Why we chose not to announce our pregnancy

For the last few months the media has gone crazy with the speculation that Cheryl Cole is pregnant with her partner, Liam Payne; photographs first appearing of a slightly more rounded stomach, her Mum papped in Mothercare, Liam’s cryptic social media updates, and the usual “sources” tipping off newspapers. And the question on everyone’s lips is, “Why doesn’t she just announce it?”.

I’ve read countless articles claiming that she and Liam are simply “courting the media”, labelled “attention seeking” and “hypocritical”, the view that when they have shared so much of their lives previously, it is unfair to keep silent on such a huge life event. Last month when Cheryl posed for photographs in a tight fitting dress, her pregnancy was clear for all to see, and although there is still no official announcement, actions speak louder than words. And, in her case, the bump speaks volumes.

In a world where every move is played out on line, it is unusual to keep anything private these days, and yet we forget that these are real people, with real feelings, just like you and I, and we should respect that they may have their own reasons for wanting to keep this private, something which I can completely relate to.

Over the years I have announced countless pregnancies, in person, by text and across social media. With our first baby we shouted it from the rooftops when I was barely even pregnant, telling all of our friends and family, never imagining that we would have to retract that announcement when we lost the baby at thirteen weeks. With Lewis, we waited until our twelve week scan before sharing our happy announcement, and the same again with Joseph, so confident that having passed the first trimester we would be taking home a healthy baby.

When I fell pregnant with Eva, our first rainbow baby, not only after Joseph but the many losses in between, we waited until sixteen weeks to make an announcement, a scan photo tentatively posted on Facebook and the news that, all being well, we would be welcoming a daughter in the new year. And the reaction from others completely blew us away – the lovely words of support, excitement and congratulations, and, over the remaining few months, I had nothing but love and support to keep us going through a really difficult pregnancy.

Six months later, falling pregnant with Megan, we were that little bit braver, waiting until just thirteen weeks to share our news, a Christmas day announcement of the most wonderful gift we could hope for. And although many offered their congratulations, we were also met with some rather shocked reactions, wishing us “Good Luck!”, a general sense of amusement from friends who thought, and quite clearly stated, that we must be crazy!

And so when Megan was just three months old and I fell pregnant with Harry, we instantly knew that it wasn’t something we would be sharing any time soon. Infact, it took both Gaz and I a very long time to get our heads around the fact that there would be a fifth baby, something which, in all honesty, was never a part of our plans. And other than telling a couple of our best friends, whose reactions were far too expletive to share, we decided to keep it to ourselves until the news had finally sunk in. After our twelve week scan, where many would announce their pregnancy, it was silently agreed that we would refrain from announcing our news, worried how others would react to yet another baby, even more so with such a small age gap, and unwilling to take on any more stress than was absolutely necessary.

At our sixteen week scan, when we found out that Harry was a boy, we were over the moon, Gaz especially, and yet for me that feeling was mixed with absolute fear. Although it had been incredibly difficult to stay positive throughout my pregnancies with the girls, I had reasoned with myself that perhaps it would be different, the irrational thought that perhaps I had simply been unable to carry another boy, that Eva and Megan had arrived safe and well simply for the fact that they were girls. And for that reason, carrying my third son, I wasn’t ready to announce it then either.

At twenty weeks we finally plucked up the courage to tell our parents and Lewis the news, whose reaction was one of absolute shock, “You’re pregnant??” he had asked, “AGAIN?!”. But, once the shock had worn off, our families were over the moon that we would have a baby boy to welcome in the Spring, the little brother that Lewis had been longing for all those years and the final piece of our jigsaw. And over the next few weeks, we had every intention of announcing our news and yet, as the weeks flew by in a flurry of hospital appointments and scans, by twenty eight weeks when the consultant began to raise concerns about the baby’s growth, in just the same way as had happened with Joseph, I realised that I still wasn’t quite ready to tempt fate and announce my pregnancy.

At thirty weeks pregnant when I fell down the stairs holding Megan, unable to break my fall, I was rushed to hospital with a broken coccyx and I knew then that I wasn’t ready to announce my pregnancy – at all!! The fear that I had damaged my unborn child in the fall was immense and, although I was reassured that he was fine, I was an absolute wreck. I was sent home to spend the last few weeks of my pregnancy lay on the couch in absolute agony, hobbling around after an eleven month old and a just turned two year old, trying my hardest to stay sane for a ten year old Lewis, whilst trying to push away the terrifying thoughts in my head that, just like Joseph, this baby would not be coming home.

You’re probably reading this and thinking, surely at thirty weeks pregnant somebody must have noticed? And yet the truth is, even at nine months pregnant nobody had noticed, because, rather bizarrely,  I don’t get a bump when pregnant. I mean to me, and to those who know me well, I had a bump of sorts, I definitely looked bigger and my boobs were ginormous, but to others, you would never really know. And I wasn’t trying to hide it, I didn’t walk around in loose clothing or a giant handbag covering my stomach like they do in the soaps, I just told myself that if I saw someone and they noticed, I would tell them, but making a big announcement was just too over whelming for me to face. I don’t have many photos of myself during my final trimester with Harry, but here I am just a week before Eva was born, and as you can see it would be hard for anyone to notice that I was heavily pregnant at all!

