This Ultrasound Post Went Viral on Facebook For an Important Reason

October 1st 2015

Laura Donovan

It's well known that people make Facebook pregnancy announcements by posting ultrasounds images on the social media platform, so freelance writer Emily Bingham used this trend as an opportunity to tell others that it's rude to ask women when they plan to have kids.

Bingham recently posted a random ultrasound photo of a fetus on Facebook to catch the attention of her friends. She wanted to explain in detail why it is both inappropriate and in some cases hurtful to prod couples about when they are going to be parents. The post went viral and has been shared nearly 70,000 times, as many women understand this particular plight all too well.

Emily Bingham Facebook

"[T]his is just a friendly P.S.A. that people's reproductive and procreative plans and decisions are none of your business," she wrote.

Bingham said that it's impolite to ask others when they plan on popping out babies because they might be experiencing fertility issues and resent the reminder of this struggle. Conception problems are common for many, as national infertility association Resolve notes that more than 10 percent of women have used fertility services.

"Before you ask the young married couple that has been together for seemingly forever when they are finally gonna start a family ... before you ask the parents of an only-child toddler when a Little Brother or Little Sister will be in the works ... before you ask a single 30-something if/when s/he plans on having children because, you know, clock's ticking ... just stop," she continued.

Bingham added that people who have experienced miscarriages might also be devastated by this question. Up to 20 percent of clinically recognized pregnancies end in miscarriage, a tragic part of pregnancy that many people face.

"You don't know who is struggling with infertility or grieving a miscarriage or dealing with health issues. You don't know who is having relationship problems or is under a lot of stress or the timing just isn't right. You don't know who is on the fence about having kids or having more kids. You don't know who has decided it's not for them right now, or not for them ever. You don't know how your seemingly innocent question might cause someone grief, pain, stress or frustration. Sure, for some people those questions may not cause any fraught feelings -- but I can tell you, from my own experiences and hearing about many friends' experiences -- it more than likely does."

How to change the conversation

Bingham concluded by saying that parents, friends, and acquaintances alike ought to ask people what they are excited about in life rather than when they intend to start a family. If the individual wants to talk about something this personal, he or she will divulge at their own accord.

"If a person wants to let you in on something as personal as their plans to have or not have children, they will tell you," she wrote. "If you're curious, just sit back and wait and let them do so by their own choosing, if and when they are ready."

Last week, model Chrissy Teigen made similar remarks in her new talk show with Tyra Banks "FABLife," telling viewers that this question could really wound a woman who wants kids but can't seem to become pregnant.

"Anytime somebody asks me if I'm going to have kids, I'm like, 'One day, you're going to ask that to the wrong girl who's really struggling, and it's going to be really hurtful to them,'" she said. "And I hate that. So, I hate it. Stop asking me!"