You’ve been warned.
With sleep at an all time low, hormones at an all time high, and life as you knew it turned completely on its head, the chances of inadvertently upsetting or offending a first time mum are going to be great.
Therefore, in order to save yourself from a potentially awkward situation, I’ve compiled a list of the top five questions that made me feel the most stabby in the first few weeks as a new mum. These should be avoided at all costs (especially if you want to keep your friendship intact).
Consider yourself warned people.
1. “Gosh I’m soooo tired, I’ve been out all weekend.”
How lovely that you still have a social life, but please spare a thought for the new mum you’ve just said this to. If she had the energy, she might just claw out your eyes.
The day this blasé sentence was said to me, I had a 10-day-old baby who only slept in sporadic bursts (and only if propped up on my shoulder), was struggling to breastfeed, and in agony from post labour complications.
I’d gone past simple exhaustion and was bordering on delirium. So hearing this was almost as painful as labour itself – especially knowing the person who carelessly uttered they were going home to a gloriously uninterrupted full night’s sleep.
2. "Have you seen the latest [insert movie title]?"
No, I had not and would not until it hit the bargain bin in the department stores.
Because not only was it suddenly impossible to comprehend watching anything that required the use of my brain (which was fried from lack of quality sleep) but my screen time was restricted to whatever shows were on during feed-time.
Basically all I was enjoying were infomercials and re-runs of Friends.
3. "How are you spending all your spare time whilst on maternity leave?"
There will always be at least one workmate who thinks maternity leave sounds like a legitimate excuse to take a tantalisingly long break from the daily grind. They picture you having oodles of spare time to learn a new language, undertake a uni degree or start a small business empire.
An ex-colleague asked me if I was planning to wile away the days by catching up on reading when on my maternity leave. I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. All I was hopeful for, was one hot (and uninterrupted) shower a day.
4. "So are you already thinking about Number 2?"
Now, here's a question that should only be asked at your own peril. In fact, if you are anything like me you might need to show some great restraint when this is asked (especially when it's mere days after you've just officially acquired the title of mum).
And while there is never a right time to inquire about whether there will be a sibling in your baby's future, especially don't do it while labour is still burning a hole in your memory and you've been up all night with an unsettled baby.
You'll only make me say something I may live to regret.
5. "Did you know my baby slept through the night from 5 days old?"
Sleep is the number one most contentious subject you can discuss when it comes to newborns. It's the holy grail we all seek but not all obtain. Therefore, even the most pious person can morph into a monster if this question is directed innocently their way.
So if you did manage to get your newborn to sleep through the night in less than a week from birth then congratulations on winning the baby lottery. However, if I choose never to speak to you again (just out of pure jealousy) you should know you brought it all on yourself.
What did you hate being asked straight after having a baby?
Want more? Try: