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Pregnancy Etiquette

Thursday, 13 April 2017  | 

 

#8 Pregnancy Etiquette are you clued up? When someone mentions etiquette I instantly think of meeting the Queen, and which fork you are supposed to eat with at a fancy dinner party. But, who knew there was pregnancy etiquette? I recently came across an article where the fertility expert Zita West describes the accepted protocol when you happen to meet a pregnant person… They include;

Don’t touch her bump This doesn’t tend to really bother me, I guess you wouldn’t go and rub someone’s stomach when they were not pregnant. It is amazing especially in the later stages when others can feel the baby and not just you. Family and friends want to be part of the experience, however I tend to find most of them are completely freaked out by the moving alien rippling across my stomach and stay clear anyway! I have never in two pregnancies had a stranger try and touch me so maybe this is why I am not to fussed with people I know trying to cop a feel!

Don’t ask if she has chosen a name People have different ideas about the name. Some want to keep it private and between themselves, and some do not mind and want to shout it out to the world. We announced Elijah’s name before he was born, and I would probably do it with this baby if we had picked one yet! It is a bit harder as we have not found the sex out, but I don’t think it is especially rude to ask if you have chosen a name for your baby. It is nice to have that bond between you and your partner to have that secret excitement and I find people do not take offence if you tell them it will be announced after the birth!

Don’t look shocked when she says she is pregnant I think everyone looks shocked when you announce a pregnancy as it isn’t every day you announce to the world you are having a child. It is huge news! It deserves a reaction! Unless the person knows you are trying for a baby then of course it will be a bit of shock! Sometimes it can be slightly bittersweet when you yourself are trying and someone says they are pregnant you want to be happy but you also want it to be you sharing this amazing news.

Don’t tell her if she is getting bigger No one likes being told how big they are getting, but it is a fact of pregnancy. You will get bigger, you are growing a human in there. Everyone does have an opinion on your bump, I went to Center Parcs recently and was described as a human submarine, it is a bit rubbish to realise you have lost control of your body but when you remember what you have at the end it makes it worthwhile. I don’t think there is too much you can do either! In my experience, they are describing how big your bump is, and not you per se. Every time I see my Nan I am greeted with, ‘How much bigger are you going to get!’. It can get to me when I am feeling a bit sensitive, but then it is also nice for people to show you some attention and notice how your pregnancy is progressing.

Don’t tell her she is not big enough As I have said everyone has an opinion, where one person sees you as the size of a rhino another doesn’t think you are barely showing. I guess when you are being told you are showing small it can niggle at you and you may then suddenly panic something is wrong. Babies move around, we carry differently everyday as long as you are happy and healthy and you know the baby is, smile and laugh it off.

Do not congratulate her on social media I guess this is a given if the news is still on the down low, however if you have found out someone is pregnant via social media with the obligatory scan pic announcement I do not see any problem with congratulating the pregnancy via social media. Currently, it is likely how you will find out anyway!

Don’t act like she is sick I go through days where I want everyone to acknowledge I am pregnant and wait on me hand and foot, other days I want the world to see how I can do everything myself 6 months pregnant and all. Most of all I just want people to give me cake. If you are not used to having someone pregnant around you, they may not know what you can and cannot do. I also appreciate those who air on the side of caution, it is better to be safe and sorry. Yes, I am pregnant and not sick but there are a lot of things you cannot do/eat/ drink so it can feel like you are! Now, bring me cake.

Don’t tell her labour horror stories I want to know all your horror stories! I asked everyone who gave birth what it was like the first time round and even know on my second-time round I am still as eager to know as much as I can. I guess in my head if I know what could go wrong I am slightly more prepared for it! If anything, I didn’t have enough stories and knowledge for when I gave birth there was so much I still didn’t know.

Do tell her she is doing fine. I don’t think we should just keep this for when someone is pregnant, but when they have given birth, when they are home from hospital and every time you see them! We need to look after all Mums and everyone deserves to know how well they are doing as I bet they feel like they are not at all. We need to ensure we are supporting and looking after Mum’s (and Dad’s) mental health especially in those early days. Plus, who doesn’t want to hear from someone they are doing fine and nailing it?

This etiquette guide had a lot of don’ts and only one do! It seems we cannot do much around a pregnant woman if this guide is anything to go by! It doesn’t take too much to offend me I am more than happy if you tell me I am pretty and bring me cake! What would you add/ remove to the guide?

 

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