter boxes, kept clean, and the cats exclusively use the litter boxes (no illnesses or behavior problems that cause them to pee on things) there should be no smell. If you smell anything at all, it should smell like cat litter (unused cat litter) which can be unpleasant but is distinctly different than smelling like “cat” or cat urine.
I only have one indoor cat right now, but if I get even the slightest whiff of “cat” I would know that the litter box is not in order. Ours gets scooped daily, changed weekly and visitors do not know we have a cat until they see him.
“I have 2 grandchildren, do you have any kids?”
“Oh no…but I do have some cats!”
“Ummm…cats are not children!”
I know that is not word for word, but I can’t see how that is not rude. Now if he had said, “Why yes I do have children, 6 of them in fact, and they are all cats. I must remember to enroll them in school next week.” THEN you could make a case that it was just a friendly reminder, “Oh my! You do understand that your cats are not human, don’t you?”
Even with only just the one quote I can confidently say that she was rude. And I would have taken the time to point out that her grand children were also animals, but of a different species than the cats. Then act shocked that she didn’t know that.
For what it’s worth, it doesn’t bother me in the slightest if people want to think of their pets as children. I’m not aware of any studies that it is “unhealthy” whatever that means. But that’s just my opinion.
OMG are you sure? Like really, really sure? I know you said there was a difference the last time you checked, but how long ago did you check? I sure hope you come back after you check again and let us know how it went.