One of the first, and best pieces of advice Ive received by a close friend was to shun “pregnancy” advice. Since announcing my pregnancy I’ve been bombarded by advice on what to do with my body… “take it easy”, “you’re doing too much”, “enjoy sleep now you’ll never get it again”…. And a variety of unsolicited words, that if I listened to them all, I would lock myself in the house, with a sense of impending doom, and just cry about the state of my future.
Luckily, I’ve never been one to listen to rules or to other peoples opinions, so being able to ignore and take in stride the onslaught hasn’t given me the emotional grief that it may a more sensitive person. Below are a few important steps I’ve learned to naturally take that I think may be helpful:
- Examine why the person feels the need to offer the advice. Was it solicited or not? What may be their own insecurities or areas of unhappiness that could be coloring their perception of your situation.
- Establish boundaries, even if this is a close family member. Don’t be afraid to speak up or message back, with a polite but firm boundary. “Thank you, but I’m choosing to remain positive about XYZ, and I will reach out if I want another opinion on it. If you don’t mind, I really appreciate your supportive silence on the matter right now. ”
- Examine why you may be defensive. Is it because you are insecure about your choices or situation? Or is it simply unsolicited negativity?
- If you do find you are insecure about something. “Am I actually running too much?” Then seek the most qualified professional you can find on the topic, and empower yourself with the knowledge on the matter to reaffirm your position on the matter.
- Finally, remember change is ok. If after following the above steps you decide, maybe you are wrong or doing something incorrectly. Don’t hold onto pride, move forward with the empowerment of your education and change your actions to best reflect what you now think is best. And if anyone feels the need to sass you, well back to step 2.
Good luck with whatever your situation is, and remember to enjoy the wild ride of the journey ahead of you.