1. When I was a parent/pregnant I would…
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While you may have some really good advice to give, keep it to yourself. New moms are already stressed trying to figure out what is best for them and their baby without throwing in everyones two bits. Pregnant women are just trying to figure out how to get that baby out safely. If they want your advice, they will ask for it. If they don’t ask, don’t tell!
2. How are you planning on giving birth?
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There are so many options on how and where to give birth that it can be overwhelming. Plus, it is extremely personal! Whether you are all for c-sections, epidurals, natural births, or hypnobirthing, it is not your decision. Plus, you don’t know health restrictions, insurance coverage (or lack of insurance), and personal beliefs, all things which can influence not only birthing choices, but straight up options.
3. I see you have pregnancy nose.
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Ouch! While you may not mean it in a bad way, and are just trying to say, well it looks like you are getting close and are probably ready to be done, it certainly isn’t a nice thing to say. Pregnant woman have enough changing body image issues to deal with without worrying about their nose. If you are saying this to a new mom, keep reading, you really need this article.
4. Do you wish it had been a boy/girl? What about your spouse?
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The fact that they have told you the gender is information enough. Whether they wished for it or not, let the parent be happy with what they are getting. And no need to plant the seed that their spouse is somehow dissatisfied with them for producing the wrong gender.
5. How many children do you want?
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Seriously, do not ask this question to a new mom. Or an extremely uncomfortable pregnant lady. Or to a woman giving birth. Not only is it extremely personal but it is none of your business. The stress they feel over this question will be more than the tiny bit of enjoyment you may find from hearing the answer. Did I mention that pretty much every new sleep deprived mom does not want another baby?
6. When are you due?
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Even if it is someone you know, most moms-to-be feel anxiety about when the baby will actually come. If you are dying to know and have to ask, be ok with vague answers like “The Spring” or “In a few months”. Oh, and never ever ask this question as a lead-in to the “Are you pregnant?” conversation, or you might be due for an awkward angry encounter.
7. You look like you are ready to pop!
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And what if she is not? Don’t ever assume someone is pregnant, and don’t ever assume someone is about to give birth. I don’t think any pregnant lady appreciates the “popping” metaphor. So don’t risk getting popped in the face and stay away from all forms of it!
8. Wow, you must be having twins!
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Uh-oh. No better way to tell a pregnant lady she is looking exceptionally large. They will tell you if they are having twins. And if they are having twins, don’t proceed to ask them how they were conceived. We have to draw the super-bad-manners-just-don’t-go-there line somewhere, and someone’s fertility and personal sex-life is a great place to start.
9. Are you enjoying eating for two?
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While you may not have any inclination that they are fat, and are instead thinking of your calorie restricted diet, this falls under the “You look extremely fat, lay off the cookies lady” category. Plus, they only need about 300-500 more calories a day, which barely touches our misdrawn stereotype of a ravenous pregnant woman taking over the buffet line.
10. Can I touch your belly?
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If you are asking this question we are glad that you at least just didn’t start rubbing the belly on first sight. If you are asking this question as you rub the belly, then back off. Besides being out of this world creepy, a pregnant ladies belly can be very sensitive and tender to the touch. No one really wants someone to rub their belly, pregnant or not, especially with strangers and acquaintances. They will either awkwardly say yes (unlikely) or even more awkwardly say no, and/or run away. Keep the belly rubbing desires to yourself.