Thursday, December 3

Lesson #22 - People, Especially Strangers, Have No Shame (Part I)

When the man and I first found out we were pregnant (to read the story, please go here), we went out and bought a plethora of books on the topic. We got everything from pregnancy timelines and what the heck is happening to my body - those were for me. We also got a few on being a daddy for idiots and what the heck is happening to your wife's body - those were for the man. I think the only ones we did not purchase were the name-related ones...icanpickacreativenamewithoutastinkinbookthankyouverymuch! If you've never been pregnant or even if you have been, but decided to forgo the books - let me just tell you this...these books include EVERYTHING!! By everything, I mean...well...every. single. thing.

The topics that were covered ranged from, "how is it possible to gain 10 pounds in one week" to "". There was a small section, not even a whole chapter, hidden in the bowels of one of these sacred books. As I'm reading this section - which was more of a side note, really - I couldn't help but laugh. It was about the gall that strangers possess and their propensity for diarrhea of the mouth (for more of that, read this) around pregnant women. Below is my list of things to avoid saying/doing around pregnant women because they all happened to me...and I wanted to punch someone - true story(ies).

1. Do not ask about breast feeding. Okay...so I'm standing in line at the grocery store with the babe - who is a mere three weeks old at this point. After putting all of my groceries on the belt, the cashier starts this small talk bit about the babe. I'm all about answering questions about how big she was when she was born or how long he was in labor. However, when it comes to feeding...I'm not so quick to respond. "Are you breast or bottle feeding," the cashier asks...seriously?!?! NOTE. TO. ALL. The bottle or breast question to a stranger is NONE. OF. YOUR. BUSINESS. Just saying!!

2. On another trip I was holding the babe. Yes - she was wearing a short sleeve onesie. Yes - she was wearing a thin pair of pants. Yes - she had only been on the planet for about five weeks. Keep in mind, though, that I had pulled her out of her carrier and had a blanket wrapped around her. A woman comes up to me in the milk aisle and comments on how beautiful the babe is. I thanked her graciously and the made another comment on her blue eyes (the babe does have the most mesmerizing blue eyes). Again, I thanked her. Then...out of NO. WHERE. she looks at me and says "that babe is far too young to be out of the house. Here is where my next note comes in...rearing of children today is NOT the same as it was when we were kids...so BACK. OFF!!!

26 comments:

Lee the Hot Flash Queen said...

At least she didn't ask when you were due and you were holding the baby!!

Anti-Supermom said...

Being a past surrogate people can really say a lot of stupid things...

but my husband had a lot of fun with the surrogacy though, he'd tell everyone 'My wife's pregnant and it's not my baby'.

hee-hee, we're so mean :)

Bombshell BLISS said...

I have people ask me all the time if my youngest is my grandchild. People are stupid.

DG at Diary of a Mad Bathroom said...

There is something about pregnancy that makes us percieved as public property. From tummy pats on elevators from strangers to the plethora of unsolicited advice, you suddenly become under the jurisdiction of the world. I bit a hole in my lip not to verbally savage these people because ultimately, they think they are being helpful or friemdly. They're not. But they think they are.

Joshua said...

History: I do all the cooking in the house, and as such I make the shopping list and hit the grocery stores; the wife can't go into stores since the smoothie-pregnancy-grocery store event with #1. It's disgusting and I won't recount again.

That known, I take the kids to the grocery store with me every Saturday morning. Wow. People are strange and just want to tell you how you're dressing them wrong or whatever else. Case in point: this older woman was passing out samples of crackers or something. I grabbed one for #1. Now, it was June in Atlanta, and thus sweltering. And here was my daughter wearing a knitted winter cap, the kind with the ear flaps, that my SIL had made. This woman proceeds to tell me that she's going to get overheated, yada, yada, yada. I ignore the comment and walk down the aisle. I come up the other side and she says it again. Again, I ignore. Third time around that side of the aisles and she says it again. Now, the wife jokes that she has no patience but it's okay because I have enough for both of us. This is true; she's wound tight and I'm easy-going (except that I'm OCD; figure that one out). I finally stop the cart, turn to her, and very quietly and calmly tell her, "She's not your child. I'm trying to teach her about decision-making and cause and effect. If she wants to wear a hat that's going to make her too warm, that's her choice. All I can do is keep cold liquid near at hand for when she realizes the mistake she's made. Kindly piss off."

Epilogue: She doesn't wear warm hats in the summer anymore. Look at that, she learned something.

