Ten Tips For Hiding Pregnancy In The Early Weeks

When you find out you are pregnant you are normally bursting with excitement but there is always that little bit of you that wonders how on earth you are going to keep it quiet until the 12 week scan. Obviously you can tell people earlier but in general most expectant parents like to keep it to themselves until that first milestone. That can mean a lot of deception and over thinking of scenarios to make sure no one guesses!

Between the team we have had a lot of experience of trying to keep our pregnancy news to ourselves so thought we would share a few hints and tips to help you in those early weeks.

The Alcohol Issue

First up I’m guessing most of you would think that the whole ‘no drinking’ is a dead cert giveaway but there are ways around it. The top tip is to just act quite natural and not make a big deal out of it. I’m not a drinker so with both my pregnancies I didn’t really have to worry as most people don’t expect me to have a drink anyway. On the occasions they would have expected me to have a drink I did some sneaky swaps. If we were at home I would pour myself a glass of good old Schloer or a coke with nothing added. If you are out and about you could take a small bottle of grape juice in your handbag which looks sneakily like red wine!

You can also try the switch drink trick using your partner or a willing friend to down your drinks. Beware they might end up a bit worse for wear!

Becky says that she always ordered the non alcoholic cocktails so it still looked like she was drinking… you obvs always have to order your own though and be good at pretending to be drunk!

The Detox Line

I’m on a detox is an excellent way to avoid not just the whole alcohol situation but also those odd situations where your friends may encourage you to dig in to a plate of Brie! Get your partner to use the same excuse and say you are challenging each other to make it look more realistic.

Lorna’s friend told her she was doing a sponsored dry alcohol month at work to raise money for charity. Although she had my suspicions she thought it was much more inventive than “I’m on antibiotics!”

Cull The Caffeine

When you are pregnant you may want to start cutting back on your Starbucks habit. This is fine if you are doing the ordering as you can opt for a peppermint tea or a decaf version but if friends or colleagues are on the coffee run you could carry on as normal and just keep the lid on, pretending to sip, but this could get pricey. Instead bring in a travel mug from home and tell them you are making your own whilst you save some money for house/holiday/clothes etc.

Keep Your Style

Don’t suddenly change your clothing to hide a bump. If you normally wear fitted clothes don’t start wearing loose flowy smocks and leggings and instead add layers or scarves to hide any bumps. If you find your clothes uncomfortable obviously switch them but try to keep to a similar style.

Patterns & Statement Jewellery

Wear some patterned tops and dresses or chunky statement necklaces to help draw the eye away from you growing bump.

Choose A Confidant

Having someone else who knows really takes the pressure off. Obviously your partner can help in social situations but you could also choose one close friend who is able to step in and help in social situations.

Keep Your Desk Stocked

If you are suffering with morning (or all day) sickness make sure you have lots of water and snacks at hand. Opt for things that will help calm your stomach like gingernut biscuits or digestives. I kept the Nairns ginger oat biscuits at work as I loved them anyway so they were an easy snack to grab. Make sure you keep up the fluids and sip at water all day long as dehydration can make the sickness worse.

Switch Up The Exercise

If you are a regular gym bunny you may find yourself feeling too tired or sick for your usual morning work outs. If friends start to question why you aren’t meeting them for your usual 6am Spin class try telling them that you are going to a pilates class later or that you have pulled a muscle so are trying swimming instead. It’s good to keep exercising during pregnancy if you can so if you still feel up to it keep going but just start to take things a bit easier. I carried on with our work running club, albeit a touch slower, for as long as I could. I appreciated the fresh air at lunchtime and it was a great bit of exercise.

The Dentist Switch

Rather than saying you are off to the doctors for yet another appointment you could try saying you are having some work done at the dentists. No one will question a couple of appointments for a crown or root canal work plus you have the added benefit of saying it’s pricey so you need to save some pennies and not go out.

Plan Your Day

If your morning sickness really does hit in the morning try to avoid planning any meetings or appointments for first thing. Instead make them for later in the day when you know you are less likely to need to make a dash for the loo.
 
Do you have any tips to share on hiding pregnancy in the early weeks or did you let everyone know early on?

