First off- all pregnant women are a little crazy. The degree of craziness is dependent on where they are in their pregnancy, but their hormones are doing completely psycho and unprecedented things. This is normal. And you should absolutely bear this in mind when speaking to a pregnant women. Without further delay, here are a few tips on how to talk to prenant women (bearing in mind that sometimes the best thing is to not say anything at all):
This also applies if you’ve never been pregnant. Yes, I realize that most women don’t vomit past the first trimester. I am not one of those women. And having my 80-year-old neighbor say that I should feel better than I have in my whole life doesn’t actually help me feel better. I feel abnormal, which is not nice. I also don’t want to hear labor and delivery stories from 60 years ago. They are scary and generally not representative of how things are now. The fact that your husband brought you cigarettes in the group recovery room in the hospital should clue you in that times have changed.
Someone send me a postcard with this in big bold letters. Because my mail carrier actually said, “Are we gaining weight or expecting?”. Seriously. He said that. There has to be a pun with “going postal on the post man” or something in here…
If the woman is under a doctor’s care, the doctor is monitoring her weight. You are not her doctor. Even “you’re so tiny” can be offensive to someone having a tough time gaining appropriate weight. And asking “How far are you?… But you’re so big!” is guaranteed to be a losing comment. I will harbor resentment towards that woman for many years, or at least the rest of my pregnancy. You can say something like “you look great!” or “I love that necklace!”. That’s about it.
As a general rule, remember the German proverb, “Never give advice unless asked.” I really, really did NOT want to hear that your stretch marks were so bad that they bled. And I kinda don’t believe you. Let the pregnant women clue you in on whether she wants to talk about the pregnancy at all. If your questions are met with recalcitrance, take that as a clue. She’s still a normal person under all that baby and may want to talk about something that non-pregnant people talk about in an attempt to feel somewhat “normal”. Mountain Kidd, over and out.
Disclaimer: The stupid stuff people say to me knows no bounds. I may follow up on this post at some point before giving birth. It may be irrational. The post may include the tip, “Don’t play a song entitled “pregnant women are smug” for a pregnant women.”.