And so the 9th week starts with the traditional “When do we tell people debate” that I’m sure every single pregnant couple in the world have during the first trimester. And I’m immobile in my thoughts. I do not want to tell ANYONE until I get to 12 weeks.
I’m touchy on this subject- I always have been. I firmly believe you shouldn’t “announce” things until you’ve reached the second trimester at least.
Everyone knows risk of miscarriage is higher in the first trimester, why risk telling everyone only to have to tell them a week or two later that it’s not going to happen? Why would you needlessly upset people who otherwise would have been going along with their merry lives clueless? I know some people like the fact that everyone around them knows about the pregnancy. It makes them more comfortable not having to hide why they’re not drinking, smoking or generally doing anything anti-pregnancy. I know some people like the thought of having a big support net of people they can rely on if the worst were to happen and that’s great- But it’s just not me.
I have a superstition that its bad luck to tell people before the second trimester- I don’t know particularly where this came from, I can only imagine that it’s because during the-days-before-facebook I never knew of anyone announcing a pregnancy until were pass the mark, as it were.
The fact that I also know a lot of the women in my family have suffered with a miscarriage makes the threat more real. After some research I discovered it is theoretically possible for miscarriages to be hereditary and run in families but this is more likely with recurrent miscarriages and just because someone in your family experienced recurrent miscarriages doesn’t necessarily mean you will.
Doctors believe the majority of miscarriages are caused by chromosome problems that were present in the egg or the sperm at the time of conception. This usually results from errors in cell division during the formation of the sperm and egg, rather than anything directly inherited from the parent. Anyhow, with 1 in 7 pregnancies thought to end in miscarriage and 1 in 4 women expected to have one in their lives, the risk is real!
Obviously what happened with Harry makes me more nervous. I was 24 weeks so it was pretty obvious I was pregnant by then but it was such a truly horrible thing to happen and what with everyone knowing as well it made every social encounter afterwards so much worse. The unspoken pity, conversations through eye contact, horrified glances when someone else so much as mentioned the words “baby” or “pregnant”- like I would just break down at hearing the word.
Then you have the people who would go the complete opposite way and talk about everything and anything that had no possible links to parenthood or babies and completely unacknowledged the fact I was actually ever pregnant. I don’t know what was worse but all of it was unbearable. I definitely do not want a repeat of the social awkwardness after I had Harry and I will do my best to avoid that at all costs.
It’s important to say that I do not blame a single person for these awkward encounters. The truth is, whether it takes the form of miscarriage, premature loss, still birth or neonatal death, death of a baby is such a taboo subject. People are so uncomfortable discussing it and what makes it worse is that because its taboo and because people don’t talk about it, they don’t understand it or know any of the facts around it. People are often look so confused when they hear me talk about Harry like he was a baby and when I explain how big he actually was and how developed a child is at 24 weeks gestation they just can’t believe it. This is something that I believe needs to change but something I don’t think ever will.
Personally, as I mentioned previously, for me once people know I’m pregnant I feel it puts a lot of additional stress on me. Carrying a child is a massive responsibility and once people know you’ve lost one its awful- so- if people don’t know your pregnant and you lose one they will never know and you will never have to deal with the sorrowful looks and the knowledge that you caused others upset.
Everyone’s so excited when they know a baby’s on the way, you don’t want to be person to take that excitement and happiness away. And as I’m the one carrying the child I feel people should respect that.
And then I come to my biggest telling-people-related-annoyance. As far as I’m concerned, it’s no one else’s business! This is something I’m perfectly happy to say to disgruntled parents, grandparents and anyone else who thinks differently! Why do they need to know straight away? What difference could it possibly make to someone else whether they know at 5 weeks or whether they know at 12 weeks?
I remember when we told people I was expecting Harry. I was 12 weeks and one person turned and said to me “It’s weird you hid it for so long, like you think we can’t be trusted or something” WAH?! This confused the hell out of me! Did this person expect me to tell them when I found out and trust them to keep it secret? Pretty fucking weird as if I were to share my pregnancy news with anyone in the early stage it definitely would not have been that particular person. Not because “I don’t trust” them but because in my opinion, they are not listed in my nearest and dearest category! If I was going to share my news outside of my hubbie, it would be with my mum or my best friends, no-one else.
Maybe they meant it as in we didn’t trust the whole world by not announcing the pregnancy early? Were they aiming for a “we-all-would-have-supported-you-if-anything-bad-happened” angle? Well that’s lovely to know you feel that way but as I mentioned earlier I don’t see the point in causing people unnecessary upset. Or… did they feel they were so superior they were entitled to know all about my pregnancy from the off? Well, a mixture of pregnancy hormones, my hate for nosey bastards and tone of this persons voice made jump straight to the “entitled to know about my life” theory which made me boil inside. Although I cut them a filthy look I managed not to scream at them, I did however subject my poor girlfriend to a rant about it later that week. I mean really, who the hell says something like that? Who the hell has such a God Complex they think they’re entitled to know if I’ve missed a period and pissed on a stick recently?!
The bottom line is you’re well within your rights to announce your pregnancy whenever you want. There are no laws (expect employment laws after 24 weeks) to dictate that you have to tell the whole world ever really. It would look a bit strange walking around 8 months pregnant denying or refusing to acknowledge your pregnancy for sure, but if that how you wanna roll- it’s up to you.
Similarly if you’re so excited and happy about your news you want to shout it from the rooftops as soon as the test flashes positive then do it. The only person who can choose when to announce the baby bomb is you and your partner. Don’t let anyone guilt you into telling them before you’re ready and don’t ever let anyone make you feel like you’ve done something wrong by not telling them straight away.
So world, you have 3 weeks to wait before the big announcement… if it’s alright with you 😛
Rant over. I’m more than a little hormonal this week as Harry’s due date has now passed. It’s weird to think I’m already pregnant again by the time he would have been born. I’m happy I’m pregnant again but it doesn’t take the pain away. It’s strange knowing if things were different I would have been possibly gearing myself up for labour right around now.
In symptom related news I’m at a loss to find I still haven’t really had any sickness or nausea- maybe I’m going to be in that category of women who have nothing and look perfect throughout the whole 9 months, The idea is laughable, there’s no way I’m that lucky, but we can all hope! I can, however, add indigestion and a sensitive nose to the list alongside constipation, baby brain and sciatica. Bring on the Gaviscon and Rennies!
Next week I have the first appointment with my consultant and I’m so excited I can’t wait! I’m hoping (and hoping and hoping) I get to see the little one on the big screen for the first time. In my last pregnancy I had an early scan at 8 weeks as I had light bleeding- this time I haven’t had any bleeding at all (touch wood) which I’m very grateful for but obviously at this stage last time I had already seen the baby so this time round I’m desperate! It’s definitely more real once you’ve seen a heartbeat and it definitely puts your mind at rest. Christ knows what people did before the noughties when they one scan at 20 weeks and that was your lot…
Highlight of the week? Mine and Andy’s 10 year anniversary! ❤
Low of the week? Someone keeps taking their shoes off at work and it bloody stinks! Yak!