If you’re already a mom, I’m sure you’ve experienced at least one of the below-mentioned comments. But if you’re yet to become a new mother, be ready for some funny yet very personal interrogating questions, as they’re coming your way soon! Although, people don’t intend to harm you with the investigations towards your postpartum life, mostly, new parents find them overstepping their boundaries.
Here, I’ve come up with a list of questions you should never ask postpartum mothers, else you’d offend them unintentionally.
20 questions never to ask new parents
1. Your baby doesn’t look like you!
Sometimes people can say a lot to the new moms without thinking about the consequences it might have on them. There can be even people who still think what’s wrong with these questions? But let's try to see from mom's side.
This is the rudest remark new moms can encounter! Telling a newborn’s mother that their baby doesn’t in the slightest way resembles her is the last thing she wants to hear. It hurts her feelings, considering the fact she has given her blood, body, and patience to bring her baby to life.
All that bearing of 9 months to know that her baby doesn’t even look like her? It’s unfair on the mother's part. Even if it's the truth, never tell a new mom such things about her baby.
It’s better to not remark on whether the baby looks like his mom or dad. New parents won’t show it in front of people but deep down it saddens them if the baby doesn’t resemble them or the partner.
2. You’ve put on a lot of weight!
It is never a good comment for any woman, I guess! but of course not for the new mom! People don’t realize how you’ve tackled all those long 9 months, eating extra for the baby of course. And finally hearing this body-shaming question on the day your kid is born!
As they get more sensitive after labor and delivery, being a new mom, it’s hard to tackle this direct remark on the body. Naturally, nobody likes unnecessary comments on their physical appearance. Especially postpartum moms! They’ve gone and are probably still going through so much in their lives! This question can irritate them as it adds more to their already full plate. We maybe don't think deeply one moment, but we can understand how such remarks may affect ourselves to hear as a new mom
3. You should get a social life as well!
The new moms are already more social than anyone with sleeping progresses, breastfeeding, and changing the diapers! What a question is this? Others should understand the efforts a new mom has to put in to get through each day. It’s almost impossible for new mothers to think about socializing, shopping, and partying! She’s just encountered motherhood, which sets the baby as her top priority.
Even getting daily household chores completed on time, and getting enough sleep is an everyday challenge for a newborn’s mom. If she’s happy spending quality time with her baby and partner, let it be like that. Please don’t force her to attend social events unless she’s willing to go!
4. How’s your love life going after the baby?
Again, It’s not ethically right to interrogate anyone’s private life- be it new moms or not! Unfortunately, all newbie mothers experience this question more or less. Sometimes our friends are more concerned regarding our personal life than ourselves. Although the people around us care for our wellbeing, sometimes they trespass their limits. I can’t stress more on keeping your boundaries because the love-life of anyone, let alone new parents, is something you should never be curious about.
5. When are you having the next one?
No one likes to be asked whether they’re going to have a baby or exactly when they’re planning for a bigger family, let alone the new parents. The hottest question everyone would be interested to know is, “When is the next one coming?” Come on! They just have gone through a long process to finally have their newborn in their arms. They’re not going to plan for another one right on the corner.
The most annoying questions, being a new mom are those asked by free-family-planning consultants every mother encounters right after marriage.
6. How come you’re running around right after delivery?
If you’ve heard this question, you’d have an idea of how rude it sounds. As if people are unhappy to see you doing your chores yourself. I wonder who made it taboo for postpartum mothers to freely walk around after delivery! When a new mom is walking about after a few hours of childbirth, then It’s obvious she’s fine! Otherwise, new moms won’t dare to step out of bed until at least a day’s rest.
Why are people always so curious and judgemental towards new mothers? It’s a very crucial time for the parents as well as the baby. People should rather say positive and encouraging remarks to new parents. And should avoid criticizing new moms for their strengths and weaknesses.
