By Rashmi Deshpande
Recently, we shared a video from Huffington Post titled, 48 Things Women Hear In A Lifetime (That Men Just Don’t). Rashmi Deshpande, who has been a mom for about a year now, left us a note saying she could write a book about things people have said to her since she’s had her daughter. We said, Challenge? She said, Accepted! So here’s a list of 10 things new moms hear that make us all want to vaanthi – and how to deal with the people who say these things.
As a new mom, I’ve really come to appreciate the divide between the haves and the have nots. The haves get to sleep in till 11 AM, or an entire night without waking up to feed a hungry mouth at 1AM, then change a dirty diaper at 3AM, rock a sleepy baby at 5AM before getting up to empty a full bladder at 6AM, thereby making it pointless to go back to sleep.
The haves also get Saturdays and Sundays off, they have friends they can talk nicely to, and hang out with. They get time to exercise, watch movies in a real theatre, stay out all night, take romantic vacations, and choose what they want to eat. So why should they also be able to say stupid things to new moms and get away with it?
Well this mommy’s not taking any more poop (except from my baby, that is)! I’ve developed a verbal armoury that I’m not ashamed to use. So if you’re a new mom and you feel a stupid person assault coming on, here’s how you can get back at them.
1. When I made a mistake calculating our office lunch bill, someone said, “It’s okay, it happens; pregnancy makes women dumb.”
Polite response: Say, “Yea, dumb enough to have had lunch with you!”
2. At one of our appointments, our paediatrician told me, “You’re lucky to have such a wonderful husband who takes time off work to come for all of your daughter’s appointments.”
Polite response: To which my husband turned around and replied, “That’s exactly how I feel about my wife, doctor.”
3. “You didn’t change your surname after marriage? Won’t your baby get confused?”
Polite response: Say, “Great idea! Guess I should also have plastic surgery to look like my husband too – you know just in case my baby gets confused.”
4. A stay-at-home mom once asked me, “How do you live with the guilt of leaving your baby with your parents while you go out to work?”
Polite response: “How does your husband live with the guilt of leaving his baby with you when he goes to work?
5. When someone says, “I hope your baby doesn’t cry at night, and disturb your husband’s sleep.”
Polite response: You say, “No, she sings him lullabies while I go out and party.”
6. Friends who often come up to you and say, “Now that you’ve had a baby, we’re never going to see you, are we?”
Polite response: “Of course you will! I’ll be right there, hiding under that pile of dirty diapers.”
7. You know that awkward conversation when someone doesn’t know what else to say except, “So when are you guys planning the second one?”
Polite response:: Casually draw a knife from your kitchen drawer and say, “As soon as I’m done hiding your dead body.”
8. Every now and then you will run into a mouth-breathing dude who will confidently announce to you, “You were hot before you got pregnant.”
Polite response: Say “Like I’m sure you were, before you were born!”
9. “Your husband sits with the baby while YOU drive? Why?”
Polite response: Make your best Utpal Dutt face and say, “Because the last time he tried standing inside it, the car almost toppled over.”
10. You have just received a message on Facebook or a comment on one of your photos that says, “Oh! You had a daughter!”
Polite response? Cancel polite response! Unfriend! Unfriend! UNFRIEND!
Rashmi Deshpande is 35% traveller, 25% writer, 40% mom and 100% sleep-and-chocolate-deprived.