please keep hands and comments to yourself

While I managed to avoid having my belly touched while pregnant, I wasn’t immune to the judgmental comments of strangers. People I didn’t know seemed to love to assume that I was either due to give birth at any second or was carrying twins because of my size.

A fascination with size has come up in conversation again, this time directed towards Levi. One particularly frustrating interaction with a woman in the children’s section of Half Price Books went something like this:

“How old is she? Three months?”

“No, he’s almost six months old.”

“Oh, I thought he was a girl because he’s so pretty. If he’s six months, he must have been premature, right?”

“Um, no. He was a hefty 8lbs 5 oz. And f*ck you.”

And she isn’t the only one who has questioned Levi’s age based on his sized. Several other strangers have assumed that Levi is younger than he is. Why do people think my baby looks so small? At his last doctor’s appointment, he measured in the 90th percentile for height!

Maybe it’s because he’s not particularly chubby. He doesn’t have the Michelin Man rings of baby fat stereotypical of infants. And that’s ok. Apparently, some babies are too fat.

But worse than the ignorant comments of strangers are their unwanted touches. At the supermarket, two passersby actually reached out and pet my son. They ruffled his hair and stroked his arm.

Do you ever feel like telling people to keep their hands — and comments — to themselves?

Let’s Discuss

  1. Jenni

    I got the same “you must be due any day now” comments when I was nowhere near my due date pregnant. *I started showing at 10 weeks* I even had a random woman run up on me in a store, rub my stomach, as if it were an 8ball, and proclaim she needed good luck because she was going to play the lottery!!! I was so stunned that I had no response I just stood there, violated!
    With RJ, I get “look at all that hair, she is so cute.” When I say “she is a boy!” I ALWAYS get “he should have been a girl, he is too cute to be a boy.” What the hell does that even mean?!!!

  2. Lynn

    I admit I don’t mind the “aren’t you gorgeous!” comments my little guy gets. But when I’m with a friend whose baby they comment “looks healthy,” my skin crawls at the scrutinizing look they give my little dude, who’s in the 10th percentile for height & weight (but mighty healthy and developing ahead of schedule).

    I think the people who guess their age wrong are just clueless- ie it’s obvious my tiny one year old is not 2. And the ones who put their hands in their faces just don’t know better!

  3. chels

    Levi looks SO MUCH like you in this pic! So cute! I had to learn to take all strangers comments and opinions with a grain of salt because people are CRAZY! It’s the worst when a stranger tries to move in on your baby. Your maternal instinct goes into attack mode and you’re left to deal w/the situation without making a scene- such an inner awkward battle!

  4. Claudia

    The comments and the touching baby things are goign to happen…this is how people are. So I decided to enjoy them and be nice with all those strangers. People don’t want to be rude. They just don’t comunicate well. Once I switched to a more positive attitude about that “problem” everything turned to be pretty amazing with strangers. But maybe I’m crazy 😉

  5. courtney @ larking.

    First time visiting your blog — first of all, Levi is ADORABLE. Secondly, totally with you on the “ummm, this isn’t a petting zoo” feeling. My daughter has ridiculously large cheeks, so everyone we meet feels the need to comment on them and pinch them. I admit that I spend most of my day pinching them, too, but she’s mine, people!

  6. Mom

    Since you had “minimal” hair, many people mistook you for a boy. I must admit that I was wasn’t buying into the ‘all pink’ thing and did dress you in other colors. Once I pierced you ears at age one, no one said anything again. And your hair grew in. 🙂

    People are in awe of babies. We coo and we talk in high tones etc. Babies are innocent and just make us happy. The fact that people want to touch him is crazy. The fact that they say he’s pretty, well, he is gorgeous. Just tell him he’s a model (he does model for me so it’s true). If people question his size, just tell them he’s healthy and won’t have a weight problem when he’s older. OR, “MY DOCTOR SAYS HE’S PERFECT AND THAT’S THE ONLY OPINION I CARE ABOUT”. That would shut people up in a nice way.

  7. mindy

    I just had my third baby and am fully expecting the same comments. People are so oblivious! My other two children are very healthy but have always been slender and people are always making comments.

    • PJ / Dolly

      I agree–people are oblivious. I don’t think they mean to be insensitive or cruel, but it can still be just as frustrating.

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