You’re probably expecting this post to be about what to buy in preparation for your newborn or how to give birth to a 10 pound, 11 ounce person without any drugs. But, nope. While this is a post for all the knocked up girls in my life, it’s actually directed toward the people in her life.
Let me explain.
Having 3 pregnancies under my belt, I feel like I have some great advice to give people who happen to know someone who is currently pregnant. Frankly put, some things that are often said to expectant moms should simply be illegal. Since they aren’t, I’ll take this opportunity to help you out in order to protect your relationships with the beautiful pregos in your world. Here are some phrases to stay away from when you’re conversing with a momma-to-be…
DON’T say…”Wow. You’re a lot bigger since I last saw you.”
First of all, if you’re starting any sentence directed toward a pregnant woman with “Wow” it better be followed by “You look fiiiine, girl!” But the bigger problem here is the word “bigger”. There is no need to point it out to them. They are building a person. The cause for concern would be if they weren’t bigger, not the other way around.
DON’T say…”I saw your belly walk in the room before I saw you.”
Pregnant women are well aware of their size. In fact, women in general are well aware of their size. We all have some body images issues, even those with flawless bodies, so naturally women who are gaining 25-35+ pounds in less than a year clearly may have some body image issues. Even when we are supposed to be gaining weight, we still hate it. That said, common sense should tell you to not comment on the size of a woman’s mid-section, but in case you lack common sense let me help you out…don’t say this.
DON’T say…”You look like you’re about ready to pop.”
Using the word “pop” is not a very respectful way of referring to the act of birthing a new life. Nor do women want to be thought of as a bomb that could explode at any given second. Just don’t utter these words at all.
DON’T say…”When are you due? Soon, I guess.”
It’s perfectly fine to ask a pregnant woman when she is due. That is, if you know without a shadow of a doubt that she’s pregnant. Probably steer clear of asking this question to strangers even if they look like they are 9 months along. And definitely steer clear of making a guess as to when she’s due. It’s never fun to have to tell someone that you still have 3 months to go even though they think you look full-term.
DON’T say…”You’re a lot bigger than all of the other pregnant women here and they are all farther along than you.”
Seriously?! Do people need a lesson on basic anatomy? Every woman is built differently. No two bodies are the same. Therefore, the way we carry babies will look different. There just is no reason to encourage women to compare themselves to other women. In addition, why would you ever imply to an expectant mom that she isn’t doing as good of a job as other expectant moms. She has enough self-induced guilt. She doesn’t need it from outsiders, too.
Well, unfortunately, I could go on and on with examples of the discouraging things that were said to me during my 27 months of incubating people, but it’s kinda bumming me out. So, I’ll simply end with this brilliant piece of advice…
“If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nothin’ at all.” – Thumper