Congratulations, Pregnant Mama!

Congratulations, Pregnant Mama!What is it about a pregnant woman that gives other people the feeling that they can just say whatever they’d like? Do they think that the woman has lost her mind and will not remember the comments? I know that most days I felt I had some pregnancy brain, but that did not decrease the sting from some of responses I got when announcing I was pregnant.
“I told you NFP doesn’t work.”
“I thought you were going to wait before you had another.”
“Do you know how this happens?”
“Will this be your last?”
Well, gee. I wasn’t looking for anyone to throw me a party, but a little support would be nice. Many of these comments came from “well meaning”, pro life people.  Some of them were family members.  I brushed these comments off but after a recent encounter, I realized this issue needs to be addressed.
Recently, I was at a small store in my town. My friend, who owns the store, announced to one of the customers that she was expecting her fourth child. The customer’s immediate response “Don’t you know about birth control?” It was said with a smile and a laugh, so I guess it was meant to be funny. My friend looked horrified and gave a fake laugh and a half smile. But I sat there cringing. The woman left the store and my friend sighed. I told her that the woman was rude to say that and she mentioned that she’s been getting similar comments from others. I left the store and I was so upset that even my passive-aggressive, non confrontational-Midwestern self couldn’t keep it to myself. (I guess living on the East Coast for the last 10 years has finally gotten to me). I walked up to the woman and (very nicely I might add) told her never to say something like that to a woman who announces that she is pregnant. She looked surprised.  She became defensive and told me that it was a joke and that she meant no harm by it. I told her that I realized it was meant to be a joke, but it wasn’t funny, especially if you follow it through to it’s intended meaning. She just told a woman—a woman who was obviously happy about being pregnant—that the child she is carrying could have been prevented. That is rude and in the future, she should keep those thoughts to herself.  I didn’t win her over, but I said what needed to be said and went on my way.
So what’s the solution? It really is quite easy. When someone announces they are pregnant—it doesn’t matter what their situation is—it doesn’t matter if you are shocked—there is one acceptable response. “Congratulations” or some other form of happiness is the proper response. It doesn’t matter if it is your sister,  your best friend, or a stranger. Say “Congratulations!” This will suffice. If you’d like to offer assistance in any way, that’s fine. But it’s not the time to get snarky or nosy.  Show the woman that you support her.  Show her that the idea of new life is something to be cherished and celebrated.  Save your jokes and negativity for something else.
Have you ever received a less than acceptable response when announcing your pregnancy?
photo credit: Lauren via photopin (license)

Katie Murry

Katie Murry

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email

3 thoughts on “Congratulations, Pregnant Mama!”

  1. I can sympathize, I’ve been there. Mostly from family, and used-to-be close friends. The key is in the statement “Show the woman you support her.” That is why others make those horrifying statements – they’re trying to show (and doing a darn good job of it) that they *don’t* support her. That they don’t support this decision, and that somehow they should have been consulted if there was the expectation to offer and give support.
    Then the pregnant-women spend the rest of the time trying to pretend to that they don’t need support from their family and friends. And when something happens that proves they do, the response is still not “I support you”. It’s “You shouldn’t have had [so many] kids.” It’s hurtful.

  2. I appreciate this article so much. Unfortunately, I have been on the receiving end of rude comments regarding my pregnancies. It always hurts and is never acceptable. As women it is imperative for us to be loving towards one another regardless of our opinions.

  3. It seems the best response is a sincere comment that shows that you really do know where children come from and that this is a desired pregnancy. When I was pregnant with my fifth baby, I remember more than one person making some negative comments. I always said (with a smile) that my husband and I felt a moral obligation to raise children who would be productive members of society. That usually cut off negative comments.
    One time I was walking on the sidewalk with a friend, and we had about 8-9 children between us. A woman who was out in her yard commented, “I’m happy all those kids are yours and not mine.” I looked at her right in the eye and said, “Oh, so am I!” Later in my life, I also remember telling someone that my only regret was that I did not have a sixth child. That left the negative person speechless!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

You Might Also Like

The Whole Story of Natural Fertility

Do you remember your middle school or high school reproductive health class? When I think back to my education about periods and “How babies are made” my memories are brief. I can remember short parts of videos or awkward condom demonstrations and disgusting pictures of STDs. Does this sound familiar to you?

Read More »

All About Endometriosis Awareness Month 

All About Endometriosis Awareness Month  Millions of women suffer in silence every year from a disease called endometriosis. Most of the time, it goes undiagnosed or misdiagnosed for years until it’s accurately treated for what it is. Women with this disease might “look healthy” from the outside, and they become

Read More »

Recent Blog Post


English English Español Español
Scroll to Top