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My Biggest Complaint About The Expression “We’re Pregnant”

The expression, “we’re pregnant” has become firmly entrenched in the American vernacular. I can’t quite figure out if people who use it are confused about the proper use of pronouns, or are misinformed about how humans procreate, or are trying to include men in the pregnancy process for whatever reasons. I suspect it is a case of the latter, but let’s review.

For those confused about pronouns: “we’re pregnant” is perfectly fine if you are a woman and you are standing with at least one other woman and you both have a bun in the oven. If you are a man and you’re standing there with the woman you impregnated , the proper response is “she’s pregnant.” See the difference.

For those who don’t understand procreation: Clearly if you’ve impregnated somebody, you both probably understand that the one with the penis won’t become pregnant. You can’t have a false , or a symbiotic pregnancy, or a pregnancy-like experience if you have a penis. You need a uterus, vagina, and some other important parts to be pregnant. So to recap, if you have a penis, you can’t be part of “we’re pregnant.”

I suspect that the expression, “we’re pregnant” was spawned from the idea that if we somehow include men in the part that happens for the first nine months after conception that they will somehow love their kid more, or be better fathers, or not demand a paternity test. It’s not hard to argue that those are important things, but like most things in life, I don’t think simply saying something in a special way makes it true.

Now, all that aside. My advice to you is this. If your wife is pregnant, and she wants to use the expression “we’re pregnant,” you should just smile and say, “yeah baby, we sure are!” If she wants to tell her friends that you are sharing in her morning sickness, or your back hurts from carrying around the load, and that your kidneys are tired of being kicked by the little guy, then you just agree. You can be the hero here.

But if you are hanging with a bunch of your guy buddies, you may want to reconsider using the term “we’re pregnant.” We see through that crap and we know that what you’re really trying to say is that it’s going to be a long time before you get any. The proper expression in this case is, “she’s pregnant; let’s have another six pack.”

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  1. Excellent writer. Very funny. And so true. My husband can’t stand it when people say that.

  2. i totally agree… i’ve never quite understood why some couples say ‘we’re’ pregnant… it’s annoying, and if my husband ever said that i might have to smack him. ;)

  3. Does the phrase “We’re on the rag” work better for you?

  4. i dont know why you think this is a problem. if the guy wants to be part of the pregnancy by saying this expression, then let him. why are you trying to isolate the women? its cute if a guy thinks that way.
    also, if a guy has his girl pregnant, u cant necessarily assume that what he is thinking is that he wont get some for a while. its true that its going to cross his mind (just like it would also cross the mind of the impregnated woman), but its unfair and sexist of you to say that that is what he thinks overall about the situation.
    if you dont like to share in the excitement of building a family, please keep it to yourself and don’t ruin it for everyone else. Thank you.

  5. I could not agree more. Men do not have a clue what it is like to carry a baby around for 9 months. It’s insulting that they would try to steal the lime light from a pregnant woman. Let her have her time to shine.
    I don’t think it’s cute or endearing, one bit.

  6. i think its adorable how i look at and mind u I’m six months along is that hes excited about it and if u think about i mean really think about the whole were pregnant thing is actual kinda true i mean they aren’t actually pregnant but remember but you wouldn’t be pregnant either if it weren’t from them so come on they are just as excited about the up coming arrival as u are

  7. Right on. I think its completely ridiculous when a woman of a heterosexual relationship states “we’re pregnant.” (because usually it’s the woman) I think it sounds retarded and I want to stop and say: “Ohhh wow! So who’s giving birth? Ok hm… And who’s going to be breast feeding? Uh huh… And the episiotomy..? Oh right, the one with the vagina.”
    “We’re having a baby” works just perfect but the neo-yuppie comes along with this “we’re pregnant” crap. It’s got to stop. Really. Just so you know, everyone who hears you say “we’re pregnant” thinks you’re a moron.

  8. wow. this is really sad.

    i’m way too perterbed by the whole “we know that what you’re really trying to say is that it’s going to be a long time before you get any. ” to even comment on that, so we’ll just leave it aside for now.

    When men say this, it typically means that they want to support their hunny through this entire process… not just during the ‘fun part’. Typically the man says this to ease his dear heart’s mind that she is NOT alone in this, is NOT going to have to do this by herself, and that he is one hunderd percent supportive of her and of their baby.

    I understand that YES, it is the woman who goes through the (majority of the) physical changes, as well as great emotional stresses. Which is exactly why the man is saying this. So that he makes his partner aware that he is in this too - whether it means a midnight run to the grocery to get the pickles for on her ice cream… or to rub her feet after a long day… or to give her a quickie before work because she’s THAT horny (ps, you CAN have sex while you’re pregnant, fyi…)

    The fact that you say ” if we somehow include men in the part that happens for the first nine months after conception” just makes me question what kind of experiences you’ve had in the past to make you so closed minded to the good that can come of being pregnant in a loving relationship (how is he NOT involved? he made that baby too.). This is a partmership. it takes two. i am very sad that there are people out there with these opinions on one of the most beautiful things two peopel can share. i thank GOD i’m in a relationship where i can EMBRACE the fact that my partner WANTS to share the joys AS WELL AS the burdens with me.

  9. Either parent could say, “We’re expecting.”

  10. I just came across this vernacular phenomenon recently and it still makes me squeamish. I would think the woman “half” of the pregnancy would hate her husband saying that - she’s the one who’s going to have the hot flashes, morning sickness, labor pains, huge stomach, etc.- so how does he get away with claiming to be pregnant. “We’re having a baby,” is better because we’re talking about after the kid leaves the womb, but “we’re pregnant”, ewwww.

  11. “We’re pregnant”, “We’re due in June”, etc- This expression is probably my biggest pet peeve and I’m so glad I’m not the only one! Thank you!

  12. Would a couple also say “we have testicular cancer”? Of course not. Even though as a couple the wife would support her husband through this process, a sane woman would not tell someone “they found cancer in our prostate”. Saying “we’re pregnant” is exactly the same. It is not humanly possible for someone who is BORN a man to be pregnant.

    You can say “we’re expecting a baby” and convey the same message without sounding like a buffoon..

    I am a woman and I’m tired of hearing women use this ridiculous phrase. But what is worse is a MAN who says “we’re pregnant”. Its not in the male genetic code to refer to themselves in such a feminine manner. More than likely, if you hire a private detective to trail him for a while, you might find him trying to get another man “pregnant”.

  13. What are the chances that the person responsible for this very pathetic, dismal article could be one of the folowing ??

    A. lesbian
    B. A man hater
    C. Simply just just unattractive
    D. All of the above

  14. Couldn’t agree more. It sounds very contrived, and as you pointed out is likely some lame attempt to make it appear the man is more than normally supportive. I think it makes the man sound like a pussy. “We’re having a baby” works just fine. Next time I hear “we’re pregnant” I plan on asking which of them will be delivering.

  15. I totally agree, “we’re” pregnant is the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard.

  16. So I’m watching the Celtics game tonight and every 10 or 15 minutes there is a commercial with a guy talking about “we’re pregnant”….it makes me want to puke when I hear people say this. I would imagine the people defending this phrase are the ones saying it. Just know that when you walk away from someone after saying this they are laughing at how ridiculous you sound and commenting “maybe next time we see them he might be pregnant because I can see a slight camel toe developing where his penis use to be”

  17. I agree with the author. I have no problem with men who say “we are expecting” or ‘we are going to have a baby’. Because you are both expecting to become parents and the baby belongs to both of you. But men who say ‘we are pregnant’ are so stupid. Being pregnant is a physical condition and men simply can’t become pregnant. To me for a man to include himself in being pregnant is disrespect to his wife and what she will endure to have this baby. He will not have morning sickness, his ankles will not swell, his abdomen will not become enlarged, he will not be kept awake at night because of backache or because the baby wants use the kidneys as a punching bag, he will not go into labor, and he will not be taken on a wild and crazy ride by his hormones. Men you don’t get pregnant, and you can be supportive of your wife by making midnight runs to the grocery store without saying stupid things and sounding like a moron.

  18. I agree totally, and I am a man. This phrase has irked my since the very first time I heard it a few years ago…

    I mean you wouldn’t say “We’re breastfeeding”, “We’re going into labour”, or heaven-forbid, “OUR water broke!”

  19. Here, here! What a ridiculous expression. My cousin used it today to tell me that she and her husband are having a baby and it irked me so much (not the news itself, you understand, just its delivery) that my annoyance led me here.

    Men (or lesbian life partners) can be totally involved and supportive during the good times and bad without anyone suggesting they are doing the gestating. It’s not cute, it’s biologically impossible. And “we’re expecting” or “we’re having a baby” is perfectly inclusive, surely? If my husband ever used it, I would clobber him - but I know he feels the same way so fingers crossed, no clobbering will be necessary if and when we have such joyous news to share… in an appropriate and biologically correct way :)

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    Children often have a way of coming up with a name for the baby. I think it makes them feel a part of the whole scene. A niece begged me to name my first daughter Big Bird. A friend’s daughter choose broccoli for the new baby. It’s cute in utero, but allowing it to continue will only result in your child being named Billy Boo boo Belly - or Boo Boo for short!

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  22. Sure he’s involved! He’s just NOT PREGNANT!

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  27. lol I love how some people came on here, obviously offended by this small article. I dislike it how couples say “We’re pregnant,” it’s just innaccurate. I understand the husband would want to be involved [and he IS because he helped make the baby! haha] but it’s just wrong to say. Better to say “She’s pregnant.” It won’t make him any less of a dad or any less involved. I would love having a very involved and supportive husband in the future but that term is just wrong…

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  30. Thank God! Someone wrote about this absolutely annoying phenomenon. The anger and totally illogical, emotional based responses from people who do use this, just proves to me that I was right in stereotyping the type of people who say this!

    Mike-Clearly you didn’t fully read the article, if you had you would know that the answer is no to all of your moronic guesses! I am a feminist and a HUGE proponent of finding ways to make men feel more involved in their child’s lives-to the point where other women have accused me of being anti-woman so stop trying to find ways to insult people just because you disagree with them-you just sound childish.

    Christi- I think you made the best point in arguing with people who insist on using this phrase. Looking at other diseases and conditions I think it would be obviously insulting for any family member taking care of an ill person to insist that they also have said disease. Yes they go through it just as much and I expect them to support the ill party but if I had to spend every waking hour taking care of a mother who was dying of cancer it would be EXTREMELY insulting of me to claim “WE have cancer”.

    This has nothing to do with people not wanting the man to be involved or not realizing that he is helping out or that he has just as much to do with it as the woman and I don’t believe thats why people say it. This is the new hippie, overly emotional, let’s find new ways of bonding & attaching because just showing genuine love isn’t enough, “I think everything I do and say must be cutesy” breed of Americans! I assure you it’s not cute, it’s not going to make any man stick around longer if he’s a piece of s**t, its not going to make your bond stronger etc etc etc.

    You are both having a baby, you are NOT both pregnant.

  31. Hear, hear! I can’t stand it when couple (usually the woman speaking) say, “We’re pregnant!” You, plural, are not pregnant. Only the woman is pregnant. You are both expecting a child, however. Pregnant is a physical state of being.

    I know that people think it’s cute to say, “We’re pregnant!” Or maybe it’s warm-and-fuzzy and politically correct, but it doesn’t make the man pregnant, too.

    When people came up to me and said, “I hear you’re pregnant,” I always replied, “WE are not pregnant. My wife is.”

  32. Oh man, I’m a pregnant woman and this drives me crazy. My husband is absolutely 100% a part of MY pregnancy and the gestation of OUR child, but it’s me who’s doing the gestating. We’re pregnant? Come on, does science and literal thought no longer mean anything, or can we all start using words however we want?

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  35. Son and wife are using this rediculous statement. Didn’t hear him say it yet but she is driving her with it, we’re pegnant we’re having blood work or we’re having an ultrasound, can’t stand it. my poor husband who’s not up on this new lngo was totally confused when she was telling him WE’re having an ultrsound next week. He said we who I don’t have any ultrasound booked, I was killing myself trying not to explode with laughter. How am I going to stand this for 7.5 months.

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  37. For those of you who love this “cutesy” phrase, let me ask you this. When the man goes to the doctor and fills out a medical history, does he check off the box asking if he’s pregnant? If he pees on the stick, does it show a positive reading? Is he still allowed to have x-rays at the dentist? Does he consult with his doctor before taking any kind of over-the-counter meds to make sure it’s safe for the baby? Does he give up his beer for 9 months? NO!
    The definition of pregnant is “to carry offspring in the womb”.
    What’s next? Will women start using the term “we’re impotent”?

  38. Was just watching ‘HouseHunters’ …a former Rockette and her husband were looking for a new house. She kept saying, ‘We are pregnant’…and that is what led me to this page….It is the dumbest, most politically correct incorrect thing a person can say!!!! It is an affront to women who actually get pregnant!!!!…To say, ‘We are having a baby’ is the way to go!!!!!

  39. Why do you say “we’re” pregnant? I never say “we” only have one testicle.

  40. Jhoselis, I believe you missed the point. Read what Carole posted. Carole has a brain and she knows how to use it. :-)

  41. I have had 4 pregnancies myself…..my husband was a very big part of the initiating of the pregnancies but, no way was he ever PREGNANT!
    This “we’re pregnant” is one of the dumbest things people say today. I know the world is changing but anatomy is not….men can not be pregnant, no matter how much little women want it to be so! I’m so glad there are others that are still in the real world, thank you

  42. I think we are pregnant is better, because of the guy’s juices it happened in the first place, without the spermatozoon an ovary cant evolve into a human, and one ejaculation has what? freaking 300 spermtozoon! jeez. its “we are pregnent whether youlike it or not cuz i gave her like 50 billion sperms!”

  43. TOTALLY Agree! I have been telling people this for years and some actually become offended by my explanation– “It takes two to tango”. …?? Yes, it takes 2 people to create a baby but unless I’m mistaken, most males can’t be physically pregnant. Such an occurrence would be a miracle of science and worthy of national news media coverage. If the desire is to be inclusive, it would be better to say “we’re having a baby” or perhaps “we’re expecting” because both parents are expecting a baby. Thank you for this article. I can only hope that this expression fades in usage but my guess is that it is here to stay.

  44. I am a married man and I just delivered the news that “we’re pregnant” to a family member who immediately chose to be sarcastic about the way I chose to deliver the news rather than be happy for us. I can tell you that it was not me trying to accomplish anything other than deliver news to a family member. I wasn’t trying to steal my wife’s thunder or show support through some sort of passive statement or somehow make someone feel like I will endure as much as her during the pregnancy.. It was merely a statement and a way of sharing news, and quite simply, just the way it came out.

    It astonishes me that I read how many people are so easily bothered by such an innocuous statement. If you are married, many folks, myself included, are of the opinion that you are now a unit and while there are still two individuals, you are now a team, and public representations of that should not be in the least bit offensive or off putting.

    You can rip this like I’m sure you are chomping at the bit to….but at the core of this is really a character issue. Anyone that calls or takes the time to share with you the news that they are having a baby has decided that you are important enough that they want you to be a part of this. How much of a jerk are you if you nit pick the chosen words that may have just been the words that came out. If in that moment when you find out great news about somebody that is in your life, the only thing you can do is criticize how the news was delivered rather than be happy for them, your true character shows.

    I can tell that if you have the balls to be critical or sarcastic to that person to their face about this then you should also say to that person, hey I don’t care about your happiness, I am just a selfish, small minded jerk that demands that you tell me news in a manner that is suitable to my ears, otherwise your news is not important to me.

    I’m sure you won’t do this, because after all it’s about how the other person did something wrong, right? My hunch is that in this very moment you are in your ever present defensive mode, you are still coming up with ways to respond to this that support your views that it’s not about the message that people are delivering, it is the method that they choose to deliver it that matters. You are so self absorbed and offended right now that you are still thinking this is about you, and so your little brain is just a buzz with all the witty comebacks you can make here. Laughable… and you will probably never get the fact that anything you say that remains in defense of your position further solidifies just how bad of a friend you are to those in your life.

    The message here is that the two people are having a child. Lose sight of that and your true character shows. That person that shares that news with you has chosen you, god only knows why if you are this critical.

  45. Unless he is a sea horse or impregnated by aliens he is not pregnant. A specific word with a specific meaning. To those saying men are trying to hog the glory…I never heard a man use this term. To mike, probably quite low. I also hate the usage of “preggers” and “baby bump”. Stupid is not cute.

  46. Thank You!!! The expression
    “We are pregnant”
    Irrates me to the point of bringing on PMS

    For those women deluding themselves
    That their husband/partner will bond easily
    and change diapers in theiddle of the night, if at all
    Get a grip girl!!

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