There are some circumstances in life when it can be tricky to know what to say. Socially awkward situations, where you maybe haven't had a whole lot of practice in finding the right words. Encountering a pregnant friend should be a time of great joy, but can be fraught with social tension, particularly if it comes as a bit of a surprise. If you are at risk of stupidity, it may be best to stick with; 'Hey, congratulations' and let her fill in the gaps. If she's anything like I was, there's a good chance she has had very few human encounters since leaving work and will be more than happy to ramble on for hours! Here are some of the worst faux pas that are best avoided, if you want to retain that friendship, and your teeth.
Haven't you had that baby yet?
There is no way to answer this without varying amounts of sarcasm. If this is the best you can do in terms of pregnancy small talk, be prepared for a huge dose of hormone-fuelled derision.
Oh my God you're huge!
If you learn nothing from reading my blog ramblings, please, for the love of humanity, remember this bit; in no circumstances is this ever a compliment.
*insert any random birth horror story*
There are few times or places when people want to hear a horrendous medical story, but a gory maternity drama to an expectant mother? Think it through...
Are you still with the dad?
When did this even become a question? General rule of thumb; if you feel you need to ask, it's probably best not to ask.
You look tired/sick/depressed...
Yes; tired of tactless comments, sick of answering the same dumb questions and depressed due to all of the above! Two words; radiant or glowing. Anything else is risky at best.
You must be due soon!
Not necessarily. Sometimes it's possible to overdo the eating for two, but no one wants it pointed out to them. You had better have a rough idea of the dates before you come out with this gem.
Are you hoping for a boy/girl? (the opposite of what you already have)
No, I'm hoping for a baby. Because that's what I'm expecting. A baby. Never in the history of all eternity has anyone ever replied to this question with; 'Good Lord, yes! I'll be gutted if I end up with two the same!'
Was it planned?
Again, this comes under the banner of 'if you have to ask'... Honestly, the clues will be there, but who wants to think about that now? Unless the announcement is peppered with loud sobs and lamentations, just embrace the joy of the moment!
Don't you have a television? (to a mum with more than two kids)
This is wrong on so many levels. Firstly, and most importantly, thou shalt not pass judgement on other people's family choices. Bad. Secondly; any comment that draws attention to what caused the baby to be created in the first place, is surely going to lead to even more social awkwardness. Thirdly; it wasn't funny the first time and I guarantee you won't be the first person to say it. So don't.
Are you sure you're pregnant?
By saying this, you are either suggesting that the, previously jubilant, new mum just looks fat, or, equally, too thin to be with child. You may think that second one is a positive thing, but, trust me, when you've spent weeks, or months, driving the porcelain bus, nursing breasts that feel like over-inflated beach balls and finding all your favourite foods suddenly repulsive, you damn well want something to show for it!
Enjoyed this listicle? Try this one next! 10 Facts that Matter about Babies (and lots that don't!)
Photo Credit: My lovely friend Lauren!