What NOT to Say

by Anise Flowers

Lately I have been learning that people say really stupid things to pregnant women in the third trimester.  A few of my favorites…

1.    “You look like you are about to POP!”

This was the most detested comment among the mom’s in my birthing class.  As if any woman’s uterus ever burst open like a balloon!  Sometimes I ignore this rude statement.  One evening, in response to this comment from a maître d’, I replied with a smile and an enthusiastic “Thank you!”  Because being on the very of popping open is a compliment, right??


1.    “I’m sorry.”

A few weeks ago, a woman asked about my due date and this was her response when I told her December 13th.  I replied with “Why?”  She went on to explain that all children with birthdays in December (like herself) hate having a birthday in the same month as Christmas.  I was fuming for quite awhile afterward.  No one should say “I’m sorry” to an expectant mom about the birth of her baby.  How dare she feel sorry for my baby boy?  And especially without knowing what I went through to get pregnant and how very much this baby is wanted. 

2.    “You must be so miserable.”

Actually, NO.  I am not miserable or uncomfortable.  I feel great and I still sleep well at night and quite comfortably.  So maybe ask how I am feeling.  But don’t project the worst emotional state onto me as the blessed birth of my baby is approaching.

3.    “You are HUGE!”  or “Is it just one baby?” or “You look ready now.”

My weight gain and my baby’s weight are exactly average.  So being told how BIG you are is obviously a sign that people don’t know what it looks like to be 8 months pregnant.  Just this week, I was teaching a workshop and two ladies said “You look great and skinny – just a baby belly.”  And then a third woman walked up and said “Good lord, you are HUGE”.  Okay, so which is it??  I’m taking the skinny comment!! 


This reinforces for me the adage that everyone else’s opinion is none of my business.  Being big and pregnant is an exercise in remaining centered in who you really are.  And letting the stupid comments roll off your back (or baby belly as the case may be).  I’m certain that this is good practice for parenting as well.  For I’m sure friends and strangers will be weighing with their opinion of my parenting skills in the near future.  I am certain to be told that my baby is spoiled and much more.


What TO Say


“You are going to be a great mother.”

This is by far my favorite comment.  For I feel as if I’m on the verge of beginning to achieve my life’s purpose.  And each time a friend or acquaintance has uttered this statement, it washes over my soul and resonates deep in my heart.  So next time you see a “hugely” pregnant woman, I recommend this wonderfully affirmative statement.

Only 3 weeks left until baby Tucker’s arrival!  While I look forward to meeting him, I continue to enjoy these last days of pregnancy. I feel grateful every day to have had this experience.