Mothers truly do deserve more respect. We LITERALLY would not be here without them, and yet, people STILL try to take away women's agency over their bodies. People somehow think they can say whatever they want to women with child, like commenting on their weight or already judging their parenting style. It's truly disrespectful. Read on to find out the most insulting things people have said to women during pregnancy.
Content has been edited for clarity.
Of Course It Was Planned!
“I’m currently 21 weeks with a baby boy. People asking, ‘Was it planned?’ is one I get a LOT of now.
Yes, baby was planned, but I had a small chance of carrying long enough to make it to a dating scan because of hormonal issues and previous scarring.
Touching the belly without asking is constant and I actually slapped an old coworker who came up behind me and did that with no warning.
Someone told me, ‘You have two boys already, you should have gotten an abortion. You can always have another later.’ Yeah, I actually got this one. The boys aren’t mine (partner’s previous relationship), and freak judgmental old hag can go bug off. God, it made me so mad.
Also the whole, ‘I’m going to be the godparent/present for the birth/your support person for birth/etc riiiiiight?!’ Ughhhh.
I also got asked by same old coworker if I could still see down there to shave or if I needed a hand (with suggestive eyebrow wriggle). He got reported to HR, so hopefully I don’t have to see him again!”
“How Dare I Listen To My Own Body!”
“I told my mom the other day that this was my first and last pregnancy. I’m tired, uncomfortable, and I’ve had shingles and gestational diabetes. It has been a rollercoaster, but not in a good way. My husband and I also agree that we cannot afford another child, so we are happy with the one.
My mom said that I was being incredibly selfish for deciding that. How dare I listen to my own body and be financially responsible?!
All because she wants more than one grandchild…
Again, who is being selfish here?!”
What Kind Of Jerk Would Say This?!
“I used to work at an auction market. The people there are very over-involved in other peoples lives. My boyfriend also works there. When we got pregnant the first time, we told everyone right away to keep me away from dangerous cattle, situations, etc. So when I had a miscarriage, we told them about it, I took two weeks off while my hero boyfriend fielded most of the horrible task of continuing life. I came back part time for maybe a month before quitting completely. He still works there.
I gave an old, greasy coworker a ride to the mall the other day. He asked how far along I am now: 22 weeks! Word for word, this is what he says: ‘Congrats! Are you happy you made it farther this time?’
No duh, I’m happy, jerk. I could have hit him in the grocery store. My boyfriend and I laughed it off because the guy might be a little senile. Now, we are working on disconnecting from those people as much as possible.”
Nothing Sinful Here
“My wife was pregnant with our son. As happens with pregnancy, her fingers swelled up and she couldn’t wear her wedding ring, so she instead put it on a necklace.
She was at her work cafeteria when some guy starts chatting her up about her pregnancy, and then says, ‘You know, Jesus Christ will forgive you for your sins.’
She was a little taken aback exactly what just happened and wanted to escape the situation. She said, ‘Excuse me, I have to go find my husband.’
The man looked shocked ‘You have a husband?’
She showed him the ring-necklace and said, ‘Uh yes…’
He said, ‘Oh, I didn’t see your ring.’
‘Well, it doesn’t fit on my hand. I am pregnant, you know.'”
What Makes People Think It’s Okay To Say This!?
“My husband and I had several miscarriages before we finally had a child. It was no secret that we were having trouble carrying to term. Kind of hard to hide that fact when you are obviously pregnant, and then…suddenly something happens, and no one is excited anymore.
We had finally hit the end of our third trimester, we were just a few short weeks away, and our doctor had assured us that this time everything definitely should go as planned. Two separate people, in two completely different conversations, took it upon themselves to tell me stories of how their friend or relative had lost their child during labor. One actually said the words, ‘I know you’re excited, but it’s important to remember that the baby isn’t here yet and anything could happen.’
As if I wanted to hear any of that. What are people thinking?! What makes them think it’s okay to say something like that?”
Whatever You Do, Don’t Comment On Her Size
“When you’re pregnant, everyone thinks you are now public property. Where you could recede into the faceless background in public before, now you are extremely visible and as such, everyone wants to talk to you about what’s in your stomach and what you’re eating and what you plan on naming the baby and whether you plan on naturally feeding and if you’re prepared for your downstairs to tear, etc. Most of the time, people are well-meaning, but that doesn’t make it any less draining to talk about your body and weight and whatever with every cashier or restaurant patron around you when you just want to go about your business.
When I was pregnant, I gained 50 lbs. I had weighed 115 lbs for 14 years before being pregnant. I had never in my life put on weight, so I wasn’t exactly feeling great about my body after another doctor’s appointment where I found I had gained more for no real reason at all. I went to pick up some groceries afterwards, and an older guy in the produce section asked when I was due. I politely answered, saying it was a month or so away. He looked at me incredulously and said, ‘With twins?!’
Because I got that from people who forget what 8 months pregnant looks like all the time, I irritably said, ‘Nope, just one!’
