Having a baby is one of the most stressful and exciting experiences of a parent’s life. While there are certainly a lot of things that can make expectant parents nervous or stressed — morning sickness; shopping for essentials; health concerns for both baby and mother; and worries about finances, childcare, maternity leave, bonding, and adjusting to a new life scenario, to name a few — there are also the immense joys that come along with the anticipation of bringing home baby. Announcing a pregnancy is one of those.
Typically, expectant mothers wait until the end of the first trimester or beginning of the second to publicly announce they are with child, but some, including me, can’t wait to share the news. That’s the thing, though. The decision when and how to share rests solely with the parents themselves — nobody else.
So when one expectant mother’s own mom decided to announce her daughter’s pregnancy on Facebook without permission, the mom-to-be was understandably irked.
Not only did Meemaw post what should be the couple’s happy news to share without getting the OK from the parents-to-be, but she also did it while drunk. Ouch.
Look, it’s understandable that Nana is excited about the family’s upcoming addition. Who wouldn’t be? Visions of chubby legs, baby snuggles, and bedtime stories likely drove her impulsive behavior. But there’s a line when it comes to sharing news such as this, and Gammy crossed over it so far she can’t even see it behind her anymore.
There are all sorts of reasons why new parents might wish to keep this news to themselves, not least of which is the fact that they and only they get a say about when it’s blasted to the world. Many expectant parents are well aware of the statistics suggesting most miscarriages occur in the first trimester and may wish to keep the news to themselves so as to minimize further pain in the event of a tragedy. Others may not want their private affairs made public, especially not on social media. Still others might need to come to terms with the news themselves before opening themselves up to a barrage of congratulations.
The point is, each parent is different. It is up to them to decide when and how to spread the news (if at all), not to mention their right to be the first to do so.
I don’t blame this mom-to-be for feeling overwhelmingly betrayed. I know first-hand the surge of hormones doesn’t make it any easier for her. The one silver lining is that it seems the father’s family knows where their lane begins and ends. So there’s that.
People, if someone you know has news to share, whether it’s announcing the upcoming arrival of a baby or signaling the devastating news of a death, please: LET THEM BE THE ONES TO SHARE IT. There are all sorts of unseen and unconsidered consequences of choosing not to do so.
Think before you share. Your loved ones will thank you for it.