"Wow, you've got your hands full!" is #1, and as much as I want to say "Yeah, no sh*t!", I usually just smile and say "Yup, I sure do!", little do they know that this is only half of my kids, but I leave that part out because that's just asking for more comments, and looks of pity. If I'm out with all four and they see the twins, I'll hear "Looks like you went for #3 and got a big surprise, eh?", or some other version of that. The one that I'm most surprised by is, "Are they natural or did you do fertility treatments?" or if I mention what a surprise the babies were, they'll say "Oh, you mean you didn't do IVF?" with a shocked expression- not that there's anything wrong with fertility treatments, I just can't believe how bold people can be to a stranger, and I also don't see why it matters? Then there's "Do they run in yours or your husbands family?" and I say "No, they don't run in my family, they do in my husbands though, but it doesn't make a difference because it has nothing to do with the sperm, it's all about how many eggs you drop." They usually look at me a little taken aback, having just been given a somewhat graphic biology lesson by a total stranger, and I think, hmmm... maybe that was TMI? But, it is a common misconception that I want to clear up, it sure shuts them up, and they then seem more than eager to get away from the nutjob, so, I use it a lot... with a smile.
I also get, "Are they boy/girl?" Me, "Yes.", then they ask "Oh, are they identical?". Really?? They're a boy and a girl and they clearly look nothing alike, hello- Mcfly! But, I know some people just don't know. Honestly, I'm kind of a hypocrite for even getting annoyed, because, I'd probably asked that question before having twins. I've had many a blonde moment in my life, and I also know that people are just trying to be nice and start a conversation because they're curious about the twins. It turns out that people are completely fascinated by twins. I had no idea, before having them, that this is how it is. It happens to all moms of multiples- who knew??
Then, there's the "OMG! OMG! TWIIIINNSSSSSSSS!!!!!!! I WANT TWIIIIINNNSSS!!!!!". This one cracks me up, because I used to be one of these people. I totally wanted twins, but thought I'd surely never have them, so it was more like a "Oh, that'd be cool, but it will never happen." kind of thing. So, I tell these girls (because they're often, like, 17 year olds saying this to me) "I used to say that... and I'd say it again because it IS awesome." and for the teenagers I'll add "But, it's a lot of work, so, wait about 10 years before you have kids." My little PSA for the day.
It really is awesome. That's what I want to say to the people who give me those looks of pity and say "Oh, you poor thing." Really. People say this to me. Sometimes I don't want to give them the pleasure of sounding overly defensive and/or I don't have time to really get into it, so I ignore them. But, if I'm in the mood to set them straight, I ask "Why do you say that?", so they feel uncomfortable for being so rude. Then, they usually mumble something about how hard it must be, and then walk away. My favorite reaction to my family is when somebody says to me "What a blessing!". Now, I'm about as far from religious as you can get, but that makes me smile, and I usually respond with "Thank you, they really are a blessing!".
When I was at Toys R Us, yesterday, a woman came up to me and started shrieking "OMG- TWIIIINNNSSSS! I WANT TWINS!!! You've got your hands full! Are they identical? Do they run in your family? Did you use IVF?? You poor thing!" I was so shocked that I couldn't think of anything to say- I'm sure my face was priceless. She gave it a moment, then started laughing and said "Sorry, I'm totally kidding. I have twins and I've always wanted to do that to somebody else!". Brilliant! We both had a good laugh and then went about our shopping.
I really should just pass out cards that say:
Yes, I'm aware that I've got my hands full.
They are fraternal boy/girl twins.
No, they don't run in my family,
No, I didn't use fertility treatments,
and, I love my big family.