Why I’m not on iVillage

So iVillage isn’t something I ever spent any time on before I was pregnant, and once I was out of the gestational closet as of month 4, I haven’t been back… until today.  (What can I say, it was 4:30 and I wasn’t about start trying to accomplish something new at work.) 

They have discussion boards by due month, so I thought I’d check in and see how the October ladies are handling their loads.  Surprisingly, there are a substantial handful who’ve already given birth and are now living in the NICU, looking at their children through plexiglass.  I’m glad the ladies are supporting each other through their cyber playgroup, but in all my selfishness I try to avoid this crowd lest I plant the seed of complete and total paranoia in my already neurosis-fertile brain.

Outside of the bed ridden and the preemie-moms, the rest of the gang appears to grow anxious.  And tired.  And in some cases, a bit angry… and this is what I find interesting about iVillage specifically.  It’s the land of blinkie signature icons announcing how blessed you are to be having a little angel, with charts tracking the babe’s progress and cutesy graphics about having a little Fall pumpkin.  These are ladies that are generally SO EXCITED to be pregnant that I in all my snark started writing this here endless diatribe of a blog. 

So now that these ladies are getting fat and uncomfortable, and they no longer feel the need to tread lightly so the pregnancy gods don’t reward their ingratitude with a miscarriage, they are feeling a bit unsatisfied with the whole “pregnancy experience.”  My favorites are the ones who complain that she “just isn’t enjoying my pregnancy” or is frustrated that “something that’s supposed to be so beautiful feels so miserable.” 

My question is, who ever told anyone that pregnancy is “a wonderful experience” or “a beautiful gift” in the first place?  Where did this myth get started?  Was Eve trying to trade Adam for the ability to pee standing up?  I don’t care how excited you are to have a baby, or how amazing nature is in its ability to keep on keeping on, but pregnancy is neither a gift nor a miracle.  It is a biological process, in the same way that digesting your food and taking a shit is a process.  Or healing a broken leg is a process.  And it happens to be a drawn out and uncomfortable one.  Every living species on the planet reproduces in some way or another, so it’s not remarkable, unique or special.  Sure, it’s important, it’s life sustaining and it is a big deal in the sense that it’s life changing (not to mention completely distracting), but it’s not an all expenses paid trip to Bora Bora with George Clooney as your personal massues in which case it would be genuine cause for disappointment if you did not enjoy every waking minute of it.  I mean for god’s sake, have you ever heard someone say “I just didn’t feel like I experienced my root canal.”

I mean, can you imagine how insane these ladies are going to make themselves when the kid is actually born?  Brass plating the kid’s first dirty diaper and feeling endless guilt about trying to sleep instead of scrap booking the hourly picture diary they’ve committed themselves to taking so as not to miss anything since they “grow up so fast.” 

Ladies ladies ladies… the snark will set you free.  If there’s anything people give you when you’re pregnant it’s a ton of leeway (since everyone assumes the hormones have us constantly on the verge of tears or tantrum), so tell it like it is, sister.  It’s not like there’s any correlation with being a gushy pregnant lady and having a shorter labor, so what do you have to lose?

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One Response to “Why I’m not on iVillage”

  1. patience Says:

    “The pregnancy experience”–that’s hilarious. Like it’s some kind of middle class privilege no different from piano lessons or a grand tour after college.

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