19.4.12

Keeping the secret

For the last two weeks we’ve been travelling around various parts of the UK having lots of fun. I will get round to posting an update at some point but as I seem to be running out of time this week I thought I’d upload this post which I wrote back in February just to prove that I’m still here!
You’ll have to excuse the fact that it’s a total rant - I was really sick and frustrated at the time of writing - but I’m genuinely interested in your thoughts on the matter. Don’t worry if you don’t agree with me, I just want to hear what you think...
{Written on 24th February 2012}
I have a query for you...would you ever ask someone if they were pregnant on a suspicion, even if they hadn't announced it officially yet?
I don't think I ever would - or have - asked that question before; it just seems way too personal, but I have been very surprised (and frustrated) by the amount of people who have asked us in the time that I have been missing things because of my morning sickness. I've lost count of the number of times that Josh has come home from college saying "we're going to have to tell people soon. So-and-so asked me if you were pregnant again today and I hate lying".
I get it...I've been sick for a month and I'm pretty sure that most people have their suspicions but why ask? Either
1) people are genuinely concerned that I might not being able to spot the (to be honest, quiet obvious) signs of pregnancy...which is just insulting to my intelligent OR
2) they're just being nosy and fishing for gossip.
Don't get me wrong; I'm not talking about close friends or family here. I'm talking about acquaintances or just general friends who don't fall into the category of needing to know intimate details of my life. Surely everyone knows that most people like to keep pregnancy quiet until twelve weeks so why ask a really direct question like that which might cause awkwardness? If I'm pregnant and I want you to know about it I would have told you!
Maybe I seem like I'm over-reacting and being harsh. People are probably just asking because they're concerned for us, but I just can't help being really frustrated with it all this week. Even with all the sickness I want to be able to enjoy every moment of being pregnant, but keeping it a secret is just becoming a nightmare and people's 'concerned' words are actually just making me stressed.
Firstly, I want to just be able to feel ill in peace. Okay...people are obviously going to have suspicions as to why I've been a recluse for a month but as it is I'm feeling really pressured to go to things even though I'm feeling awful because people are questioning Josh all the time as to my whereabouts. Secondly, we really don't want to be pressured into telling people before we're ready! At the moment I'm only about nine weeks and that still feels way too early to tell people. We know when and how we want to tell people but all of that is being put under pressure because people are asking us directly 'are you pregnant?' and we either have to lie to their faces or sacrifice the personal decisions we've made to keep it to ourselves.
What do you think? Am I over-reacting? Would you ever ask someone if they were pregnant before they officially announced it? I'm counting down the days until we can officially tell everyone! It's going to be such a relief!

12 comments:

  1. I completely agree with you!! It's stealing your thunder in a way! It makes you feel like you'll be telling thin air when you announce it because everyone is already showing suspicions or asking to your face if you are pregnant! Not fair. :(
    Also I wanted to let you know you've won the Versatile Blogger Award;
    swing by
    when you can to pick it up! :)

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  2. I don't think there's ANY situation where it's acceptable to ask a woman (directly or indirectly) if they are pregnant! I got asked if I was pregnant once when I definitely wasn't... so awkward! It's just a bad idea all round. Especially because most people (like me) purposefully want to keep it a secret until the end of the first trimester. I was fortunate enough to not get sick during my pregnancy but there were still situations where I had to "dodge the truth".

    By the way, CONGRATULATIONS! Motherhood is completely amazing :)

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  3. I totally understand! I just think it's rude. If it's a friend that's one thing but it's always people who barely know you or who are just acquaintances! I would never ask someone that! Just mind your own business, you'll know eventually! Haha!

    The whole first year or two we were married, if i had the SLIGHTEST sickness, people would say "must be pregnant!!!!!!" & it got old. Once i was like, "I have BRONCHITIS. That is not a symptom of pregnancy!" It was just a little ridiculous. Haha. I know that's different b/c you really ARE but you get what i'm saying. People feel way too comfortable these days - they are not afraid to ask ANYTHING! Haha!

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  4. I agree too! Neither would I ask a married couple why they DON'T have children. It's rude, intrusive and just plain nosy. But we have to forgive those who do ask...

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  5. I might suspect it but I'd never ask unless it was VERY VERY obvious...otherwise that's just rude!

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  6. I agree with you. I wouldn't ask anyone... I think that's rude!

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  7. First of all may I offer you my sincere congratulations on your wonderful news!

    People can be surprisingly overfamiliar when it comes to pregnancy and children. It's like they suddenly seem to think that your business is their business! For example, my first two children were only 19 months apart, so people I hardly knew seemed to think it was okay to ask if my second baby was planned. I was offended when someone said my second child 'had better be a girl', since my first child was a boy. Now that I have three children, the most common question I get asked by people is 'are you done yet?', as if discussing my family size with strangers is perfectly okay.

    In short, I think that once you start on the motherhood journey you seem to need to develop a thick skin. Often people are only trying to be conversational, but it is hard when they overstep the bounds of genuine interest to overfamiliarity. I try to smile and be polite, without necessarily answering the question they have asked directly.

    Wishing you all the very best for a happy and healthy pregnancy.
    Kind regards,
    Paula

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  8. I completely agree with you, as well as the other commenters. I would never consider asking someone, even if they were sick a lot recently. I was suspicious a friend of mine was pregnant, but knew it must be too early to say anything so I kept quiet and let them make their announcement in their own time. Also, I've been a bit unwell lately, and a few people have asked me if it was due to a pregnancy, which it wasn't. I think even asking as a joke isn't very nice (when they don't think you are), in case you actually are and then have to lie.

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  9. Rach - I agree entirely that is rude to ask and to make comments. However, a word of warning - I am pretty sure once you and Josh start in parish life it's going to become parish news and people will think it's their right to ask and be nosy. Paula above is quite right - a thick skin is going to be one of your most important assets!!! I don't think I've said Congratulations yet - I was away when you came to Aber.
    Jean

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  10. wait till people you hardly know start touching your belly!!!! but have to agree with Jean as a ministers wife you will find you are in the public eye (as will your child be) - but you get used to it - maintaining a good sense of humour helps and mostly it is because people care and feel they know you well - even if you only vaguely know them.
    Su

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  11. Oh my goodness congratulations!! You will love being a mommy, how exciting :)

    Ahhh people can be so rude, I know it. They think they have the right to ask questions about private matters and THEN to step even further and give their unsolicited "advice" about things. So many people got on our case for getting pregnant 7 months after our wedding, they were like "Why didn't you live a little before you got pregnant?! Now you're doomed to a life of drudgery!" And man, that's just their opinion and a bad one at that. I want to be like "what's your definition of 'living' and 'drudgery'?" Ugh. It's so annoying and frustrating.

    But just keep doing what you are comfortable with and know that it is a blessed thing to be a mother. I don't think you're overreacting, the first pregnancy is nerve-wracking and you don't know what to expect and everything is new & wild (and hormonal). Like Su said above just try to keep a good sense of humor :) I know I have to pray for the grace to deal with the crazy things people say to me even now. You are doing great! Congrats again!

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  12. I think I would ask if it was somebody I knew and they were trying for a baby and then starting to act different from usual, i.e. not eating cheese, not drinking. Apart from that, I think it is a bit preposterous.

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