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Lottie loves teaching her girls to be cake baking and crafting supremos. It may be messy but she wouldn’t have it any other way.
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24 Comments. Leave new

I feel really strongly about not hiding from the early weeks for fear of miscarriage. While I didn’t get a chance to tell all and sundry about the pregnancy I lost I was very open about the losing it. When we all keep silent for so long we are missing out on valuable support during the most exhausting and stressful part of pregnancy (for me anyway).

Of course, everyone has to do what is right for them, and maybe work is not the right place to share- everyone needs to make their own choices, but I won’t be keeping it a secret if there is a next time. I had to tell all at 9 weeks anyway as I could not stop puking…

I also really feel strongly about coming back at/ truth bombing all the irritating “oooh something to tell us” people, who are rarely those who know you well.

I sound super grouchy this morning… I promise I’m not!!! 😳😳😳

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Lottie Manns
11th July 2017 9:27 am

Not grouchy at all! I definitely think it is a very personal decision and I too always wonder about the 12 week thing as you definitely need support if you do experience miscarriage. I had a few early miscarriages and afterwards my friends knew but I was wary of it becoming common knowledge at work. It sounds silly as it shouldn’t matter but I didn’t want it affect anything work wise as I had no idea how long it might take me to get pregnant again. Also my old work weren’t a particularly family friendly place, my one friend kept it secret for 6 months. I have no idea how!! xx

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I totally agree with your comment lottie. For me and especially as I have fertility issues I would not want my work to know that it’s on the agenda as it could take me a long time to fall pregnant again if I miscarried and I do think that would affect my progress at work. It’s not fair but unfortunately it is still the case in some professions/work places x

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Lottie Manns
12th July 2017 7:26 am

It annoys me that it is like that in a lot of places Sarah, maybe one day it will change. Wishing you lots of love x

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I agree, when I suffered a late miscarriage and also a missed miscarriage, I was so grateful for the friends I’d told. I’d not lied to anyone during those first 12wks, if it came up, I told them face to face. What a relief! After all, who are you protecting by keeping it a secret for that time?

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Lottie Manns
12th July 2017 7:26 am

Very true Fiona. You definitely need your friends around you x

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I agree Lucy, I’ve had 3 miscarriages, one at 10 weeks and two much earlier. With my forth pregnancy (which resulted in my daughter 😊 ) I told the people who I’d been open with about my miscarriages pretty early. I felt like I wanted to enjoy this pregnancy as much as possible as I didn’t know if it would result in another miscarriage, plus it meant I didn’t have to pretend I was feeling okay when I felt like crap with constant ‘morning’ sickness!
At work it was only my boss that I told early on, but that also helped as I didn’t have to lie about appointments to him (i had lots due to the miscarriages) and he was really great letting me work from home when needed and making sure I wasn’t over doing it.
X

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I am currently 9 weeks pregnant with our second……we have told a few people (mainly for practical reasons!) but it’s not common knowledge.
To me the first trimester is the most stressful by far and ironically the one when I think you need most help and support, but its the norm to keep it quiet.
I have had bleeding on and off from finding out I was pregnant, which I didn’t have with my daughter and I have been so anxious….its been so draining, but have a couple of people to talk to about it, has made it a little bit easier.
I think telling a one or two people you are close to, is important.

PS Bleeding in early pregnancy might be an idea for a future post….it seems pretty common (from my constant Googling!) but is rarely spoken about and there is no scarier sight seeing blood when you are pregnant.

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Yes! Agree with everything in your post. I had terrible sickness with both my babies, and had a subchorionic hematoma with my second which caused me to bleed heavily at 12 weeks (just after announcing it to the world!) which subsequently left me on bed rest. With a 1 year old to look after. In Hong Kong. With no support network 😩 Suffice to say I learnt a lot about myself during that experience. Bleeding is so common in pregnancy for a plethora of reasons and it’s only when I went through it that I realised I had an army of women supporting me who’d been through the same!

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Lottie Manns
12th July 2017 7:28 am

Oh bless you Jen, it sounds like you have been through it xx

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Lottie Manns
12th July 2017 7:28 am

Congratulations! It is funny how it is the done thing not to tell anyone when you need everyone to tell you it’s fine to feel sick and what to do if you have concerns. Definitely having a couple of people who know is a great idea x

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I have always puzzled about the not telling people til 12 weeks thing too as I thought I’d need people to know and support me if the worst happened. However I went along with it and thankfully didn’t have to deal with the worst. I did find out I was pregnant just before Christmas both times though and I am a reknowned party person and love my wine so I found the work Christmas do extremely stressful and un-fun trying to dodge the cocktails, free wine and not appear rude when the boss offers to buy me a drink! I ended up buying some very expensive rounds just so I could order myself a lime and soda without the vodka! I used the antibiotics excuse, the driving excuse and the poorly husband and child excuse to get out of it on multiple occasions. All worth it in the end though.

