Surround, Support, Bond, Positive, Intentional! Discussing pregnancy after sexual abuse. You can be empowered and heal.
What Say Ye......
To a woman who appears to be pregnant?
When you become pregnant you seem to become a magnet for many things to be said or even done to you! It can be overwhelming, create feelings of anger or even fear or just a feeling of being uncomfortable.
Personally, through my pregnancies it has always been insinuated that I get rather large, maybe too large. I must be carrying twins. People even asked me if I was sure about that! After six pregnancies and the third baby to be born this Summer, I know full well the weight I put on is just right for me and my baby. It is not indicative of twins. And yes I am sure there is only one!
So what is okay or NOT okay, when YOU KNOW a woman is expecting?
1. Let Her Tell
Even if you think she is definitely pregnant let her be the one to share the news. Sometimes it is not so obvious yet and you don't want to ask if a mother isn't really pregnant. There can also be many more scenarios. Maybe she already had her baby, or she was pregnant and suffered a loss. You never know the story so let her share that news. If she doesn't then do you really need to know? Safe to never assume either.
2. Ask to touch!
Ask before you rub her baby bump PLEASE! Some people are not comfortable with being touched by friends or family, let alone strangers. It amazes me how pregnancy seems to automatically change boundaries. It doesn't, so hands off unless the mother says it is okay.
3. Don't Guess/Ask Due Date
"So your due in a month?"
"No 3 months left."
Don't ask for a due date or assume a mother is getting close to it or has a ways to go. How a woman grows a baby and carries that baby is unique and can be very different from someone else you may know. Also a due date is not exactly accurate. In fact it is a birth month as average gestation is 265-300 days. Exact dates create more pressure for a mom, especially in a social media world. " Hey have you had the baby yet?" "Any news yet?" Which brings us to our next point.
4. She will announce arrival!
Ugh! This is obvious you would think, but don't be surprised it is very common for people to ask close to the due date if baby has arrived. Don't ask or tell the mother something that is clearly obvious. She will announce the arrival when she is ready either in person with a baby or on her social media, texts or phone calls. Stop nagging her and let her relax as she prepares for the upcoming birth of her baby.
5. Compliment Her!
She is going through a miraculous change with growing a baby and it isn't always easy. A compliment can always help boost confidence in the midst of fatigue and pregnancy inconveniences. The amazing change that occurs in the woman's body to accommodate the growth of the baby is miraculous and every woman should be treated with reverence for such a beautiful thing from life. Confidence on her part and confidence in nature can come from uplifting words of encouragement from those around her. That confidence can help carry her through from pregnancy to mothering.