The Pain of Looking Pregnant When You’re Not


Pop quiz: Is that belly full of a baby or
a burrito? Trick question, it’s none of our business. Everyone knows the old etiquette trope that
you’re never supposed to ask if a woman whether she’s pregnant except for the following
three circumstances. One, you’re her partner and she’s just
taken a pregnancy test and you’re really excited and are like, ‘Are you pregnant?!’ Two, she announces she’s pregnant and you’re
so surprised you’re like, ‘Are you pregnant?’ And she’s like, ‘Yeah I just said I’m
pregnant.’ And you’re like, ‘Really, I’m going
to ask you again are you pregnant because I thought that was a burrito in there that
just wasn’t coming out.’ Or three, you’re standing next to a woman
on a crowded elevator when it appears that her water breaks to which you might naturally
say, ‘Hey are you pregnant?’ Otherwise the question is verboten because
feminine body standards. The only time it’s socially acceptable if
not celebrated to have a visibly protruding female belly is if you are pregnant or a belly
dancer. But I honestly wish the whole stigma of having
a visibly soft stomach or pooch and the level of insult it is considered to even suggest
that a woman might be fat is the crux of why we consider this question controversial. In a healthy at every size culture fat wouldn’t
be the focus. It wouldn’t be the very worst thing you
could call a woman because oh guess what? We would accept that all of our bodies come
in different size skin suits for different reasons, sometimes pregnancy. And instead we might focus on the more relevant
reasons to not randomly ask the pregnancy question. In no particular order, female bodies are
not public property, regardless of how tattooed or extremely pregnant they might be. It also presumes that pregnancy is equally
easy for everybody which only perpetuates our culture of silence around things like
infertility, miscarriage, polycystic ovarian syndrome, endometriosis and vulvodynia. Finally, this aesthetic fat phobia underpinning
our politeness to not ask this question marginalizes all of the non-burrito related reasons why
we might carry around extra weight from time to time, things like endocrine disorders,
depression or maybe we recently had an abortion. Not to mention it’s wrongful implication
that fat woman couldn’t possibly accept and even love their bodies. Not too long ago someone popped the question
to me via FaceBook comment and I was so weirded out by how body conscious it made me. I mean even today I can’t tell you who made
the comment but I know the photo and I know how long I stood that day and just kind of
stared at my body in the mirror and wondered is my pooch looking too preggers and then
I wondered why am I even worried about this? So while it’s definitely not our business
to ask other people this question it definitely it could definitely be worth us asking ourselves
why do we care so much about it? And where I can get a burrito ASAP.

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