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Nicole Richie demands strangers stop touching pregnant women’s bellies

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Kayleigh Dray
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With pregnancy comes many changes; your belly grows bigger, you need the toilet constantly, your back aches, and you suddenly start craving the weirdest food combos ever.

But the most annoying change, by far, is the fact that your right to personal space seems to diminish overnight.

Countless community boards and Reddit threads are filled with pregnant women complaining about friends, family members, colleagues, and, sometimes, even strangers walking up to them and touching their bellies.

And now Nicole Richie has sounded off on the topic, too.

When asked to name the worst part of being pregnant with son Sparrow and daughter Harlow, who are now seven and eight, the fashion designer insisted it was people grabbing at her belly to feel them kick – without asking permission.

The 34-year-old added that her one piece of pregnancy advice for all mums-to-be would be to stand up for themselves, and tell people to leave them alone.



Speaking to People, she said: "I would say, 'Don’t let anyone touch your stomach. Don’t let everyone think they have the right to just touch you'.

"Who wants that? Nobody."

She’s not the first celebrity to speak out against unwanted touching; Ellie Kemper, aka the Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, told Today’s Willie Geist that she is “not a very touchy-feeling, comfortable person.”

Ellie Kemper

Ellie Kemper

Unsurprisingly, this aspect of her personality didn’t change overnight when she found herself pregnant with her.

“I don’t know what goes through a person’s mind, a stranger’s mind, no less, when they think, ‘Oh yes, your stomach is now something that belongs to me and I can touch it.’

“I’m like, ‘Ugh. There’s a space violation.’ But also they were just touching my digestion, there was nothing quite there [early on in my pregnancy], just a pea, nothing to fawn over.”



Meanwhile fashion blogger Anita Gaitho, of Style Sketches, wrote a post about how irritating she found “rude” people during her pregnancy - and it quickly went viral.

In it she wrote: “Since I’ve hit these last stages of my pregnancy, I’ve started receiving such rude comments, I can’t believe how dumb people can be. I’m now 36 weeks along and I can probably write a book’s worth on the rude comments and silly questions that I’ve been getting.

“The most recent and high up on the list of most offensive has been hearing how big my lips and nose have gotten. Say what now? I didn’t stand up for myself because I was caught off-guard but the next time someone says something rude to me, I’ll be so ready to throw back a rude retort.”

She added: “The next stranger that attempts to touch my belly is getting kicked in the crotch.”

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Kayleigh Dray

Kayleigh Dray is editor of Stylist.co.uk, where she chases after rogue apostrophes and specialises in films, comic books, feminism and television. On a weekend, you can usually find her drinking copious amounts of tea and playing boardgames with her friends. 

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