I’m just a regular dude. I have a steady job, good manners, and a happy family life. I’m far from some new wave, male feminist with an agenda and a heavy axe to grind. But I can’t believe the way many people still talk to pregnant women in our society today.
As we prepare to welcome our third (and final) child into this world, I thought I’d reflect back on all of the dumb things said to my wife, so that, just maybe, we can make some progress in the arena of common politeness.
Here are 10 things you should never say to an expecting mother:
WOW! You’re really popping out!
Is this meant to be a compliment or just a general narration of what everyone else in the room can plainly see? Thanks, Captain Obvious! When you’re done calling out random facts, tell me where I can find a cheap room on Hotels.com.
Are you sure there aren’t twins in there?
Are you sure you don’t want to get punched in the face? Have you ever seen a pregnant woman before? Have you ever seen a woman before?
Hopefully, you answered yes to all of these questions, which means you are entirely aware there is a growing human being inside of that body. From what I recall about standard etiquette, it’s impolite to comment on a person’s body, especially if that person is in a very vulnerable and hormonal state of being.
I bet it’s a (insert gender) because (insert wives’ tale)!
Thanks, jackass. You realize this is a classic 50/50 scenario, and there’s a good chance you’ll be out of sheer luck. Don’t smile like you just cracked the Da Vinci code using sacred knowledge your Aunt Susan passed down.
It is annoying when people say this and even more annoying when they gloat about being correct later. So save it.
After touching belly without permission...Hey there, little (insert generic pet name)!
I’ve never actually seen this, but I’ve heard about it. I would 100 percent slap you into unconsciousness if this happened in front of me. I don’t care if you’re a cute, enfeebled, 80-year-old man with a dog and a walking stick.
Don’t get an epidural.
That’s so weird you feel that way. Because every single medical practitioner in our advanced and civilized society feels the exact opposite. Epidurals are so safe that literally every single delivery room in the United States of America is equipped to perform this request, should it be necessary.
Thanks, Donald Trump! If you’ve ever said this to a pregnant woman, you are a terrible person and you honestly just ruined her day. As well as mine.
End of story.
Make sure you breastfeed! It’s so much more healthy!
Thanks for the pro tip, lady next to us in the checkout line.
Make sure you don’t drink all that Mountain Dew in one sitting. Make sure you get some cardio in after five pints of Ben & Jerry’s. You know there’s a whole section where they sell fruits and vegetables, right? Good talk.
WOW! Another one!
Yeah, she probably didn’t know massive numbers like two and three were so hard for you to quantify. Next time, we’ll invite the whole town over for their thoughts on the logistical nightmare we could potentially inflict upon the community by housing another child under our roof.
Did you plan it?
Did you plan that Philadelphia Eagles logo tattoo?
How do people not get that this is about as obnoxious and invasive as you can get?
Are you scared?
We all saw the “Miracle of Life” video in Health class. I’m scared, and I’m not even the one pushing the kid out. Great way to take a mental jab at someone who really doesn’t need it right now.
Now that we’re done talking, you can go give a helpful reminder to the Fire Department that their job is terrifying and they could be burned alive.
Honorable Mention (because, yes, this has actually been said):
Let me stand next to you, I want to look skinny.
What. The. F...!
Sadly, a lot of the people behind these comments intend nothing but well wishes and are simply looking for something to say. Stop and think about the situation for a moment, and you will realize the only acceptable things to say are:
You look great! Congratulations!
Aside from that, let me assure you that silence is golden and, in many situations, preferred over a forced and awkward exchange of redundant dribble. She has heard it all before.