In the May, when I was rushed into hospital to be induced, I can distinctly remember sitting on my hospital bed with Gaz at my side, voicing my concerns that we had left it too long to announce the pregnancy, that our announcement would actually be a birth announcement, and the panic set in that we had taken it too far. And sat there, waiting for my labour to start, I felt the over whelming urge to text everyone that we knew to tell them I was pregnant, worried that we would upset so many people for not having shared it sooner. And yet my labour kicked in and, before I knew it, it was too late. He was here in our arms, and I knew that we had no other option but to simply announce his birth.

And so we did. And I cant even begin to tell you how shocked people were that just four days after Megan’s first birthday I had given birth all over again, even more surprising that I, the blabber mouth that I am, had managed to keep it to myself for all of that time. Many of our friends were confused as to why we had chosen not to share our news, even more so given the fact we had announced our previous pregnancies, and some were very put out that they hadn’t been “in on the secret”, with no real understanding that it had never been a secret, more a case of self preservation.

And even now, two years and ten months later, I know that there are still people who don’t understand why we didn’t share our pregnancy with them, why we seemingly shut them out of such a huge event in our lives, and I understand that, I really do. But for me, I would do it all over again if it meant that I would survive it in the same way. If keeping it to ourselves allowed me to keep my head down, cling onto my sanity, and just get through it one day at a time, focusing solely on keeping my baby safe, even now, knowing that it had hurt the feelings of others? I’d do it all over again.

And I hope when Cheryl and Liam finally announce the birth of their baby, or even if they choose never to announce it at all, that the media and the public respects that. For none of us could ever really know why a person makes the choices they do, and sometimes it’s all about survival.

 

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135 Comments

  1. March 7, 2017 / 7:15 pm

    What a lovely post! Completely understandable, it’s entirely up to you who you tell and when. I would have loved to see people’s faces when you posted that photo of Harry! x ps. I am so jealous of your tiny bump, I was the size of a small planet!!!

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 10:23 am

      Thanks lovely. Haha they were shocked to say the least! The school mums were literally gobsmacked, they thought I was looking after someones newborn when I rocked up in the playground with all three of the youngest! xx

  2. March 7, 2017 / 7:32 pm

    Such an insightful post to read and, sitting here 22 pregnant with our rainbow, I can appreciate the need to do whatever keeps you all safe and sane – regardless of what people may consider “normal” or how others may feel in a response. Every journey is unique, and you can only do what you feel safe with. Thank you for sharing this with the world.

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 10:21 am

      Thank you Jessica, pregnancy is such a personal experience, even more so when you’re carrying a rainbow, as you know. I hope that the next 18 weeks go well for you, much love to you. xx

  3. March 7, 2017 / 7:38 pm

    Aww this is such a lovely story! I can’t believe how tiny you are when pregnant!! I was HUGE!! xxx

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 10:18 am

      Ahh bless you, I’m sure you looked fab. I have major bump envy!! xx

  4. March 7, 2017 / 7:48 pm

    Loved this post Laura! Can’t believe you don’t even look pregnant, I looked like a whale haha!! xx

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 10:18 am

      Thanks Kerry, I’m sure you didn’t! I felt a lot bigger but I suppose to those who don’t know me, I looked completely normal! xx

  5. March 7, 2017 / 8:10 pm

    I get it, I completely get why you wouldn’t announce. I felt the same with our 3rd daughter. Sometimes I still can’t actually believe she is here – and she’s 6! I’m suspecting that Cheryl might never announce the birth and don’t blame her. Your tiny bump is amazing – I wonder if in some ways that made it an even harder pregnancy as you didn’t have the proof? My bump was the size of a small village & I still doubted it x

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 10:17 am

      Aww I feel like that about mine too, I wonder if I will ever stop pinching myself? That’s so true, I think had I had a bump it would have felt like it was really happening, without one I use to doubt myself even more! Thank you for reading. xxx

  6. March 7, 2017 / 8:15 pm

    What a lovely post Laura. I cannot get over how tiny you looked just a week before you had Eva!!!! Amazing.

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 10:16 am

      Thanks Lisa, I have no clue where she was hiding, she must have been nestled right into my back! xx

  7. March 7, 2017 / 8:30 pm

    I am sat here at 19 weeks pregnant looking more like 6months pregnant and until reading this post I literally had no idea how people could get pregnant and not know. I looked more pregnant when I wasn’t even pregnant that you do at 30 weeks, and isn’t it just the most amazing thing that our bodies can all be so vastly different?! I can’t imagine being pregnant at the intervals you did, but then my body does ‘pregnancy’ at such an extreme, (weight, size, sickness, pain etc) I probably just wasn’t made for it. What an amazing mamma you are. We didn’t announce my first pregnancy until I was 20 weeks and felt a bit more sure everything was def ok. This pregnancy I announced at 12 weeks, mainly because it was too hard to physically hide, but I’ve been so anxious about things going wrong. Totally understand why you made the decision you did x

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 10:15 am

      Aww I bet you have a gorgeous bump Sarah. I was so jealous of anyone who had a bump, I used to try to push mine out to make myself look even the slightest bit pregnant!! I think we should announce, or not announce, our pregnancies whenever we feel comfortable. I have friends who announced at 4 weeks, others not at all, it’s such a personal decision! I hope that you are keeping well, almost half way there! xx

  8. March 7, 2017 / 8:39 pm

    This is such a lovely read, amazing how tiny you were when pregnant 🙂

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 10:11 am

      Thanks Laura. It always baffles everyone how I never get a bump, I have no idea where these babies of mine were hiding! xx

  9. March 7, 2017 / 9:04 pm

    It is one thing that bugs me is everyone having an opinion on why someone does or doesn’t do something and it happens all the time with couples and being/getting pregnant. You just never know the reasons behind the choices and it is their choice.
    Very jealous of your tiny bump!

