Pregnancy is an exciting time, witnessing the growth of your baby inside your wife. Many changes happen to a woman during pregnancy, both physical and emotional. Apart from her belly getting bigger, there are also changes to her skin and the respiratory, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, endocrine, urinary and musculoskeletal systems. Given the many changes to accommodate a growing fetus, it is delicate time for communication between husband and wife.
Here are 10 things not to say to your pregnant wife!
1. Are You Getting Fat from Ice-cream or Baby?
Pregnancy can lead to total weight gain of up to about 17kg for a woman. This additional weight goes to the baby, placenta, tissues and fluids for support. While it is important not to eat unhealthily during pregnancy, asking an outright question regarding your wife getting fat is no way to remind her of a healthy diet. Very likely, she already feels conscious of her weight gain, so don’t rub it in.
2. Are We Eating THIS Again?
There are cravings during pregnancy and as long as your wife is not indulging in an overly unhealthy diet, just eat the same thing again if it makes her happy. Better still, take the time to polish up your cooking skills and cook something you like for your own dinner (and she may like it too!).
3. What? Cramp Again? Massage Again?
Carrying the extra weight can result in leg cramp and back ache. Leg cramps come from fatigue, compression of leg blood vessels and possibly, mineral imbalance. Back ache can also arise from shift in the posture to accommodate the growing belly. Therefore, there are strictly legitimate reasons for needing you to massage your wife!
4. Your Skin Looks Kind of Weird
Yes, yet another change during
pregnancy. There are stretch marks during in the second half of pregnancy, spider veins and also pigment changes. Even if you think your wife’s skin looks weird, don’t say it. If she asks you about it, kindly let her know that it is nothing weird as these changes are part of pregnancy and she is still ever so beautiful.
5. Can You NOT Sleep so Much?
No, especially in the first trimester, a woman feels tired due to the changes to her body. Moreover, there are studies linking the lack of sleep during pregnancy to birth complications and pre-term births. If there is an activity that you like to share with your wife, make it a date instead of expecting the usual (many hours) of TV series marathon.
6. Can I NOT Go for Doctor’s Appointment?
There are monthly checkups during pregnancy, which increases in frequency during the third trimester. If you are not able to go for every one of them, let your wife know. However, don’t skip the gynecologist checkups because you find it boring or a waste of time – because they are not. They are important to monitor the baby’s development and it is always comforting to have a spouse with you during these checkups.
7. Can I NOT Be in the Delivery Room?
This is an outright no! If you are scared of the sight of blood, there are always places you can sit so that you don’t see the blood. Moreover, the time in the delivery room is much longer than the actual delivery and you should be there 100% of the time (except for toilet breaks!).
8. Birthing and Caring for Baby Can’t be Difficult – Let’s Skip the Class
Many delivery hospitals offer classes to first-time parents to educate them on what to expect during pregnancy and delivery, as well as caring for a newborn. While many of these information are available on the internet and caring for a newborn is not so difficult, your wife may want to FEEL prepared. Both men and women can get anxious about a baby’s arrival and being together in a class talking about it with other parents and experts can help reduce that anxiety.
9. You Can Take Care of Baby’s Stuff, since You’re SO Free
For those of you with stay-at-home wives, don’t take it that she is to get ready for the baby on her own. There are activities which are tiring and potentially cause a pregnant woman to over-exert. For instance, clearing and carrying stuff around to make way for a baby’s room. Painting the room should be done early and not by your wife. Buying baby clothes and items can be exhausting and heavy. Choosing baby name is not physically taxing, but a shared experience unique to both you and your wife. All these have got nothing to do with your wife having more time, after all, she’s supposed to be resting!
10. What about Sex?
Your wife may not want to have sex and take heart, it has got nothing to do with you. During pregnancy, there is increasing fatigue, anxiety and growing belly (with many physical discomfort). Second trimester is a good time for having sex as there is reduced anxiety and the belly has not got so big. Sex or not, don’t forget loving via touch and cuddle!
Knowing the changes during pregnancy can help you to be more understanding to your wife and better support her. It definitely lowers the likelihood of you saying the wrong things!