Okay, y'all might remember that my ENFJ personality took over a few months back and we had a little talk about how to handle certain phrases tactfully. (Go ahead and brush up in case you missed it.) Clearly, it is time for another one of those little talks. Pregnancy Style this time.
-Wow, you're about to pop; Any minute now, huh?, or any variation on that theme.
This is problematic because it might not actually be a dire as it appears. And if it isn't? Not only did you just imply to a hormonal, anxious, and sensitive woman that she looks ten months pregnant, but you simultaneously reminded her that she actually still has some growing to do. Honestly, I didn't have to deal with this with either of my other pregnancies, but this one has me looking like Big Mama and I have been surprised at how free people are with their comments. Be gentle on those hormones, instead?
When are you due? Or, I bet you're ready to meet that sweet baby!
This avoids any emotional meltdowns about size, discomfort, or wait times. You put the ball in their court to gush about their impending blessing, which they will no doubt be happy to do if you have avoided offending their every sensibility.
-I bet you hope it's a girl/boy!
This is problematic because even if said pregnant woman does have a preference you are getting into "way too personal" territory. If you don't already know she wishes for one or the other then you are not close enough to suggest it. Truthfully, thought, even if a woman had a preference before her pregnancy, this is a time wrought with weird dream, anxious thoughts being thrown at her from every direction, and dreams of just getting through to snuggle a little baby. I got this a lot when I was pregnant with Ava and I get it even more now that I have had two girls. Want to know how disappointed I was that Ava is a girl? Exactly 0%. I expect the same percentage this time as well, no matter what the gender.
Are you finding out if it's a boy or girl? When? Have you picked out a name? Are you sharing?
I don't know a single expectant mom that isn't excited about her decision to find out or (as in our case) not find out. One little turn of a phrase and you will probably get her gushing instead of awkwardly trying to run away from you. Basically it's never okay to just assume you know what some one wants. (You know what assuming does!!!)
-You look tired.
Let's actually just strike this phrase from our language all together, shall we? This problem goes far and beyond pregnant women and new mommies. Why? Because you are looking at someone's physical appearance and then making a judgement call. You basically just told someone they don't look "good" or up to whatever standard you have in your head for a well rested person. I actually have someone in my life that mentions how tired I look every time they see me without a full face of make up, needless to say I don't enjoy being around this person.
Another reason it's a problematic statement? Because usually if someone really does look tired it is because they actually are tired and pointing out to that person that not only are they actually sleep deprived but they look it as well is in no way helpful, uplifting, encouraging that person to share with you. Instead?
Hand them a Starbucks gift card and back away slowly.
Or if you absolutely must say something, let them know they seem to be handling things well. However that only applies if you actually know the situation they are in, so really probably best to just hand over the caffeine and back away. If they want to talk about it they will. If not, your safe.
That last one applies to me right now specifically as I don't sleep the last two months of pregnancy. Almost at all. I mean, I'm tired when I have a newborn, but right now the circles under my eyes make me look like I have two black eyes. UGH!
Hopefully you found this little guide helpful and maybe you could gentle pass it on to someone who needs a little redirection. :)