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 10:10 am

      Thank you Jo, it riles me too. I can understand that some of our closest friends were a little put out that we didn’t share the news with them, but I just couldn’t bring myself to say it out loud! It was easier for me to keep my head down and just try to get through it as best I could, and with that bump nobody even noticed!! xx

  10. March 7, 2017 / 9:24 pm

    I CANNOT believe how you look there with Eva, that’s crazy!!! But good for you, I can totally understand after everything you’ve been through you needed to focus on you and your baby’s health. Such a fantastic post as always xx

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 10:09 am

      It was crazy for me too Susie, I was the same with all of the children, I just didn’t get a bump?! The midwives used to be completely baffled by it too! Thank you though, it was such a tough pregnancy, I’m just glad we had a happy outcome. xx

  11. March 7, 2017 / 9:55 pm

    Oh honey, your post had me in tears. Tears because my best friend went through a similar experience, tears or joy and relief for your healthy babies, tears of sadness for your grief. You are one brave mama to share it all, to explain why some expecting parents might not want to share their news. Oh, and where did you hide Eva?? I had to look at your photo twice and re-read the paragraph that said it was taken a week before she was born… Whaaaaat?

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 10:08 am

      Thank you so much Mel. I’m so sorry to hear that your best friend went through similar, it must have been devastating for all of you. Pregnancy is such a personal experience, I think there is so much pressure on women to announce it and share every step of it on social media these days, for some of us that really isn’t something that we feel comfortable in doing. And I have no idea where she was, I was the same with all five of the children, it was great for not having to buy maternity clothes but I did feel a little bit cheated!! xx

  12. March 7, 2017 / 10:18 pm

    I think it’s lovely that you kept it to yourself, or shouted it from the rooftops. What is right for you is right and that’s one reason why I never read tabloids or gossip magazines. They really don’t care whose privacy they are intruding. Just an aside, a friend of mine also didn’t show. At 9 months she complained she had to undo the button on her jeans! I looked like I was carrying an elephant.

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 10:04 am

      The bump thing is weird, I wore my regular clothes the whole way through, it was like everything just got harder and more compact! It’s important to do whatever is best for us during pregnancy, its such a stressful time and if we need to keep it to ourselves or tell the whole world, that should be acceptable. Thank you for reading. xx

  13. March 8, 2017 / 9:56 am

    Oh Laura I completely respect your opinion to not share your pregnancy. I can only imagine the fear you felt and the worry. Just such a wonderful ending to a beautiful and honest heartfelt post. And can I just say – OH MY WORD to the way you carry babies!!! #BloggerClubUK

  14. March 8, 2017 / 10:00 am

    As I was reading this, I was wondering how you kept it a secret, and did people not notice your bump – and then I saw the photo! Amazing how your body stays so small, especially as she was your third baby! Maybe it’s because your body knew that you had reasons for keeping quiet, and was just helping you do that 🙂 I can just imagine the reaction from your family and friends when you did announce the birth though! #BloggerClubUK

  15. March 8, 2017 / 1:02 pm

    I read this post last night and found it so interesting. I really enjoyed reading it and I can totally appreciate where you were coming from with this. It’s up to the individual/family when and whom they want to share their news to. No one else.
    Great post
    #bestandworst

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 2:21 pm

      Thank you Rach, I know people were very offended, some still are, but it was what we had to do in order for me to cling onto my sanity. I couldn’t bear to tempt fate and announce a baby who at the time, I very much felt would not arrive safe and well. xx

  16. March 8, 2017 / 1:27 pm

    Such an interesting read hon – I feel like I was so naive with my first and only pregnancy….we have chosen to only have one child but if things were different I would definitely be more cautious about announcing things.

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 2:20 pm

      I think it’s such a personal choice, whether you announce it at 4 weeks or 40, but others should respect that and understand that sometimes you have to do what’s best for your own sanity, even more so with pregnancy after loss. xx

  17. March 8, 2017 / 2:00 pm

    I love this post. Social Media has given people this sense of importance that they should know what is going on with everyone all the time. I didn’t announce my induction date when I went into hospital or anything until Mini Me 2 was born and then I never showed a picture of his face for weeks which I know annoyed some people but he was also our rainbow baby and it was a really hard time for us… I just think we are all entitled to our privacy for whatever reasons and no one should be mad about that.

    Emmie xo

    • Laura Dove
      March 8, 2017 / 2:19 pm

      Thanks Emmie. I completely agree, before social media you simply shared your news with family and friends and then they came to see the baby when you let them know they had been born! We didn’t have social media when our eldest was born, he is 13 next month, and it was very different then. I was inundated with messages during the final weeks of my pregnancies with the girls, asking had they been born, any signs of labour, how had my appointments gone. I found myself reassuring others when actually, it was ME who was struggling and ME who needed that reassurance. With us not telling other about Harry I was able to focus on myself, on my own sanity and the welfare of my baby, and I actually found it far easier to get through those last few weeks of worry. I’m so lad that you had your own little rainbow. xxx

  18. March 8, 2017 / 2:21 pm

    A great post – thanks for sharing! I do sympathise with not wanting to shout from the rooftops when you were pregnant again. In many ways I bet it enabled you to have some peace during that time too!

