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'I Was Mortified:' WDIV Anchor Sandra Ali Recalls Insensitivity She'll Never Forget


January 21, 2019, 9:50 PM

Detroit news anchor-reporter Sandra Ali sets aside her journalist's role to post frankly about thinking before we speak, particularly to women who're pregnant -- or assumed to be.

The WDIV broadcaster, who has three sons and a daughter, speaks bluntly about blurting that hurts. "I remember what people said to me before I had my babies," Ali writes in an essay at the station's website. 

I should have kept a diary of all the things people said to me while I was pregnant. 

I have had three pregnancies full of running commentary, from just about everyone including the grocery store cashier, to the guy making my latte.


Sandra Ali: "I should have kept a diary."
(LinkedIn photo)

Ali and her husband, fellow WDIV reporter Shawn Ley, live in Birmingham with twin sons Tamer and Grant, who're nearly 2, and two older offspring -- Roman, 9, and Isla, 5.  

The weekend anchor, who came to the local station in 2010, ticks off examples of sentences that still sting:

"Wow, you are about to go. You must be ready to burst. Is today the big day?" Not exactly, I was only six months along at the time. . . .

Complete strangers would come up to me asking: "Are they triplets or just twins?" Neither, I would say, already annoyed. It is just one.

While working at the NBC affiliate in Cincinnati in 2009, Ali stopped at a coffeeshop with her first-born, then roughly 6 weeks old. "The barista asked, loud enough for everyone inside Starbucks to hear: 'So when are you due?'"

I grabbed my latte and bolted so fast. I was mortified. Did she not see the carseat I was carrying under my arm? Or my newborn baby asleep inside?

What I wanted to shout back was: "Lady, I have lost most of my baby weight already." 

Her parting thought: "Next time you see a mom-to-be, I hope you remember to be kind."


Read more:  WDIV


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