Let’s get one thing straight - this entire article is comprised of suggestions only. Feel free to review the tips with an FYI frame of mind...or not. It’s a pregnant woman’s prerogative and no one’s saying any different so please don’t kill the messenger. With that disclaimer off our chest, let’s move on, shall we?
Pregnancy can be a very delicate and sensitive topic. Innocent comments and habits can easily be misconstrued or taken personally by others when they aren’t intended as such. As a result, a pregnant woman’s comments and actions may be unfairly scrutinized and end up causing mass destruction to relationships and friendships.
This is where we come in. By compiling the top annoyances to the non-pregnant, an expectant mother can review the list and either curb what may be irritating to others or go full pregzilla on their asses - her call.
We get it - pregnancy is an exciting time as well it should be. No one can blame a soon-to-be parent for being happy, scared, worried and excited (maybe all at once) regarding their new arrival. And if they do then that’s their problem. It can also be a time when stress and hormones wreak havoc so hopefully friends, family and co-workers of expectant parents are willing to cut them a bit of slack. Either way, knowledge is key and a little sensitivity all around can go a long way.
Continue reading for 16 annoying pregnancy habits that piss people off.
16 Turning Into Boo Radley
It’s normal for a newly pregnant woman to take a bit of a breather from her normal social life at first. She may be feeling nauseous, light-headed, exhausted not to mention all-around yucky. But once she attains her pregnancy legs, there’s really no reason for her not to resume her weekly movie nights or dinner dates. In fact, now more than ever is the time for a woman to surround herself with a strong support network of family and friends.
If heading out feels like too much of an effort, then she can invite the gathering to her place. Make it a potluck, order pizza or simply crack open a bag of chips and dip. She can then sit back in her comfy sweats and enjoy the party. Even if a woman prefers not to be the centre of attention, this can be made clear from the get-go by explaining she is hoping for an evening free of pregnancy or baby talk.
Acclimating to a pregnancy should not justify any burnt friendship bridges. Just because a baby is now on board doesn’t mean important relationships should get shucked to the wayside.
15 Summon A Genie
There are actually a number of very good reasons why moms-to-be will rub their bellies. It can be a knee-jerk reaction to a sudden fluttering, kick or hiccup from within. And with taut skin stretched tight, many pregnant women find themselves constantly itchy - often relieved by a bit of belly rubbing. And a little tummy pat may help soothe gas, heartburn and/or indigestion that many preggos are prone to experience.
Newly pregnant women may feel a quick belly rub is the perfect way to connect with their unborn baby. But like any meaningful exchange, it may be best to save it for alone time. Or at the very least - until a baby bump is actually visible.
That said, chronic belly rubbing can sometimes come across as subtle bragging or attention seeking behavior. Not to point any fingers, but most people have had a run-in with what is known in certain circles as the “smugly pregnant”. Unfortunately, obnoxious belly rubbing tends to be their M.O. As in “Look at me! I’m with child”.
14 Helicopter Pre-Parenting
Pregnancy hormones will do a number on even the most level-headed and sane of women. While these substances are working their pregnancy magic, they can also cause paranoia about all sorts of things from believing their spouses are cheating to obsessing about hidden dangers.
Before going into full-on helicopter mode, a pregnant woman should talk to her healthcare provider about what foods and activities are safe for her to enjoy. Many websites may provide her with dated and/or alarmist information and the same goes for well-intentioned individuals!
And just because there are some restrictions that pregnant women face in terms of diet and activities - that doesn’t mean they still can’t enjoy themselves. So if everyone from work is heading to a sushi place for lunch, rather than hijack the plans, a pregnant woman can tag along and order something different off the menu.
13 Not Ready Nor Willing
A hard reality for many soon-to-be parents to face is that as much as friends and family are happy for them, the only people as eager as them to welcome this new addition are most likely only spouses, baby’s future siblings and grandparents. Facts are facts.
Blame it on the advent of social media or on the basic narcissism of all humans, but celebrating a baby’s pending arrival can definitely be over the top. For new parents wanting to honor their unborn child, the message can often morph from “Come celebrate with us” into “Come and celebrate us”.
Which brings us to the gender reveal party. Honestly, if anyone else besides the above-mentioned individuals is waiting with baited breath (and most likely they are not), then consider including this aspect into a regular baby shower. An even better idea is to share the gender reveal with people one-on-one. That way the happy reactions can be savored over and over again.
12 Hush Up
For any new mom-to-be, her pregnancy is probably all she thinks about and most likely it occupies her every waking moment. It only makes sense that because it is always on her mind, there will be many conversations revolving around the topic. However, when a pregnancy consumes a woman to the point that she is unable to focus on anything else, people may start to get their noses out of joint.
