The 10 Most Annoying People That You Meet When Pregnant

Categories: Parenting

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Recently a friend and colleague of mine announced that she was expecting twins, her first pregnancy. Isn't weird when you wake up one day to find that when people tell you they're pregnant you automatically think, "Congratulations!" instead of, "What are you going to do?" No? Just me? OK...

My friend, charming, intelligent, and talented woman that she is, did admit that she was scared, and that's a normal feeling. Childbirth isn't without its dangers, she's about to go through many physical ch-ch-ch-changes, and then you have that whole caring-for-a-tiny-human thing to deal with for the rest of your life.

I could spend the next 700 words telling her how everything will be all right, miracle, love, family, and you get to play with Play-Doh again without folks looking at you like some of your genes misfired. I could, but I won't. Instead I think I'll warn her because you being pregnant cause ch-ch-ch-changes (It's stuck in my head, OK?) in otherwise normal people all around you. There are ten specifically you need to be on the lookout for.

See also: 10 First Moments in Parenting That No One Warns You About

The Palmer: Something about a big belly full of baby seems to throw all sense of personal boundaries about touching strangers out the freakin' window. Old ladies and guys with comb-overs seem to be particularly likely to just reach out and palm your expanded universe like it's a hand-pad that will unlock the oxygen on Mars with only the most cursory of introductions.

You how goddamn creepy that would be to do to a person who wasn't pregnant? Like if I just waltzed up to a soccer mom in the grocery store and touched her stomach? That's just asking for a Mace breath mint. The second you start to show, though, get ready for to be humanity's personal squishy touch thing.

The Downer: Sometimes you being pregnant brings up tragedies for other people regarding their own experiences. While you don't really want to hear about a possible awful fate when you're already scared, try to be sympathetic.

However, there's another class of people that really didn't want to have children when they did and only did so because they thought it was the right thing. They'll gleefully tell you how they never lost the weight, never slept right again, or how their sex or love lives were forever ruined. Basically, they're trying to piss in your corn flakes because if they should taste a bit of piss with every spoonful then by God so should you.

The Lactivist: Let me be very clear... I am extremely pro-breastfeeding. My wife did it for a year. I fully support any law that comes along requiring employers to respect the right for a woman to feed or pump breast milk and to provide a clean safe place to do so. Breastfeeding is truly the best thing you can do to feed your child.

Some people, though, turn it into a religion, and they're worse than Jehovah's Witnesses when they descend on you. They never ask if you're planning on breastfeeding, they just start shouting statistics and warning dire consequences should you not comply. Some of them even balk at bottle-feeding with pumped milk, and on the scale of annoying adherents they're usually just slightly behind hardcore pot legalization enthusiasts.

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24 comments
racetrack90
racetrack90

I know a woman (we used to be friends but she got mad when I pointed out some things to her that she should keep in mind) that was both a lactivist and anti-circ woman. She insulted my mom because when I was born she couldn't breast feed because she couldn't produce milk. She got mad when women were asked to cover up to the point she went to a flight company saying don't use them, I never have, but they don't allow breast feeding on the plane. She got mad when I mentioned there are slings where you can cover up without covering your child. She went nuts when I pointed out she just wanted reasons to whip her tits out in public which was flat out true. She exaggerated it to the point of stupidity. She also attacked women that circumcised their boys. She also got mad when I said it is none of my business if a woman circumcises their child or not then started saying female circumcision without realizing circumcision in females is way more dangerous than boys. 

I hate women that shame based on most of this stuff on the list but the pro life crap really ticks me off. I had one guy that is pro life blame me for my sexual and physical assault by a partner. I am pro choice but never will I force a woman to have an abortion, adopt, or give birth. I keep getting told by pro liars (as I call them because there is a difference in pro life and pro liar) go fix myself because right now abortion is the best pick for me. If I gave birth, my child would automatically be taken into foster care if we didn't move. And I'd rather finish up my schooling than give birth at the moment. I have goals that will bring myself in a better position to have children because I will be making more money, I will be able to work out of my home, and I will have more time for my children. I already have a step daughter (from a previous relationship but I raised her so she is mine) and she has even said at seven years old if I was told I would die or lose a baby she'd rather the baby die. I have a reason to live so f you pro liars.

Jef Withonef
Jef Withonef

They do that kiddo. Look on the bright side, I made fun of them in print ;)

Dana Nutt
Dana Nutt

Ugh, I got harassed by a lactivist in the aisles of Target for an hour when I was pregnant with my daughter. I am incapable of breast feeding and that woman made me feel like I was a horrible person.

Houston Haynes
Houston Haynes

Dont forget , "Ah,you can always try for a boy next time", "you sure it's not twins", and "you are only four months pregnant" person(s). Honorable mention goes to " Oh,you are not having contractions who also kept referring to C- section as getting 'cut' nurse.

Sam Samson
Sam Samson

I used to work at Babies R Us. I know the kind of advice most people give new mothers. It's called "Unwanted".

ms.melissahunter
ms.melissahunter

That last month of pregnancy when I was huge and uncomfortable, I did not find the "Haven't you had that baby yet?!" comments funny at all. 

Calilopy
Calilopy

This is a great post...I'm on round #2, and have had my fair share of all of these.  Funny thing, I had a c-section the first time around (unplanned, obviously), and now before people start to tell me how dangerous it is, I'm quick to point out that my 10 lb baby really was never going to fit through my "lady parts", a fact which was confirmed by pretty much everyone in the hospital.  If you are in the small percentage of people who are lucky enough to not have complications, more power to you, but as for me, I'm on board with modern science.  

I'd add to this list the person who has no idea what a "5 months pregnant" person looks like v. a "8 months pregnant".  Half the time I'm told "i'm barely showing" and other times people say "wow, there's the baby"...no one has any clue.  This time I know just to smile and move on to  another subject.

