STFU Parents: Are Pregnancy Pranks on April Fool’s Day Outdated and Offensive?

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Yesterday was April Fool’s Day, and with it came a somewhat unexpected campaign. Unlike the typical corporate marketing campaigns that get rolled out from big brands hoping to go viral with stupid internet pranks, this one was rooted in seriousness and conducted by thousands of women who struggle with infertility and loss.  It started last week with a widely-shared poster and an unrelated-but-comparable blog post written by a mom who runs the site Scissortail Silk. Both the poster and the blog post were intended to boost awareness, although I’m not sure anyone realized just how much awareness they’d wind up creating. As of now, the post on Scissortail Silk has been “Liked” 180k+ times, and countless people have shared the poster and similar messaging across social media. As with any campaign-gone-viral, no platform went unused, and the content sharing lasted the duration of the day.

So what was all the hoopla about? Well, according to those involved, there’s an unease surrounding a particular April Fool’s Day prank that’s been upsetting certain communities for years. Although the holiday is a celebration of hoaxes and practical jokes and has been around since medieval times, some people find joking about pregnancy to be insensitive, thoughtless, and even cruel to those who have had trouble conceiving or who have lost a baby. Other jokes, presumably, are fine, but jokes about expecting a baby are now considered passé. At least, they sure were yesterday. Predictably, not everyone took to this new “rule” very well.

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