Everybody loves a pregnant woman, right? People always want to find out what you’re having or touch your belly. They’re quick to tell you you’re glowing and how beautiful you look. They open doors for you and excuse your ravenous appetite (that you get to blame on the baby). But there are also people who feel it’s necessary to give you their expert baby advice.
Whether the advice is about pregnancy, giving birth, or taking care of your newborn, it seems like a ton of people want to tell you what they think or “know.” Some of the advice I got was great — but other pieces of advice definitely didn’t stick, or better yet, made me laugh. Here is some of the weirdest advice I got while pregnant:
1. “Don’t raise your arms above your head while you’re pregnant.” My friend Darnell told me his family believed it could cause the umbilical cord to get wrapped around the baby. I’m not so sure I believe that.
2. “You won’t get stretch marks if you use lotion every day.” I’m very petite by genetics and never had very wide hips. All the lotion in the world wouldn’t have saved me from stretch marks. And don’t worry, they do fade over time. Mine are barely visible now and my youngest is 3.
3. “Eating spicy foods makes you go into labor.” Wrong. I had to be induced with both my boys at 40 weeks. The only thing all that spicy food did for me at the end was make my tummy hurt and give me hiccups.
4. “You have heartburn because your baby has a ton of hair.” I don’t know if this has ever been scientifically proven but I’ve heard tons of people say it. However, I had worse heartburn with my first pregnancy and he didn’t have nearly as much hair when he was born as my second child, Bentley, did.
5. “A lot of your hair is going to fall out after you give birth.” Mine never did after KJ. I would have been fine with some falling out because my hair got thicker when I was pregnant with him. After Bentley, I had a little bit of hair loss around my hairline, but I’m not sure if that was post-partum related or stress-related, as we had some family problems happening at the same time.
6. “Eat this one salad from this one place and you’ll go into labor.” Tried it. Even bought extra of the dressing to take home. It never worked. The likelihood is, it worked for some pregnant women simply because they were due to go into labor. I say save your money. Or spend it on raspberry leaf tea, which actually is good for your muscles.
7. “You’re more likely to go into labor if it’s a full moon.” Ummmmm no. I never believed that. The last thing I noticed while in labor was the moon.
8. “Ingesting the placenta in pill form helps with post-partum depression.” The thought of doing that totally grossed me out, so I never did it — but I had a friend who said she got it made into pills and it actually seemed to make her feel worse after giving birth. To each their own, I guess.
9. “Prepare to buy all new shoes because your feet will grow during pregnancy.” This one was actually true for me! My feet grew an entire shoe size after I had my babies. I went from a size 7.5 to an 8.5. I still to this day miss those boots I got in Paris that no longer fit.
10. “Get ready for nosebleeds.” This one was true too. I’ve heard because of increased blood volume during pregnancy, you are more likely to get nosebleeds — and I did. So be sure to carry tissues with you at all times, just in case.
11. “Don’t get an epidural or you won’t be able to feel the contractions and therefore you won’t be able to push the baby out.” So false! I couldn’t feel A THING when I gave birth to KJ and my doctor said I pushed like a pro. Literally, I touched my own leg while pushing and apologized because I thought I was touching the nurse’s arm. I looooove epidurals.
12. “It’s ok if the baby eats some dirt. It builds up their immunities.” Or it gets them incredibly sick. Cleanliness is always better for their little immune systems.
13. “If you crave fruit, you are having a boy.” I craved nectarines like nobody’s business with KJ, so for that pregnancy, I would say it’s true. But I craved vanilla protein shakes with Bentley and he’s a boy so…
14. “Drinking cold water helps your belly stay round.” What?? Just what??
15. “Don’t wear flip flops. If your feet are cold, then the baby is cold.” I’m pretty sure my baby is plenty warm inside my body, next to all my warm organs and protected by my skin. Thanks, though.
16. “Sleep on your left side for better blood flow.” I have always been a side sleeper, so this wasn’t challenging for me. I did find that I slept best while laying on my left side. Not sure if it had anything to do with blood flow but sleeping on my back made my legs go numb and made me feel nauseous. So, side sleeping it was!
17. “Eat spinach every day so your child will be smart.” I actually had a woman tell me that she ate it so much during pregnancy that it made her sick. I think too much of a good thing isn’t so good. Spinach is good for you but there’s no way I’m eating it every single day for over 9 months. I’ll just buy some extra flashcards for the pre- preschool time at home.
18. “If you eat yams, you’ll have a girl.” Sorry to disappoint, but the food you eat during pregnancy does not decide what gender the baby will be.
19. “Licking salt helps with morning sickness.” I didn’t get very bad morning sickness, so I didn’t have to try this one. Have you ever tried it? Wondering if it works.
20. “Your nose is wider so you must be having a girl. They say girls steal all the mom’s beauty while she’s pregnant but boys make the momma glow.” My nose got wider with both my boy pregnancies simply because of swelling. It went back down as soon as I gave birth. Also, I’ve never seen an ugly pregnant woman. They all seem to glow to me.
I’m not sure why it’s so easy for people to give unsolicited advice to pregnant women. Some of it is funny, some is very strange, and a few of the pieces of advice actually work. So, take it all with a grain of salt. And please let me know in the comments about what advice you got that was weird! I can’t wait to hear about the “wisdom” others had for you.