Top tips dealing with busy bodies :)(57 Posts)
PG with our 1st child & I have noticed that a lot of people seem to offer advice / lectures / preach to you. For examples I have had one woman give me a lecture today on the cons of epidurals , ( not requested by me just another interfering busy body) & another ask " should you be eating that" i am very aware this gets worse once kiddies are on the scene.
So what are your come back lines / tactics with dealing with these people? I am looking for more for a verbal route because bashing them over the head is not allowed (shame) ;)
buy the t-shirt
I bought one with "Does my bump look big in this?"
I was always more offended at people (particularly people I didn't even really know!) asking me, before I was pg, when I planned to get pregnant. Maybe I was just more sensitive then as had been ttc and didn't want to talk to my own family about it, let alone strangers!
Having said that, I haven't had much unsolicited advice/comments during my pregnancy, poss because my bump is still quite small considering how far along I am.
I think I was more offended the other night by a friend who was asked by another friend "whether she was engaged yet?"... I had to actually comment on the rudeness of that one...fortunately the friend in question was quite drunk and didn't seem that bothered....
I think the best and least stressful strategy is to nod, smile and change the subject if poss - as another poster said, people are generally well-meaning.
Teaandflapjacks I know! It is so annoying, NHS now says nuts are fine unless there is a history of allergy/asthma/eczema in your immediate family. Even so, I would have ate nuts anyway as there is no allergies in my family. I think of it like vaccinations, exposing the baby to something to boost immunity.
I was much more annoyed about the caffeine thing - it's not banned, ad better for the baby than cigarettes!
I have a very opinionated MIL and I used to argue with her. Now I pretend I haven't heard her or if I am challenged for a response, I fob her off with 'everyone's different', I haven't decided, or I'll see. it annoys her because I know exactly what I am doing and intend to do it regardless.
These people are just sanctumonius and bored. Irritating combination.
"well the gin,fags and cocaine dont seem to be hurting anything so I cant see this coffee causing problems can you?".
I love that one @froubylou - might use that night next time someone at work tells me "you shouldn't be working here in your condition" - I work in a gastropub. I thought they did away with confinement a long time ago...
People are generally trying to be helpful. There are 101 ways of getting past people you don't wish to engage with atm.
You will get a lot of conflicting advice and some bad advice as well. But hidden amongst them would be some little gems that will have a huge impact.
I could not have done without the wisdom and support of other mums when I was struggling with pregnancy complications, breastfeeding etc.
I don't think being pregnant is any excuse to be rude to anyone. People generally mean well, and everyone gets excited by a pregnancy.
When my MIL offered shit advice I'd just say something like "they don't do that now", or "it's different now"
I don't think there's ever an excuse to belittle people or be a smart arse just because they are misguided but well meaning.
You might be that lonely old lady one day.
But being pregnant is not an excuse to have advice (well meaning or otherwise) shoved down your throat, unless you ask for it.
And I'm sure most of us for the most part will nod and smile and agree with most people. My theory is opinions are like arseholes. Everyone has got one and the only one that really matters is my own!
But some people whether they be friends, relatives or strangers feel compelled to force unwanted advice upon hormonal, emotional ladies who are already going through one of the most worrying times of their lives whether they are first time mums or old hands. Chuck someone speaking AT you rather than with you over an issue that is probably completely non of their business and you are bound to get a snotty answer sooner or later.
chocsaway but being pregnant is one of those times when you are oversensitive, hormonal, irrational etc
leave them be
I really want to find some of these people - no-one offers me advise on anything! (Although MIL is itching to I think - but she's too nice to actually do it)
I would class myself as little and cuddly, but perhaps other people have a different perception?
OP, smile and ignore (unless you have a perfect smartarse comment). No point engaging at all, as anyone who feels strongly about anything just won't change their mind
chunkypickle have my mum, my MIL, some so-called friends and the pretty much the whole fricking neighbourhood, including most healthcare workers and Tesco stuff
you are welcome
*chocsaway but being pregnant is one of those times when you are oversensitive, hormonal, irrational etc
leave them be*
I have been pregnant five times. I have two children. I still managed to nod and smile. Nobody "forced advice down my throat" I was free to ignore it or discard it.
People offering or handing our advice are not evil, just thoughtless, so belittling them and using sarcasm to make them look small is not something I would like to do.
I dare you to nod and smile when having had 3 boys someone sees your newborn DS4 says "oh, you've had another boy! what a shame...a girl would've been lovely!"
had versions of this through all my pgs and after MC.
the most horrible one? after loosing baby girl someone close to me said they were happy that baby died, because they thought it would've been hard to look after 5 kids and it's better that way.
I most certainly did not smile and nod!
no sympathy from me for "well-meaning" strangers.
they can just fuck off, then fuck off some more to the far side of fuck
and we have 6 now and doing fab.
YY to Laquila - it was MUCH more annoying and genuinely hurtful when I was ttc (with lots of problems) and people asked me when I was going to have children. The only thing that really upsets me at the moment is 'when do you think you'll have a second?' I've not had this one yet! Also, I have had a difficult pregnancy so far, so am hastily rethinking my plans for a large family ...!
I think this thread is mostly good natured - thank god we have MN to vent on. I'm sure we're all balanced and very polite in real life! There's no way I could actually tell my mother that I am going to scream if she encourages me, one more time, to manipulate the NHS into giving me an ELCS because 'it's easier to sit down afterwards.' Smile. Nod. Ignore.
I've found that I'm not really getting advice as such (yet!) but more more being "informed" what will and won't be happening to me - always with a smug, derisive chuckle at whatever I might have said - so far I've been told by various people that I will "definitely"...
give up bf by 6wks to "get my life back"
be feeding baby rice at 4mths (I want to blw at 6mths) just to get my child to sleep more than an hour
have an epidural
not have an epidural
want my mum to come and stay (not a chance!)
....and on and on and on...
My new response to all helpful advice, interested conversations is "well, we're just going to see how it goes...."
If you refuse to be drawn in the subject they soon lose interest!
I may have to invest in one f iamci's babygros
Laquila you can tell your mum that a normal birth doesn't neccesary mean you can't sit down afterwards.
my 6th was born with no tearing so no stitches needed. she was 8lb 3oz.
I was so well and pain free within days. it was great!
(I had unavoidable ELSC with DS4, massive episiotomy and foreceps with DS1, plus a variety of experiences with the others. I'm ok sitting down )
and congrats on being pg!
amazingmumof6. I quite agree.
When pregnant I was able to deflect comments and advice and nod and smile.
Once my boy was born, I did get pissed off with MIL "I was hoping for a girl, but never mind" Still she lives hundreds of miles away so it's not very often I have to listen to her drivel! I can play nice a few times a year when we see her.
Anyway, I thought this thread was about remarks when pregnant? If so yes, I would be polite to well meaning misguided people.
However once the baby is born, it's just as bad! the first time DH and I were uptight, but the 2nd time we were more blase about it, saying stuff like "well the first one turned out OK, so I guess we're doing something right!"
Kittenkatzen I agree. Deflect and change the subject with a platitude.
sorry last post was meant for gertrudestein
yes chocs I agree that nod and smile works, but not forever.
especially not when pg and busy and tired and have a migraine etc.
the more kids I had the less patience I had in general, so even less to suffer fools gladly.
I don't see why I have to be polite when the other person isn't.
not my fault they have no emotional intelligence.
And the problem is that there is no end, unless busybodies go and shut up.
Wow amazingmumof6, I think you've earned your nickname!
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