things pregnant women are sick of hearing

13 Things Not to Say to Pregnant Women

I’ve written about the things pale girls are sick of hearing, the things women with long hair are sick of hearing, the things redheads are sick of hearing and – oh, yeah – I’ve also written similar posts about Scottish people and bloggers.

You’d think there’d be nothing left for me to complain about by now, huh?

Seriously, though, do you even KNOW me? Because, if you do, you’ll know that I can ALWAYS find something to complain about – so, without further ado, here are some of the things pregnant women are sick of hearing: and, by “pregnant women,” I mostly mean, “this particular pregnant woman” – don’t say I didn’t warn you…

things pregnant women are sick of hearing

“Wow, look at you: you’re SO HUGE!”

To which I always want to reply, “Oh wow, lookit YOU! You’re SO RUDE!”

Seriously, though, folks, no one likes being described as “HUGE”, pregnant or not, and pregnancy really ISN’T just an excuse to start in with the personal comments. Or it shouldn’t be, anyway. Let’s face it, though, it mostly IS, isn’t it? Speaking of which…

“So, was it planned?”

Er, was this question planned, or did you just blurt out the first idiotic thing that came into your head?

To be fair, I haven’t actually had anyone ask this myself, but I know lots of people who DID have to field this particularly intrusive question when they were pregnant, along with equally insensitive ones like, “How long were you trying for?” Which is just WAY more information than most people are comfortable with, you know?


“You want to find out the baby’s sex? Awww, but I think it should be a surpriiiiise!”

Some people can be oddly judgemental about the decision to find out the baby’s sex early, and will want to make sure you know how superior they are for having waited until the birth. I mean, whatever makes you feel good, I guess?


“I think you’re having a girl, I just KNOW it! I just have a FEELING!”

When you’re pregnant, a lot of people will have a lot of “feelings” about what you’re having. (And, oddly enough, the ones who are MOST invested in playing this particular game of chance will generally be the ones who think you should wait for a “surprise”…) There’s no arguing with a “feeling”, so there’s absolutely nothing you can say to any of this – you just have to sit back, smile politely, and accept that complete strangers are claiming to have inside knowledge about the contents of your uterus. Because that’s not awkward… is it?


“Oh, you’re pregnant? Here, let me tell you aaaalll about my traumatic childbirth experience / miscarriage / other absolutely terrifying pregnancy factoid!”

Well, to be fair, it’s not like pregnant women have enough to worry about as it is, do they?

“Better sleep while you can, because you’ll never sleep again, once the baby is here!”

Wait: you’re telling me babies DON’T just sleep right through the night, like adults do?

“Just you wait!”

This one always follows some gleeful observation about how your life will effectively be over once you have a kid. I always want to respond to these comments by saying, “God, you’re right – I guess I’ll just have him adopted, then!” but I’m sure there’s a more tactful way to let those people know that, even if they’re right, well, there’s not really much you can do about it now, other than lie awake at night thinking about how you’ve apparently ruined your entire life…


“Can you feel him moving yet? How about now? Now? NOW?”

People started asking me if I could feel the baby moving yet as soon as they found out I was pregnant. I was 10 weeks at the time, so, er NO, I couldn’t feel him moving yet, and asking me again tomorrow – and every day after that –  wasn’t going to make me change my answer. I got this question so often, and at such early stages of my pregnancy (i.e. long, long before most people would reasonably expect to feel movement) that it became a real source of anxiety to me that everyone seemed to expect me to be able to feel something that I just couldn’t feel. Please folks, for the love of God, don’t be the person who does this!

“Are you sure you should be doing/ eating/ wearing that?”

Policing pregnant women’s behaviour is a national pastime, apparently, as is treating them like small children, who can’t be trusted not to hurt themselves or their unborn child. It’s enough to drive a woman to drink. Oh no, wait…

“Are you planning to breastfeed?”

Um, I dunno: are you planning to mind your own business?

“Looking good, mummy!”


Seriously: unless I gave birth to you, DO. NOT. CALL. ME. MUMMY.

Like, EVER.


“Well, you won’t be able to wear / do THAT soon!”