  19. March 8, 2017 / 2:41 pm

    What a lovely post! We chose not to share the impending arrival of our third baby until later on, except with a select few. My bump was rather rectangular until about 20 weeks ish anyway so most people thought I’d just been over-indulging 😉 when we did share the news we still didn’t shout about it too much. I think pregnancy is a very personal and private matter, you go through such a lot in a relatively short space of time, and it’s nice to have some distance from the bizarre comments that sometimes arise about how many children you have or which gender you’re trying for…! #bloggerclubuk

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:56 am

      I completely agree. I found it very difficult that the hospital referred to Harry as our fourth baby, when he is our fifth, and I knew that the same would be assumed from many should we announce it. Even now I find that hard when people say his is the fourth, or ask if we would like a fifth. xx

  20. Katy - Hot Pink Wellingtons
    March 8, 2017 / 5:04 pm

    I can completely understand why you chose not to announce it – I really do think everyone is different when it comes to this and it’s every person’s right to do as they please. I didn’t announce my pregnancy with Max, other than to family and close friends and work of course, because I just worried the whole way through. But it goes to show that every pregnancy is different, because I’ve been far more happy to be ‘out there’ with this pregnancy, despite having many reasons to be more worried about it. Perhaps because I’m in a happier place, perhaps now because I know that even if the worst should happen that I would want the support from people – I can’t put my finger on it, but I’m feeling very different this time around. That said, I’m so huge this time around that I don’t think there’s any way I could hide it – very jealous of your teeny tiny bump!

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:52 am

      Ahh I think first pregnancies are far more worrying than second pregnancies, and every time is different. I think had I been blogging back then I would have shared it, I couldn’t have gone the whole nine months without mentioning it in my blog, not when I share so much of our lives on here. I’m jealous of your bump! I would have loved to have to have had even a small one! xx

      • Katy - Hot Pink Wellingtons
        March 11, 2017 / 7:13 pm

        Yup, I think there’s definitely the blogging aspect – there’s no way I could go through a pregnancy and not mention it! I can see how you’d have a bit of bump envy (always hate that phrase!) – still, I’m guessing you have no stretch marks!! Just stopping by again to say thanks for sharing this with us at #SharingtheBlogLove

  21. March 8, 2017 / 5:29 pm

    Aww! What a lovely post….I can understand why you didn’t announce it. I can’t believe how small you were with hardly any bump. hehehe I bet some of the reactions were priceless x
    #bestandworst

  22. March 8, 2017 / 9:25 pm

    I totoally understand not wanting to announce your pregnancies. I never did till after the 12 week scan and one time not till 20 weeks when people at work began to guess. I lost one too and it makes each subsequent pregnancy nail biting right till they are in your arms. #bestandworst

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:49 am

      I’m sorry to hear that Fiona. I agree, losing a baby makes you feel very differently about future pregnancies. xx

  23. March 8, 2017 / 9:29 pm

    I agree with you. It’s news to share with their family and friends, not us. Just because you’re a public figure, doesn’t give the whole world the right to know your business. Thank you for sharing your story. I don’t blame you for keeping things to yourselves either! #bestandworst

    • March 10, 2017 / 11:47 am

      Back again from #FabFridayPost

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:49 am

      Thank you. I felt very protective over my pregnancies, I would hate to have felt that I had to share it with the world, these celebrities must really struggle with that. xx

  24. March 8, 2017 / 9:40 pm

    I’m shocked that you could look so tiny in that photo whilst being heavily pregnant. I blew up like a balloon. I totally understand not wanting to share the news to early especially with all that you have been through x

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:48 am

      Thank you. I have no idea why I don’t show when pregnant, the midwives said I carry them more towards my back which explains why I have so many back issues now! xx

  25. March 9, 2017 / 4:45 am

    Your baby bump weeks before birth looks like my bump weeks after conception. I would love to see how your baby was stuffed in there.

    I can relate to this story. I didn’t want to tell anyone that I was pregnant either. Unfortunately my baby bump refused to be concealed. We made the announcement shortly after the first trimester. #BloggerClubUK

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:48 am

      Hehe we had a 3d scan and Eva was scrunched up into a ball with both feet on her head!! Ahh I always sympathise with those who start to show fast, it’s hard when you want to keep it private and your belly has other ideas! xz

  26. March 9, 2017 / 6:48 am

    Love post as always Laura, I love reading your blogs. I don’t blame you not wanting to say anything, you have enough professionals asking questions so adding in a pile of other people when you are juggling little ones & feeling exhausted from being pregnant too is not fun. #BloggerClubUK

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:46 am

      Thank you so much. I found it far easier to focus on my own health and well being without everyone else butting in, I would have been happy to tell no-one at all but I’m not sure my parents would ever have forgiven us! xx

  27. March 9, 2017 / 7:09 am

    I totally understand why you did not say anything, my little two are close in age and I put off announcing my pregnancy until I started showing as I dreaded people’s reaction. xx

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:45 am

      People are so judgemental aren’t they! Harry and Megan had the same due date 12 months apart, it WAS crazy but I didn’t need telling that! xx

  28. March 9, 2017 / 8:22 am

    Bless your heart, I always feel choked up reading your stories about your pregnancies, you are amazing. I think this is a wonderful and supportive post. While I shouted it from the rooftops at my earliest chance, I know someone who hasn’t even made a birth announcement. She has literally only told people in person, not posted a single scan photo, only posting one photo of her holding a baby which you wouldn’t even know was her own if you didn’t know her outside of facebook! Everyone has their own reasons, thank you for standing up for them xx #coolmumclub

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:45 am

      Thank you Claire. That’s exactly it, we all have our own reasons behind the choices we make, and we shouldn’t have to share those with the whole world if we aren’t ready to. Thank you for reading. xxx

  29. Sophie
    March 9, 2017 / 9:06 am

    Such a lovely story! I don’t think I could have kept my mouth closed that long!

