Pregnancy is an exciting, life-changing event. Announcing a pregnancy is a big deal for modern moms-to-be, often accompanied by creative special announcements and gender reveal parties. When you should actually tell family and friends you're pregnant, however, is a matter of personal preference.
Deciding When to Reveal Your Pregnancy News
Deciding when to announce your pregnancy depends on many different factors. You should ask yourself the following questions to help you decide when you are ready to give others the news:
- Do I have any risk factors that increase my chance of miscarriage?
- Am I considered a high-risk pregnancy?
- Will telling people help me feel more comfortable or stressed?
- Do I need a large support system if something should happen?
- Do I have a certain work lifestyle that may need to change?
Times to Consider for Announcing Your Pregnancy
Remember that there are no set rules that determine when you should announce your pregnancy. This should happen only when you feel ready and are comfortable about making the big announcement. The following are some guidelines with times and reasons you may want to consider:
First trimester runs through your 13th week of pregnancy. Reasons why you may want to announce your pregnancy in the first trimester include:
- You can't keep a secret.
- You want and will have support and understanding, especially if you're tired, hormonal or have morning sickness.
- You receive reassuring results from the first trimester ultrasound.
- You receive reassuring results from their first trimester chromosomal genetic testing.
Second trimester is from 14 weeks of pregnancy to your 28th week of pregnancy. You may want to wait until after the first trimester is over to make the announcement. Reasons why you may want to wait until the second trimester include:
- You had a previous pregnancy loss (or losses) in your medical history.
- You may want to wait until baby is diagnosed as 'healthy' after your second trimester ultrasound.
- If an amniocentesis is needed in the second trimester, you may want to wait for the results of that test to come back as well.
- You may have had difficulty conceiving or had a previous pregnancy loss or stillbirth and you're still very cautious, sensitive and worried about your current pregnancy.
- You have a general fear of first trimester miscarriage.
- You may want to wait until you start showing.
- You may want to wait until after you find out the sex of the baby by ultrasound.
Yes, you may actually want to consider waiting until the third trimester, which runs from 28 weeks to your 40th week of pregnancy. These reasons include:
- You may want to avoid unsolicited advice from imposing family and friends.
- You had a previous pregnancy loss or stillbirth and prefer to wait.
- You are worried about work and do not want the pregnancy to have any effect on your career.
Who to Tell and When
When you are ready, you may want to consider staggering the pregnancy announcement.
Start With Family
If you are close to your family and they're your biggest support system, then you should share the news with them first.
Next, you will want to share the news with your closest friends. These would include those friends who will be there to help and encourage you.
You may have extended family and friends that live far from you. This is where social media can be helpful. You can be as clever and imaginative as you want when you announce your pregnancy news by creating a cute post or photo, by posting your ultrasound picture, or by posting an excerpt of your gender reveal video. Bravo reports that many women wait until the second or third trimesters to share the news on social media venues like Facebook and Instagram. Reasons for this vary, from past struggles with infertility to the desire to keep the pregnancy private. Make sure you are comfortable with the news being public knowledge before you post your announcement.
What you do for a living will determine when you should tell your employer.
If you do strenuous physical labor then you need to let your employer know early in your pregnancy so you don't cause any harm to your unborn fetus. Examples of this type of physical labor include:
- Lifting heavy things
- Standing for long periods of time
- Repeatedly bending at the waist
- Exposure to hazardous chemicals
If no physical labor or hazardous chemicals are involved with your job, then you can tell your employer when you are comfortable. There is no need to worry about your job. The law is in your favor because you are protected under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978.
When You're Ready
The most important aspect of when to announce your pregnancy is your comfort level. Once this announcement is made, not only should you prepare yourself for the elated reactions you will receive, but you should also prepare yourself for some good (and at times bad) advice, pregnancy stories from amazing to horrific, and old wives' tales galore from well-meaning family and friends.