Giving advice to pregnant women

One of my best friends in the world is pregnant with her first child.
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Every time we have been with other people and they find out she’s pregnant, for some reason, they start to spew advice….Whether it’s been asked for or not. Seeing how much unsolicited advice she has gotten with her pregnancy and remembering all of the advice I got when I was expecting has definitely made me think twice before spitting out advice to anyone I meet.

If you’re going to give advice to a pregnant woman (or any mom for that matter), there are a few things you should consider before actually giving that advice:

  • Was the advice asked for? If your pregnant friend asks you questions about breastfeeding vs bottlefeeding, by all means – Give her all the advice you have. If she tells you, “I plan to bottle feed,” this is probably not the time to tell her about all of the terrible dangers of formula-feeding. This will only result in defensive responses.
  • Are you knowledgeable on the topic? If you are doling out information on how to get your child to behave while your own child is throwing rocks at the siding, you should probably not be doling out said advice. You see what I’m saying here?
  • Are you giving too much information? I’ve caught myself doing this all too often. My friend is not even 9 weeks along yet and I’m already prepping her for her hospital stay. Try to keep your advice somewhat relevant to the situation.

Just think of the situation reversed. Is this advice that you would have listened to when you were pregnant or is it really inappropriate for you to be having the conversation at all? This will make for a much more pleasant pregnancy for the advised and a less embarrassing experience for the adviser.

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