Is it wrong for me to get irritated when at work I’m on a large group call and someone who is leading it says something about Parents and their kids going back to school? Like in the opening when greeting everyone, something like, “ wishing luck to the parents, whose kids are going back to school.” I get it, but it also excludes a lot of people especially when you were talking about calls with multiple hundred people. Is it wrong for me to feel this way? And is it wrong for me to say anything?

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Breeders think that everyone likes kids, especially theirs 😂

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If it's just a short phrase like that and nothing more, let it go. If everyone is going around taking turns talking about how old their kids are and what school they're in and what their food allergies are, then they're wasting everyone's time. No point in being irritated.

Would you also be upset with someone commenting on extreme weather in their region because that conversational nugget doesn't apply to you?

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I get it. Please don’t jump all over me - I had failed fertility treatments so am hypersensitive. Just needed a reality check, it seems this is how every call is started . I am fully aware the universe doesn’t revolve around me and life goes on, it’s just like a little stab every time despite years of therapy.

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This kind of stuff annoys me too, but I try to remind myself that it’s an attempt at building rapport since this is a commonality a lot of colleagues share. I myself am child-free by choice (different from your situation, clearly!) but even though it’s a choice for me it still grates my nerves that the extraneous chitchat at work seems to always revolve around kids. It’s totally unfamiliar and alienating to me. I’d rather talk about literally anything else.

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Man, if I weren’t female I’d totally use that next time someone asks!

No, well wishes to people when they need it does not take anything away from you. They should wish you well at appropriate times of year for things you are going through. Happy hannukah to those who celebrate!

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Makes sense, and I'm sorry you're going through that. Keep in mind that if you do complain or get visibly irritated or snippy, that's just going to invite people to ask intrusive and painful questions, which will just make the situation worse (from coworkers, not fishbowl).

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Thanks. I do not believe I would say anything. I’m actually about to go on a three week cruise while everyone else is dealing with school so maybe I should just think about that!

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Eh, I get it, but it's just small talk like talking about the weather.

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They’re free to do so but I might check out and can’t guarantee I’ll come back to focus when they need me.

You could always chime in with a cheerful and enthusiastic “Yes, good luck! We’re happy to have all the parents back at work, pulling their weight again!”

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