Sure, I’m emotional. I’m 33 weeks pregnant with baby two. I’m at the point where my tears have few limits while scrolling through social media. Puppies – blub. Babies – Blub. Blub. Inspirational stories – Blub, blub, blub.
So it’s no surprise I was extra annoyed by the Ralphs cashier yesterday. But some people really are so clueless when it comes to how to talk to a pregnant woman. That, or they like to compare everything about their birth experience to the experience you must be having, because you know, every pregnancy is the same.
As the cashier was ringing up my bounty, she asked, “So when are you due?”
I smiled and replied, “January.”
“Oh wow, you look like you are ready to go now. That’s what I looked like when I gave birth!”
Seriously – Are some people just unaware of the vomit they are about to spew when they open their mouth?! I’ve gained a total of 22 lbs., which mind you is already more than I gained in total with my first pregnancy (so I’m a bit self concise), but honestly, I didn’t think it was totally out of control…until now.
The grocery store train wreck didn’t end there. She declared, “Early January, I hope!”
“Actually January 23rd,” I mumbled.
She didn’t even pause, as if she had noticed how awkward the conversation had become. Biggest eye roll ever.
Thanks for commenting on my body’s beach ball similarity, said no pregnant woman ever. I just left shaking my head.
I’m not suggesting you walk on pins and needles around every obviously pregnant woman. Just please stop to think of something positive and uplifting to say before you open your mouth.
Pregnant mamas have a lot on their mind. They probably haven’t had comfortable sleep in awhile, they may feel like they are running out of acceptable clothes that fit, and they’re probably starting to think about this gigantic watermelon that soon has to exit their perfect peach.
After two pregnancies, the grocery store conversation was obviously not the only clueless run in I had. Here are a few things I’ve heard that I wouldn’t recommend using as your one liner:
“Is it really safe to be running while you are pregnant?”
“You wanted that decaf right?”
A coworker who said, “Your pregnancy has been way to easy, something bad has got to happen.”
A cousin who said, “Why would you want a natural birth? You wouldn’t get your tooth removed without pain meds. Why would you do it with a baby?”
“You look like you’re ready to Pop!”
Obviously none of these made me feel warm and fuzzy inside.
Thankfully, I’ve had some positive interactions that have taught me what can really make a pregnant woman’s day. Here are a few:
“Wow, that’s awesome that you are still working out!”
“From behind you don’t even look pregnant.”
A coworker that wished me a quick and easy delivery.
An aunt who said, “I honestly believe you are strong enough to achieve a natural birth.”
A guy who simply clapped for me when I ran by him on the trail.
Strangers that held the door open, or offered to carry things for me.
Pregnancy and childbirth can be a real mind f*ck for a woman. Please don’t traumatize her with negativity. Heed the old advice: If you can’t say something nice, please don’t say anything at all. We really don’t want to hear it.