Last week, I was preparing dinner when a neighbor knocked on the door to drop off a package. He and I exchanged maybe 50 words in two years, but when I opened the door and he spotted my bump, he immediately said:
“Ah, you are pregnant! How far? "
"Six and a half months," I replied, smiling.
"Is that all?"
"Well, shit, you're not exactly small, are you?"
I picked up the package, wished him good night, closed the door and burst into tears.
It's a bizarre pregnancy phenomenon that the minute you break your news, everyone in the world suddenly has an opinion about your body and an inexplicable sense of entitlement to express that opinion in your face. You are expected to accept their remarks with a smile, however insulting or insensitive they may be. And this at a time when you are most emotionally vulnerable and your relationship with your body is the most delicate. So, I think it's high time to remind these people that not only is it cruel and indiscreet to comment on a pregnant woman's body, but it is also potentially dangerous. So cut it.
This shit is pretty hard
The pregnancy is amazing. But it's also terrifying. You MAKE A HUMAN. Your sanity can be just as precarious as your bladder control, and what you need more than anything from those around you is empathy, reassurance, and understanding. And yet, it's easy to feel more like an exhibit in a museum than a real person - with every aspect of your body subject to scrutiny and criticism from doctors, midwives, colleagues, parents, street people, like that guy you went to high school. with, your creepy uncle, and the old man on the bus who told you the perineal massage really helped his wife in her third trimester.
And you are expected to be grateful for their interest. Happy to share the intimate details of your last gynecological exam and delighted with their tongue-in-cheek observations on your "waddle". Being pregnant is like being thrown into a pit of snakes and then berated for not smiling while they bite you. This is wrong and could cause serious damage. A disposable comment from a stranger about a pregnant woman's height could lead her to fall into depression or adopt unsafe eating habits in an attempt to make her body more "palatable." Is it really worth the risk to break your two cents?
Why do people think this is correct?
What I find most disconcerting is that these comments are not made exclusively by grandmothers and eight year olds. I've heard them come from otherwise low-key and sensitive people who would never dream of calling a woman "massive" at any other time in her life. So why now? Why does society have a collective blind spot for the feelings of pregnant women?
I think a good rule of thumb is, if you don't tell her when she's not pregnant, don't tell her when she is. Or - "if in doubt, shut your mouth."
Intent is irrelevant
When I was pregnant with my first daughter, I looked like a stick insect that had swallowed a stone. This time I look like I swallowed a beach ball. So I have had comments from both ends of the spectrum. And here's the problem: they're just as insulting.
When I was pregnant the first time and people told me I was 'tiny' I instantly started to panic that there was something wrong with my baby that I was not doing enough to. feed her, which she missed before she was even there. I felt ashamed of my body and started dreading telling people how far I was and making excuses for my height.
FYI: My baby was fine - but that's not the point. For all these people knew, there might have been issues in my pregnancy that I had chosen not to share - and yet they believed it was their right to tell me my body was wrong.
Worse yet, they were the ones who told me that they "wanted to say it as a compliment", because all I took away was a reminder that there was a "right" and a "wrong" way. to watch during pregnancy and the world judged my body by these standards.
I thought the second time around, I would be too tired to care less what anyone said, but the truth is that comments about my pregnant body still hurt. They really hurt. I am still a person with feelings, insecurities and fears. I also run after a toddler on four hours of sleep during my third trimester, which means my emotional stability is on par with Kathy Bates in Misery. So please be nice. And give me some chocolate.
One final thought
I guess that's what it comes down to in the end: kindness. Right now, I might feel like I've ingested the Death Star, but I don't need to remember it. My skin might be oily and the hair on my legs overgrown, but I'm dealing with a lot of other shit so please unless you mean to tell me that I look like a radiant goddess, I don't want to hear it. Just be nice. And I wasn't kidding about this chocolate.
Have you had to deal with hurtful comments about your pregnant body?
If so, and you want to arm yourself with a smart return for next time we have a few for you.
Our next recos: How to elegantly deal with unsolicited parenting advice
Having a baby is an exciting time that often inspires women to make healthier lifestyle choices and, if needed, work toward a saine body weight. Here you’ll find tips on how to improve your eating and physical activity habits while you’re pregnant and after your baby is born.
These tips can also be useful if you’re not pregnant but are thinking about having a baby ! By making changes now, you can get used to new lifestyle vêtements. You’ll give your baby the best possible start on life and be a saine example to your family for a lifetime.
Gaining an appropriate amount of weight during pregnancy helps your baby grow to a healthy size. But gaining too much or too little weight may lead to serious health problems for you and your baby.
Talk to your health care professional about how much weight gain is appropriate for you. Work with him or her to set goals for your weight gain. Take into account your age, weight, and health. Track your weight at home or when you visit your health care professional. Don’t try to lose weight if you’re pregnant. Your baby needs to be exposed to healthy foods and low-calorie beverages ( particularly water ) to grow properly. Some women may lose a small amount of weight at the start of pregnancy. Speak to your health care professional if this happens to you.