It’s mostly about shoes (Because your feet will double in size after birth, apparently), but I was also recently told that I won’t be able to have nice handbags any more, just a giant diaper bag. (My first response to this was to wonder why my husband can’t carry the diaper bag from time to time, but the conversation had already moved on to how often the baby will pee in my face, so I didn’t get the chance to ask…) In fact, I won’t be able to have ANY nice things AT ALL, because that baby will just ruin EVERYTHING, won’t he? Say, I wonder why people even HAVE babies?!



“Do you think he’ll have red hair? What if he has red hair? Won’t it be amazing if he has red hair?!”

OK, so this one really applies to me in particular, rather than “pregnant women” in general, but I realised pretty early in my pregnancy that wow, some people are REALLY invested in what colour of hair my baby is going to have, and that a lot of those people are going to be REALLY disappointed if he’s not “a ginger” …  which he almost certainly won’t be. ( Both parents have to carry the “redhead” gene for that to even be a possibility, and it’s not very common in Greece, which is where Terry’s family are from).

It could still happen, I guess, but Terry and I honestly don’t care what colour the baby’s hair is, and I’m always a little bit surprised when people make the assumption that it must be THE MOST IMPORTANT THING EVER to us, or say that they’re “hoping it’s a redhead” or something, as if any other hair colour JUST WON’T BE AS GOOD. Seriously, people, it’s just hair – oh, and while we’re on the subject:


Have you ever been pregnant? What did you get sick of hearing?

13 things pregnant women are sick of hearing

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  • Myra


    Go Amber! Sometimes I think being socialised and polite is a distinct disadvantage to health lol.
    One thing I have wondered about it though is, did you buy a new car?

    October 25, 2017
  • Myra


    Love the GIFs lol

    October 25, 2017
  • Vanessa


    Not every baby behaves the same way, mine slept eight hours through the night right from the beginning, but everyone in the family kind of expected (read wanted) not to be the case and showed up to help and give time to rest (read play with the new toy), so instead of resting I had to entertain!

    October 25, 2017
  • We got “Bet you hope the baby’s NOT a ginger.” Er… no… quite happy either way, thanks.

    This morning (36 weeks), I’ve already had three people comment that I’m “at the waddling stage”. THANK YOU, RANDOM STRANGERS, I’M QUITE AWARE THAT I WALK LIKE A PENGUIN RIGHT NOW. They did all seem very excited for me, though, and a bus driver saw me attempting to hurry over and actually waited for me, so I guess there’s that…

    October 25, 2017
  • My kids are 12 and 17 and perfect strangers still call me “mom.” The doctor’s office is particularly bad for this. As in, they will say things like “Mom, can you fill out these forms?” or “Mom, how long has she had that cough?” Seriously, if you can learn my kid’s name then you can learn my name too.

    The thing that drove me really crazy at the end of my pregnancies was the people who had to constantly comment on the fact that I hadn’t obliged them by having the baby yet. Every single time they saw me they would say something like “I can’t believe you haven’t had that baby yet.” or “Are you still around?” I was supposed to find it amusing. I didn’t. Then they seemed to feel this horrible glee because I was tired and ready to be done being pregnant and they would tell me stories about the woman who went three weeks late or whatever. People can be awful. (Should I qualify that by saying I know not all people are awful and I know some of them are quite nice and surely they meant well? Or shall we just take that as a given?)

    October 25, 2017
  • Lynsey


    I hated people thinking it was ok to touch my bump! or give it a rub! obviously my mum, sister, close friends I didn’t mind so much (although they seemed to know when to keep their distance) but acquaintances or total strangers…….RUDE

    October 25, 2017
  • Karen


    When I was pregnant with my third (and every time since when I’ve been out with my 4 year old, 3 year old, and 6 month old) people were constantly asking if we were “done” after this one. Also, that my husband must be SO HAPPY to finally get a boy after two girls, and that we can stop reproducing now that we’ve “got our boy”. My husband happens to love having girls!

