As I get closer to my due date (less than 3 months now!), and I get bigger…and BIGGER, I find myself becoming more sensitive to the casual comments from other people about my weight, what I’m eating, and the like. I still don’t think people mean to be offensive or anything, they’re simply just making conversation, or comparing me to their former pregnant selves or someone they know that’s preggers, but at times I’m like; really people, are you seriously saying that to me right now?? So I thought I’d do a little public service announcement (PSA) to help everyone out there know where they could be potentially stepping into a minefield of pregnant girl emotions. This way, you’ll all be wiser when it comes to what topics to avoid when talking to a preggers. Here goes…
So, how much weight have you gained so far?
This question – no matter how innocent it is – is innately offensive to a 7-month pregnant person. You may just be curious, but it’s sort of like a man asking a woman how old she is – you just don’t do it! I mean, why are you asking me this question? Do I look like I’ve put on a lot of weight to you? Are you judging me knowing that I still have 3 months to go and that could potentially be another 12 lbs or so? ARE YOU SAYING I’M FAT????? …This is where my mind goes when you ask me this question. So just don’t. I’ll admit, I’m probably guilty of this in the past too, asking my friends because I wanted to see where they bumped up against the magical 25-35 lb. recommended pregnancy weight gain scale. But why did I ask anyway? To judge them if they tipped the scales too high? To tell myself I’d never do that when I’m pregnant? I don’t know, but now I know to never ask this question! And now you know too!
Are you eating another snack?
Wellllll, if you saw me eating a snack an hour ago and I’m eating another one now, then yes, I’m eating another snack. But now you’ve just called attention to it, and now I feel self-conscious and think you’re judging me!! Never mind that snack #1 was a 100-calorie cottage cheese snack pack and snack #2 were grapes – suddenly I feel like a major hog. Look, I bring my lunch to work 5 days a week and I fill it with light, low calorie snacks and lunches. I’m talking oatmeal for breakfast, grapes mid-morning, a 230-calorie salad kit for lunch, cottage cheese and carrot/grape/pretzel snack packs in the afternoon and an apple after I work out. That’s actually pretty good! Yes, I’m eating about every 90 minutes or so, but jeez, I’m hungry – this stuff is rabbit food!!!!! Sure, occasionally I’ll have a brownie that is left over in the break from a meeting or something, but so what! The baby wanted it – not me!!!!
When are you due? Oh July? What…are you going to have like, a 9 lb. baby or something?
Yes, this is a very specific example and yes it was said to me recently at work! I don’t think the perpetrator meant harm by it, but do I think she was trying to shame me from overeating or whatever she assumed I must be doing – yes. Again, I don’t think people realize how sensitive preggers are to comments about weight. So just please, don’t say this kind of stuff!
You’re about to pop!
Whatever you do – don’t say this either. Especially if you don’t know the preggers and you’re just trying to make friendly conversation on the train or something. You have no idea if she literally is about to pop, as in, she’s due any minute – or if she’s only 7 months pregnant!! I had a pregnant coworker complain to me a few months back that people would say this to her and she’d have to tell them that she was only 6 or 7 months pregnant. This is similar to you asking a non-pregnant person if she’s pregnant because she’s got a noticeable pooch – minefield people, MINEFIELD!!
You know, you told the doctor you’re eating really healthy Courtney, but I found an empty McDonalds McFlurry in the trash can…
Yes, another very specific example, this time from my husband. First of all; what is he doing going through the trash??? What, is he like part of the C.I.A. now? Is he monitoring my preggy dessert splurges? And secondly, that was NOT my McFlurry! That was my friends – I had the hot fudge sundae and it was small! And it didn’t even have nuts! Jeez! It’s really easy to judge a pregnant girl when she’s ordering dessert at a restaurant and you’re not. All the while, the non-preggo can sit back and order beer after beer like it’s nothing! HELLO! What do you think all those beers are? Can you say: CALORIE BOMB!? Hey, it all adds up buddy! I figure, I’m not binge drinking on the weekends anymore, so I can enjoy that dessert after dinner occasionally if I want to. Leave me alone!
So that’s that. Whatever you do, heed my warning please. Don’t go being stupes and asking all these horribly insensitive questions to a girl that may (or may not) be struggling with body image issues, weight gain concerns, etc. I know pregnancy is a beautiful thing and something to revel in, but it doesn’t change the fact that deep in our psyche, we feel a little self-conscious of our large and in charge bodies. The new cellulite, the boobs resting on the tummy, the thunder thighs – it can do something to a girl. So leave the topic of her weight and her eating off limits! Don’t say I didn’t warn you! 🙂