Real Talk: Things You Shouldn’t Say to a Pregnant Lady

12 Jul

Disclaimer. If you are reading this, and feel like you may have said one of these things to me, PLEASE don’t worry. I love you and am not currently harboring any grudges (anymore). But no really, I’ve never had any pregnancy grudges…yet. This is more a word to the wise. Why not help make pregnant ladies’ lives a little easier?

For those of you who don’t know, pregnant women are sensitive. It’s not some sort of myth or old wives’ tale. And it’s not just all hormones (although, that’s probably a ton of it). No, especially from a first time mom perspective, we are facing some big life changes.

  • How will the baby change my relationship with my husband?
  • How will the baby change my budget?
  • What should I do about work? About childcare?
  • How do I mold a young mind into a responsible adult? I could go on all day.

And this doesn’t even include the more selfish ones like,

  • Will I lose this weight?
  • Will I get varicose veins or stretch marks or some other unalterable scar from this experience?
  • When will I wadddddle?? (AHHH!)

That was a long-winded way of saying: we’ve got a lot on our minds PLUS hormones making us a little cray cray. So, world, can you pitch in and not ask us stomach-churning questions? I sure hope so.

I’ll start with the positive.

Acceptable Pregnancy Questions/Phrases

photo (7)

Meet Bob, my rents’ new BT puppy! He’s a lot of fun, and, as you can see, too cute for his own good.

How are you feeling? This is a perfect question, shows concern but is not too personal.

How far along are you? Warning: do not follow this by extreme surprise at the belly size after. How do you know what a pregnant belly should look like? Are you an OBGYN or midwife? Didn’t think so.

What are your nursery plans? This is usually a fun question to answer. But don’t press her if she still doesn’t have plans.

What are you craving? Just don’t be disappointed when it is as innocuous as “Green Salsa.” We all don’t have extreme cravings like Aunt Becky in Full House.

What are your names? Some people don’t want to share their name choices, so this also could be weird. However if she does, the appropriate answer is always a variation of “That’s so cute!”

Here’s what NOT to say in response:

  • I knew a HORRIBLE person named that!

  • Like the Twilight character? (let them tell you their inspiration, don’t just say the first reference that pops into your head. Maybe they like a name and are hoping an unfortunate reference will be irrelevant when their kid grows up)

  • That rhymes with…

  • What about this name?

What are you having? A generic “[Insert gender here] are so fun!” response is most welcome.

And, anytime people say stuff like, “You look great!” you give her at least a short reprieve from insecurities.

And here’s a crazy idea: just talk to her about normal stuff. Sometimes pregnancy can be all consuming, so a chat about the best TV shows and summer movies could be just the thing.

Now on to the DON’Ts.

photo (8)

Here’s The Coasts playing White Water Tavern. They were great! (As always) Don’t miss their next show, K?

Here’s a pre-pregnancy one for you: When are you guys having kids? I’ve learned to insert foot in mouth with that one. You just don’t know when someone’s dealing with infertility or other health-related issues. Best not bring it up in a small-talk convo.

Are you pregnant? This seems like a how-to-interact-with-people no-brainer, but I thought I’d include this one just in case. You don’t want to give some lady a complex by asking if she’s pregnant.

You’re not really showing yet, it just looks like you are bloated. Ok, would you tell a non-pregnant person they look bloated? Is being bloated an attractive state? NO and NO.

This is a variation of the above: You look like you just ate a [insert fatty food here e.g. pizza, burrito, cheese burger] Nope, gluttony is also not something you usually accuse non-preggos of, so just don’t, K?

Any phrase that includes the word “waddle.”

Any observation of weight gain, fat or bigger [fill in body part].

Unless she volunteers the info, don’t go delving into the “Were you trying?” question. Personal! Not a normally acceptable topic of conversation, why is it suddenly so?

I’m not really big enough to invite belly touchers yet, but don’t do it. I don’t know why pregnancy seems like a magical time when you can touch strangers, but news flash: it isn’t.

I’m not trying to be overly dramatic here. And I hope you don’t feel like you have to walk on broken egg shells around pregnant ladies. BUT keeping the focus off the negatives (bloating, weight gain, waddling) and onto the positives (glowing, great name, fun nursery) would help when pregnant ladies are ALREADY ON THE EDGE. Oops, I did just yell at you, didn’t I?

Any experienced moms have something to add to my list?? Comment away.

Everyone else, have a good one! I’ll see ya soon.

3 Responses to “Real Talk: Things You Shouldn’t Say to a Pregnant Lady”

  1. Shanna Moody July 12, 2013 at 2:12 pm #

    People lose all filters and social niceties around the pregnant ladies. Soon you’ll have to answer to everything from your feeding choices to your birthing plan. And wait until you are week 30+, you’ll be told how “you must be miserable!” or “you’re about to pop.” And EVERYONE will tell you to “sleep while you can.” (And you should). Congrats to you and Ike!

  2. Kristin July 12, 2013 at 2:29 pm #

    i’m planning to touch your belly a little bit. But I’m not a stranger. 🙂 jk this is a good list!

  3. Heather July 13, 2013 at 3:53 pm #

    Loved this reminder to treat glowing moms-to-be delicately 🙂 I do think that these are all easily navigated with a pregnant-sized dose of humor- most people mean nothing ugly by what they say, and even strangers can be genuinely excited for you and your new adventure as they remember their time as a new parent or look forward to their turn to have a little bundle of their own. As a mom of 3 kids in 4 years, my LEAST favorite comment (and one that never stops being offensive to me) is the “you know what causes that, right?” …Yes. Yes, we do. And we like it….OK, I never really said that in response, but I wanted to, just for the shock factor!! LOL! We often joked that our family motto was “maternity for eternity”!

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