Strange things happen to the human body during pregnancy. For your partner, it’s all about the discomfort and bizarreness of growing another human inside of them. For you, it’s all about how freakishly easy it suddenly becomes to get your foot into your mouth. Like, all the way in.
During her pregnancy it will be nearly impossible for you to not say something dumb that will make her cry. It’s the inevitable outcome of the cauldron of hormones bubbling inside of her and the fact that you are … a guy. That’s literally all it takes.
To make the chances of dining on sole a bit more slim, check out this handy guide of things not to say to your pregnant partner, which does not include: “Babe, can you go grab me a beer?” Because just the fact you’re reading this shows you are, clearly, better than that.
“You Look … “
Any time these two words come out of your face, immediately pump the brakes and consider what’s coming next. If it is connected to any vague (or specific) quantification of her volume, girth, circumference, mass or weight, you need to grab the e-brake and execute a glossal j-turn.
Reconsider even things you think will be helpful and show empathy, like “tired” or “uncomfortable,” or even “ … like a birthday balloon two days after the party just sadly dragging across the floor at the whim of every slight breeze.” She knows all of this. And feels it more acutely than you see it.
Here’s a short list of words to use after “You look … “
- Like you’re glowing
- Like a foot massage would be really helpful. Would you like to sit down and let me work some magic?
On Food And Eating
At some point you will observe some feat of eating from her that will truly impress you. Whether it’s a craving-related treat that seems just straight up gross, or a quantity of food that makes you think to yourself, “Wow,” do not ever actually say that word or riff on the general sentiment.
She might be concerned about her eating and her weight. But then again, she might not be. The last thing any lady needs (pregnant or not) is a dude commenting about how, and what, she’s eating.
Things you can say in regards to food:
- Can I make you dinner tonight?
- Would you like more?
- Is there anything else I can do while I’m out getting that for you?
- No. You do not look fat. Yes. Really. I am absolutely telling the truth.
On Emotions (Hers and Yours)
She’s feeling emotional and she does not need you Howard Cosell-ing every mood swing or crying jag. Your best bet is to keep silent on the issue. After all, the very last thing you want to hear your pregnant partner say is, “Oh? You think this is emotional!? You haven’t seen emotional!”
On the other hand, you may want to talk about how the pregnancy is making you feel. Yes, you are also tired. You are worried. It’s difficult for you, too. But these are conversations to have with close friends, preferably those who’ve had children. They are not discussions to have with her. She is growing a human. You are supporting her while she’s growing a human. Think of yourself as a … um, tomato cage. A tomato cage has no complaints.
What to say when she’s emotional:
- Nothing. Just hand her a box of Kleenex and give her a hug (if she wants one). Unless you were an asshole for some reason (you probably were whether you agree or not), in which case there is only one word to say: “Sorry.”