There aren’t many of them. My students tell me that pregnant people get to wait in the handicapped lines at Disneyland, but since I try to shun Disneyland, that’s not much of a perk to me. Here’s what is a perk:
1. Free Coffee. Of course it’s not coffee, really. I don’t handle caffeine well un-pregnant, so when I’m pregnant, I only drink herbal tea. But I’m picky about my teas, so, in coffee shops, what I order is steamed milk. Steamed milk is the perfect pregnant drink: lots of calcium & protein, fills you up without being too bad for you, makes the baby in my belly kick happily. But apparently not many people order this. Every coffee-shop-employee knows how to make steamed milk, of course, but they’re shocked to be asked to make it without shots and sugary-additives and stuff. Barista-folks don’t know how to ring it up. Sometimes I tell them, “You can just ring that up as hot chocolate,” but, instead, they generally opt to give it to me for free. I get a lot of free drinks when I’m pregnant.
2. Membership in the secret club who laughs about the need to pee every few minutes. Pop-culture representations of pregnancy have it all wrong. Food cravings are rare, rushes to the hospital are rare, and even lamaze class is rare (at least in my neighborhood, where hypnobirthing or bradley-method are more common). The pop-culture tropes of pregnancy are so wrong that the only ones who really know what pregnancy is like are those who have been pregnant or, maybe, their very-attentive spouses. I think it’s because pregnancy has such a varied grab-bag of symptoms that pop-culture just doesn’t understand. Or perhaps it’s because insomnia, moodiness, odd skin-changes, heartburn, excess mucus, and leg cramps wouldn’t be so amusing on a sitcom. But the extreme-nesting urge is kinda amusing, and every mom I know laughs at the 1st & 3rd trimester bathroom trips. We laugh about labor, too. We laugh about a lot of things that are generally avoided in polite conversation. We don’t even have to know each other very well to start in on one of these conversations.
3. I can’t think of number 3.