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The countdown to your belly “popping” is exciting—but as soon as it does, the floodgates are open: Cue the onslaught of annoying baby-related Qs. Most people (your mother-in-law included) mean well. But fielding intensely personal questions gets old…and fast. Here, the worst offenders and how to tactfully reply.

RELATED: 10 Things Nobody Tells You About Being Pregnant

pregnant woman with man

“Were You Trying?”

Translation: “Were you and your husband having frequent sex?” (Awkward.) The answer is a moot point. You’re pregnant and telling the world, whether it was an accident or not, so the best response is to deliver a bit of a non-answer: “We’re both so excited and really can’t wait to meet this little person.” Moving on.

pregnant mom with kid

“Do You Have a Name Picked Out? How About [INSERT BABY NAME HERE]?”

Look, no judgment if you want to tell the world your name, but know that announcing it ahead of time can invite unwanted opinions (“ugh, I went to school with a Leon and he was a total jerk”) or, worse, room for negotiation (“but it would mean so so much if you considered your great-great-grandma Gertrude’s name”). A good way to deflect: “Not yet, but we’re narrowing it down” or “You’ll be the first to know…after the baby.”

mom and stroller

“What Kind of Stroller Are You Buying?”

It sounds innocent enough, but in our experience, this is a veiled attempt at passing judgment on the type of parent you’re going to be. Mention a Bugaboo? (“You know your kid’s just going to puke in it, right?”) Or, conversely, a Graco. (“Come on, spend a little, will ya? Your kid will live in this thing.”) Just like baby names, it’s best to deflect: “We’re actually still doing our research, but if we need any advice, we’ll let you know.”

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“You’re Going to Breastfeed, Right?”

Again, this is so personal. Volunteer the info if you want, but you might opt to keep things vague—as in “that’s what we’re leaning toward”—since opinions on this run the gamut and can be high-charged. (“Good luck, it was a nightmare for me!” or “You’d really deprive your baby of the nutrients it needs?”)

pregnant mom

“Are You Going to Get an Epidural?”

Depending on who asks, it’s totally fine to reveal your preference—and remember that all deliveries, epidural or not, are natural. Or, you could keep your decision between you, your hubby and your OB/GYN. A respectful reply: “I’m going to make a game time decision, since, as my doc keeps reminding me, you really can’t predict how everything will go.”

pregnant woman hand on belly

“How Are You Going to Afford to Pay for All This?”

Yep, people have no qualms asking about your financial situation. And, other than offering them access to your bank statement, you could nicely reply: “The same way everyone else does: one paycheck at a time.”

pregnant woman hospital

“Do You Want to Hear My Birth Story?”

If someone asks first, consider yourself lucky. Most people just dive right into their traumatic tale. Want to hear all about Sharon’s water breaking at the Rite Aid? Carry on. But if you know it’ll just up your anxiety, don’t feel bad speaking up: “I’m already a bit nervous, so I’d rather hold off, but let’s definitely compare notes later.”

pregnant woman multiple hands

“Can I Touch Your Belly?”

It’s a classic. But truthfully, the annoyance level depends on the person asking. (Your niece? Cute. Your landlord? Creepy.) Just remember, it’s totally fine to say no: “Actually, I’m feeling a bit woozy and nauseous today, sorry!” Trust us: No one will want to mess with that.

RELATED: Things Real Women Wish They Knew Before They Had Kids

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