There’s always one. In every situation, pregnant or not there is always one negative person who has nothing positive to say on the matter. In pregnancy, the same applies. Whether it’s strangers patting your belly or unsolicited ‘advice’, there’s plenty of negativity to fill your nine months and beyond.
I was home in Ireland briefly and sadly, I kind of regret going. Not because I received negativity but because I received support. I am aware that seems incredibly cynical and negative. I was finally able to share the pregnancy journey with those who seemed concerned, interested and happy for me. I cannot describe the feeling of going through such a special time and being the only one invested in it. So I won’t even try but it was very hard to leave a loving, familiar environment and return to one void of such happiness.
I have come to discover here that when I am in the company of others, all I hear regarding my pregnancy is what will or will potentially go wrong. I spoke in my last post about struggling with my mental health throughout this pregnancy. The last thing any expectant first-time mother wishes to hear is what they are doing wrong or what will go wrong. It baffles me that at such a special time in life, the only sentiments offered are negative. With all due respect – if you have nothing nice to say, then say nothing.
I understand that some people don’t worry. I am a sensitive, intuitive person and worry comes with the territory. Don’t get me wrong, I am confident in this pregnancy. If it weren’t for the external factors I would say I am loving it. But I have the normal apprehension that is to be expected when facing delivering your first baby. Fortunately, in my battalion I also have my intelligence, a strong maternal instinct and a drive to succeed. Maybe I internalize too much but I cannot bear someone treating me like I know absolutely nothing. Condescending comments that almost infer I haven’t held, cared for or ever even seen an infant in my life. Negativity about the way I eat, drink or choose to care for myself during the gestation. Telling me with a loud cackle how my house will never be the palace it is now, again. UGH.
Like snowflakes, fingerprints and pregnancies – we are all unique.
Why is it so hard to live and let live? In my rant I have digressed. I have taken too long to realize that the health and well-being of myself and my child trumps literally everything else in my life. Giving these people power over your emotions is the worst way to manage. You must continue on boldly and bravely in your pregnancy. You are the mother. That intuition is strong for a reason. You know what is best for you and for baby. Embrace the positivity you receive. Be thankful for those people and their kind words, generosity and support. Give them the space in your head and heart.
Dealing With Negative Nancy During Your Pregnancy
- Bite your tongue
- Smile and nod
- Say thank you
- Firmly but nicely state that you do not wish to discuss certain topics if they are too personal or invasive
- Don’t focus on the fact that your boundaries are being disrespected and allow it to become bitterness. Some people just truly believe they know everything
- Try to remember that to them the ‘advice’ is coming from a good place and not one of malice
- Don’t internalize it as condescension, often empty vessels simply make the most noise
- Don’t go over the conversation in your head later on
- Let others’ negativity go. Their know-it-all attitude is not your weight to carry
- Use your time educating yourself on what’s to come – it’s the best way to minimize fear
- Speak to your doctor about any concerns and worries potentially caused by what others say to you. He or she will be happy to clarify and reassure
- Give supportive people your mental energy
- Keep a pregnancy/gratitude journal
- Embrace the journey, don’t let negative comments/people steal the joy that is now
If you’re struggling to fend off negativity or just feel overwhelmed in your pregnancy check out my recent post The Importance of Self Care During Pregnancy for some simple ideas to take a positive time out!