    October 25, 2017
  • Amelia


    The thing I hated was “are you sure it’s not twins” – yes, I was enormous (big, 9lb3oz baby and excess fluid as well -he was and is perfect) and I am a twin (identical though so not the type that runs in families). It was so hurtful because I was a bag of nerves due to the excess fluid (and the fact my son’s head was off the scale big). The other one was “was it planned?” As though I’d divulge that kind of information to anyone – yes he was but that’s beside the point – if he wasn’t would they have assumed he wasn’t wanted or that me and my husband were irresponsible? GAH, people just ask stupid questions when they hear you’re pregnant. Unfortunately, it doesn’t getuch better once the baby arrives – one man asked me if I’d had an episiotomy! Can you imagine asking something so personal? I mean ever. And then you get the women who go on and on about their natural births as though getting an epidural means you’re not a proper woman or mother. It’s all just hideous.

    October 25, 2017
  • Amelia


    I should say that being a mother is the best thing that ever happened to me though! Sorry I sounded so negative. It’s honestly the most rewarding experience of my life and watching my son grow up is incredible.

    October 25, 2017
  • D


    My most annoying moments were after birth…people wanting to watch me breastfeed…or asking if they could bring their young children to watch. Ummm…HELL NO!!!

    October 25, 2017
  • Yeah any sort of negative comment bothers me. Like when I passed a crying baby with a work colleague when we were out for lunch, him: “oh you better get well used to that sound!”. I also don’t really like the comments on the bump. Either commenting that it’s small or really obvious. People don’t know what to say I guess! I also had people asking me if I already knew the gender from about week 10. Er.. no! It’s way too soon!

    October 25, 2017
  • I’ve never been pregnant, but a fair few folk have said some nasty things about what a mess I would’ve made of it.

    A “friend” once told me that I’d be a “terrible mother” because I made her son laugh and then he was too excitable to sit still. Meanwhile, my aunt informed me that I shouldn’t have children because I wouldn’t be able to “bear it”. A boorish male relative informed me that I wasn’t “very good with boys” because, yet again, I couldn’t get them to do what they were told because they were having fun (and I didn’t expect them to behave!).

    While I don’t have children through choice, I do like spending time with them and am perfectly good at caring for them. So I found all these remarks really unpleasant.

    October 25, 2017
  • My life right now:
    When are you due?
    But when in January?
    But when in mid-January?
    [repeat forever]

    October 25, 2017
  • Jade


    Excellent choice of gifs. My mother likes to remind me that, “You’re body will never be the same.” and “aww, you’re going to lose that cute little waist.” Which, cool. Thanks mom. After this thing comes out, I will in fact stop exercising FOREVER. Sheesh.

    October 25, 2017
  • Hahaha! Oh, dear, these are all SO TRUE. And I had to laugh because otherwise, I was going to snap someone’s head right off when I heard these sorts of things. Depressingly, they didn’t stop after I had the baby either; people still felt the need to comment on my body/size and how quickly I was or wasn’t shedding the weight. Like, yes, I did slim back down, but that was because I am diabetic and trying to figure out my insulin intake post-baby. The fast weight loss was a result of my blood sugar being high as I struggled to control it; it actually wasn’t a great thing and it felt super-awkward to have people being all, “Oh, I wish I had lost the weight that fast.” (Side note on the diabetic thing: I still get people asking me if I should/shouldn’t be eating things or doing things. Apparently having any type of medical condition is licensed for people who don’t know a thing about your medical history to make commentary about how poorly you are taking care of your health. Like, its an immune disease, not brain disease. I’m still in full control of my cognitive abilities.)

    Anyway, what I wanted to say, is your sense of humor and wit makes me laugh and brightens my day, so thank you. Also- being a mother of a son rocks, so poo-poo to all those people who “feel” you’re having a girl. Having a id is wonderful no matter the gender.