Oh and we are totally secret namers.  WIth some overly loving & involved family, we just decided we wanted the right to a) not hear everyone's comments ahead of time to change our minds and b) completely change our minds at the last minute.  I mean, what if she's born and you're like, wow that's really a Dana. :)

Kristina Michel
Kristina Michel

As a direct opposite to The Downer, I'd like to submit The Annoyingly-Positive Mom. She already has four kids, equates being pregnant with the second coming of Jesus, can't wait to tell you how much you'll LOVE being a mama. Now that you're pregnant, she feels you've entered some kind of secret moms club and uses it as an excuse to casually regale you with every story about every burp, spit-up, crap and cough her babies made and why it's SOO cute - because it's not enough that said children's own parents have that ammo to embarrass them with with they get older. We must all have it too. She immediately shells out the 20-gigs worth of pictures her little bundles of joy she's loaded into her phone and eagerly anticipates the day when you will send pictures of yours, beginning with the ultrasound shots and running all the way through the end of your maternity leave. And God help you if this person is a co-worker because then you'll be obligated to bring your newborn to work so that she and the rest of the moms clique can poke and prod it all the while dumping on even more unsolicited advice and embarrassing child-rearing stories.

ElizabethA
ElizabethA

My favorite is the "When are you due?" I get a variety of responses, either I'm too small and look great or I get the "Are you sure you're not having twins?" Those are the worst :(

MadMac
MadMac

This whole thing was fun but "That's just asking for a Mace breath mint," is MONEY. We've finally stopped getting the "so, why haven't you two had children yet," question and associated "solutions." I especially love that question from the oh-so-concerned parent who's kid is trying to set fire to the family dog with the neighbor's acetylene torch even as we speak. Good stuff, Mr. F.

cfein
cfein

And this is another reason I love your stuff. You do not write as though women are a somewhat different species, the not-default of the human race, something Other. You include women... in each fine point of the language you choose, you comprise women within humanity. This was not a mansplanation of what them wimmins hate when they're pregnant. It was a 'splanation by somebody who gets it. Even better: In the event this is something you have to work at (and I can understand why it might be)... you can't tell that this wasn't written as it would naturally occur to you.

One example of this little pet peeve o' mine: Check the warning label on booze in the US. "(1) According to the Surgeon General, ***women*** should not drink alcoholic beverages during pregnancy because of the risk of birth defects. (2) Consumption of alcoholic beverages impairs ***your*** ability to drive a car or operate machinery, and may cause health problems.” 

Now -- Did it serve a purpose to use the word "women" and NOT "you" in that first instance? Are there new drinkers around who don't know that women are currently the only ones of us who get pregnant? Or, wait, are women exempt from that 2nd one, because they're not specifically mentioned? Grrr. I have always wanted to know who wrote that thing. It's hard to annoy me after a few drinks, but that warning manages to.

Mary Catherine Graham
Mary Catherine Graham

They forgot the acquaintances who want to be your best friend all of a sudden.

AwesomeMargie
AwesomeMargie

I was one of those who kept my kid's name a secret.  The reason I did it was no matter what I was going to name him, people were going to comment on it positively or negatively especially since I was going to name him after my brother.  After my son was born, people still commented on it but at least I got to tell them that they were too late.  

drusilla.grey
drusilla.grey

Oh how I hated the majority of these people each time I was pregnant! The touchers were my most hated. Next were the fear mongers who felt it necessary to give me every birth and pregnancy horror story they'd ever heard. And completing the most hated trinity were the unsolicited advice givers. Like the jerks in the grocery store who flip out on you for having French cheese and wine in your cart. Hey assholes, just because I'm knocked up doesn't mean my husband or guests have to suffer my dietary restrictions.

The only advice I ever give is to rest, relax, and burn the What to Expect book because it is a collection of awful scenarios. The week by week books are better.

JefWithOneF
JefWithOneF topcommenter

@cfein This is pretty much my favorite comment ever.

MadMac
MadMac

Either positively or negatively, huh? No grey area of "he/she/it is not my tax deduction, so I don't care?"

Hera_Caine
Hera_Caine

@drusilla.grey  I was somewhere in the neighborhood of 8 mos pregnant with my 3rd kid when I was told by a clerk at a hell-mart that she couldn't "in good conscience" sell me a 6 pack of beer and a pack of cigarettes for my then husband who wouldn't be off work in time to buy the beer himself.  She told me that she didn't trust that it wasn't for me. I broke down into tears, sobbing and told her that she'd better get her manager or I'd be calling corporate and giving them her name.  Her manager was more than happy to sell me said beer and cigarettes, and then carried it out to my car for me while I carried a screaming toddler. 

I say, a beer won't hurt you. now if you are binge drinking... yeah, that might be an issue. But for me, I like my steak rare, my cuts cold, my cheese soft, my eggs runny, and my fish raw.... and to hell with anyone that tells me I can't do it.

MadMac
MadMac

That touchy-thingy is ASSAULT. My sister has five kids and if ANYONE, husband included, touch her belly, she would've broken their arm off and beaten them to death with it. What the h3ll is wrong with people? You don't go pushing up on the kid after their born--well some do and that's why God gave us ankle monitors and offender lists.

AwesomeMargie
AwesomeMargie

@MadMac Lol.  I wish.  When the hell did being pregnant open the public to comments?  "Are you going to breastfeed?  It's for the best.  Natural birth?  You shouldn't drug your baby.  Circumcision?  It's barbaric."   Back off guys, I just passed the 12th week.  Shit.

MadMac
MadMac

Dr. Ross Lence said you can judge a society by the questions asked in it. We're a crass--entirely in need of a boot to the mouth--society, I'll tell you that.

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