“Sharing the same room”

After seeing the results of the pregnancy test and telling me that we need to monitor the progress, the doctor tells me:

“There are three things you need to avoid: ‘Lifting heavy things, falling down and sharing the same room’*.”
I: “I’m sorry?”
She: “You can’t sleep with your husband. You might have different ideas about this in Western countries, but we are quite strict about it here in China.”

*同房 tóngfáng, or “same room”, is a Chinese euphemism commonly used to say “have sex”.

Has your doctor ever told you something similar? I’d love to hear your stories.

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19 thoughts on ““Sharing the same room”

  1. and we still don’t know the answer… you know how to keep people nervous! argh >.<
    pregnancy in China (and post-pregnancy time) has some really stupid things like 'don't watch TV, don't wash your hair' etc. so if I ever get pregnant I'll avoid my MIL since she really believes those things, she told my husband 'I watched TV and worked when I was pregnant with your sister that's why she's not as smart as you are'. Lovely woman.

    Can we know the result now? 🙂


    • There’s a slight difference though – the not washing hair thing is a cultural tradition (in addition to eating pig’s bladder soup, hope your MIL doesn’t suggest that)… whereas the not sleeping together thing is just ignorance. There have been studies in the past concerning this, having sex does NOT affect the embryo inside a womb. You should tell your misinformed doctor that.


      • if pregnancy is completely OK it’s safe to make love, even more I’ve been told that at the end of pregnancy it’s actually suggested to have sex because it will help release hormones and help with giving a birth (or something like that (: )


      • Exactly. The doctor is lacking peer reviewed evidence to support the idea that not having sex is in any way harmful. Amazing someone can get a medical degree in a powerful country like China and pass off completely unsubstantiated claims as if it’s sound medical advice. It scares me that the two most powerful countries have populations that just don’t care what science says or what the evidence supports. In China, that apparently gets labeled as a cultural tradition and makes it all the way to medical schools. In the US, the crazy creationist superstitions run for school board and re-write the kid’s text books. Either way, people can think what they want in their own lives, but when you start calling your opinion medicine or re-writing text books, expect to be called out on it.


  2. If the pregnancy is not looking strong, even Western doctors will give you this advice (although some are stricter about it than others – some are a bit “eh” about it unless it’s a specific problem).

    They’ll definitely word it differently, though – literally just sharing the same room doesn’t seem harmful!


  3. Wait! I’m confused. In your last post there were signs for and against you being pregnant. This post sounds like you are… Or maybe you’re just leaving us hanging. Is this what’s called a cliffhanger?


  4. Well “sharing the same room” is always dependent on the doctor in China. When my wife was pregnant already in summer and we where in China we visited two doctors. One said the very same thing and that the baby might even get some brain damage and the second doctor was laughing about such nonsense.
    But anyways, even though in Europe they normaly don’t say such things the doctor might still recommend some caution for example if it is a difficult pregnancy/ the mother is weak/ or other things.


  5. Wow congratulations!

    Regarding the doctor’s advice… well… it seems to fit in the same category as “don’t eat or drink anything cold when you have your period”.


    • I am. Everytime my mother in-law sees me do a squat she will repeat “get up” so often until I finally do get up because I find it annoying that she doesn’t stop saying “get up” even if I tell her that squatting doesn’t do any harm to the baby. But she wouldn’t have told me before getting pregnant. I guess your MIL is just eager for you to bear her some grandkids?!


      • Haha that’s funny, I mean in china there are certain things that’s just NO when your pregnant .. But squatting ? In Norway women work out until they are 8 months pregnant .. I guess they just care about you and the baby although it gets a bit annoying 😛 My MIL is asking me everyday when I will get pregnant ….. I tell her I can’t really control that and I told her I don’t want kids yet , you should have seen the look on her face – it was absolutely priceless haha. Again congratulations on the pregnancy! 🙂


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