-Joshua

Joshua said...

Oh, that was longer than I thought. My apologies.

Caroline said...

Oh, man . . . I remember being in a store with my daughter when she was two months old and a woman made a comment about when I was due. WTH??

I wrote about it here, if you are interested in the story.

The girl with the flour in her hair said...

I was touched a lot when I was pregnant. It's like suddenly, everyone thinks it's ok to rub your belly.

I'm not Buddha. It's not lucky. In fact, it's very unlucky because you're likely to get kicked in the knee.

Well, maybe not. I'm more...passive. I'll just bear it and then talk about you when you leave. :)

Complicated Mama said...

People never cease to amaze me with the unsolicited advice they give to moms.

It sounds silly, but my pet peeve is when when the baby is crying and someone says "Oh, maybe she's hungry" --- gee thanks the reminder, you're right I totally forgot to feed my kid!

Or "ooh- she SOUNDS like shes hungry"... what? you know my child's crying tones -- really? ... I dont buy the whole differnt cry thing anyway-- ive never noticed a differnce lol

wines constantly said...

Oh, the awesome things I have to look forward to!

I'm not big enough yet for tummy patting (*fingers crossed*), but I do get a LOT of stares. Seriously, people, it's just a stomach!

Blondie said...

Great post honey! Your blog is too cute! I am following you now. Thanks for following my blog and the sweet comments on the post yesterday. I did a post on your favorite today, so go check it out! Kori xoxo

Mommy Lisa said...

1) I was walking slowly in the skyway DT Mpls on a Friday at about 8.5 months...I was TIRED...and out of nowhwere someone behind me decides - in an EMPTY skyway - I am too slow and SHOVES me aside as she passes me. I grabbed her arm just in time to say, "Sorry my tired pregnant a$$ is too slow for you."
2) At the age of one my daughter liked playing with her hat - on, off, on, off - I got scolded outside Target that it was too cold for her to be without a hat!
3) A nice little old lady sees me pushing the stroller and leans in to peek at my sweet girl and exclaims, "What a CHUNK!" I think she was about 12lbs at the time.

However - I think I am guilty of the breast/bottle question. I asked my regular barrista @ Caribou that one day, but only because I had coupons for formula she might be able to use. She took the coupons and did not seem offended. ;)

Shandal said...

Some Betch at the grocery store also told me that I shouldn't have my 3 week old baby out of the house yet. Mind your own business people!

Blondie said...

I was thinking the same thing...damn Ralphie is hot now! Thanks for the comments sweetie! Kori xoxo

SPEAKING FROM THE CRIB said...

nosy people blow

Vodka Logic said...

Or a teen age boy who asked if I was going to breast feed... wtf

Martinis or Diaper Genies? said...

boobs. don't talk about em. Just look at them.

Menopausal New Mom said...

I think I would change supermarkets. Funny how people feel the need to just blurt out whatever is on their minds. Great post!

Theta Mom said...

In a nutshell? It is NONE of their business and nosy people are SO annoying!!!

Melissa B. said...

There's something about pregnancy and babies that brings out the intimacy in folks. People were always touching my belly and asking the most personal things. And the amount of conversation I had with strangers after the kids were born was even more remarkable...

Leah said...

Haha! Yeah, people are very rude sometimes. I also love it when total strangers want to reach out and TOUCH my baby, especially his hands, which go directly into his mouth. Why would someone do that?!

kys said...

My mom is one of those old ladies who will tell strangers that their baby needs to have socks and a hat on. In the summer. In Florida.

Margaret said...

I would have killed someone if they said any of those too me. All though they did call me fat when I was pregnant.

Baby Sweetness said...

You know I haven't noticed a lot of those comments, but I honestly think it's probably because I'm oblivious / really good at ignoring people. When I was pregnant, one of my friends told me how people kept telling his wife labor horror stories. I said - huh, no one's done that to me. A few weeks later I realized 20 minutes into a conversation that this woman was telling me her labor horror story, I was just sort of tuning it out / not relating it to me at all (your bad labor doesn't mean mine will be bad). So people are probably incredibly rude / in my face all the time and I've just gone on blissfully ignorant. I knew having an annoying brother would garner me some good skills one day!

Michele said...

Love this post!!
Just found you from Vodka Logic. What a great blog.

I'm always amazed at the unsolicited advice, and touching, and boundries that are crossed when we are pregnant. Crazy.

Raine said...

Great post - Im gonna try to think of my own rude preggo comments :D

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