Soon after her positive test, 35-year-old Arianna was eager to announce her pregnancy. It wasn’t excitement that made her determined to share the news, however; she wanted to tell people why she wasn’t acting her usual self. The first trimester had been tough, as Arianna not only battled with chronic fatigue, nausea, and vomiting but also experienced antenatal (or prenatal) depression.
Arianna, who heads up Pachamama, an online support group for new and expecting mothers, often felt she didn’t want to get out of bed. “I felt like crap, but I put this insane amount of pressure on myself to keep going at my usual pace,” she says. “I thought, I’m just going to tell everyone that I’m pregnant and I feel awful. If anyone’s going to understand, it’s that community, right? But for some reason, I just couldn’t do it. I couldn’t reveal my pregnancy before the 12-week mark.”
You’ve probably heard of the “12-week rule,” the universal benchmark for when it’s safe to announce a pregnancy. But to what extent is it fact or folklore?