    October 25, 2017
  • JUST YOU WAIT! This is a phrase my mom uses repeatedly! I hate it (not being pregnant now, already having 3 small children). But I´m 100% sure I´ll use that too 😀

    October 25, 2017
  • IM not even pregnant. And I can already imagine how annoying these could be. Urgh I’m definitely going to get the ginger comments too. Oh the joy! Ahaha

    October 25, 2017
  • May


    If I was pregnant and someone made those comments I would not hold back one bit. Like:

    – Wow, look at you: you’re SO HUGE! Well yeah, that kinda comes with the package of growing a full person inside you
    -So, was it planned? Actually, it’s a funny story, It all started with a bottle of alcohol and an orgy…
    -You want to find out the baby’s sex? Awww, but I think it should be a surpriiiiise! What can be so surprising about a human’s genitals, Karen?
    -I think you’re having a girl, I just KNOW it! I just have a FEELING! I once had a feeling it was a baby but it turned out to be a giant pizza, so who knows really
    -Oh, you’re pregnant? Here, let me tell you aaaalll about my traumatic childbirth experience / miscarriage / other absolutely terrifying pregnancy factoid! Oh, you’re alive? Let me tell you aaaaaaaall about the horrible things that happen to people who are alive
    -Better sleep while you can, because you’ll never sleep again, once the baby is here! I don’t sleep anyway so now at least I’ll have something to do instead of simply staring into the darkness while slowly being consumed by madness
    -Just you wait! I’ve done my waiting. Twelve years of it, In Azkaban
    -Can you feel him moving yet? How about now? Now? NOW? Thankfully no. You see I once watched Alien and I can’t quite shake that mental image you know?
    -Are you sure you should be doing/ eating/ wearing that? Not really, but I am sure I did not ask for your opinion
    -Are you planning to breastfeed? No, I’m planning to go all the way back to the middle ages and hire a wet nurse
    -Looking good, mummy! I don’t recall pushing you out of my vagina, love
    -Well, you won’t be able to wear / do THAT soon! Oh how awful. My whole life ruined, in shreds, destroyed, all because I dared get pregnant. Guess I’ll go cry in the corner cuddling my new sweet baby to comfort myself
    -Do you think he’ll have red hair? What if he has red hair? Won’t it be amazing if he has red hair?! I think it’d be amazing if he had wings, or superpowers, not a particular hair colour. It’s hair, Karen, calm down

    I’m truly amazed that you managed to keep yourself from strangling these people. What’s with the need to rain on everyone’s parade, honestly?

    October 25, 2017
  • Helen


    I get so many of these! I’m 32 weeks now and every bastarding day at work I get at least one person telling me how much bigger I am than yesterday…that’s sort of how pregnancy works you twits, baby isn’t going to be shrinking in here, is he?!?
    People do seem to think that the second you are pregnant they can make comments about your body they’d never dare to otherwise. Weirdos.
    Luckily I am able to roll my eyes or laugh at people…or persuade them to make me tea since I’m so gigantic I can’t possibly make it myself!

    October 25, 2017
  • Mel


    Tim Minchin! The best! You’re amazing Amber, your baby will be beautiful!

    October 25, 2017
  • Decca


    I am overdue by 4 days and I am fed up with the harassment of ‘when’s that baby going to arrive?’ My midwives are happy to let me go to term plus 12 days, so I potentially have a long wait left. I just send back the link which answers the question perfectly. Nobody is anxiously awaiting me going into labour more than *me*, so I wish they’d all STFU about it.

    The gender thing must vary in places because I got a lot of fuss for *not* finding out the gender. People were looking at me like I’ve got two heads when I said we’re waiting to find out when the baby’s born. I can’t say I’ve ever cared about whether other people have found out what gender they’re having, and that’s before or since being pregnant myself. It’s just not my business! If people want to know, great, if they don’t, also great!

    My foot-in-mouth father-in-law called me a ‘lump’ earlier this week, which is somehow even bloody worse than ‘wow you’re huuuuuge!’

    I was also ready to get stabby whenever I was asked ‘was it planned?’ I would never dream of asking someone that. It’s horribly intrusive – with questions like that, I feel like if you have to ask then it’s obvious you’re not close enough to the person that they would tell you something so personal organically.

    “How’s *our* baby doing?” I mainly blame expectant grandparents for this one. Sorry folks and folks-in-law, I’m your baby (or my husband’s your baby,) the baby I’m carrying is *my* baby, not *our* baby. I’m sure I would have noticed if you were swinging from the chandeliers with us (or going through all the stages at the IVF clinic with us, getting prodded and poked and pumped with hormones!)

