Listen, men of the world, let’s get something straight: I realize pregnancy boobs look pretty tempting. But let’s set some ground rules because those things? Well, they are off-limits.

The first trimester can be one of the most transformative times for women — many women, quite literally, do that whole “glowing” thing. Their hair is shinier, their skin is luminous, they carry this secret smile on them, and of course, their boobs just look freaking amazing. But while they may be glowing on the outside, the inside is a whole `nother story. The inside looks like churning stomachs, constant queasiness, a fear of something going wrong that you can’t see or control, barfing or honest-to-goodness wishing you could just barf and get it over with (even though it’s never over with, let’s be real), and the overall slow dawning realization that everything you once knew about living in your own body is about to change.

In other words, you may look good, but you feel like absolute crap.

Which is why we are making the line, you know the one between us, our boobs, and you, very clear right now. Sure, some may think of pregnancy as a free pass to never have to worry about birth control, but spoiler alert: 1) there’s nothing “free” about pregnancy for a woman and 2) did you know you can actually get pregnant while you are already pregnant?

OK, so the second one is a low risk, I’ll admit that. But the point is, this whole pregnancy thing is going to take time for both of us to adjust to. For those of us who happen to be the pregnant ones, this might mean learning to go about our days with a superhero’s sense of smell, telling ourselves that we don’t really want ice cream all day, every day, and adjusting our waistbands way before we thought we would have to.

And for you, that might mean just giving us a little space right now. Maybe just institute a “look, but don’t touch” policy. Maybe just consider back rubs or foot massages as the ultimate sexy time for a little while. Maybe just don’t give up on us just yet. Maybe just let us figure out how to navigate life with these new balloons affixed to our chest.

Because honestly, these heaving, romance-cover-worthy bosoms of ours are pretty darn bittersweet since we know that they come with a price that only we can pay. Every time we look down, every time we are surprised by our own reflection in the mirror, every time we catch you staring at us with that weird little smile on your face, we are reminded that the cost of motherhood is steep. We know, whether inherently or because we’ve been down this road before, that motherhood requires us to give every single part of ourselves to another person. These boobs you are now admiring feel like they are on loan — a very expensive loan that we aren’t even sure we wanted in the first place. And their time is limited. In a few short months, they will balloon from a place of second glances our way to a place of slight horror. And a few months after that, those boobs will be called to the plate, their true purpose revealed when we are forced to make a decision about whether or not to feed a little human being with those things.

In short, we carry a lot of weight, in some ways, the very weight of another person’s world, in our now-larger bras. So excuse us if we’re just a little more than hesitant to turn them over to anyone else right now. You’ll just have to deal with the fact that those pregnancy boobs might be off-limits to you right now — unless we say otherwise. In which case, please be prepared. Because pregnancy is a confusing time for all of us, OK?

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