We all know that there are a ton (and I mean a TON) of things you should never, ever, EV-ER say to a pregnant woman. Still, whether one has ever been pregnant or not, it is common knowledge that these faux pas are committed all the time.
If we know what not to say, then what should we say?
*Disclaimer: No, I was NOT pregnant with twins (although, looking back on this picture, I can see why many assumed as much). This was me at 38 weeks with my second child who weighed in at 9 pounds 3 ounces. That is as close to a 10 pound baby as I would even hope to get!
Ten things TO say to a pregnant woman
1) “Congratulations, on your pregnancy!” Okay, that may seem like a no-brainer but play it safe. Stay away from questions like, “Was it planned?” Or, my personal favorite, “You do know how that happens, right?” Sharing in the joy by offering a simple congratulatory word is always appropriate.
2) “You look beautiful!” The last adjective that most pregnant women would use to describe themselves as is “beautiful” (especially in those last few months). Don’t be afraid to give a compliment. It’s probably needed.
3) “You look so healthy!” Avoid at all costs (and for your own safety) saying anything about the size of her tummy, if she is wide, or if she looks pregnant from the back, and so on. All most mommy’s really hope and strive for is a healthy pregnancy. Affirm her in that choice.
4) “Things went really well during my pregnancy/delivery when…” Be quick to share POSITIVE experiences. Pregnant women have enough to worry about without being given countless horror stories.
5) “May I touch your belly?” Now, I’m assuming that if you’re asking (the key word in the point I’m making) that it’s because you’re a close friend or relative. Pregnant women like their space just like anyone else. Respect the bubble. I had a stranger come up to me during one pregnancy who started patting and commenting on my belly. It took everything I had to resist patting and commenting on their plump middle in return.
6) “You only have X amount of time left? I can’t believe it!” Pregnancy can crawl by and, when it does, comments like, “Whew, you have a ways to go yet,” do not help. Put a positive spin on time comments and remark about on how fast time can fly. Oh, and that is the perfect moment to ask if the mommy-to-be needs any help with preparations. ;)
7) “I’d love to help you by…” Help is always appreciated whether it be in helping prepare for the baby’s arrival or afterwards. Paint a room, put away baby clothes, scrub a toilet, cook a meal, or offer to babysit. It can be difficult to ask for help so be quick to offer it.
8) “What a lovely name!” Parents spend a lot of time picking the right name for their child. The last thing they need to hear is about the horrible person you knew by that name or any comments that indicate you may think it odd. Remember, if you can’t say anything nice then don’t say anything at all.
9) “You are going to be a great mother!” Motherhood has it’s fair share of challenges. It’s a daunting role. Please, pretty please, build up mothers-to-be.
10) “Children are a blessing!” And they are. Even if you think the family size is “too big,” if the kids are “too close together,” or if you’re glad that it’s not you. Life is something to celebrate and thank God for giving. Be quick to do so!
“Encourage one another and build one another up.”
1 Thessalonians 5:11