Women's  Healthcare Topics is a website about pregnancy and your newborn baby.

How to Announce Your Pregnancy

Reviewed by James Brann, M.D.

How is the Right Way to Tell?

Learn ways to announce your pregnancy.

The little stick has turned pink! Your blood test came back positive! This is just the news you've been waiting for and you can't wait to share it. But should you? When is the right time to announce your pregnancy? Two key people need to be informed immediately, your partner and your doctor.

What is the best way to tell your partner that the two of you are about to become the three of you? Or that the three children you have are about to become four? Or the... okay, you get the point. Telling your sweetheart that a baby's on the way can be both exciting and a little nerve wracking.

How to tell him, when to tell him, where to tell him, whether he's as anxious to parent as you are, or whether he's more reserved about parenting, you announcing the pregnancy is the emotional equivalent to his popping the big question (or asking you to move in together if that's the lifestyle choice you've made). Think of the planning you'd want to go into such an event if you were on the receiving end of such tremendous news.

Make your announcement special. After all what is more special than creating a life together? This is not the time for an email. Unless hubby's a techno wizard, in which case that might be an apropos means of giving him the news. How about a romantic dinner topped off by a cake with a pacifier on top?

Make this announcement truly special. After all, Dads are often left out of all the fuss that is made over pregnancy. Make a fuss over him, the rest of the fuss (from friends, family, and even strangers) will be all about you. Oh, yes and the baby, of course.

Call your doctor within a day or two of learning you are pregnant. You need to get yourself into the office's system and schedule your first prenatal appointment. You should inform your insurance company, as well.

What about everyone else? When does the rest of the world need to know you're expecting? The only answer to that question is: they need to know when you are good and ready to tell them. Some women spread the news right away. Some wait until after their first prenatal appointment. Others wait until the end of the first trimester. Others until they are showing and there's no hiding it. Telling or keeping the pregnancy a sweet little secret...both are very personal choices. Do not feel pressured in either direction. There are a few reasons people choose to keep their good news private initially, personal reasons like a history of miscarriages, cultural ones like family tradition, or medical reasons. If you feel that it's best to wait until you have gone through the first trimester and your risk of miscarriage has decreases tremendously, then you should wait to announce your pregnancy.

One key concern is timing when to make the announcement to children. The age of your children is the key factor in when they should be told. If children are old enough to notice changes in your health and behavior, like morning sickness, weight gain, or uncontrollable excitement, they should be told right away in terminology they can understand. No need to go into full detail...rather tell them that you are pregnant and when the baby is expected to arrive. Invite them to ask questions and remind them that if questions come up later, they should not be afraid to ask them.

When dealing with young children, the wait to announce your pregnancy should be longer. Think about it. Nine months is an awfully long time to wait for something. Keep in mind how hard it's going to be for you and you're an adult. Some psychology professionals recommend waiting to inform big brothers and sisters about little brothers or sisters until Mom is showing. That way, they do not worry that Mom is ill and their wait is that much shorter.

If you choose to hold off on making the big announcement to your children or stepchildren, it is important that they do not pick up on the tail ends of conversations. Choosing not to announce your pregnancy to children right away should influence your decision regarding who else to tell. After all, other than you and Dad, they are the ones who will be most affected by baby's arrival.

To tell or not to tell, that's a question with no single correct answer. Regardless of when you choose to share your news, obviously everyone in your life will know eventually. And they'll be thrilled no matter when you tell them!

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