Let’s be honest. Pregnancy is already a dreadful enough process as it is. A small alien takes over a woman’s body for 9 months, controlling her every move, making her sick, tired, overly emotional and ravenously hungry for months on end. It is not always fun or delightful or comfortable. And that’s WITHOUT outside judgment or prying questions into this intimate process taking place in her uterus. There are a few key questions that you should not ask a preggo, but these seem to come up often in conversations and I honestly don’t think people know that these questions can be offensive or intrusive. Well if you don’t know, now you know:
1. “Are You Carrying Twins”?
This should be a no-brainer but I have unfortunately heard this question too many times for my comfort during this pregnancy. Under no circumstances is it acceptable for you to ask a pregnant lady if she is carrying twins UNLESS she volunteers that information. The underlying assumption is that you’re telling her “You are FAT AS HELL. There have to be two humans in there.” And that is not always the case *smiles and waves* Preggos are already hyper-conscious of their size, the way they’re carrying and how they may be perceived by outsiders. Please don’t make it worse by insinuating that the reason they’re carrying big is because there’s more than one baby in their womb.
2. “Have You Picked Out a Name?”
Tread carefully with this one. If the preggo in question is a close friend or family member, I think it’s totally fine to ask. If not – it’s really none of your business. They may have some names in mind but want to keep it a surprise. Or, they may be internally having extreme anxiety because they’re weeks away from meeting their munchkin and they still don’t have a name picked. Either way, its personal. So unless mama volunteers names or asks for your input/suggestions, just don’t ask. Look at Beyonce – her twins’ names weren’t even confirmed until weeks after they were born. It’s a personal decision and everyone should respect that.
3. “Are You Having a Natural Childbirth?”
This question can come with quite a bit of controversy and can also be a little offensive. If I’m planning to have a natural childbirth and then I end up getting an epidural, am I suddenly less “strong” or a “bad mother” from Day 1? These are all things the mama-to-be is constantly thinking about already. I think it’s perfectly fine to talk about YOUR personal birth story and share anecdotes and advice based on experience. But please don’t expect every mama to know exactly how they plan to bring their baby into the world. And do not judge them outwardly based on their answer. Let her volunteer the information and if she doesn’t, the topic is off limits.
4. “Did You Conceive Naturally?”
This question can be especially intrusive for a couple that may have struggled with fertility. If the couple has been open/vocal with YOU about their past fertility issues, you should still tread lightly but it may be ok to ask. Anyone else, don’t even go there. It’s a very sensitive subject for women and men who have been trying to conceive. And, to be honest, it shouldn’t matter. A healthy baby is a healthy baby, whether conceived naturally or via fertility treatment.
5. “Why Don’t You Want to Know The Sex?”
Listen folks – some people just don’t care to know up front. Technology is a beautiful thing. It has allowed us the ability to see the sex of our babies in advance and that’s wonderful. But it’s not for everyone. Consider that some women may have experienced miscarriages or failed pregnancies in the past and so their only concern is a HEALTHY baby. Other families are just traditional and would prefer to wait. And still others like the thrill and surprise of finding out on delivery day. I personally didn’t want to know the sex of my baby until 3rd trimester, so I’m having a gender reveal/shower all in one. Either way – it’s a personal choice. You asking “why” is essentially implying there’s something wrong with that choice.
I don’t proclaim to be an expert in pregnancy etiquette but now that this is my second time at the rodeo, I’ve noticed a few patterns. I wouldn’t be a good friend if I didn’t inform you all that some of your questions COULD be deemed offensive and inappropriate.
Have you asked any of these questions? If the answer is “yes”, it’s ok! Don’t feel bad for what was said or done when you weren’t properly informed. But now that you know, please take responsibility and have only positive and respectful conversations with the preggos you come in contact with. They are already going through ALOT, emotionally and physically, so the best thing you can do is support them with positivity and let THEM guide and direct the conversation so you don’t push the wrong buttons.
Curious to hear your thoughts! Leave a comment below – let me know what you think.