Just as any pregnant woman would expect her true friends to be excited and happy for her, this same courtesy needs to be extended back to them as well. If a preggo can’t muster a bit of interest in her BFF’s knee surgery or her neighbor’s run-in with raccoons, then she can’t expect them to care about her pregnancy cravings or her latest blood pressure reading.
Keep in mind that this is only a suggestion - if a pregnant woman prefers to talk non-stop about all things baby, there is no reason she should restrict herself. However, if she notices people seem to be avoiding her, this may be the cause.
11 Seriously Hush The Eff Up
Listening to an adult goo-goo and ga-ga over a baby can be annoying - so imagine the irritation factor of listening to a grown up use baby talk to a fetus in utero. It honestly does no one any good (fetus included) to hear an adult lisping their conversations in a failed attempt to sound cute and child-like.
Many baby-talkers feel this child-directed speech pattern is a great way to connect to an unborn baby. Experts in the field often refer to this as “motherese” (although “parentese” would be the more politically correct term). But it can easily turn into a bad habit difficult to break once baby arrives.
While babifying language or making up cutesy words is patronizing as well as supremely annoying, it’s also detrimental to a baby’s language development. So cooling it will be beneficial not only for the baby - but for everyone within earshot as well!
10 Please Stop Talking
Motherhood preachiness can be supremely annoying as can a variety of breeder rhetoric. The following phrases should definitely not be uttered to any child-free individuals within a pregnant couple’s circle. While they may be seemingly harmless or even thought to be constructive, they tend to come off as insensitive and sometimes even hurtful. Here they are in no random order:
- You'll understand one day.
- Tick tock.
- When's it your turn?
- Time's running out. / Don't wait too long.
- You'll change your mind.
- You don't know what you're missing.
- You're so lucky you're not pregnant / don't have kids.
Even if said with the best of intentions, these taboo phrases can come off as superior, condescending and patronizing at best or exceedingly hurtful at worst. True meaning can be lost in translation when childless individuals feel that pregnant couples or couples with kids are lording their ability to procreate over them.
9 Great Expectations
For noticeably pregnant women, they may have observed a phenomenon where strangers are extra kind to them. People may smile and ask them how they’re feeling, more doors than usual may be held open on their behalf and seats may be readily offered up on public transit. However, it’s important to remember not to abuse basic human kindness. So don’t let all this extra attention due to a swollen tummy go straight to a swelled head.
Of course it’s amazing to be on the receiving end of so many kind gestures but they aren’t owed. Sadly, those same people who smile at a pregnant woman in line at the grocery may be the same ones to roll their eyes at her when she has a crying baby on ther hip. And the people holding the door open to accommodate the baby bump may not be as chivalrous when it’s a stroller in tow instead.
What we’re getting at is this: Appreciate it but don’t expect it. And enjoy it while it lasts!
8 Is That Allowed?
For anyone out there eager to receive judgment and criticism thinly veiled as advice - simply become pregnant! Unfortunately, other pregnant women can often be some of the worst culprits when it comes to doling out their unsolicited opinions. In fact, relationships have been known to fall apart when good friends become mutually pregnant and don’t see eye-to-eye on pregnancy and parenting issues.
So remember, just because one pregnant woman chooses to steer clear of specific foods or activities, not all women will feel the same way. This doesn’t mean they value their unborn baby any less or that they are throwing caution to the wind. It simply means they’ve received different advice or don’t have the same level of concern.
Preggos on the receiving end of criticism and judgment should try their best to develop a thicker skin. If need be, talk to their spouse, trusted family and friends and their healthcare provider and then do what they feel is best . . . all others be damned!
7 Woe Is Me
Complaining is actually a normal and healthy way to vent. In fact, many conversational exchanges begin with a mild complaint as it’s a great way to break the ice. But when it becomes a constant stream of negativity, it can grow tiresome and annoying for others - no matter the topic.
Because of all the strange, uncomfortable and sometimes downright painful side effects of pregnancy, women who are typically positive and upbeat may find themselves unleashing a torrent of grousing on anyone willing to listen. Of course everyone has an off day. But it may be wise to save complaints for close friends, family and caregivers as most everyone else may just be acting polite when asking “How are you feeling today?” Preggos should try their hardest to be tactful and diplomatic in their response and save the belly-aching for later.
There’s a bonus to faking positivity. It can lead to genuine positivity and gratitude. Remember - there are many people out there who would kill to be in a pregnant woman’s stretched-out shoes.
6 Heavy On the Details
If a woman has always been a habitual sharer of TMI, then chances are pregnancy will exacerbate the situation so be prepared to hear about her daily vaginal discharges and tender hemorrhoids. Just because over-sharing seems to have become the norm. it’s important to read a room and get a grasp on who is actually interested in this sort of information (hint: NOBODY!)
