Ridiculous Things People Ask New Mums

Last week I wrote a post about ridiculous things people say to pregnant women and whilst sharing on Facebook, I had a few people comment about things people had said to them when they were new mums. Hence this post.

If you bump into a new mum today, try to avoid all of the following:

1. “What is it?” I had this quite a lot especially with my youngest who is becoming a typical ‘pretty boy’ in terms of looks. When he was a newborn, strangers in the street would actually ask “what is it?” As if even his species was unfamiliar. I admit that sometimes it’s hard to tell what gender the baby is unless the pram is adorned with pink or baby blue (and even then, who are we to assume?!) The best way to get round this is to speak to the baby and say “you’re beautiful – what’s your name?” And just pray they have a gender obvious name like John or something. Whatever you do, just try to avoid asking “what is it?” as if you’re not even sure if it’s human.

2. “Is he good?” One of the more ridiculous things I’ve been asked. Yes, surprisingly, my four week old is not yet inherently bad.

3. “How’s she sleeping?” Don’t even ask unless the information is offered to you. When people ask this it’s as if it’s the Holy Grail of parenting. And as most new parents have yet to find it, asking if they’ve found it just rubs salt into a very sleep deprived wound.

4. “Are you having anymore?” Most new mums are still padding themselves ‘down there’ with the equivalent of a folded hand towel and are still wincing when they use the loo. “Having anymore” would require things happening ‘down there’ that I don’t think any new parents want to think about very soon.

5. “How are you feeding him?” I don’t visit friends with toddlers and ask what they’re planning to feed them for the next week. It’s a personal question and, even if it’s well meant, people can get a bit defensive and feel a bit guilty. New mums do not need to be made to feel guilty, even if it’s by accident.

6. “When’s it due?” Someone asked me this whilst I was pushing my first in the pram which I thought was hugely unobservant and it made it a bit awkward when I had to point to him and say “last week.” It can be hard to tell so possibly just avoid this question altogether to avoid new mum on day 8 feeling like a big fat whale.

Really the only questions you need to ask new parents, especially new mums are:

Are you ok?

How can I help?

Do you know how amazingly well you’re doing?

Do you want chocolate?

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16 Comments

  1. Ha! I got asked when the baby was due when we were leaving hospital; with the capsule!! Oh dear!! Basically, one must NEVER raise the topic of sleep…ever!! #FartGlitter

  2. Ha ha I've seen this topic many times as a blogger and I nearly always click because they're always a giggle. Number 2 made me laugh and number 6…pointing at the baby and saying 'last week' ba ha haaaa. But you know what? I honestly don't remember getting annoyed at being asked any of these (which is weird because I'm no laid back earth mother and I do know I used to get utterly wound up at people trying to give me unwanted advice). I think I just took it as people simply trying to show an interest in the baby…or should I say the unidentifiable 'it' in the pushchair lol. Which reminds me number 1 made me laugh too. Or maybe I've had too many kids and can't remember anything about the early years! Love your posts you funny lady. #fartglitter

  3. Great list. Parenting can lead to some uninspiring conversation by people trying to show a bit of interest. I often finding myself complimenting new parents on how well they look, given that as a parent of a three year old who still wakes at night, I often feel more tired than they look. They might be hiding the fatigue but either way it's a job well done. #fartsglitter

  4. Yes, offer chocolate please! Or go take a nap while I hold baby for a while. I especially like #1 – that is a more subtle way of asking. Your list should go on the front door of all new mums, a sign for visitors! Thanks for sharing with #bigpinklink

  5. Haha! I've had all of this.It always amazes me how people lose all sense, tact and decorum when talking to a pregnant woman or new mum. The 'is he good' one drove me mad! They mean do they eat and sleep well I guess (which neither of mine did) but who on earth is going to say "No, rotten to the core." about their own baby? #bigpinklink

  6. Oh yes the chocolate to power through the exhaustion! That I can totally related to! The having anymore – there must be a reflex punch action! I adopted my two so never went through the new born bit, had some daft things said to me as an adoptive parent. #FabFridayPost

  7. "Is he good?" is a classic. If you have the worst sleeping crankiest baby do they think you're going to say "no, he's terrible actually, I'm thinking about trading him in for a better model." HOnestly, some people! #FabFridayPost

  8. Oh how right you are. People belive they have carte blanche to ask away the most personal and judgemental of questions during and after pregnancy. I am certain if men gave birth, this would not be the case…but that aside, people have some nerve. Flip the questions around and see how they feel? So, when was the last time you two had sex? What do you cook each night and really, its not organic? They would be horrified if they thought about it-but there in lies the problem. They do not think. Add chocolate as needed, and maybe more. xoxo #FabFridayPost

  9. Absolutely spot on! I really do hate it when people just 'assume' though! I have 2 boys and well.. yes they are pretty but you can tell they are boys and everyone always calls them little girls! "Ah look at them little girls aren't they cute" or "be careful of those little girls hunny"

    There's only so long that you can be polite for.. I now say "oh ok, come on Leo and Mylo" then they know they just called my boys little girls and get all embarrassed.. #fabfridaypost

  10. OMG! "When's it due?" Really?! Once, I was baby carrying my girl who was just 3 months old. A stranger came up to me and told me off saying that I should be at home nursing her not walking around in a toy shop looking for a present for my older son. – What?? Come again?? #FabFridayPost

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