Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The question a woman should never be asked

 The boys loved the Star Wars exhibit at the Indiana State Museum.

Connor adores Boy Scout camp this week. 

Connor had a play date.  I was talking to his little friend's mom when I noticed her eyeing my mid-section.  Suddenly she exclaimed, "You're not pregnant, are you?"

It took me a minute to process her words before I stammered, "No...no."

She fumbled a slight apology before taking a sharp left turn in the conversation, "So what do you think about the weather?"

I limply contributed to a discussion on storm clouds and precipitation, but my mind was elsewhere.  I was instantly transported to an obsessive world where I couldn't stop the "Why does she think I'm pregnant?" thoughts from dominating my constant internal dialogue.

I landed on a few conclusions:

It's because I gained a few vacation pounds after visiting the food trucks one too many times.  Curse you ice cream trucks!

It's the shorts I'm wearing.  I'll burn them when I get home.  

It's that time of the month, the lighting, the big lunch I ate...and on and on.

Suddenly, I had mentally committed myself to a forever diet of celery sticks and bottled water or a wardrobe filled with mumus.  

As I've shared this story with various friends/acquaintances/strangers/anyone that will listen, I've become amazed at the number of women that have been on the receiving end of this same question.  And the way the question is asked varies; the delivery can be bold, creative, rude, or (fill in the blank).  Those of us that have heard that question (and indeed are NOT pregnant) can find the humor in the situation, but still walk away with a bruise to the ego and a ding to the self esteem.

So on behalf of all of us, I beg the general public NOT to ask a woman if she is pregnant.  NEVER.  EVER.  EVER.  The rare exceptions to this rule are if she's wearing a t-shirt with the word "Baby" on the front and a downward arrow or you actually see a baby crowning.  Otherwise, never take the sight of an abdominal pudge as an invitation to get personal.  NO GOOD CAN COME OUT OF THIS QUESTION...if there's the slightest possibility that you're wrong.  If someone is truly pregnant, she'll let you know at some point, even if it is nine months later. 

And for those of us that have received that question, let's hold our heads high (suck in our guts) and laugh/cry together.  

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