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:44 am

      Haha I was so shocked that I did! xx

  30. March 9, 2017 / 9:57 am

    I totally agree with you. The media should leave Cheryl alone. Only they know why they aren’t announcing and it’s nothing to do with any of us! Thanks for sharing your story. I love how honest you are. #coolmumclub

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:44 am

      Thank you. I feel really sorry for anyone in the media spotlight, especially during pregnancy. I would have done anything to protect my baby, I can’t imagine how that must feel when you can’t leave the house without being photographed! xx

  31. March 9, 2017 / 9:58 am

    It makes perfect sense to me that you chose to not announce his birth till he was safely in your arms. With both my daughters my kidneys played up as well as the Diabetes. I’d love three little ones but due to my health this may never be.

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:43 am

      Ahh I’m sorry to hear that Helena. I couldn’t allow myself to believe that he would be here safely, I was sure that we had tempted fate by having a fifth. xx

  32. March 9, 2017 / 10:19 am

    Lovely post. Its your baby and your news. No one shoud prescribe how or when you share it. Good luck with the babies. #Stayclassymama

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:42 am

      Thank you for reading. xxx

  33. March 9, 2017 / 11:03 am

    Wow tiny bump! I always look like I’ve swallowed a beachball! It is up to the parents to decide when to tell #StayClassyMama

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:42 am

      Ahh I am so jealous of everyone who has a bump! xx

  34. March 9, 2017 / 11:23 am

    Popping back over from #coolmumclub for this post hon xoxo

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:41 am

      xxx

  35. March 9, 2017 / 11:31 am

    I felt really emotional reading this. In a way I can understand people feeling almost left out, by not knowing you were pregnant, but I can absolutely understand why you kept it to yourselves. It really does some down to survival sometimes doesn’t it. Also, I can’t get over that photo of you! So amazing how different people’s experiences can be, there was no mistaking the fact that I was pregnant each time! x #BloggerClubUK

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:41 am

      Thank you. I think I would feel a little sad to have been left out of a friends pregnancy too, but I would hope that with my friends knowing what we went through, they understood. And for the most part they really did, it was something I had to do just to stay sane!! I would have loved a bump, even just a small one! xx

  36. March 9, 2017 / 12:22 pm

    Such a beautiful post with pictures of the handsome Harry! I think you should announce however, and whenever you like. Who says you have to share it on social media at all?!

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:39 am

      You’re right Clair, thank you. xx

  37. March 9, 2017 / 8:49 pm

    What a great post! Nobody should feel compelled to share their news if they have chosen not to. Putting yourself and your baby first is all that matters. I still can’t believe how tiny you look in that photo!

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:39 am

      Thank you, I think pregnancy is such a personal experience, we should respect that more. And I know! It’s crazy when I look back, it was the same with all five of them, they were nestled into my back! xx

  38. March 9, 2017 / 9:45 pm

    Such an interesting post and I can totally understand why you didn’t feel like you could share your news. So happy it turned out well for you and to those who were offended well they can just deal with it! It’s your baby and it’s sad that you didn’t feel like you could tell them in the first place.

    Amina xx | http://www.AliandHer.com

    #coolmumclub

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:38 am

      Thank you. I agree, our baby, our choices too! xx

  39. March 9, 2017 / 10:01 pm

    It’s an incredible story! I totally get it – I said I wasn’t ever going to announce my pregnancy with the mouse, and made it a total non-announcement. I never did ‘declare it’ at work, I didn’t want a baby shower or leaving gifts and I was so scared of tempting fate. In all honesty though, everyone probably knew really early on –
    He was such a gorgeous baby, like his brother xx
    Thanks for sharing with #coolmumclub

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:37 am

      I can relate to that. I never had a baby shower with any of my five, I didn’t even buy a single baby gro, not so much as a nappy even, I was just so scared that we had tempted fate by having another. I think it’s important that people respect your privacy when pregnant, none of us know the reasons why others keep it to themselves. Thank you for reading lovely. xxx

  40. March 10, 2017 / 8:26 am

    So glad it all worked out for you. I can totally understand why you kept it a secret. Good job your little boy was good at hiding too.
    #thatfridaylinky

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:36 am

      Hehe yes, if he hadn’t stayed hidden we would never have kept it to ourselves! xx

  41. March 10, 2017 / 9:06 am

    I completely understand why you wouldn’t want to announce your pregnancy. One of my friends suffered multiple pregnancy losses, and she went from yelling it from the roof tops with the first to keeping it as quiet as possible. At the time her husband had started to suffer with depression (not sure if it was related, but certainly didn’t help), he is a very private man so I think found it difficult to seek help. At one point she told me she was pregnant before she told anyone else including her husband because she needed to tell someone and she was so worried about his reaction if she lost it again. Thankfully they didn’t and they are now fantastic parents to a very happy little boy, and his dad is recovering nicely.
    Thank you for sharing your story.
    #ThatFridayLinky

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:35 am

      That’s so interesting, I actually told my best friend about Harry before I even told my husband, I wasn’t sure how to tell him when our youngest was just three months old!! I think you just have to do what’s right for you don’t you? I’m glad that your friends husband is doing well. xx