    October 26, 2017
  • I’m 37 weeks and have written a few posts complaining about the very same things! I was blown away by people who asked if it was a surprise, but more so by people who asked how my husband was coping with the news! Um, we made the choice to make a baby people and last I checked, both of us were there when we did!! SOO rude. I also got tons of other mothers telling me their horror stories like some sort of right of passage, and people who thought it was appropriate to mention terrible tragedies involving pregnancy.
    I was also surprised how many people told me we shouldn’t have found out the sex, and why did we ruin such a wonderful surprise. It’s a surprise when you find out one way or another – doesn’t matter if its at a 20-week scan or at 40 weeks delivery people!!

    October 26, 2017
  • Selina


    The worst one I got was from my aunt when I was about four or five months pregnant with my oldest. It was the first time I’d seen her since announcing my pregnancy, and the first words out of her mouth were “Goodness, you’ve put on a lot of weight haven’t you? Especially around the thighs.” I was completely floored. Of course being the non-confrontational people pleaser that I am I just laughed it off, but man I wish I was one of those people who can come up with witty rejoinders on the spot, because she really needed to be schooled!

    October 26, 2017
  • Vicky


    I probably encountered most of these comments during my three pregnancies (apart from the red-head one….!) but none of them really bothered me. It’s just people trying to be nice.

    Your being pregnant is a good handle to start a conversation. If you were wearing a plaster cast on your leg, they’d all be making jokes about Long John Silver, or telling you about when they broke their arm….

    Let it go, let it gooooo…..

    October 26, 2017
    • Decca


      Being nice is “How are you feeling?”

      Being intrusive is “Was the baby planned?/Are you going to breastfeed?/Do you know what you’re having?/Why did you/didn’t you find out what you’re having?/My goodness you’ve put on a lot of weight!”

      If people aren’t forthcoming with details about their pregnancy, assume it’s because they don’t want you to know. It’s not an invitation to ask.

      October 26, 2017
  • Mairik


    I reckon people just think your hair is awesome and since it’s a bit unusual they hope it will pass on. And it is awesome.

    October 26, 2017
  • Just drop kick them and blame it on the hormones xx

    October 27, 2017
  • Bobbi


    My favorite is when you are experiencing pain or some other pregnancy related discomfort and a veteran mother will look at you gleefully and remind you that it just gets worse. I have no idea why pregnancy is an excuse to be gleeful over someone else’s pain or discomfort.

    October 31, 2017
  • I am also sick of people commenting about my “next pregnancy” when I am still only part way through this one. I made the mistake of once saying to someone I was only going to have this one child, and the barrage of abuse I got about only children and how it was an injustice to them. This person knew very little about me, my age, how hard it had been to conceive this one, or anything about my personal circumstances. It was vile. Just smile and nod people, smile and nod.

    November 13, 2017
  • Crikey I have been asked all of these too (not the redhead one) just reading this list makes me angry!
    Currently 28 weeks pregnant and I want to get the answers printed out on a tshirt haha.
    Even from people saying ”are you pregnant?” i think is rude, the unwritten rule in my eyes is unless you can see the baby coming out, don’t even insinuate a woman is pregnant!!

    The worst thing is, our partners don’t get any of the ridiculous questions!!! xx

    Keep positive, you are doing and looking great and I love catching up with your blog! 🙂

    November 14, 2017
  • I’m surprised how many people ask the “Was it planned?” question, often as pretty much the first thing said after I’ve mentioned being pregnant. I had put this down to the fact that my partner and I aren’t married, but I could be wrong. Either way it seems rather rude.

    January 8, 2018
  • Taryn


    I was asked if it was planned a lot or people would comment about how me and my husband “got right to it” since we were young and newlyweds. I was also told by my grandma that “I was getting round in the cheeks”. That one was particularly hard because I was working my ass off to overcome an eating disorder for my baby. I got dirty looks for being young and pregnant (I was 18 but looked younger) and I got asked if the father was still in the picture. Um yeah. I have the ring for a reason.

    June 26, 2019