Thursday, November 19, 2009

Corporate Bellies

Why is it that there are several things in life that always seem to evoke a total loss of any appropriate social conduct and conversation? Pregnancy seems to me to be the most consistently regular cause of a total lapse in sensitivity in the larger part of the population.

Why do people make comments like "It must be in the water..you should drink some," when they, and seemingly everyone around them, is getting pregnant? Or, "He just looks at me and I get pregnant, har, har, har!" What the heck does that mean? And why would you say that to me when I barely know you? Do you have any understanding that there are millions of women who want to be pregnant but aren't and would give anything for it to have been as easy as a sip of water or a look? Any inkling that I might be one of them?

And what about once you're actually pregnant? Why does every random person cross personal boundaries and rub you? Why do they feel the incessant need to express how large you look and how you must be having more children than you think you are? Do they think this makes a woman feel good? Do they think this is funny? Like gaining 40pounds is fun for a woman.

Perhaps it's just that the thought of an impending baby really excites people and they let down their guard. Maybe it comes down to "It Takes a Village" and people see other baby bumps as corporate belly property. For me, it comes down to insensitivity. People sometimes just cannot fathom that their story is not the story of those around them. We don't think ahead to wonder if we are being potentially hurtful, we just barge ahead, holding up humor as our torch and burning everything in our path for the sake of a good laugh.

Well, for every dumb comment I've made to a pregnant woman, I'm sorry. For every insensitive word to someone regarding my own story with my first son, I repent. I'm praying that God will grant me sensitivity and words of life for those around me as well as continued patience for people who assume that I must not be pregnant on purpose. I'm also praying that I can honestly respond to those people and maybe help them understand why it's less than helpful to make such comments. Who knows? Maybe it'll spare someone else having to laugh falsely along while aching inside.

2 comments:

  1. It seems viral - people are trying to make conversation and they can't think of anything to say and so they just repeat whatever innane thing they've heard other people say and so the insensitive remarks just keep multiplying. I'm so sorry you're struggling with this and I sincerely apologize if anything I've ever said to or around you has ever been hurtful. I wish we were going to be seeing you this weekend!

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  2. Amen! I'm sure I've made some insensitive remarks at some point before I realized that life is full of complicated circumstances. Oh how one's perspective changes with time and more life experiences! I'm sorry that you've had to be the recipient of all that - it can be so hurtful, that's for sure.

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