8 Tips to Keep Your Pregnancy a Secret in the First Trimester

Last Updated: October 1, 2023
Liesel Teen, RN-BSN

By Liesel Teen

BSN, RN, Practicing Labor and Delivery Nurse

This article may contain affiliate links. This means that if you make a purchase through these links, we may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. Learn more about affiliate links.

Looking for tips to keep your pregnancy a secret? I got you mama – and I’ve been there, twice! Cue filling an empty beer bottle with water, ha. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

You see, it’s very common to want to conceal your pregnancy in the beginning – typically through the first trimester. We’ll talk about this more below, but this is because the risk of miscarriage drops off at that point.

The trouble is, hiding your pregnancy when you’re feeling pretty crappy can be tricky!

So come along with me and we’ll go through all kinds of tips to keep your pregnancy a secret in the first trimester.

Follow @mommy.labornurse on Instagram to join our community of over 640k for education, tips, and solidarity on all things pregnancy, birth, and postpartum!

Why do people keep pregnancy a secret?

You might be asking yourself why people would want to keep their pregnancy a secret – and that’s a valid question. I understand that different people have different opinions about this topic, and that is perfectly okay!

There is no right or wrong way to go about it – it’s a personal decision that you and your partner should reach a decision on together.

But back to why people keep their pregnancy a secret. You see approximately 80% of all cases of pregnancy loss occur within the first trimester (source). 

I’m not sharing this stat as an attempt to scare you. I share this information with you because this is essentially the reason why a lot of women get through their first trimester, or further before they share their pregnancy news. 

Deciding if you should keep your pregnancy a secret

How can you decide if you should keep your pregnancy a secret? Again, this is a personal decision that should be made primarily by you, with the input of your partner. 

Not only is there no rulebook for this, but there’s also not a right or wrong way to go about it. Not at all helpful, right? My response whenever someone asks when to announce their pregnancy is typically, “Whenever the hell you want!”. 

I know that doesn’t do a whole lot to guide your decision, but it’s the truth! As the person growing and carrying your baby, you should decide when you announce your pregnancy. 

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Liesel Teen BSN, RN | Pregnancy + Birth (@mommy.labornurse)

But, to help you make that decision, if you just can’t decide what is best, ask yourself these 4 questions:

  • If I tell this person that I’m pregnant will it increase or decrease my anxiety? Will it feel good for me?
  • If I announce my pregnancy on social media at this time will it increase or decrease my anxiety?
  • If I miscarry, do I feel certain people knowing about my pregnancy will help my situation (by offering support) or make it worse?
  • How does my partner feel?⁣⁠

And just remember, every situation and every person is different!

Many women feel comfortable telling close friends and family before the 12-week mark, and then telling bosses, coworkers, social media, and everyone else later in their pregnancy. 

⁣⁠Some women feel comfortable sharing their pregnancy with the whole world the moment it happens.⁣⁠ 

Some women don’t feel comfortable sharing at all!⁠ All three of these scenarios are perfectly normal and valid!

8 Tips to keep your pregnancy a secret in the first trimester

1. Hiding your bump to keep your pregnancy a secret

When your bump pops during pregnancy depends on lots of different factors. I actually have an article alllll about when you start showing in pregnancy where you can learn more.

But the short of it is that there is a good chance, especially if this is your first baby, that you won’t have to worry about hiding your bump in your first trimester!

However, if you’ve had babies before, are expecting multiples, or maybe just have a certain body type or shape, this *might* be something you need to think about when trying to keep your pregnancy a secret. 

How to hide your bump during pregnancy?

My biggest tip for keeping your bump hidden is to wear loose-fitting clothing. I’m no fashionista, but it seems that flowy dresses and tops are in, at least for now, so this should be fairly easy to do! Add a little flow to your wardrobe to keep any suspicion at bay. 

If it’s colder weather season and/or you are more of a jeans kind of gal, I’ve got a tip for you! Have you heard of the hair tie hack? 

