One Born Every Minute
Not Your Mama's Pregnancy: Dealing with Unwanted Advice
When I was pregnant, my mother, whom I love dearly, would always talk about how pregnancy was so different now.
She couldn't believe that I wore fitted shirts and dressses instead of some muu muu-like tent contraption. She looked at me with raised eyebrows when I wore stylish clothes, high-heeled shoes or did pre-natal yoga. But most importantly, she couldn't stop telling me all the things I was doing wrong.
In fact, my mom was always raining her old school wisdom on my modern mama pregnancy parade. If it wasn't the general, "don't wear that" or "should you be eating that?," it was the spooky stuff like "whatever you crave and eat too much of, that will be the shape of your baby's birthmark," or "don't go to a funeral while pregnant, or your baby will be depressed. "
Then there was the scary stuff like when, toward the end of my pregnancy, she would warn me not to reach up too much or risk tangling the umbilical cord around the baby's neck. Where did she get this stuff?? I was so paranoid, I didn't know what to do. I mean, is it only reaching up? What about reaching sideways? It was too much.
The point is, you may have mothers, aunties or grandmas dispensing their sometimes unsolicited, many times unwanted, advice about how to be during your pregnancy.
My advice is to let them talk. Usually, they mean no harm. And sometimes their "wisdom" is good for a laugh and other times you may find something useful. But you should also be clear about boundaries and use your strong voice to say, thanks but no thanks!
Also if their comments begin to feel abusive or are otherwise upsetting you, then you need to enlist the help of your husband or partner and be firm about maintaining your peace during the pregnancy. Let the offenders know that stressing you out is not in the best interest of the baby.
You are a parent now, don't be afraid to stand your ground.