  42. March 10, 2017 / 10:42 am

    I have a few friends who didn’t announce their pregnancies on social media and I totally respect that – I also love it that when a baby picture suddenly pops up on their feed and people freak out that they had no idea that “you” were pregnant. I was keeping quiet about number 3 until we’d had our scan, but at 10 weeks people were asking me when my baby was due! I tend to show before the 3 month stage and by 9 months I look like I’ve had an inflated beach ball up my jumper. Good on you and your amazing family. Sarah #FabFridayPost

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:34 am

      Thanks Sarah. I would have loved to shout it from the rooftops but it was just such a worrying time, more than ever with him being a boy, and I needed to do what was right for us. I would never have been able to keep it private if I had got a bump! xx

  43. March 10, 2017 / 11:03 am

    It really is personal but I can totally understand why you didn’t announce after going through what you did. Also how tiny you were pregnant… wow! #SharingtheBlogLove

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 11:32 am

      Thanks Andrea. Oh I know, the “bump” was ridiculous, I was the same with all five! No wonder nobody noticed! xx

  44. March 10, 2017 / 12:43 pm

    Where on Earth do you hide a full grown baby in that body?! lol All joking aside, it always bothered me when people felt entitled to know you were pregnant. I understand that everyone is excited, but the way some people act…Wow! #fabfridaypost

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 1:54 pm

      Haha I have no idea?? I must have tiny organs or something? Yes, people seem to think you are public property when you are pregnant, and so intrusive with their advice and touching your belly! xx

  45. March 10, 2017 / 1:00 pm

    We were so paranoid about something happening that we didn’t announce either, and then I ended up with a condition where the risk of stillbirth was 15%. A lot of people found out after he was born. There’s also a lot to be said about privacy. #stayclassymama

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 1:54 pm

      Oh gosh that must have been such a worry. I was convinced that Harry would be stillborn like his brother, I couldn’t allow myself to imagine that he would be born safe and well. He was actually very poorly when he was born and in ICU for two weeks so we still weren’t out of the woods when he was born. I am very protective of him now, perhaps that is why? xx

  46. March 10, 2017 / 2:32 pm

    That’s a really interesting story and thanks for sharing something so personal. I guess we’re all worried about the judgement of others, especially as it was your fifth so you knew the reactions you got previous to your little boy. As long as you’re happy as a family and youre better after the fall (thank goodness) that’s all that matters 🙂

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 4:53 pm

      Thanks Alina. I think the judgement was a huge part of us wanting to keep it quiet at first, but mainly due to the fear of going through another stillbirth. With him being a boy I was terrified the same would happen, it was far easier for us to stay focused on our family by keeping it to ourselves. xxx

  47. March 10, 2017 / 3:29 pm

    My best friend had two miscarriages in two months and on the third month she got pregnant. She was terrified to tell people and was a bigger gal so she didnt show. She was a month away from giving birth before she made a formal announcement and even then it was hard on her,
    #fabfriday

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 4:52 pm

      Ahh I can so relate to that. When you have lost a baby it changes the way you see pregnancy, we just couldn’t enjoy it or relax in any way. I’m glad that she went on to have her baby, that’s lovely to hear. xx

  48. March 10, 2017 / 7:00 pm

    I can totally understand why you would be anxious about sharing the news of your pregnancy after all you had been through. What a lovely surprise your announcement must have been! Also – you are right about the bump! It is BIZARRE entirely! I can’t believe that photo is a week before you gave birth. I bet you didn’t get too many offering you a seat on the bus then? That’s a downside, eh! #PoCoLo

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 7:14 pm

      Haha no! I was never given special treatment for being pregnant, I feel a little cheated! xx

  49. March 10, 2017 / 7:11 pm

    Totally understand why you decided to keep the news to yourself hon. You did what felt right for you and Gaz at the time. You have gorgeous kiddies! All five of them 😘 xx

    • Laura Dove
      March 10, 2017 / 7:14 pm

      Thank you Jayne. I think you’ll always offend someone no matter what you do!! xxx

  50. March 10, 2017 / 9:12 pm

    It is definitely OK to keep this kind of news to yourself. I wouldn’t have got away with a nine months but I wish I was able to keep my last pregnancy to myself a little longer, unfortunately there were people who felt differently about my privacy. I definitely don’t miss having them around

    • Laura Dove
      March 11, 2017 / 7:17 pm

      Oh I think far too many people intrude on your privacy during pregnancy, be that through unwanted advice or mauling at your stomach! I’m sorry you had to announce it sooner than you had hoped. xx

  51. March 10, 2017 / 10:11 pm

    I think it’s always good to be reminded that pregnancy is a personal journey and one that people shouldn’t feel they have to announce – whether they are in the media or not. I can completely understand why you chose not to announce yours and I loved reading your birth announcement when Harry did arrive – what a big surprise that must have been for everyone! Your bump photo with Eva is quite impressive – there was definitely no hiding my pregnancies from around 24 weeks – with Sophie I had people asking me at 10 weeks because I already had a definite bump! It’s a shame though that people did feel offended by you not announcing sooner especially when your reasons for not doing so were such valid ones (not that it should have mattered whether they were or weren’t though!) #SharingtheBlogLove

