Friday, June 20, 2008

Top Ten Things Never to Say to a Pregnant Woman

Nine pregnancies means I’ve just about heard everything…so as a public service announcement to all well wishers and curious strangers, I provide the following tips to avoid a faux pas in the presence of an expectant mother.

10. "Did you plan this?" If the answer is yes…so? If the answer is no…again…so?

9. "You’re so big! I bet you’re due any day now!" First, if you’ve never seen the woman before, you have no frame of reference for size. Second, unless you’re an obgyn, guessing how far along a woman is in her gestation is a dangerous prospect…if you think due today and she’s seven months, you risk having a large hot chocolate or diet coke jammed up a nostril. Any jury of women would think you got off lightly with only a warning in such a situation.

8. Discussing/dismissing prospective mother’s birth plan…and proposing own alternative –drugs/no drugs/ at home/induction…whatever the substitution/alteration…it’s not what the doctor and patient ordered. This is like going to a restaurant, up to your girlfriend’s table and telling the waitress…I know she ordered Caesar salad and the pasta with cream sauce but she really would like ice tea, some wedding soup and the chicken pesto bowtie pasta. Then telling the girlfriend, “Trust me, you’ll love it.”

7. You’re carrying high/low, sideways, it must be…boy/girl. This changes daily and even by the moment and is also dependent upon wardrobe choices for the day, and gender, well, I’ve taken to saying, “If I didn’t know, I’d say there’s a 50% chance you’re correct.” I’ve had total strangers assure me that the ultrasound was wrong based on their analysis of how my tummy was aligned at the moment. My moral compass forbids me from then asking them, “Want to bet?”

6. Are you going to have any more? Family size decisions involve only two people. ‘Nuff said.

5. Offering to or actually patting the belly before receiving clearance or after clearance has been denied. Big No No.

4. Are you sure there aren’t twins in there? Similar to number 7 and number 9, there is no way that this comment can be considered a compliment.

3. Relating delivery horror stories…72 hours, no epidural worked…husband stuck at job, broken car, had to be delivered by neighbor’s yard man…these bring no comfort to the awaiting pregnant lady. They are battle stories…that create or revive memories of labor that rival post traumatic stress syndrome.

2. Labor inducement tricks…eat olive/mushroom pizza at this restaurant…try jalepenoes in brownies…these things work as well as guess the baby by how she’s shaped. They also usually involve gross combinations that can make even the steeliest of stomachs ill.

1. "Haven’t had that baby yet? Stick a Fork in You, You’re done…" Trust me, the woman 38 weeks pregnant wants to be done…she’d love to be delivering…when she is, you won’t see her…she’ll be at the hospital unless the yardman had to take over because her husband’s stuck at work.

So…what do you say? "Congratulations, how wonderful! When are you due? How are you feeling? And Do you know if it’s a boy or a girl?" Then, if the gestator wishes, who knows, she might even let you feel the baby kick.

Hopefully, this post will save grace, face, and keep all those women suffering through the summer gestating, from stuffing soda/straw up stranger's nose incident free. This has been a public service announcement. We now return you to your regularly scheduled humor blog content.

1 comment:

Josephus Flavius said...

5 myself (8,7,5,3,1). It's amazing how people don't know how rude they're being. Sometimes I actually think they believe what they are saying is the first time we've heard it. They should say to themselves "How would I feel if this is the 50th time I'd heard this question?" before they act.

The "gestator" was a funny added touch.

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