The other day a lady asked me how much weight I’d gained during my pregnancy. My immediate feeling was “how rude!” When I truthfully replied that I hadn’t weighed myself since Christmas, so had no idea, she told me rather gleefully that she’d gained FIVE stone when pregnant for the first time. She went on to describe the look on her midwife’s face, “as if I’d murdered someone”. So I had to revise my initial assessment: she didn’t mean to be rude, she just wanted to share her own pregnancy experience with me… Still though, that question is a sensitive one for any woman!
This did start a chain of thought about all the questions I’ve been asked so far during my pregnancy, and all the classics that are surely still to come. Far and away the most common one has been whether it’s a boy or girl. As yet I haven’t plucked up enough courage to reply “I hope so”! Close on its heels have been ones about morning sickness, how I’m feeling in general, and whether we have everything ready for the baby.
Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition
So far, so standard. Unlike the fictional Emma from Emma’s Diary, I have NOT been asked the following, and do hope I manage to escape as they are pretty embarrassing:
– Was it planned?
– Are you happy about it?
And more of a personal comment than a question:
– Blimey, you look huge/tiny.
Actually, I have been informed I look huge/tiny, mostly by acquaintances – I know that when friends and family comment on the size of my bump it is more to do with how it is amazing that a baby is in there, rather than a superficial critique on my body shape. My stock response now is that having been measured by both my GP and midwife, my bump is in fact bang on average for this stage of pregnancy. That usually staves off any further opinion sharing about my personal appearance!
In real life, I really don’t understand the mindset of someone who would ask whether a pregnancy was planned. What if the woman answers “no”? What then? Awkward! And whether she is happy – again, it would be so tempting to respond “no, not really” just to see them squirm in embarrassment.
It gets worse. A Telegraph article describes the Top 10 things not to say to a pregnant women. Apparently all of these proper foot in mouth moments actually happened! My personal favourites are:
– Is it twins?
– What birth control were you using?
– Who’s the father?