    • Laura Dove
      March 11, 2017 / 7:16 pm

      Thank you Louise. I’m sure there were many who felt a little put out that we hadn’t told them, but the majority kept that to themselves. It was never something that we set out to keep a secret, it was just a case of me being far too scared to say it out loud. I genuinely thought that we would lose him, I guess I just needed to do what I needed to do. And here he is! xxx

  52. March 10, 2017 / 10:20 pm

    Ah look at his face! Gorgeous. I do think that in lots of situations in life we all need to adopt a bit more acceptance, like you say you never know why and you shouldn’t have to to value someone else’s decision. After our experience I was so nervous about telling anyone because we had chosen to go through it again and absolutely left it as long as my husband thought I could! X #sharingthebloglove

    • Laura Dove
      March 11, 2017 / 6:44 pm

      Definitely, people will always cast judgement or offer unwanted advice, for us it was a lot easier just keeping it to ourselves. Also with him being a boy I was absolutely convinced that we would lose him, and I wasn’t ready to tempt fate. It’s very easy to hide a pregnancy when you don’t have a bump, I’m not sure we would have been able to otherwise! xx

  53. March 11, 2017 / 3:10 am

    such a lovely post, your body, your baby, your family, your decision. slightly different but my husband and i did the same with our marriage, announced it afterwards and almost 15 years on we still have people saying they felt left out the loop, well that’s their problem and the fact they still comment means our friendship survived

    • Laura Dove
      March 11, 2017 / 6:43 pm

      Good for you! I would have LOVED to do that, although I think my parents would have been devastated, but I totally get why people do it! xx

  54. March 11, 2017 / 1:24 pm

    Wow yes, this! Personally, when we were expecting our daughter (now 7), we shouted it from the rooftops. Couldn’t wait for everyone to know. Following a complicated pregnancy and a traumatic labour, we couldn’t wait to announce the birth. But absolutely, why should people question why people don’t want to announce these events across social media. If we’d decided to have another baby, we wouldn’t be announcing to all and sundry because we’d be preserving ourselves and waiting with baited breath too. Your bump IS tiny btw Laura!… #pocolo

    • Laura Dove
      March 11, 2017 / 6:40 pm

      Thank you Carol. I think whatever your choice – shouting it from the rooftops or keeping it private, it’s just such a personal choice and that should be respected. Pregnancy after loss is so hard, I needed to concentrate on staying sane rather than listening to others tell us how crazy we were for having a fifth! xx

  55. March 11, 2017 / 5:51 pm

    Wow, you don’t have a bump! Mind you, I was pregnant with twins and measured small for one baby! It’s totally up to you when you tell those around you about a pregnancy. It’s such an individual decision. Thanks for linking up to #ThatFridayLinky

    • Laura Dove
      March 11, 2017 / 6:38 pm

      If you’d seen me when I’m not pregnant you would realise that I do have a bump, it’s just not a textbook baby bump, ha! I think it’s such a personal experience throughout pregnancy, even harder when you have suffered a loss, and for the most part people did respect that. The others, well, almost three years on and they’re still not happy! xx

  56. Nige
    March 11, 2017 / 9:57 pm

    Another awesome post Laura completely understand you not saying anything what a shock people must of had. Mind you you didn’t look very pregnant tiny.
    Love your writing Laura it always drags me in and I can’t wait for your next post Thanks for linking to the #THAT FRIDAY LINKY come back next week please

    • Laura Dove
      March 13, 2017 / 9:42 am

      Thank you Nige. I think people were very shocked, even more so the ones who we had seen recently and hadn’t noticed! It was lovely keeping it to ourselves though, especially with Harry being our last, although I’m sure had I been blogging then I wouldn’t have been able to keep it quiet at all!! See you next Friday! xx

  57. March 11, 2017 / 11:59 pm

    I feel such grief at your losses, and such joy for the ones who live. I’m not even a mum but I understand fully! And I respect parents who wait to share or don’t want to share.

    I know it’s NOWHERE near the same, but I wanted to share this anyway. I didn’t tell a lot of people about my second marriage until after the fact. I’d experienced a LOT of negativity from people since they were all mutual friends with my ex, and I was really stressed and experiencing severe anxiety and depression (my husband lives in the UK and I was living in Canada at the time, so we were having to deal with immigration and visas and all that sort of thing as well) and I just didn’t want even more angry berating from my friends. Needless to say, a LOT of people were utterly shocked when I made the announcement, and a lot of feelings were hurt. But I truly had to for my own sanity.

    #PoCoLo

    • Laura Dove
      March 13, 2017 / 9:40 am

      Oh wow Mary, I have actually had other comments on here that others kept their wedding a secret. I know friends of ours married in secret and announced it when they returned from their holiday, I think it’s far more common than you think. I can understand that people felt hurt, I think my parents would feel sad that they had missed out on my day, my best friends the same, but sometimes you have to do what is right for YOU! How lovely that you met your husband in the UK, I hope you are both very happy together. xx

  58. March 12, 2017 / 6:51 am

    I’ve just stumbled upon this post and it completely resonated with me, keeping things to myself is how I cope, and people, especially close family just don’t get it. It sounds like the most perfect thing to do for you, and at the end of the day its about you and your family x

    • Laura Dove
      March 13, 2017 / 9:38 am

      Thank you Sherry. I think we all have our own coping mechanisms, sometimes that is sharing our worries and other times it’s just keeping them to ourselves. We should respect the choices of others, even if it leaves us feeling as though we weren’t a part of that. xx

