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I know, without a doubt in my mind, that I’m not the only girl who gets asked, “When is your baby due?” when I’m just trying to live my best life.
I consider myself a healthy individual.
Sure, my posture could be improved. I really love vegan pizza and matcha lattes, but I do go to hot yoga five times a week, eat a plant-based diet, meditate, journal, take long walks, take the stairs, and look alright in a bathing suit.
So why am I asked regularly if I am expecting?
Some call it bloating, some call it genes, but whatever it is, it’s not cool! I usually just brush it off and say, “No, I am not expecting.” Or, “Nope, just lots of wine.”
However, recently, I was wearing a flowy shirt to work and a co-worker asked me when my baby was due. I answered, “Sorry, I’m not going to have a baby, I just feel best in baggier clothes.” She proceeded to tell me how she thought I was pregnant for the last four months.
This time, it really got me down. I went to the bathroom and cried and took off my shirt in the stall to stare at my body. I’ve seen so many pregnant women in my life, and certainly, I thought, I did not resemble one. But I stood there anyway, crying, dissecting every inch of my body, wondering why she’d made that assumption. I couldn’t shake the feelings.
Why do people feel the need to comment on someone’s weight or body shape, like ever?
It led me to thinking about this woman I follow on Instagram who lost her baby during childbirth, and for weeks, people asked her where the baby was, or if she was going to have a baby anytime soon. And that really broke her.
Another girl told me she was ordering a smoothie and a sandwich at a deli, and the cashier pointed to her tummy and said, “Aww, eating for two?” She said no, then threw out both the smoothie and the sandwich and proceeded to cry in her car about her weight—even though she was not overweight.
One time, I was checking into a hotel, standing in a horrible posture while holding my dog, and the front desk girl told me, “That puppy is gonna be jealous when that baby comes along!” I answered her, “I’m not pregnant, I’ve been on a road trip so maybe I’m just bloated from bad food?” She apologized.
Anyway, what I’m getting at is: I just don’t think it’s okay to ever ask a woman if she is expecting. Or to assume she is, and comment on it.
I don’t have kids, but I do know that being pregnant and post-pregnancy are sensitive subjects. And while I feel they don’t get discussed enough, we must be mindful about when to talk about them, and with whom.
Before you ask a woman if she is expecting, consider that she may have just lost her baby, or has already had her baby, or suffers from a food addiction or eating disorder. Many women’s bodies change daily (and even hourly) based on what they eat and drink, and they are probably hard on themselves already.
Please let this be a message to be kind to others so they can be kind to themselves.
I’m not pregnant. I just really love food.
And, I really love my body.