Thursday, May 20, 2010

Just you Wait!

I have a great friend who is 8 months pregnant. She is elated. Ecstatic. She could not be happier. After trying for over a year to conceive she is only one month away from welcoming her baby boy into the world.

Since she has started trying to get pregnant we have a running joke about the comments people make without really thinking. Comments that I never really noticed until she started getting annoyed. Comments that revolve around the theme "just you wait."

Before she got pregnant she would express her desire to become so. "Just you wait," they would say "pregnancy is not easy."

After she became pregnant, the frequency of the comments doubled. "Just you wait until the morning sickness kicks in..., Just you wait until you gain 50 pounds and see how happy you are then...Just you wait until the third trimester, then see how happy you are."

As the time grows closer and she expresses her excitement--it has gotten exponentially worse. "Just you wait until the baby comes, you will have no time for yourself...just you wait until you are up all night, you'll wish you were still pregnant..."

How is she supposed to respond? "Oh you are so right, I didn't think of this before...I'm going to be so unhappy."

I too have experience the "just you wait syndrome" Just the other day I excitedly shared that my daughter was taking her first steps. "Just you wait a few weeks, she'll be into everything and you'll wish she wasn't walking." Sure as she grows, so will the work and effort of parenting. I understand that--but there is no way I would want to stop her progress in life to make it easier.

Sure--people don't mean any harm. It is very innocent--but we need to think about what we are saying before the words leave our lips.

There are several things wrong with Just You Wait Syndrome. First of all, are you saying it for the benefit of the recipient? Or are you trying to squeeze your way into the center of the conversation? More importantly, why do you need to take the joy out of the moment? Wouldn't a better response be: "That is so exciting, I'm so happy for you!"

I am guilty of J.Y.W.S. I've probably said this to many of my friends...but honestly, what right do I have? Just because I have experienced something before, doesn't make me an expert on the experience!

I think it is especially important in your circle of MOMS to be supportive. Be happy. Think about what you are about to say. Will you be a listener, someone people want to share with?


Have you ever experienced J.Y.W.S? Does it even bother you?
List at least one of your pet peeves, and if possible, a great way to handle the situation.


  1. I for one have NEVER wished to still be pregnant!! I am sure I've probably said a just you wait comment before, but not with a "you'll wish this" at the end, but more like "first steps eh? won't be long before she's running!" which for me, I intend it to be a look at the fun you have coming type of comment. Although now that I think about it, I've had people SAY that type of thing. Usually it's "Just wait till she's a teenager!" type comment. I let it roll off. Sure teens can be drama laden, but I'm excited for every stage. The only thing I DON'T look forward to teen years is how it signifies how close it will be for her to leave and go out on her own. I've been a lot more sensitive to those comments, though, now that I've had friends and relatives experience unique difficulties which would make such comments very inappropriate (as in the case with infertility or delayed conception). I think you are dead on, though. The "Just You Wait" phrase is a very close cousin to the "I'll Be Happy When" phrase!

  2. Ha! That has always bugged me too! I get so annoyed! It bugs me just as much as mothers telling me "just you wait you will miss this..." reason this bugs me so much I very rarely complain about my son at all they just look at me and think she must be wishing all of this away I should butt in and give her some advice. Guess what Ladies, I spend every day trying to savor the moments I spend with my son and annoy him with the amount of kisses I plant on his chubby cheeks. I know I'm going to miss it when it's gone that's why I try so hard not to MISS it while it's happening.

  3. Holy cow, I hate this! I tell people we are trying and it makes me sad we haven't had kids, and they tell me I shouldn't be because parenting is hard. It's like telling single people not to be sad they're not married because marriage is hard. I know marriage is harder than single life... but it is also better. Much better. And I believe parenthood is the same way. Much harder. And much better. I do try to give myself doses of reality when someone reminds me of the difficulties of parenthood, but I also try to let them know that, regardless of the inherent difficulties of the experience, I want to be a parent. Of several children. And I don't think I'm crazy.

  4. Ohhh I've experienced this; I think most women have. (Am I right in feeling like this is probably something men don't suffer from as much as we do? Doesn't it seem like women are much more frequently the recipients of unsolicited "advice"?)

    I think a lot of it boils down to insecurity--when people have a hard time with something they 1) want others to recognize what a hard thing they went through and applaud them for it, and 2) are afraid that if you don't have as difficult a time as they did, it's because you're better at it than they are.

    If we could all learn to stop comparing ourselves and just focus on others sometimes, it wouldn't be such a problem. Everyone has different experiences, backgrounds, and skills, and someone else's success or failure doesn't say anything about you.