Sexism During Pregnancy

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As if pregnancy isn’t already hard enough on its own, women also have to deal with a ton of sexist behaviors and comments. Being a woman is a struggle itself. But to have to put up with unsolicited advice, non-consensual touching of the belly, mean remarks about appearance, and tons more can be a tough gig during such a trying time. Sexism during pregnancy is a very real thing.

Here are some behaviors that you will probably be experiencing once you get pregnant.

Weight advice

Not only are people greatly concerned about how much weight you’re gaining, they will also offer unwanted advice on how to quickly jump back to your pre-pregnancy weight. Some people even have the audacity to say how you must always look good for your husband.

It’s important to remember that everyone’s body responds to pregnancy differently. Be kind to yourself. And remember, birthing a baby is no easy job. Your body is literally creating another human being. It WILL look different and that’s okay!

Touching you without asking

Many women are okay with this but for many it can be uncomfortable and alarming when someone touches your baby belly without warning and consent. How you feel is valid and important. And it is perfectly justified for you to draw your boundaries if you need to. Politely, but firmly, let the other person know that you are uncomfortable with sudden touches and this can startle you.

A lot of women have to put up with this kind of behavior because they are concerned about coming across as rude. But it’s your body and you get to decide what’s comfortable and what isn’t.

Maternity leave scares

People love to paint pregnant working women as lazy, or inadequate for the work environment. You will hear remarks about how they think you won’t be returning to work once you will have a baby. Or you will have to deal with people implying your maternity leave will be like a mini holiday. These people are just malicious and insensitive, and have no idea how much work a baby is!

Don’t let these things get to you. You are not alone and your maternity leave is absolutely justified! Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise!

Doctors

There are a lot of conversations about doctors behaving inappropriately with pregnant women on the regular. Not only that, but they also talk down to you. There is little you can do because the power dynamics usually fall in the doctor’s favor.
We advise you go for a female doctor. Such incidents are almost never an issue when you have a woman as a doctor.

There will probably be a lot more that you will have to put up with. So brace yourself! Who ever said being a woman was easy?

Are you a mom who has experienced things like this before? Tell us about your experiences!

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