There seems to be two main types of expecting mothers: the mothers who see that positive test and run to announce it to everyone within the next day, and the mothers who see the positive and keep it between just themselves and their spouse (maybe a close relative or two). Which one are you?
Thanks to social media on our phones, so readily available to communicate news to friends and family, I find myself more aligned with the first group of moms. If something exciting happens, I know most of my online connections will want to hear about it and celebrate with me!
But I’ve been noticing a trend lately: expectant mothers will announce early, in some cute way, only to get some comments like, “Wow, you aren’t very far along. Aren’t you worried X, Y, and Z might happen?” or “I heard miscarriage is –% more likely to happen before 12 weeks of pregnancy.” Some (perhaps well-meaning) friends/family will begin to put doubt into the mother’s mind and increase her fears that a miscarriage is just around the corner.
Why do we do this to expectant mothers? They already have that worry of miscarriage in the back of their minds—every mom does. They already know that IF they miscarry, they’ll face the pain of having to tell people who knew about the pregnancy. We don’t need to remind them or make them second-guess their decision to announce, effectively taking away the excitement of telling others and getting their reactions.
Besides, when is “too early,” anyways? That is so subjective! One woman might think 6 months is still “too early” and won’t feel comfortable to announce yet while another might think there is no such thing as a “too early” announcement. And who are we, as outsiders, as people who hold no medical degree, to tell her when “too early” is or is not.
So, if mothers know miscarriage in the beginning of pregnancy can happen, and they know it’s painful to have to tell people if they lose the baby, then why do they still announce right away? One reason is because good, happy news seems few and far between these days. Moms want to share something positive! And once the woman is pregnant, that’s a definite positive, with only a chance of a negative.
Because they want the support if a miscarriage does happen.
Your friends and family love you. They help you, support you, laugh with you and cry with you. This will be especially true if the awful circumstance of miscarriage does happen in any of your pregnancies. This is the exact reason why I will announce my pregnancies as soon as I want to, with no worries about others thinking it’s too early. I will need my village of supporters. I will need the love and service my family and friends want to offer. I will find out about others who have been in the same/similar situation and hear some much needed advice I might have missed had I stayed quiet about it all.
I feel comfortable enough to share something so exciting and personal as pregnancy (and yes, possible miscarriage), so this perspective works for me. No worries if you don’t feel the same way. Every woman and her spouse are welcome to keep their pregnancy private for as long as they want. But hopefully soon, no woman will feel the need to wait to announce just because of the few naysayers that could bring doubt. Hopefully soon, we as supportive friends and family will learn to stay positive and hopeful, just like the early expectant mother is. Hopefully soon, more expecting mothers will feel comfortable reaching out from the start of their pregnancy to build a supportive team behind her, no matter the outcome.