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Why are people so insensitive?!

(24 Posts)
AKP79 Mon 10-Oct-11 13:32:25

After spending most of the day yesterday trawling between shoe shops to try and find a pair of knee high boots that zip up over my ever increasing calves, which although I found a pair has left me feeling a bit rubbish. Our receptionist at work has just asked when I'm due, I told her and she gasped and asked how many babies I had in there!

My self esteem and body image is on the floor at the moment anyway without people being so insensitive! Seriously why does pregnancy make you an open target for comments and bump touching!

Moan over!!

Greenshadow Mon 10-Oct-11 13:40:36

Probably because they (I) don't consider it to be insensitive.
Can't understand why people, most of whom are presumably delighted to be pregnant, are upset about people commenting on the size of their bump/baby. Personally I was always pleased that people acknowledged my bump by commenting on it.

It's hardly an insult after all is it?

(Waiting to be flamed as insensitive, but honest)

AKP79 Mon 10-Oct-11 14:10:52

Appreciate you might not think that insensitive and it's great that you are able to feel that way about yourself when you're pregnant, but not all women find it as easy to embrace their growing bump and changing body shape!

I became pregnant because I wanted to start a family and not because I wanted people to start commenting on the size of my bump or groping it when they felt like it, she's the company receptionist and someone I barely know, not a family member or a friend.

I can only speak for myself, but I personally think it's insensitive to gasp at someone in such a way especially if you don't know them.

ChineapplePunk Mon 10-Oct-11 14:21:35

Personally, I agree that it's totally insensitive. I've never made comments like that towards a pregnant woman, and I would have to kick my own arse if I did. And as for touching the bump. If someone ever attempts to touch my bump without my express permission and approval, I'll be none too pleased.

IssyStark Mon 10-Oct-11 14:31:30

I don't think it is that insensitive myself. I'd always reply with 'just the one, thankfully' and a big smile (which mums of twins prob. think is very insentitive in turn). Many people would think that commenting on the size of your bump is a giving you a compliment rather than trying to insult you.

I like pregnancy because I can wear clothes which emphasise my shape - it's the one time I can have a big tummy and not get disparging remarks or glances. But then no-one has ever tried to touch my bump without asking either.

fuckityfuckfuckfuck Mon 10-Oct-11 14:34:08

I don;t think it's insensitive either. I get that commenting on people's shape is normally not on, but I think in pregnancy people are just trying to be friendly and acknowledge that you're pregnant. I've had none of this yet as I look pretty small for 17 weeks, noone would even know I'm pregnant, and if anything I'll find it reassuring. Maybe I'm odd though.

ChineapplePunk Mon 10-Oct-11 14:41:49

It's not so much comments about the bump, but the way in which some people do it. For instance, AKP79's receptionist sounded like she was trying to insinuate that she was way to big for however many weeks along she was. Well, that's what it sounded like to me.

AKP79 Mon 10-Oct-11 14:47:29

That's exactly how it felt ChineapplePunk!

I have had people in the past say to me that I'm all up front etc and I've not got remotely upset by that. It was the gasping and the acting shocked that upset me. I appreciate that I am a little over-sensitive at the moment as I really am not coping with the changes to my body, but the whole drama of her reaction made me feel pretty crap.

ChineapplePunk Mon 10-Oct-11 14:53:40

Sod her! smile
Plenty of pregnancy compliments are nice, but comments made in that way are just nasty.

hiss42 Mon 10-Oct-11 15:21:45

You get in like a 'pregnancy bubble'. My ds is 8 weeks now, and for my whole pregnancy, I was like why do people make me feel so big by saying "you're huge!!", they think they can just come up and touch your bump, why won't they sod off with their have you had your baby yet? Is it EVER coming? Evry 5 minutes (was 2 weeks overdue before induction!)
I promise you the second that you've had your baby you'll be doing the EXACT same things you hated to other women! You jsut forget how annoying it is!!!

highlove Mon 10-Oct-11 15:54:53

I really agree with others who don't think it's insensitive at all; I think other people are just trying to be nice and want to talk to you about your pregnancy. So I honestly don't get what there's to be upset about, though could see it might just get a bit annoying after a while. Then again I've never been pg, desperately want to be and have been trying and failing to be for bloody ages so there's nothing I'd like more in the world than someone to be commenting on my bump.

cravingcake Mon 10-Oct-11 15:56:32

I was politely asked not to go into labour at the checkout in tesco today, the checkout lady said it in such a nice polite happy way, & it was a new one on me, normally i get the how long to go, cant be long now that it actually made me smile. I'm 36+5 & look & feel the size of a baby hippo but am hoping LO stays put for a few more days at least.

