Women's bodies are often considered to be a subject of public discussion and scrutiny. Is she sexy enough? Skinny enough? Modest enough? Assertive enough? Demure enough? There's no winning. So you can imagine how much worse this gets when a woman is pregnant. And our society, in no uncertain terms, hates fat people. So you can imagine how it can feel to be fat and pregnant. There's so much we, as a culture, can do to make fat pregnant women feel less awful, including refusing to assume fat pregnant women have gestational diabetes.
I just missed being labeled with gestational diabetes during my first pregnancy, but was diagnosed relatively early on with my second. Let me tell you: it's a pain in the ass. Actually, to be more accurate, it's a pain in the fingertips you constantly have to prick in order to monitor your blood sugar. But people just looking at me couldn't tell I had gestational diabetes, just like you can't look at anyone and make a medical diagnosis strictly based on physical appearance.
And yet fat pregnant women are subjected to the assumption that they have gestational diabetes all the damn time. And this is on top of all the assumptions they endure all: they must be unhealthy, they must not exercise, they must have a terrible diet, they must smell, they must not be sexually attractive to anyone, and so on and so on into a never-ending spiral of awfulness. That multiplies by, like, a million when they're fat and pregnant because of the added crap people feel entitled to have a vocal and expert opinion on when any woman is pregnant. People are quick to assume that a fat pregnant woman must need a C-section, they must not have known they were pregnant initially because they're heavy, they must have a dangerous, and they must have a high-risk pregnancy.
It should be easy to see why these assumptions are not just garbage but harmful, yet people continue to make them every single day. So with that in mind, here's why you shouldn't assume someone is afflicted with this proverbial pain in the butt (but, again, actually fingers!) just because of their size:
Because When You Assume You Make An "Ass" Outta You & Me
This is standard and sound logic from our elders from the time we're, like, 10. Let's hold fast to the hokey wisdom of the ages by not assuming anything about anyone because it's so obviously bad form in just about any case you can think of.
Because It's Rude AF
In addition to making yourself out to be an ass (as mentioned above) you're just coming across as super rude. But here's the thing: it's so easily avoidable. Just don't do it. Even if you're secretly assuming a fat pregnant lady is diabetic in your head, just keep it in your obnoxious, presumptive head where you're only hurting yourself.
Because She May Very Well May Not Have GD
People with a BMI (which stands for "body mass index" but should stand for "bullsh*t metric, idiots") of 30 or higher ("average" is around 18 to 25) are considered to be higher risk for gestational diabetes. That said, it's hardly a forgone conclusion that anyone with a higher-than-average BMI is going to have gestational diabetes.
Because Plenty Of Non-Fat Moms Have GD
In addition to a BMI of 30 or more, there are other risk factors that can indicate whether a woman will have gestational diabetes. Age, race, and family history (if the women in your family tend to have gestational diabetes) play a huge role in whether or not someone will have gestational diabetes. Or it will be a complete surprise and come to a young thin white woman with no family history of the disease, because it happens, people!
Assuming only fat mothers will have gestational diabetes does a disservice to other women by promoting a narrative that indicates only fat mothers have to be concerned when, in fact, it's something everyone should be wary of.
Because Fat Moms Have Enough To Deal With
Fat women put up with a lot of assumptions under non-pregnant circumstances. No one should have to deal with all that societal baggage, least of all when they're growing a human.
Because It's Stressful For The Mom In Question
The mom in question may not be at a stage in her pregnancy where she's even been tested for gestational diabetes (it usually doesn't happen until 24 to 28 weeks). So, maybe she has it and maybe she doesn't, but you assuring her that she must be diabetic is doing nothing but stressing her out. So stop.
Because You Should Let Her Give You Her Own Narrative
Hey, here's a novel idea: let the pregnant person tell you what it's like to be pregnant. If she wants, she'll even tell you what it's like to be pregnant and fat! Everyone has the right to tell their own story and be heard.
Because It's A Negative Judgment
Here's how I know anyone claiming to "just be concerned about your health" when they fat shame someone is lying: because literally everyone I've seen do that have never said diddly-squat when a skinny person eats like crap. More often than not they'll laugh in amusement at how such a "tiny little thing" can "pack away that many sweets."
So spare us all and be honest with yourself.
Because You Need To Let Her Enjoy Her Dinner In Peace
And yes, her dessert afterwards, too! She's pregnant! She's hungry! Leave her be!
Because It's None Of Your Damn Business
Absolutely none of your business. You need to find something better to do with your time.