Nobody tells you that being pregnant means that your belly becomes public property… From the moment you announce the exciting news it quickly starts to feel like everyone has an opinion about your growing baby bump… and they have no reservations sharing it with you.
Below are some of the comments and actions that have made the greatest impression upon me:
– “Are you SURE you’re pregnant?” Yes I’m sure, he’s kicking me in the kidneys right now making me need to use the restroom every 30 minutes.
– “One of these days you will wake up and be huge.” Gee, I was excited about my growing baby bump, but you just made me feel like a beached whale.
– “How much weight have your gained?” When did this become an acceptable question outside of the doctor’s office?
– “My belly is larger then yours and I’m not even pregnant.” Hmm, how do I politely respond to this statement…
Then when my baby bump finally started to become obvious, even to total strangers, I was not prepared for…
– “Looks like you are due any day.” Considering a few days before people were exclaiming how small I am, I was quite caught off guard and suddenly felt like a blimp at 8mo pregnant.
– Strangers with no warning reach out and grab your belly. You know in some countries that would be considered battery, but somehow being a human incubator means anyone can touch you without permission.
– Then of course there are those who do ask first, well kind of, it’s more like they indicate their intentions prior… It typically goes something like: “Is the baby kicking?” Then without hesitation they proceed to grab me and speak directly to my belly: “Hi baby, are you awake?”… Long awkward pause…“Baby, are you in there?” Yeah, as evidenced by my huge belly, he is definitely still in there.
-Then of course being pregnant is an instant invitation for everyone to share their own horror stories of pregnancy, labor, and delivery. Why do people always want to tell you the worst parts? But this we will save for another day.
Prior to pregnancy these intrusions into my privacy and personal space probably would have made me laugh. However, when your body is surging with hormones– you alternate between feeling like a human incubator and feeling like a weight watchers commercial in reverse– meaning simple comments can send you on an emotional roller coaster or lead to tears.
Thanks for stopping by!
Dr. Patricia Bast was born and raised in Southern California. She earned a bachelors degree in science at UC Irvine, then went on to graduate medical school from Touro University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Northern California. After several years working as a pediatrician Dr. Bast choose to expand her training to include lactation consultant. Dr. Bast is now raising her children and taking care of patients in beautiful Georgia.