If You Can’t Say Something Nice…

My favorite awkward question of my pregnancy was; “You’re having twins?!  Real twins?!”

Real twins?  No, fake twins.  They’re silicone – you wanna feel?  I think this person was either asking if they were identical or inquiring whether we used fertility treatments to conceive.  I think people generally mean well and I think all people are curious by nature so I chose to give them the benefit of the doubt.  I’d rather laugh about tacky comments than read into the intentions behind the comment.

And this brings me to the classic, “when are you due?” conversation.  This is fun.  I think it’s okay to ask this of most pregnant women and then make an innocuous comment like “oh Halloween babies – how fun!” or “my daughter was born in January, too!” or “you’re almost there!  Hang in there!,” etc.   I only encountered the reaction, “Oh my God!  You have 10 weeks left?!  You look like you’re due next week!” once.  Again, this person didn’t know me well and probably didn’t know anything about twins.  I had two humans, two sacs, and two placentas – I was literally double pregnant.  It’s a good thing I looked big!

Many people are intrigued by twins and ask tons of twin questions:

  • Fraternal or identical?  Answer: We don’t know for sure.  My type of twins (dichorionic/diamniotic, or di-di for short) can be either fraternal or identical but are most likely fraternal.
  • You don’t know if they’re identical?  How do you find out?  Answer: We have to do a DNA test.
  • Natural or in vitro?  Answer: Natural
  • Do they run in your family?  Answer: No.  Well, now they do….

I thought all these questions would annoy me but, actually, I can sympathize.  My husband and I did not know very much about twins either.  Twins are cool and I’m happy to tell people what we’ve learned so far.  I hope I still feel this way 18+ years from now.

Many people told me I looked “small for twins.”  Most of the people who said this to me did not know me very well.  Plus, most people have not known very many women who were pregnant with twins.  Riddle me this: if you didn’t know me before I was pregnant, how could you be qualified to assess my size as compared to the other twin moms youalso don’t know?  However, I generally decided to take this comment as a compliment.  (Notice it was my decision to take this as a compliment, not the commenter’s intentions.)

Here’s some free advice: if you find out someone is pregnant and you don’t know what to say either, a) don’t say anything or, b) be encouraging and tell her she looks great.  Those are your options.  Do not make commentary on her size.  Now that I think of it, those are your options even if she’s not pregnant.  As Thumper would say, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”

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