Ever since the palace announced the news of the Duchess of Sussex's pregnancy, a majority of her public appearances have been filled with photos of her resting her hand on her stomach, cradling her baby bump.
It's a habit she's adopted since the pregnancy news broke during the royal tour of Australia in October -- and most noticeably, at Monday night's Fashion Awards where she was seen affectionately cupping her growing belly.
Even before the awards show, Twitter users were quick to call out Meghan's tendencies, but Monday night reaffirmed how critical social media users are when comes to the first time mother's habits. "We know you’re pregnant, stop cradling your bump it’s not going to fall off.." said one user.
"Why can't she just stand normal, in particular at official occasions? She is just constantly showing off and this is really disgusting and repelling..." said another.
— Thots_Aloud (@Thots_Allowed) December 10, 2018
Yes, all that baby bump-overdoing thing is tiring... Why can't she just stand normal, in particular at official occasions?
She is just constantly showing off and this is really disgusting and repelling...#MeghanMarkle#BritishFashionAwards
— Just Spot :-) © (HRH, but not using 😂) (@spotterdotter) December 11, 2018
While many rushed to her defense, calling for her to be proud of the "blessing," there may be a specific reason the duchess keeps touching her belly. Her gestures "will have a profound effect on her baby," explained Katherine Graves, founder of KG hypnobirthing.
'It’s a positive thing for both mum and baby to touch and reassure baby, which is vital for babies bonding and well being, staving off postnatal depression and facilitating healthy connection for all," she said.
She continued,"It has been shown time and time again that babies recognise what they have experienced in the womb after they are born."
RELATED: Meghan's style moments this year:
According to the Daily Mail, Graves helps train midwives working at the exclusive Lindo Wing, which is where the Duchess of Cambridge gave birth to all three of her children and where Meghan is expected to give birth this spring.
It is also possible that Meghan's gestures are out of protectiveness. "'At public events, Meghan may feel more protective of her baby and thus cradle her bump more than usual," said Liz Halliday of Private Midwives to the Daily Mail.
"Mothers may feel that stroking their bump calms the baby in some situations and during public events Meghan may be either consciously or sub-consciously attempting to do this," she continued.