Dealing With The Know-It-Alls

8:31 AM

One of my favorite people in the world is my cousin-in-law. I really consider her my twin and one of my closest friends. We truly could have been separated at birth - we are so alike that it's bizarre. We are both currently gestating, and are both currently miserable. The great thing about having a close friend due the day before you are is that you can talk through the highs and lows of being pregnant. Alicia and I have a nightly texting ritual, asking about the day, new aches and pains, as well as sharing pictures of baby clothes and our hideous, flat belly buttons.

Our conversation the other night got my granny panties in a twist. Everyone has their story, and everyone wants to share their story. We all do it; we've all heard the stories. Problem is... no two stories are the same. Is labor and delivery hard? Yes. Is there a part in our delivery stories that we felt like our head was spinning like in the Exorcist? Of course.

Here's the problem in sharing the stories: sometimes we freak new moms out. Sometimes we set them up to fail by being "helpful." Share your story - that's fine, but don't intentionally try to scare the hell out of your friends with your horror story about how awful the epidural was or how the baby will have 3 eyes if you dare choose to take the sweet nectar drugs. Odds are it really wasn't that bad. And really, when you look back, wasn't it just a tiny blip on your radar? You are too busy fielding temper tantrums in Target and wiping butts to dwell on your vaginal vs. C-section delivery.

Everyone thinks that their way is best. There is nothing wrong with confidence in your decisions and being able to defend what you believe in. How do you deal with people who love to force their opinions and decisions on you and your body?

The funny thing about pregnancy is that people seem to think it's a team sport. If I remember correctly, this started with man-to-woman. Definitely wasn't a zone defense type of situation. I don't care if your sister's ex-boyfriend's mother-in-law's aunt had a completely natural birth, and only gained 20 pounds. Congratulations. I also don't need to hear that you prayed for death after the doctor sliced you open with a kitchen knife, and all you did was cry for weeks on end. Not helpful.

Some of these examples are direct quotes they heard while they were pregnant. Some of the quotes came from family members, friends, and the best, perfect strangers. Please share your most offensive comment you received while you were pregnant. I'm sure we can all commiserate together.



Weight gain.
"You look so small. Is that safe for your baby?" "Oh, how much have you gained?" "Is your doctor concerned about how much weight you have gained?" For some odd reason, how much or how little you have gained becomes everyone's business. I'm realizing the irony of that statement as I have been posting my weight gain my entire pregnancy. The only thing you need to worry about when it comes to your weight during pregnancy is what your OBGYN thinks. If he/she thinks you're looking like a Mack truck, then ease up on the Oreos. Otherwise, unless your friends or family have secretly become an OBGYN, their opinions on your blubber are none of their business. And feel free to let people know that it's not their business. OR you could ask them how their doctor feels about their extra tub.

Delivery.
Did you know that there is more than one RIGHT way to deliver your babies? I didn't either because so many people are concerned with letting me know that there is only one way, regardless of the statistics on issues, the long conversations that you have with your OB, or the information all over the place about what is safest for you and your babies. Here's the cool thing about what we know in this day and age: having babies come out of your body, whether through your lady garden or through a very small incision in your lower belly, either way, you are a mom.

If you make the best possible decision for your babies and your body, then that's the best decision for you. The irony of people shoving their opinions down your bloated throat is that they were pissed when they were pregnant and people gave them opinions. It's a trap. Ignore them.

Drugs.
In the beginning, God created man and woman. They sinned and now childbirth is like blowing a watermelon out of your nostril. Therefore, if you have a low pain threshold and you need to get juiced, do it. If you are able to hold out (like my mom), sneeze and suddenly your baby is out, by all means, go for it. I am a huge weenie when it comes to pain. Two hours into labor, I was ready for my epidural, and I'm so glad I did it. I don't have a high pain threshold, I didn't want to scream obscenities the entire night, so I went ahead and did it. And you know what? It was fine. I was fine, Maddie was fine. If you don't believe in the drugs, don't take 'em, but don't do the snotty girl thing and pass judgment with your eyes when I tell you that I was a much more pleasant person after I was floating.

Does this mean you can't share your personal story? Of course not. This is just a reminder that some of us are beached whales pregnant and walking into unknown territory. This is not the time to tell me that having twins is the most miserable thing for the first 6 months and you cried the whole time. Not helpful. Choose your words wisely. Feel free to tell me that it's difficult, but that you get on a schedule and things start to get easier. Don't tell my cousin not to get an epidural because YOU couldn't handle the after effects. Use your filter.

Feel free to share your most obnoxious "helpful" advice you were given while you were pregnant! I need a nice Starbucks after that!

xoxo,
a.

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