Such a simple, yet genius little trick. If you are wanting to squeeze a few extra days (or weeks) in your pre-preggo pants but can’t quite seem to get them buttoned, give the hair tie hack a whirl. 

Basically, you wrap one end of the hair tie around the button on your jeans (or pants), thread the other end through the buttonhole, and then hook that end on the button as well. 

Maybe it sounds complicated, but I promise it’s so simple, just check out my post below for a little tutorial.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Liesel Teen BSN, RN | Pregnancy + Birth (@mommy.labornurse)

Another good tip for the colder weather season is to dress in layers. Throwing on a cute, loose-fitting sweater or jacket can do wonders for keeping that bump hidden!

2. Keeping your pregnancy secret when you are exhausted

My wish for you is that you bypass the first trimester exhaustion, but my guess is that at some point it will hit ya. There were days, early on in both of my pregnancies when I seriously questioned how I was going to make it through the day without just absolutely crashing. It does improve, and you will get through it – I promise.

My biggest piece of advice for that first trimester exhaustion is to just lay low those first several weeks. I know this might not be completely possible, especially if you have older kids to care for or have prior commitments (weddings, work events, etc.), but try not to commit yourself to anything “extra” if possible. 

Being able to lay low for those early weeks will help you avoid having to answer any awkward and unnecessary questions about why you are so tired and will give you some extra time to rest up – a win-win!

New call-to-action

3. How to hide your pregnancy around alcohol

This sort of goes along with the previous one. One simple way to shield suspicion about alcohol consumption is to simply avoid any social events where alcohol might be involved for those first few months.

I understand that this is not an issue for all. I know there are plenty of people out there that don’t consume alcohol and that’s great – this one should be very easy for you! 

But for those of you that do like to have a little vino, or whatever else it might be, thinking about how you are going to get away with not drinking alcohol around your friends or family can be anxiety provoking.

Again, I know it might be pretty impossible to just completely avoid all social gatherings, all friends, all events for three months, so I’m going to provide you with some additional tips on this one!

Tips to keep your pregnancy a secret around alcohol:

  • Arrive early: If you are meeting friends, coworkers, or whoever at a dinner or an event, consider arriving early so that you can order a mocktail or non-alcoholic beverage before anyone else gets there
  • Get the bartender in on it: Take this opportunity to fill the waitress or bartender in on your little secret (you don’t actually have to tell them you are pregnant, you can just say you aren’t drinking alcohol) so they can help you out!
  • Fill an empty with water: Another trick is to fill up an empty beer can or bottle with water. You can go to the bathroom and pour your beer out, or have your partner give you their empty and discreetly add the non-alcoholic beverage of your choice
  • Go with non-alcoholic: Finally, there are lots of great non-alcoholic beers and mocktails out there. I feel like most restaurants I’ve gone to recently have a fairly decent non-alcoholic menu, so be sure to check that out too!
  • Just say you’re not drinking: You don’t owe anyone an explanation, mama!

4. When you are experiencing nausea

Ah, the dreaded nausea…a telltale sign of early pregnancy. Basically, if you are anywhere from the age of 18-40, a woman, and you experience any amount of nausea, then you must be pregnant. At least that’s what society thinks, right?

This one is a tad trickier to conceal than some of the others. The easiest thing would be to minimize the time you are around others so you don’t have to come up with an excuse as to why you are nauseous and/or vomiting. 

Granted, no one will actually be accompanying you to the bathroom, at least I assume as much, so it could be possible for you to just not disclose it. 

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Liesel Teen BSN, RN | Pregnancy + Birth (@mommy.labornurse)

But, sometimes, no matter what you try, there’s just nothing that can keep the morning sickness at bay. 

My best tips and tricks include:

  • Eating smaller, more frequent meals throughout the day instead of 3 large meals
  • Keep individually wrapped alcohol swabs on you at all times
  • Anything ginger 
  • Keep a travel toothbrush and toothpaste in your bag
  • Don’t leave the house without a sleeve of saltine crackers
  • Acupressure bands
  • Preggie pops 
  • Take your prenatal vitamin at night or with food

Related Reading: 10 First Trimester Tips From a Labor and Delivery Nurse!