He said, ‘My wife wasn’t even that big, and she was carrying twins!’
Thankfully, I actually had the wherewithal that time to respond with, ‘Wow, that’s a really rude comment to a pregnant woman you don’t even know.’
Most of the time, pregnant women just laugh it off because, despite the fact that those comments are rude, people will dismiss your irritation as ‘being hormonal’ if you sass back.”
“I Have Never Been More Insulted”
“With my daughter, after she was born, she refused to eat for 48 hours. She would just scream and kick. They would syringe a little milk into her mouth and she would throw it up. I couldn’t feed because of this for almost a week, and my milk never really came in. I was making, at my absolute peak, 2 oz a DAY. Pumping every 3 hours around the clock, 24 hours a day for almost 3 months. I tried every herbal remedy, every wives tale, every recipe I could get my hands on. Eventually, I gave up and I was really heartbroken. I spent weeks crying and depressed trying to cope with the fact that the one thing you’re supposed to be able to provide as a parent, I couldn’t. Not knowing what was wrong with me is still is a sore spot with me.
I’m currently pregnant with my son. A few weeks ago, I went to WIC in a new city and the lady, who was a counselor there, asked me if I naturally fed my daughter. I told her no and explained the story. She proceeded to argue with me saying that wasn’t how it worked and people don’t just ‘not lactate.’ She accused me of lying and went on a huge, 10 minute speech about the importance of nursing.
Then she asked me, ‘Did you even bother to try?’ and kept asking if I was even going to put out the effort to try with my son, unlike what I did with my daughter.
I have never in my life been so insulted by a question.
I think the worst part was she insinuated I was just being lazy after I ran myself into the ground trying to feed my daughter.
The WIC people in the town I moved out from were really nice and supportive, but this lady was just downright rude the whole time.”
Ableism Is NOT Cool
“I have some disabilities (I can’t walk without a stick or crutch), but I lead as normal a life as possible. I’m currently 36 weeks pregnant, so it’s pretty obvious. As soon as I started to show, I have been asked more than once whether someone ‘like me’ should be having a baby (none of my issues are hereditary, we made sure of that before conceiving).
I’ve been questioned about if I’m taking any medication. I’ve also been told I’m going to give birth to a crippled/deformed monster because I’m still on some (as soon as I conceived, I saw my doctor and stopped any meds that would cause issues).
I’ve also had people express surprise that I’m capable of doing the dirty, or that my husband wanted it with me.
Getting pregnant didn’t affect me much at first. I didn’t get some pelvic girdle pain around 20 weeks, but as I have lower back issues it wasn’t anything unbearable. However, since 28 weeks, the pelvic pain has gradually increased and my mobility has taken a hit. The main problem being if I use two crutches to walk, it vastly relieves the pelvic pain, but it tires me out extremely quickly. If I only use one crutch I don’t get the same relief, but I can move around longer. My balance hasn’t been an issue.
I knew I’d have a harder time during pregnancy than most, but I was prepared for it. Hopefully, once my little one has arrived, the PGP should rectify itself fairly quickly. And I’m still on course for a natural birth, though obviously if it became necessary to have a c-section, I’m not going to turn it down. Whatever is best for both the baby and myself.”
They Didn’t Realize How Rude They Were Being
“Pregnancy brings out the weird in people, for sure…
The security guard at my workplace asked how ‘dilated’ I was. Yeah, that was reported to HR. He was fired while I was out on maternity leave for making other similarly inappropriate comments to other female employees.
The other one that really makes me chuckle was when I told my boss (who was an otherwise terrific guy) that I was pregnant. It was my second pregnancy and my older son was two at the time, so it wasn’t like they were back-to-back pregnancies. Before he said, ‘Good news’ or ‘Congratulations,’ he blurted out, ‘Was it planned?’
I was taken aback and just said, ‘Well, as much as you can plan these things.’ I think the ‘What the heck?’ look on my face let him know he was more than a little off-base. He quickly recovered and said, ‘Congratulations, I’m so happy for you, etc.’ He was normally a great guy, so I think he just had a momentary lapse of judgment.
The final thing was people trying to tell me how far along my pregnancy was! Now, mind you, my kids were both IVF babies, so I knew the time of their conceptions to the minute. I’m not a petite person and my husband is built like a linebacker at 6’4″ and 250, so, needless to say, our kids are not and never were small. I had a big belly pretty early on. People would ask how far along I was and I’d say ’28 weeks’ or ’32 weeks’ or whatever the case was, and they’d argue with me about it, saying there’s no way I wasn’t gonna have that baby any second because I was so big or asked if I was sure I wasn’t having twins. I think they honestly had NO idea how rude they were being! One woman, literally a stranger that struck up a conversation with me in a store, was particularly insistent. I finally just looked her and said, ‘Yes, I know when this baby was made. I was there.’ That abruptly shut her up (Thank God).
I didn’t have a lot of the inappropriate touching that a lot of women get, thank goodness, because I probably would have punched the perpetrator. I think my resting witch face helped with that quite a bit!”