7. We are coming to see your baby
After the newborn’s delivery, every other person is hurried to the hospital to see the little baby and mommy. If you're not from their family, your arriving calls might send shivers to the new parents. Mainly because they’re overtired from labor, delivery, and breastfeeding. Postpartum mothers already have so much on their plate from looking after the baby to piles of household tasks. Not to mention the recovery from a painful childbirth experience, and sleepless nights with the newborn. Upon so much going around themselves, even the thought of entertaining some guests is cumbersome for new parents. Even your planned visits are more or less the same as surprise calls until a few weeks after childbirth.
8. You look like you were never pregnant!
Even though people don’t mean anything wrong when they put forward such a comment, new mothers can feel it differently. If you’re one of the luckiest postpartum mothers to never put on baby weight, believe me, people will have problems with it too. From “were you even pregnant? To “how come you didn't put on weight?”.
These questions are common among new mothers. People will urge you to tell the secrets of your smartness, which can pretty much annoy you, especially, when you don’t have any top secret to entertain them.
Although people don’t want to hurt mothers by their complimentary remarks on their body shape, some moms can get offended by them. The last thing on the minds of new parents is their body weight, shape, and weight loss diet. Besides, newbie parents are more concerned with their newborn’s health, and wellness.
9. When are you losing the baby weight?
Honestly, no one likes to be commented on their body weight, and shape, etc. You might think people don’t ask questions about weight loss to postpartum mothers anymore. Well, you must be very lucky if you’ve never been asked one but some moms still go through this to date. And sadly, I’ve been one of them.
How on earth can people expect new moms to lose weight within a few months of delivery! This question feels worse if you're breastfeeding your baby, and can’t afford to lose weight right away, It just adds fuel to the fire!
10. Did you have a painful delivery?
Some people might think that discussing labor experience will somehow bring solace to the new moms, but the truth is the opposite. Logically speaking, is this even a question to ask: “did you have a painful delivery?”. After all, who’s labor and delivery have been the most relaxing and comfortable encounter of their life!
If nothing else this question will bring the pain back into action, not physically, but mentally. The best thing you can do for new moms is to keep the labor gossips out, at least during the first few weeks of the delivery, when new moms are vulnerable to such talks.
11. Did you get stretch marks after the baby?
When people ask such questions, they only intend to relate to their own pregnancy experience or want to get information regarding the possibility and remediation of stretch marks. Asking such questions can make postpartum mothers anxious about their bodies. Well, everything related to one’s body is private. If already they don’t have issues that you’re making them conscious of their belly marks.
A newborn’s mom might feel you’re overstepping the boundaries by asking personal things. So, it’s better not to make a comment on anything directly pointing out to the mother’s body.
12. Let me give you some parenting advice!
When people ask such questions, there’s no doubt they genuinely want to offer their help to the new parents. But sometimes, the idea of getting others involved in parenting can offend the new parents. If they’d need your advice they’ll let you know! I’m telling this being a new mom, I didn’t like it when every other person was telling stuff about dealing with my baby. It made me feel as if I'm not enough for my baby. Or I can’t understand my baby. Or maybe others know my baby better than myself, which is quite disturbing though!
I know when people advise new parents, their intentions are good. It's just that new parents are overwhelmed by the whole process of childbirth that slight comments and unwanted advice can offend them.
13. Are you breastfeeding?
Another extremely personal question to ask a newborn’s mom is “Are you breastfeeding or not?” Let me tell you, being a new mom, whether you respond positively or else, you’re never safe. People will come prepared to bash you either way. Some of them would support breastfeeding and a few would disapprove of your decision.
So, on the safer side, chose to not respond to this question especially when visited by a group of ladies. Because it's one of the controversial topics that can arouse disagreement among many. Anyways, It's a very private question that you can simply not bother to answer.
14. When are you going back to work?
If you’re not a close friend or family, this question can sound a bit rude to almost everyone. Especially, it’s an extremely boring and threatening thing to ask a new mother regarding her rejoining office. During the early period with a newborn, a mother simply can’t think of anything else but her infant. Let her enjoy the best time of her life without asking questions regarding work and rejoining the office.