PamBeesly Mon 10-Oct-11 15:59:54

I hate people commenting on my body, whatever the weather but its down right rude to make comments like that, particularly when you are pregnant.
Good luck with the rest of your pregnancy smile

localcrackpot Mon 10-Oct-11 16:01:19

One colleague told me that my suit was too tight. I think she thought she was being friendly, but being told your clothes don't fit (especially when dressed up for an assessment) is exactly as complimentary during pregnancy as before it.

banana87 Mon 10-Oct-11 17:14:47

I seriously do not know but I am ready to punch the next person who makes an inappropriate comment about my bump angry.

5littleducks Mon 10-Oct-11 17:31:16

I think you are being over sensitive too. People just like to talk about your pregnancy and it doesn't sound insensitive to me tbh. People also talk a load of shit so if someone is rude don't take it too seriously - I had a couple of people tell me how HUGE I was with DS when I was having growth scans because they thought he was tiny (and my bump was too).

HardCheese Mon 10-Oct-11 20:16:12

I hear you, OP. My bump isn't really visible yet - 16 weeks, weigh 2 kg less than the first time I was weighed by the midwife from being sick, and am wearing lots of drapey autumnal cardigans - but anyone who decides it is a suitable topic of conversation at a bus stop, or (God help them) touches it uninvited is going to have their heads bitten off. I have no interest in whether other people consider it insensitive or not, I am concerned with my own responses to being some kind of object of public scrutiny. And, for the record, I love my pregnant shape, but I don't see why it's any of anyone else's business.

BedHog Mon 10-Oct-11 20:25:01

As recently as the early 1980s, it wasn't uncommon for women to give birth to a 'surprise' twin, as scanning equipment wasn't that sophisticated and women usually only had one scan. I know two people who this happened to. I guess this is where all the 'are you sure there's just one in there?' gumph that (usually older) people come out with comes from.

Agree it's annoying though. People forget how scary pregnancy is.

pregnantmimi Mon 10-Oct-11 22:43:27

It used to bother me up in till I got to 30 weeks and I really have got a big bump and like people commenting on how big it is and love people touching my tummy! I remember being upset when people commented on how big I was but now I am big I dont mind cause its true. When I was 3 months and people said I was big I just thought no Im not and it hurt cause I am a size 14 and struggled with weight in the past and didnt feel my body was that different but now it is I dont mind. I remember a size 8 woman at work telling me I was huge at 3 months and I was still a 14 stupid cow x

notlettingthefearshow Mon 10-Oct-11 23:32:15

I love people noticing I'm pregnant. I think pregnant women are beautiful - including me! - so it is always a compliment!

Personally, pregnancy frees me from previous body hang ups. I can safely say my stomach has gone from my most hated body part to most loved.

My student asked me how many babies I was carrying - I thought it was hilarious!

I've not had anyone trying to touch my bump, apart from my students who are not British. I would tell them if I wasn't comfortable.

morethemerrier Tue 11-Oct-11 17:36:37

Since when can someone 'gasping' before asking how many have you got in there ever be considered as a compliment?

Theres plenty of nice things to say to a pregnant woman without commenting on her size wether it be a big bump, or equally as annoying 'oohh your very small for X weeks'!

I agree that people like acknowledging and making small talk about your pregnancy and its nice, but I have never told someone they are HUGE?!?

Thats just plain rude!

Maybe you should have said in a whisper, 'well dont tell anyone,but they have started calling me Octomum at the maternity unit'! wink

beatrice75 Tue 11-Oct-11 19:19:41

I totally sympathise AKP79. I get comments like yours almost every day and it's knocking my confidence down big time. I'm not one to be obsessed with the size of my body and I never felt self-conscious with my other two pregnancies but this time it's different and I don't feel very attractive at all. Part of the problem is that I'm much bigger and the fact people keep making comments about it makes me feel a bit like a freak. It may also be that I don't have a lot of time - and money actually - to be as girly as I was a few months ago so I haven't been to the hairdresser's, or had a manicure, or bought expensive maternity clothes for a while.
I think some people are subconsciously jealous of the attention that a pregnant woman always gets and somehow they have to make a stinging remark. I don't believe that they don't realise that commenting on how big you are is not a nice thing to say!

HardCheese Tue 11-Oct-11 19:33:39

Sorry to hear that Beatrice - it must feel disheartening, but as you say, it's about other people's rudeness, not about you. I'm not sure about the subconscious jealousy, but there's clearly something disinhibiting about other people's pregnancies that makes some colleagues, family members, total strangers feel able to make comments about a woman's body that they wouldn't dream of under other circumstances. If you wouldn't gasp aloud and comment on the size of a woman's ass, then don't do it about her pregnant belly! I don't have any hangups about my body, pregnant or otherwise, but I do make a point of not letting anyone away with rudeness. In my opinion, people need to be firmly trained as to what is and isn't appropriate as a comment!

PinkFondantFancy Tue 11-Oct-11 23:02:38

Unless your receptionist is also a midwife or obs, I would take her comment in the spirit in which it was probably intended-something to say to show an interest in your pregnancy. Don't let others' comments affect how you perceive yourself.

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