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Lottie Manns
12th July 2017 7:30 am

Loving all your excuses Natalie. And your poor credit card :) x

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I find this very hard at the moment for a different reason. I’ve been pregnant three times – once resulting in my lovely four year old son with no problems at all thankfully, but since we had him I’ve experienced a 10 week miscarriage and an ectopic pregnancy. With the miscarriage I had told a couple of ‘close’ people at work, because it had become fairly obvious by 9 weeks. With the ectopic I was rushed into hospital for an emergency op resulting in the loss of a fallopian tube and of course the baby. This time I told work it was a cyst and was off for 3 weeks recovering. Since then we’ve been trying for another and I’m very, very anxious – so I’m barely drinking, minimising caffeine, and avoiding spa weekends, hen dos, social occasions. It’s really hard as I think people must think I am pregnant but I’m just ‘trying’.

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Lottie Manns
12th July 2017 7:32 am

I am so sorry to hear about what you have been through and I hadn’t even thought to talk about the reduced alcohol, appointments etc when you are trying. I am sending you every bit of love Sarah. xxx

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This couldn’t have come at a better time…I’m 6 weeks and have got my hen do this weekend!!! I’ve roped in my sister and bridesmaid to drink swap with me to make it look like I’m drinking! Then it will be on to the mocktails!!

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I was 4 weeks pregnant when I had my hen weekend – bridesmaids, sister and mother on hand who helped fool everyone. No one guessed and I still had an awesome time celebrating – even without a drop of prosecco. I worried a lot about keeping it secret that weekend but it worked out fine. I hope you have a lovely time xx

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Lottie Manns
12th July 2017 7:32 am

Whoop, exciting. Baby and a hen do!! Best get practicing your best drunk dancing! x

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What timing! I’m 6 weeks pregnant with our second and we just found out on Friday. And again I started wondering again why we think we have to wait till the 12 week mark. Is it only for the benefit of the others because the feel awkward when you tell them that you had a miscarriage? Why does one have to keep the excitement quiet? Then again I guess, the more people know the more often you might have to tell when you had a miscarriage which might be torture for some in itself… So as you see, I am really undecided!
Well that wasn’t the question though, was it? I have my sis’ prom coming up on Saturday and I don’t know yet what excuse to use!

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I debated this a lot when pregnant but in the end I felt I didn’t want to tell too many people because I didn’t want to tell them if there was a problem. Not because I wouldn’t want people to know, but to avoid having to discuss it with everyone at work. So we told family, a few close friends and my closest colleagues. Actually after the 12 week scan I was still nervous about telling too many people – I never did a big announcement or anything. Lots of people at work found out when I came back after Christmas with a bump!

I was terrible at hiding it though. Lots of avoiding parties. Occasionally I pretended to be too hung over to drink!

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Lottie Manns
12th July 2017 7:34 am

Love the hung over excuse Jools! x

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Lottie Manns
12th July 2017 7:33 am

Such exciting news Anja, congratulations. I do think it’s a really personal decision as to whether to tell people or not so just go with what you feel happy with xx

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SO happy I have found this.
I am currently 6 weeks pregnant – feeling happy but obviously aware that things don’t always work out for the best, so trying to keep myself calm but realistic too.
We have just got back from 10 days away and ended up having to tell the couple we were with as we just couldn’t relax (the no alcohol, picky eating and regular exhaustion on my part). However, we just dont want to have to tell every Tom, Dick and Harry…
I have a best friend’s hen this weekend coming up and I hate to say it, but it’s giving me anxiety – I am usually a big social drinker and it will be incredibly obvious. I could try sneaking faux champagne etc but the stress of that is winding me up already. Would it be best if I just tell the bride-to-be and drop out? I feel awful saying that :( xxx

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Lottie Manns
24th July 2017 8:31 am

Congratulations Bee! Try not to stress. Could you tell the bride and maybe she will drink your drinks for you. Sure she won’t mind a few extra!! Otherwise you could try the antibiotics trick? You will be fine xx

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