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I was pregnant,
became a magnet for strangers sharing their traumatic birth stories.
All this did was frighten me about the future. I
learned that people like to share their horror stories, maybe because
it's therapeutic to talk about it.
That's great and all. But we need to stop
sharing these stories with expecting or new moms. It doesn't help them in any way and just feels rude.
Here are seven stories we
can do without.
1. You're having a
C-section? Let me tell you about how my scar ripped open!
approaching a C-section get all sorts of horror stories—often with
a side of judgment. You'll hear about how your baby won't properly
bond or how you'll have trouble breastfeeding. Some might even
insinuate it's not a "real" birth.
But the worst stories you'll
hear are those about scars that didn't heal properly and
life-threatening infections. Unless you are asked, please don't share the
more gruesome details of your medical history with pregnant moms.
2. I see you're
pregnant, here's my traumatic birth story.
My theory is that
moms share birth stories the way old guys share war stories. Clearly,
we've all been through stuff. But birth stories are also highly personal.
You wouldn't think so though with how freely traumatic ones are shared—by strangers, no less. They labored for days.
Their episiotomies were epic. No thank you.
3. You will never
This one is quippy
and people like to say it in the strangest of places—grocery
checkouts, elevators, ATM lines, shoe stores. Usually shared by older
parents, it's supposed to be a playful poke in the ribs. You hear it so often it becomes trite like, "Nice weather." But it's also its
own proper horror story.
Sleep deprivation is no joke.
If you feel like you're getting the hang of this motherhood thing, it's only a matter of time until someone tries to rain on your parade.
4. Just wait till
If you feel like you're getting the hang of this motherhood thing, it's only a
matter of time until someone tries to rain on your parade. Oh, he's walking? Just wait until he starts climbing. Over the toddler stage? Let me tell
you about my teenagers. Don't tell new moms it's going to get harder. Instead, offer help or guidance with the stage they're in right now.
5. Did you hear
about that daycare that lost/hurt those kids? Aren't your kids in
Look, we read the
news stories that come across our timelines. That in itself can be too
much. But when people who know your child attends daycare bring it up, the fear
mongering comes with a twinge of judgment. Waving goodbye each
morning is hard enough. New moms don't need daycare horror
6. Kids ruin your
"Did you hear
about so-and-so? Yeah, they had a baby and now they're getting a
divorce." There's no doubt that when two people become parents it changes their lives. Admittedly, that is a hard adjustment. Sometimes these breakup stories are shared as a warning. But you'll find just as many, if not more, people who feel the opposite
is true: family strengthens their relationship.