Consuming healthy foods and low-calorie beverages, particularly water, and the appropriate number of kcal may help you and your baby gain the proper amount of weight. How much food and how many calories you need depends on things such as your weight before pregnancy, your age, and how quickly you gain weight. If you’re at a healthy weight, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ( CDC ) External link says you need no extra calories in your first trimester, about 340 extra calories a day in your deuxième trimester, and about 450 extra kcal a day in your third trimester. 1 You also may not need extra calories during the terminal weeks of pregnancy.
Check with your health care professional about your weight gain. If you’re not gaining the weight you need, he or she may advise you to take in more kcal. If you’re gaining too much weight, you may need to cut down on calories. Each woman’s needs are different. Your needs also depend on whether you were underweight, overweight, or had obesity before you became pregnant, or if you’re having more than one baby.
Does your eating plan measure up ? How can you improve your habits ? Try consuming fruit like berries or a banana with hot or cold cereal for breakfast; a salad with beans or tofu or other non-meat protein for lunch; and a lean serving of meat, chicken, turkey, or fish and steamed vegetables for dinner. Think about new, healthful foods and beverages you can try. Write down your ideas and share them with your health care professional.
A vegetarian eating plan during pregnancy can be healthy. Consider the quality of your eating plan and talk to your health care professional to make sure you’re getting enough calcium, iron, protein, vitamin B12, vitamin D, and other needed nutrients. Your health care professional may also tell you to take vitamins and minerals that will help you meet your needs.
Yes. During pregnancy, you need more vitamins and minerals such as folate, iron, and calcium. Getting the appropriate amount of folate is very important. Folate, a B vitamin also known as folic acid, may help prevent birth defects. Before pregnancy, you need 400 mcg per day from supplements or fortified foods, in addition to the folate you get naturally from foods and beverages. During pregnancy, you need 600 mcg. While breastfeeding, you need 500 mcg of folate per day. 2 Foods high in folate include orange juice, strawberries, spinach, broccoli, beans, fortified breads, and fortified low-sugar breakfast cereals. These foods may even provide cent pour cent of the daily value of folic acid per serving.
Most health care professionals tell women who are pregnant to take a prenatal vitamin every day and consume saine foods, snacks, and beverages. Ask your doctor about what you should take. What other new habits may help my weight gain ? Pregnancy can create some new food, beverage, and eating concerns. Meet the needs of your body and be more comfortable with these tips. Check with your health care professional with any concerns.
Eat breakfast every day. If you feel sick to your stomach in the morning, try dry whole-wheat toast or whole-grain crackers when you first wake up. Eat them even before you get out of bed. Eat the rest of your breakfast ( fruit, oatmeal, hot or cold cereal, or other foods ) later in the morning.
Eat high-fiber foods. Eating high-fiber foods, drinking water, and getting daily physical activity may help prevent constipation. Try to eat whole-grain cereals, brown rice, vegetables, fruits, and beans.
If you have heartburn, eat small meals spread throughout the day. Try to eat slowly and avoid spicy and fatty foods ( such as hot peppers or fried chicken ). Have drinks between meals instead of with meals. Don’t lie down soon after eating.
Certain foods and drinks can harm your baby if you have them while you’re pregnant. Here’s a list of items you should avoid.
If you were physically active before you became pregnant, you may not need to change your exercise vêtements. Talk with your health care professional about how to change your workouts during pregnancy.
Being physically réactive can be if you don’t have childcare for your other children, haven’t exercised before, or don’t know what to do. Keep reading for tips about how you can work around these hurdles and be physically réactive.
How can you tell if you’re doing moderate-intensity aerobic activity ? Take the “talk test” to find out. If you’re breathing but can still have a conversation easily—but you can’t sing—that’s moderate intensity.
If you can only say a few words before pausing for a breath, that’s called vigorous-intensity activity. If you were in the habit of doing vigorous-intensity aerobic activity or were physically active before your pregnancy, then it’s likely okay for you to continue these activities during your pregnancy.
You can talk to your health care professional about whether to or how to adjust your physical activity while you’re pregnant. If you have health issues such as obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, or anemia ( too few saine red blood cells ), ask your health care professional about a level of activity that’s safe for you and your unborn baby.
Go for a walk where you real, in a local park, or in a shopping mall with a family member or friend. If you already have children, take them with you and make it a family outing.
Get up and move around at least once an hour if you sit most of the day. When watching TV or sitting at your computer, get up and move around. Even a simple activity like walking in place can help.
Make a plan to be réactive while pregnant. List the activities you’d like to do, such as walking or taking a prenatal yoga class. Think of the days and times you could do each activity on your list, such as first thing in the morning, during your lunch break from work, after dinner, or on Saturday afternoon. Look at your calendar or phone or other device to find the days and times that work best and commit to those partouze.
For your health and safety, and for your baby’s, you should not do certain physical activities while pregnant. Some of these are listed below. Talk to your health care professional about other physical activities you should not do.