5. Hiding your pregnancy around your kids

Depending on the age(s) of your other kids, your strategy for concealing your pregnancy will probably differ. If your children are on the younger side, toddlers for example, it will probably still be pretty easy to come up with something off the cuff that they will go for. 

“Mommy has a little tummy bug” or “Mommy isn’t feeling well today”. Phrases like those should keep their little curious minds from wondering. 

And let’s be honest, I’m pretty sure the last thing that would pop into a three-year-old’s mind in this situation would be, “Oh, my mommy must be pregnant since she doesn’t feel well!”

For older kids though, it might be a tad trickier to come up with something they will believe. 

You can always just tell them you have a little bug or aren’t feeling well. Depending on the child’s age and how reliable they are though, you might feel comfortable sharing if they can be trusted to keep the secret. 

6. Needing to go to appointments

Luckily, early in pregnancy, you aren’t having to go to the doctor alllll the time…like you do towards the end. You can expect to have your initial prenatal appointment between 8-10 weeks. 

Depending on your health history and any possible complications, you might have another before you wrap up your first trimester. 

The biggest issue with the appointments, for most people at least, is having to miss work. But again, the appointments in the early stages of pregnancy are pretty spread out, so you should be able to get by without spilling the beans. 

Plus, I’m pretty sure it’s illegal for your manager or boss to ask medical-related questions anyways, so just leave it at “I have a doctor’s appointment” and that should be that!

Related Reading: How to Make the Most of Your First Prenatal Appointment

7. How to hide your pregnancy when you have to pee all the time

Urinary tract infection, bladder infection, anyone? That will certainly shut someone up quickly. Okay, so maybe you don’t want to be that “forward” but I guarantee it would work 100% of the time if you tried it.

Really and truly though, it is nobody’s business how many times you visit the bathroom and what you are doing in the bathroom. Anyone that is questioning your trips to the bathroom is just plain nosy and needs to buzz off. 

It might be a little different if it’s a close family member or bestie, asking out of genuine concern, in which case you can decide whether or not you feel comfortable sharing. 

Nobody else should be that concerned with your bathroom habits to actually inquire out loud. And if they do – it’s perfectly appropriate and acceptable to make them blush a little bit by saying you are experiencing a personal medical issue.  

8. Final tip – consider confiding in one trusted friend

It might be a good idea to choose one close friend or family member to be your ally. In addition to your partner, choose someone trustworthy and someone you anticipate spending a lot of time around during your first trimester.

This is especially a good idea if you plan on attending any weddings or events during this time. This person can act as your undercover mocktail runner, can help vouch for your recent “sickness”, or just keep people off your case! 

Feeling more confident about keeping your pregnancy under wraps?

Whether you are team spread the word the second you pee on a stick or prefer to wait until your first trimester (or even longer) is behind you to share,  I hope you have gained something from this article. 

When you decide to announce your pregnancy is completely up to you and there is no right or wrong time to do so. 

Do what makes you happy and what you are comfortable with. 

I have all kinds of free resources out there about early pregnancy and more so be sure to check them out!

Click me

Liesel Teen, RN-BSN

Liesel Teen

BSN, RN, Practicing Labor and Delivery Nurse

As a labor and delivery nurse, I’ve spent countless hours with women who felt anxious — even fearful — about giving birth. I want you to know it doesn’t have to be that way for you!

Are you ready to have an even better birth?

Everything in your hospital’s childbirth class – plus so. much. more. Get the knowledge and tools necessary for a positive birth experience – no matter how you deliver!

Natural Birth Class

Eliminate the what-ifs and feel strong and ready for your unmedicated birth.

Start here if birthing without an epidural is your goal!

Epidural Birth Class

Let go of fear and feel fully prepared for (and unafraid of!) your epidural birth.

Start here if you know you want that epidural – or you’re not sure what your birth goals are!

C-Section Birth Class

Release anxiety and gain a sense of control for your C-section birth.

Start here if you have a planned C-section on the horizon. You deserve birth education too!