How to be friends with a pregnant woman: a primer.
- I’m not stupid; I’m pregnant. I want to discuss the same things we discussed before I got knocked up, whether it’s grad school or your dating exploits. If anything, I want to discuss these more, because everyone thinks that as soon as you get pregnant, the only thing you’re capable of discussing is BABIES. I want to remember who I am, not just what I’m doing.
- I’m still fun to hang out with. Just because I’m up the stick doesn’t mean I have a stick up my ass. I still have the mental capacity and propensity for saying or doing dumb stuff, I’m just saying it sober. I may not be able to stay out as late as pre-pregnancy me, but I still want to see you and socialize with you.
- If you’re feeling lazy or depressed, I suggest calling your pregnant friend. We’re riding some pretty gnarly mood swings and are the perfect person to share a couch with for a fascinating afternoon of Friday Night Lights and a bag of ruffled potato chips.
- As much as we’d like to join you at the club or the bar, we may have physical issues barring us from standing around for three hours clutching a drink. If I can almost pass out in an empty coffee shop, I can almost pass out in a crowded bar where I can’t get to a glass of water. Can we at least go to the bar with lots of chairs?
- If you don’t plan on being a parent, that’s cool, I don’t mind. I still like you and your company. But I will like you less if you constantly bring up how glad you are you’ll never be pregnant, and I may try to stab you if you give me pitying looks.
- My decision to be pregnant has nothing to do with you, stop acting like it’s a personal offense. Alternately, my decision to be pregnant has nothing to do with you, stop offering me advice about everything. If I want advice, I’ll ask. Until then, could we please discuss something that’s doesn’t involve my uterus?
- I understand that some people will decide that they don’t want to be friends with a pregnant person, or, alternately, a parent. That’s fine. Bow out of the friendship gracefully. I assume that some people won’t want to be friends with me because I decided to have a kid. It makes me sad, but I’m not going to cause a scene.
- If we’re very close, don’t hesitate to ask me if I need anything. I’m new to this pregnancy thing as well, and I’m afraid to discuss how I’m feeling because I’m afraid it will alienate other friends and acquaintances. Honestly, I’m afraid to tell you, but I need you now more than ever. I can complain or dissect the pregnancy experience to my spouse or my mother only so much, I need someone who’s not related to me by blood or by vows. I’ll pay you for your time in wine.
- I’m the same person you’ve known for six months/four years/two decades. Talk to me about the same things you would if I wasn’t pregnant. I promise, I’ll appreciate it.