I love being around pregnant women. In fact, I am at that prime age where most people I know are married and are ready to cross over into the world of parenthood–at least they think they are ready! 🙂
The benefit of this is that I love to be a source of support in those uncertain times. I happen to be surrounded by other women who enjoy playing that role as well. So, I started thinking about why that is and I realized that frankly it’s not solely about helping other women when we share our stories or our tips–though that is definitely the intention of it. However, I fully confess to the fact that I LOVE to talk about my experience in pregnancy and delivery. In a way, sharing these battle stories is a sweet re-living of a period in time with that child that I will never get back again. It is also our opportunity to bitch and moan about the crosses we bear/bore with a captive audience.
I will say that while I am very truthful about what I share, I am also very cautious about how I treat the pregos, as I remember some key things that I really did not appreciate from others when I was pregnant.
So below are some of my tips for avoiding the status of pregnancy coach vampire ( see also “Vagism” post):
1) Do not tell 1st timers all the horrid details of your delivery–or at least share that you know someone with an opposite experience. The last thing these poor lambs to slaughter need is a description of the butcher knife. They are going to scare themselves plenty. I remember a friend telling me about his wife’s full episiotomy when having their 12 pound baby. Christ! It still terrifies me!
2)Be careful when asking a pregnant woman how she is feeling. She is likely feeling like ass depending on when you ask her, so save her the trouble of coming up with the PC/work appropriate answer of “I can’t keep down a cracker, my nipples make me want to cry and I haven’t shit for days.”
3)Share your good stories about mothering bliss! All too often I hear moms tell pregos “Just wait–this’ll be you soon.” Let’s help them out by sending the message–you’re so lucky this will be you soon!
4)Don’t treat your pregnant friends like children–let them decide what to eat for themselves, and let them jaywalk if they want to. I can’t tell you how many people “protected me” from traffic and asked me if drinking coffee (decaf) was okay when I was pregnant (I had A cup once a week). Do people not remember when they smoke and drank martinis while pregnant in the 1950s?
So, that’s me on my soapbox. Of course, with your closest friends you will likely know the best approach–maybe they want to know all about your vagina and the mileage it’s seen or how you can’t remember the last time you had a hot meal. But, maybe not, and maybe you are telling them things they just don’t yet need to know or worry about.