DEAR MISS MANNERS: I am 13 weeks pregnant, and really annoyed with my husband’s family members for constantly asking me how I feel and if I’m showing yet. I’m at the point where I am getting angry enough to try to avoid them.
I guess it’s because when I do describe how I’m feeling, they don’t listen -- almost like the question is just something that needs to be asked, and they don’t know how to react to a description of sickness.
I feel like telling them that I’m not going to answer that question anymore. I know those words are blunt, but how should I tell my husband’s mother, sister, aunts, dad, etc. to stop asking questions?
GENTLE READER: Now, now. Of all the indignities people routinely direct toward pregnant ladies, “How are you?” is not the worst. It is not even a particularly nosy question, but merely a conventional pleasantry.
There is no need to be snippy to your baby’s close relatives. However, Miss Manners will allow you to give a frank answer, such as “nauseous” or “cranky” (one word; no graphic descriptions) provided that you do it with an impishly apologetic smile. They will not be likely to press you for details. And in all fairness, you would not want them to offer folk remedies or remind you that your discomfort is worth the end result.