According to WhatToExpect.com, here are some of the top pregnancy-related things that people do not want to hear about:
- vomit visuals
- sexual details
- vaginal discharge chit-chat (just EWWWW!)
- nipple talk
- hemorrhoid discussion
Pregnancy is a wondrous experience often characterized by many strange and random symptoms. These can easily dominate any conversation that a preggo happens to be involved in. All it takes to appease the non-pregnant masses is to dial it back a notch, make a concerted effort not to chatter thoughtlessly and rethink mentioning any gross-out details.
5 Baring It All
Birthing photography has become a huge business. A snapshot of baby the second he/she emerges (not to mention ACTUALLY emerging) may be worth a thousand words. Many new parents will save these photos for certain eyes only (hopefully just theirs!) - and we recommend placing similar restrictions on the half-naked pregnancy photos as well.
Many excited parents-to-be consider the half undressed shots of baby bump with proud papa cradling mommy’s tummy to be a right of passage. Fine. But perhaps reconsider using them as a Christmas card or displaying them at a workplace. As poignant and touching an image they may be for the soon-to-be parents, they may be viewed as yet another annoying and narcissistic display of over-sharing by all others.
Here’s an idea: instead of getting caught up in the run-of-the-mill, cheesy, half-naked bump photos that pretty much everybody is doing - get creative. There’s nothing stopping parents from designing their own personalized maternity photo shoot. They can make it as hilarious, interesting or serious as they choose. Best of all, these images will be one-of-a-kind.
4 Oink Oink
Baby on board is not code for a woman to gorge herself on the reg. In fact, a preggo actually only requires an additional 300 calories per day - as in one slice of bread with some peanut butter - NOT an entire family-sized bag of chips chased by a slice of cake or two.
Cravings are normal and everyone is guilty of being a glutton now and again but when it becomes habitual, that’s where a bigger problem may lie. If a mom-to-be is not eating the vitamins and nutrients necessary for a growing fetus, the baby will basically suck them straight from the source - mainly a mother’s teeth and bones. And if an expectant mother gains too much weight, this can create a whole other set of complications.
When mothers are constantly overeating and then justifying it with the phrase “Baby wants what it wants”, it grows old fast to those who must bear witness.
3 Internet Insanity
Google mania goes hand-in-hand with paranoia - in fact, google will feed the worry as opposed to relieving it. For any woman out there leaning toward obsessive paranoia and over-protectiveness, then she should probably cool it with google and any other internet searches.
Google-crazed pregnant women (as well as new moms) are extremely vulnerable to being sucked into untrustworthy websites. These sites draw in the worriers, fill them up with biased, factually inaccurate and even alarmist info and then count on them to spread the unreliable word to the rest of the world.
It’s a normal part of pregnancy to worry and suffer from some mild stress - but it’s how a person chooses to alleviate these worries that matters most. It makes more sense to discuss any concerns with a trusted healthcare professional or family and friends rather than scouring the web for answers.
2 Glory Be To The Bump
Think back to the newly engaged woman who would eagerly flash her ring at anybody nearby and talk about how amazing marriage was going to be. This was the same woman who just didn’t want anyone to remain single now that she was off the market - and was frantically trying to set up all her single friends. Now - remember how annoying and obnoxious that was?
Same goes for the newly pregnant woman (or man for that matter) who now want every one of their childless friends to discover the newfound joy that is pregnancy and impending parenthood. Not only is this behavior irritating to the nth degree but it is also extremely presumptuous by assuming that all individuals plan on having children. Even worse, these comments can come across as sharp insults to those who cannot have children or who have been desperately trying to become pregnant.
Rarely is it a deliberate intention for parents-to-be to act like know-it-all clods. Pregnancy and parenting can be such insanely sensitive topics - even the most innocent of remarks can easily be misconstrued and blow up friendships.
1 I Know A Secret
“I know a secret but I can’t tell you - na na na na boo boo.” Imagine hearing this on a playground at some middle school. The grown up version is just as annoying and occurs when soon-to-be parents eagerly announce to everyone that they know their unborn baby’s sex and/or name but just aren’t telling. Hey - it’s a parent’s prerogative to know but not tell and no one’s saying otherwise. But here’s a piece of important advice for parents in the know - perhaps just don’t advertise as much.
If anyone asks a parent-to-be if they have names chosen yet or know the baby’s gender, simply reply: “It’s a surprise”. Which it is . . . to everyone else. Any other response may be a tad smug and attention-seeking not to mention dramatic. Now if that’s what a new parent is looking to incite, then “na na na na boo boo” away!