Men and women are significantly different, and that is what makes the world go around. However, there are some things women will never know about men, and many things men will never understand about women and their bodies.
Through my pregnancy, I have experienced more emotions than I have since my eating disorder episodes or emotional days of high school. Thank God, I have the sweetest and most patient husband! He has been so attentive during each phase, and I could not be more grateful. And now since I have him trapped, he can experience my craziness without leaving me! Haha… but really…
There are things he does not understand, and never will.
Men do not have a uterus! They do not, and will never, understand the extremities of menstrual pain (not even going to get into the details of that), the emotions of the constantly changing woman’s body (every day of every month), and especially carrying a child in the womb. Being a female is not easy or simple, and even as a woman, I am often confused and surprised by the ongonigs of my body.
The fact is that every person, no matter of gender, race, or age, knows someone who has been through pregnancy. Everyone knows a woman, or dozens or hundreds, who have experienced moon cycles and childbirth. However, just because we all know someone, does not mean we can comprehend what their body goes through. Have you ever heard, “Every pregnancy is different”? I am learning how every true that statement is. Many women have told me they had little to no “morning sickness,” while my own mother said she was sick the entire time she was pregnant with all four of us. My point is, we can never truly know what is going on in another person’s body, but especially men cannot know.
When a man gives his [unwanted] opinion of how his mother or sister or his distant cousin felt during their 9-10 months of pregnancy, I literally want to slap him! As Rachel on Friends said, “No uterus, no opinion!” I know their words are meant to be encouraging or in an attempt to relate to what I am going through, but it instead makes me irritated. My body, and other women who experience their first pregnancy, changes every single day in a way I am not accustomed to. At 18 weeks along, I feel my uterus stretching, the round ligament expanding, and am insanely irritable. All these physical feelings have nothing to do with how honored and ecstatic I am to be with child. The physicality of pregnancy is the hardest, and I don’t expect any man to get any of this. It frustrates me when they give any opinion!
While my daddy, husband, and father-in-law are more than supportive, I still feel as though I am a little crazy. Is this normal? My dad is a medical doctor, has birthed 70+ babies, and has been the husband to my mother for 34 years with four children. Yet, he does not intrude on my feelings and will give me his medical advice only if I ask for it. I guess, for several reasons, he actually understands the differences in women and men’s bodies, and knows not to offer up his opinions. Smart man! My husband knows me so well after 7 years together, and knows when to walk away and when to hug and comfort me. My father-in-law respectfully stays quiet about most of the subject except his excitement for another grandchild. These men seem to get it!
I wish that other men, mostly younger guys, would follow in their footsteps and know when to shut up. It is difficult enough for the shape of my body to grow, dealing with MANY emotions, preparing for motherhood, worrying about the baby’s safety and health in my uterus, and of course, all the physical discomforts of carrying a baby. Pregnancy is beautiful, magical, a blessing, but it is also scary, at times uncomfortable, and exhausting.
Unless you have a uterus or are a woman who has been through a pregnancy/delivered a child, please do not go up to other women and present them with your thoughts or opinions. It is okay that you have no idea what women go through; that is a part of life. Shouldn’t we be more careful, more loving, and more understanding of a women growing a human inside of her?