Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Things You Should Never Say To A Pregnant Woman (and suggestions for alternatives): A 10 Day Series

It seems we as a culture stink at speaking to pregnant women. Being my second time around the block I am just so tired of comments (especially in public and especially from strangers) that really try my patience and my soul’s contentment. I want to make clear that it is worth enduring these conversations for 6 months…but we could make life a little easier on all pregnant ladies by not having to make them hear these things….and worse, force them to smile and respond to them. :)

I appreciate that you notice I am pregnant and want to make small chat with me but maybe we can switch some of our most common remarks to some I will suggest in this series. 

Let me start off (and please really hear me) by saying that being pregnant is a blessing. I try not to forget this throughout the time I am expecting. When people ask me how I am (especially in public and especially strangers) I try to always respond, “I am well.” Because I am well…no matter what aches or pains I may be having. I am in God’s hands, my baby is in God’s hands, I am well. The Bible clearly teaches that children are a blessing from God. So, I really truly do my best not to complain about pregnancy. Plus, the added awareness that many people struggle to get and remain pregnant breaks my heart and reminds me to stay thankful. 

With all that introductory and disclaimer information done...let's get down to business. Some of these are silly, some funny, some more serious...they are all actual things that have been said to me or people I know. I don't know why our culture insists on saying really stupid things to expectant mothers but I do know that most women want to hide the last 4 weeks of their pregnancy and mostly it's to avoid well-intentioned people. So, again, I'm not saying don't talk to pregnant women...I'm simply asking that you think before you speak. Ok, let's begin with an easy one...

Day One: 
“Don’t you know what causes that?” Yes. We do. Thank you so much for making it abundantly clear that you either think we are having a baby too quickly or are having too many for your liking. Or maybe you just don't know what else to say? Men are the worst offenders of this one. This is neither clever nor original. Let’s drop it from our lexicon. 
Alternative: “Congratulations”

An added disclaimer: I wrote this while pregnant but never published it. It seemed a bit self serving at the time. Now that I am no longer expecting I feel better about sharing for, I think, the general good of pregnant women everywhere. :) 

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