It doesn’t seem to matter what point in your life you are at with trying to conceive, being pregnant, or being postpartum — people will always manage to say stupid shit to you that is insensitive, stupid, uneducated/ignorant, and/or not helpful or supportive. Some of these comments are well meaning, but they really just do not help at all, nor do they make you feel good or better about your current situation.
After learning that I had given birth vaginally, my mom raved over how “easy” and “simple” I had it since I didn’t have to go through a c-section or a c-section recovery. “You are SO lucky,” my mom said, partly happy for me and partly resentful about the two c-sections she had. She kept saying this over and over on pretty much every single call as though I didn’t hear it the first time she said it. Seriously? Just because I had a vaginal birth does NOT mean my labor was “easy” or “simple,” nor does it mean that I won’t have pain postpartum. What the fuck? I was in labor for TWENTY FIVE hours, and NINE of those hours I had nearly non stop contractions. Who is she to tell me that I had it “easy”??
Then, my mother-in-law made similar dumb comments. She called my birth “easy” because it was vaginal and said multiple times that I would forget the pain from labor because of the sweet bundle I brought home. Okay, let’s all not be delusional here: while I am extremely grateful and feel blessed that my baby was born healthy and is home now, I have NOT forgotten how intense and painful labor was, nor will I ever forget the extreme agony I was in. Then, she continues to make comments about how she hopes that the two of us are getting “plenty of rest” or sleep given we hired a night nurse.
Yes, it’s true that we are getting more sleep on average with help via a night nurse. That does NOT mean I am getting adequate or “plenty” of sleep… because what parents of a newborn in this world are getting plenty of sleep unless they have chosen to 100 percent formula feed their baby and hand them off to help, whether that is by a family member or hired help???
I’ve also gotten comments from some friends regarding whether I regretted having an unmedicated birth. Given I was mobile within two hours of giving birth and have been able to do most things around the house unassisted, why the hell would I have WANTED an epidural in hindsight, which would have prolonged my overall recovery?? And given I am more mobile, that also means Chris needs to help me with fewer things, so he’s likely happy that I went unmedicated in the end, as well!