How NOT To React To A Pregnancy Announcement

How NOT To React To A Pregnancy Announcement

A pregnancy announcement is usually a person’s way of sharing some very exciting news.

If they’ve included you in the list of people they want to know, hooray, you can now consider yourself an important part of their inner circle.

To stay there, it’s important you react to the news in an appropriate manner.

To help you out, here are a few suggestions of things you shouldn’t say in response to a pregnancy announcement:

#1: Finally!

Anything along the lines of ‘about time’ is probably best avoided.

Remember, this isn’t a bus. It’s a baby.

And no matter how long you feel you’ve been waiting for this moment, now is not the time to start whinging about how long it has taken.

Other people don’t live their lives according to your schedule (unless you are the person in charge of the timetables for public transport), so resist the urge to dramatically look at your wristwatch and instead congratulate the happy couple.

After all, the very fact that you feel this pregnancy is overdue implies you are excited about the news, so try to focus on that instead.

#2: Was It Planned?

Before these all too commonly uttered words leave your lips, please take the time to stop and think about what they mean.

In detail.

Yep, it’s a pretty personal question, and probably not one you should be asking.

Just assume that if your friend wants you to know all of the gory details about the conception, she’ll volunteer them.

Do. Not. Ask.

#3: Are You Joking?

Perhaps your friend is a bit of a joker, and yes, maybe this is a joke, but take a few moments to consider things before asking this question.

Imagine that your friend is joking, and you believe it, so what?

People will laugh, the end.

But if your friend really is pregnant, and you assume it is a joke, you could potentially hurt your (hormonal) friend’s feelings by implying that the idea of her with child is nothing short of a joke.

#4: Birth Sounds Awful…

Today is about your friend’s wonderful news, it is not the time to start sharing childbirth horror stories.

Please keep your labour-gone-awry stories to yourself.

Don’t spend the conversation fixating on how the baby will make a grand entrance into the world, and instead just focus on how excited you are for your friend.

Motherhood is about a hell of a lot more than just the birth.

#5: I Thought You’d Put Weight On!

If you value your friendship (read: life), do not say this sentence.

#6: Why?

Now is not the time to ask why, that bun is already cooking away quite nicely in the oven.

If your friend announced that she was thinking about starting to try for a baby, of course you could ask more about her reasoning.

But once that pregnancy has been announced, the why and wherefores hardly matter.

This question also implies that you simply cannot fathom why a person would want to have a baby, and is best avoided on the day of the big announcement.

#7: I Guess You Won’t Be Doing [Insert Something Fun Here] Anymore

Contrary to popular opinion, pregnancy does not signify the end of personal identity.

Your friend will probably still be able to wear those designer heels, jetset across the world ticking off places on her travel bucket list, and climb the career ladder.

She’ll even still be able to spend an evening drinking cocktails with the girls – once the baby arrives, of course (though she might join you for the odd mocktail before then).

Do not see her pregnancy as a ‘The End’. Things may chance, of course, but your friend will still be very much herself.

#8: Oh.

If you’re not thrilled about the news, for whatever reason, you might think keeping your mouth shut is a polite way of handling the situation.

In truth, however, your silence will speak volumes, and anything other than a ‘Congratulations’ will let them know exactly how you feel.

Fake it till you make it, and give your friend a huge hug and tell her how happy you are for her.

As a general rule, anything other than a ‘Congratulations – how do you feel?!’ is probably the wrong reaction.

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Fiona Peacock is a writer, researcher and lover of all things to do with pregnancy, birth and motherhood (apart from the lack of sleep). She is a home birth advocate, passionate about gentle parenting and is also really tired.


  1. How about “congrats! So am I! Due 5 days before you though…” This is from a friend who always has to one up people….my pregnancy or my kid’s childhood is not going to be a competition. I’m not dealing with that.

    1. Lmao @ Amber my mother said “I’m going to be a grandmother? Screw you!” And walked away lol took her like 5 minutes to regain senses after shock, came back and repeated the same question “I’m gonna be a grandmother?” Lol

  2. my sister reacted with ” what the hell are you doing with your life?” and then proceeded to reply with a simple “nice”. she was only a year older then me when she had her first baby. it hurts when its a sibling.

  3. How about this one;

    “Congrats .. Also you’re husbands ex is pregnant too”

    Some people just REALLY REALLY need get over the past! Lol

  4. I hate it when people asked how far along I was, then proceeded to count back the weeks and say ‘oh what were YOU doing x weeks ago?!?’ Or trying to figure out when/where conception occurred. Leave those questions in your mind please!!

  5. “Oh no” came out of a relative’s mouth before I could finish the sentence with “but I am in the middle of miscarrying.”

  6. My husband and I got yelled at by his parents. A bit of back story, we had been dating for about 7 months, were on birth control and still ended up pregnant with our surprise baby! (He’s 3 now and is one of the coolest kids I know). We both still lived at home and were not really prepared for a baby. We told my parents and they were excited and made sure to tell us that if we needed help, to let them know. We told his parents and they yelled at us and belittled us for about 20 minutes, telling us how the baby would have a crappy life, how we have other options and that poverty is no way to raise a kid. Needless to say, our relationship with his parents is spotty at best.

  7. So a mutual friend looked straight at my boyfriend and said ‘well done’…. Not the most appropriate response but we got a good laugh out of it!

  8. When I announced my third child most of my friends told me to have an abortion cause a third child will ruin my life. Well the father said the same.

  9. My mother came out with “Oh sh1t!” for our 2nd, 3rd and 4th. This is also the woman who kissed our 3rd as a day old baby whilst she had bronchitis after being specifically told NOT to kiss him. And she and my dad spread the news of our 3rd to everyone in the family who began facebook posting their congratulations whilst we were 7-8 weeks pregnant.

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