No, I'm NOT Pregnant
Lena Jarvis* of Allentown, PA, has never quite managed to get rid of her post-pregnancy belly pouch and this has led to a sense of frustration. Says Lena, "The baby is nine months old, but I still have this giant belly. No amount of diet or exercise seems to make a difference. I can just about cope with this state of affairs—after all, it's only aesthetics, but what really aggravates me is how stupid people can be.
Women are always coming up to me in the supermarket and saying things like, 'Oh, so you've decided to give Ian a little sister or a brother! Isn't that lovely?' which has the effect of making me want to strangle someone. Anyway, what am I supposed to say to that? If I say, 'No, not really, it's just my post-pregnant belly that doesn't want to go away,' it makes them feel stupid and awkward, which is what they are, but I try to be a lady. On the other hand, if I just smile and nod, there goes the rumor mill and then everyone's asking me when I'm due. What's a gal to do??"
Jane Walston* of Wichita, KS has a similar tale of woe. "If I see an old friend, someone I haven't seen in a long time, they're liable to ask me, 'So, when's the baby due?' It's not my nature to make anyone feel bad, but they've asked a super-klutzy question. Usually, I'll just say something like, 'I'm not pregnant, but I don't blame you for wondering—sometimes I think I'm never going to get rid of this big belly.'"
Jaclyn Mavis* of Atlanta, GA has no compunction about telling people off. "If you ask a stupid or hurtful question, you deserve whatever gets dished out back at you. I tell 'em, 'Honey, I'm not pregnant yet, but I'll be sure and tell you the minute I see a stripe on the home pregnancy test. This here's just a beach ball I've swallowed to make a fashion statement.' That tends to shut 'em up but good!"
Mary Ianini* of Staten Island, NY has a very hard time coping with her feelings during encounters related to her pregnant-looking belly. "It really hurts when people ask if I'm pregnant. I feel like my pregnancy robbed me of my body. My stomach doesn't seem like it'll ever come back to what it was pre-pregnancy. When people ask if I'm pregnant, it reminds me of this, so it's painful. My sister never managed to get rid of her pouch, so I probably won't either. If that's supposed to make me feel better, well, it doesn't. It only confirms my suspicion that no matter how much time goes by, no matter how little I eat, or how many crunches and sit ups I do, I'll always have this pouch on me."
Perhaps the most proactive solution has been achieved by Myrna Lehigh* of Baltimore, MD. "After about the fifth time someone asked me if I was pregnant again, I went to a booth in the mall where they personalize t-shirts and had them make me a shirt that says, 'No, I'm not pregnant, and if you're smart, you won't ask me.'
I've had tons of women asking me where they can get a t-shirt like mine. I should probably market them!"
*Names have been changed