When a newborn’s mom finally decides to get back to work, then is the time for you to show care by asking her out if you can babysit or offer any other help. Believe me, postpartum mothers will love and appreciate your genuine concern.
15. Is your baby sleeping well?
Although this question seems harmless, for a postpartum mother, it's just like adding fuel to the fire. Sleep-deprived and overtired babies are hard to manage especially for new moms. New parents usually struggle with putting their newborns to sleep. During this situation, asking questions about their baby’s sleeping pattern can put them off.
It's a good idea not to compare your baby to a postpartum mom’s. Sometimes, unnecessary comparisons can overpressure the new parents, and most likely they start questioning their parenting techniques.
16. You don’t look so well!
Although, people only ask such questions to those they really care about, but new mothers simply don’t get along with this one! If you want to make postpartum mothers cry, then go ahead and say this to them. They may be suffering from baby blue or Postpartum Depression (PPD). And chances are they already know their bad emotional and physical health.
Pointing out their illness will not make things easier for them. Rather you can give them a helping hand looking after their baby while they take a good sleep or choose to relax a little bit. Another great gesture is to let them vent out, listen to them without judging or questioning about their postpartum experience.
17. Did you get PPD?
No matter how educated we might be, the topic of mental issues is still considered inappropriate for open discussions. That’s one of the reasons why new moms are not comfortable when questioned regarding their mental wellbeing. “Are you depressed?”, “I can see the symptoms of PPD!” “Did you get PPD after childbirth?”
All these questions can make new moms miserable. No one wants to be judged by their mental health, be it new moms or else. Especially when postpartum mothers are going through so much in their lives, It's better to avoid such topics.
Having said that, the majority of newbie moms get PPD and are very sensitive towards it. There’s no point in bringing up the sad topic, rather, try to please them with a helping hand. The best way to deal with moms having PPD is to simply listen to them. Let them pour everything out, and they’d feel much better.
18. My baby had been...! How’s yours?
It’s very natural for every mother to talk about their babies, no doubt, moms never get tired of discussing their kids. The bitter reality is no one wants to know whether your baby has been so good or bad in sleeping, feeding, going out, behaving, and whatsoever. Such comparisons can upset postpartum mothers. For instance, if you’re bragging about your little one’s goodness, the new mother will feel sad if she’s struggling with her newborn's sleep, and whatsoever.
The same goes with awe-striking at a newborn's mom if her baby’s doing so well. That’s because new mothers are very sensitive to others' feelings and sorrows. Chances are she’d feel bad for the struggles you encountered with the newborn.
19. Send me the pictures of your newborn!
Just like anyone else, postpartum mothers don’t feel comfortable sharing the pictures of their newborns with all of their acquaintances. The reasons may vary from mothers to mothers. Some simply want privacy until the baby is a few weeks old.
Many parents want to see your live reaction towards the little one. Others’ being subjected to the protection of the baby against the evil eye. And many more based on their beliefs and ethics, which you ought to respect.
So, if you're just an acquaintance with the new parents, avoid asking for the baby’s pictures, rather wait till they officially post it on their social media, or personally send you one.
20. Don’t hold your baby that much, else he’d get used to it!
People show their concern for the new mommy and the little baby when they say such caring remarks but it might feel like unnecessary advising to the parents. “You hold your baby quite often!” is another very common remark new mothers are tired of hearing. Even if she’s holding her baby quite often, it’s her choice after all. No one else is going to get affected by her decisions regarding her baby. New parents are vulnerable to unwanted advice, especially when they’re doing all parenting demands of them.
At the end of the day, postpartum mothers know what is best for their newborns. If you want to care for the new mothers, avoid asking questions that can irritate them, invade their privacy, or sound judgemental. A happy mom can raise children 10x better than otherwise!