Friday 27 February 2015

PREGNANCY: A Message To Everyone Who Has Compromised My Personal Space...

I have enjoyed watching my bump grow week on week, the process of our baby growing inside me has given me a whole new level of respect for my body. I just keep wishing I had known how inspiring my body would be when I was a self conscious teenager, hating everything about my body! If you're lacking respect for your body right now, just think one day it could produce another human being. That's pretty wonderful if you ask me!

Becoming pregnant is such a magical time of your life - a journey you will inevitably learn a lot about yourself and your body - but unfortunately (in my opinion) you somehow become public property. Or at least a lot of people think so.

Pregnant women and baby bumps have always fascinated me - what did it feel like to have a baby inside you? What does it feel like when the baby kicks? How do you sleep with such a big bump? When do you adopt the pregnant waddle? - so many questions and intrigue but I didn't start stroking random women's bumps or asking inappropriate questions. Not everybody I've come across during my pregnancy follows this usual social etiquette though, for some people I can now be seen as public property. All because my husband and I decided to have a baby - a decision WE made and a journey WE are sharing. Not a decision or journey that everyone and their dog needs to be or should be involved in. Don't get me wrong, I love sharing some aspects of my pregnancy, baby kicks and growing bump with the people I love (and all your lovely blog readers!) but surely it's up to ME what/when/where/how/who I want to share things with? No?

During the however many weeks I have been pregnant and people have known about it, I have been faced with a range of awkward situations that just wouldn't have been considered acceptable had I not been pregnant. Like the time that I was only 16 weeks pregnant (so barely had a bump) and someone lent over me saying "Oh you don't mind if I stroke your bump, do you?", while they were stroking my 'bump'. In other words they were stroking my slightly wobbly tummy, that I certainly didn't want people to be touching or stroking! But what can you say when they are already doing what they're asking is ok?! It's awkward. I shook the situation off with an unsure laughter, wishing that it wouldn't happen again. But it did, in fact it did later that day. I was saying goodbye to someone and they managed to wiggle their hand through my coat to stroke my tummy, I was shocked. I felt so uncomfortable and just scurried off - since when is it appropriate to put your hand under someone else's coat and touch their tummy? It seems since you announce your pregnancy, but that shouldn't be the case in my opinion. Just because I'm pregnant doesn't mean my body becomes public property. In fact my body is going through so many changes that I may or may not be feeling more self conscious than usual - making these inappropriate situations even more uncomfortable.

When I announced I was pregnant a lot of Mum's did warn me that this 'public property' situation would happen, but does that make it ok? Is it ok that women have come to expect it when they announce a pregnancy?

Personally, I don't think so.

A message to everyone who has compromised my personal space and privacy during this pregnancy, please remember:

It's my body, going through a journey my husband and I are sharing and if I/we want to share something with you then I/we will. If not then please keep your questions, advice, pressure and hands to yourself.

Thank you.

Did you struggle with this 'public property' aspect of being pregnant?

I'd love to hear your experiences too :)

Helen x


  1. I've been quite lucky in this respect - only one person has grabbed at the bump (though, of course, I haven't been out and about much and, when I am, the bump and all the support clothing is hidden under a duffel coat) - but I've been surprised by how many people think it's okay to ask really personal questions like, "Was it planned?" Why is my in/ability to use contraception suddenly up for public discussion?!

    1. Exactly - I can't believe how personal some of the questions get!

      Helen x

  2. I was okay with the bump feeling when i was pregnant, not many people touched it, but maybe that was due to me wearing baggy clothes to hide it (not on purpose) Although probably everyone i met asked if it was planned or if i was on any contracetion. It was none of thier business for one. Suz xo

  3. I've been adamant that only my partner gets to touch my bump. A few people have snuck in there but got such dirty looks that they haven't dared since!


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