  59. March 12, 2017 / 1:42 pm

    Lovely post, Laua, and using your personal and difficult experiences to give people some perspective of what is and should be a private moment. Bravo to you! You are strength personified Momma! #FabFridayPost

    • Laura Dove
      March 13, 2017 / 9:36 am

      Thank you Lisa, that’s so lovely of you to say. xx

  60. March 12, 2017 / 2:10 pm

    I was terrified to announce our pregnancy and we actually didn’t tell anyone apart from our twins parents and my best friend. I was signed off work with spd from 3 months and so only if we saw people did they see me and know. When Bubs was born it was April 1St and Hubs sent out a text to say mother and baby doing well quiet a few of our friends thought we’d pulled the best April Fools!! I’m sitting here now snuggling my Rainbow xxx #stayclassymama

    • Laura Dove
      March 13, 2017 / 9:35 am

      Ahh I’m so glad that you have your rainbow, I can so relate to that. I was lucky that I didn’t have a bump so even those we saw regularly had no idea, I’m not sure I would have been able to keep it to ourselves otherwise! That’s so funny about the april fools joke, I would have thought it was a joke too! xx

  61. March 12, 2017 / 3:42 pm

    I went through a lot of miscarriages with my ex, eventually wearing us down and finding that we weren’t strong enough as a couple to get through it. When my current wife told me she was pregnant, my first response was “don’t tell anybody” which didn’t go over very well. I remember how each time somebody made a comment and we had to again tell them about our loss it was another knife stab. Didn’t want to risk that again. #thatfridaylinky

    • Laura Dove
      March 13, 2017 / 9:34 am

      Ah Jeremy I’m so sorry to hear that. As I have shared on here, we suffered fifteen miscarriages and so I can totally relate to that, it changes the way that you feel about pregnancy completely. I envy those who can enjoy their pregnancies without so much worry and stress! xx

  62. March 12, 2017 / 3:42 pm

    I completely understands where you are coming from. I also didn’t announced Evelyn’s until our second scan. I had such terrible pregnancy with her with all the extreme morning sickness and sort. This is such a lovely post. I don’t think anybody feels obligated to tell anyone their pregnancy if they don’t want to. Harry is so so cute! Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful story with us again. #FabFridayPost xx

    • Laura Dove
      March 13, 2017 / 9:24 am

      Thank you Su. I’m sorry you had such a terrible pregnancy, it’s hard when you are feeling so unwell or anxious, I think we all feel very protective about our pregnancies and it’s just about doing what is right for you. xxx

  63. March 13, 2017 / 11:41 am

    I am still in complete awe at that bump photo! That is incredible. I can imagine people would get the hump about you not saying anything but at the end of the day it is your life and you have to do what is right by you and your lovely family xx #bestandworst

    • Laura Dove
      March 13, 2017 / 5:35 pm

      Thanks Yvonne, and I am super jealous of anyone who has a proper baby bump – I felt cheated!! You’re right, you do what’s best for you, I think sometimes that’s all you can do! xx

  64. March 13, 2017 / 7:52 pm

    Where is your bump? That is crazy Laura!!! I totally get this. I didn’t do a FB announcement with my second pregnancy, we told people by text or when I saw them. I didn’t hide it, as with my bump we couldn’t. I think you do the right thing for you at the time. By SIL got a bit of the hump with me, as we didn’t tell them the minute we knew. You have to do what is right for you. I can just imagine peoples reaction when you posted this!!! Thank you for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove x

    • Laura Dove
      March 14, 2017 / 2:29 pm

      Haha it’s there!! Honestly, I can see it, I know others can’t, and the midwives were all acting as though I was some kind of medical marvel, haha! Oh people will always feel annoyed when they aren’t “in” on something, I think it’s extremely selfish to be annoyed about it without thinking about someones reasons for keeping it quiet! xx

  65. March 14, 2017 / 9:05 pm

    This is a lovely post and I am a stronger believer everyone should announce whenever they feel it is right for them. I’m one of those people that never asks weather a friend is pregnant or not ( even if I kind of know) because I believe they would tell me if they wanted me to know and I would hate to put them in a awkward situation. I’m in complete shock regarding your bump though. I was pretty small but you could always tell I was pregnant past 30weeks. Thank you for sharing with #StayClassyMama x

    • Laura Dove
      March 15, 2017 / 12:27 pm

      That’s exactly it. I’ve suspected friends to be pregnant but known that they will tell us when they are ready, even if that is when the baby is in their arms! My bump was crazy, it was the same with all of them, I would have loved a big bump! xx

  66. March 24, 2017 / 3:18 pm

    I can totally understand why you did that.
    When I fell pregnant with BP we didn’t exactly announce it either. We simply visited the in-laws and the Hubby sat there rubbing my tummy the whole time. Nothing was said but his mum called him later and asked “Is Morgan pregnant?!” it was quite funny! 😉
    Thanks for linking to #pocolo

    • Laura Dove
      March 27, 2017 / 9:15 am

      Haha that’s so funny!! We thought about not telling our parents at all but I thought they might be slightly annoyed!! xx

  67. April 24, 2017 / 9:51 am

    I completely understand. After all the heartbreak and loss you went through I can see why you left the announcement to last and I think it is perfectly reasonable. Your friends should understand but sadly many do judge x

    • Laura Dove
      April 24, 2017 / 4:23 pm

      Thanks Ana, I would do it exactly the same way if I were to go back in time, I had to do whatever it took for me to get through it! xx

    • Laura Dove
      April 24, 2017 / 4:23 pm

      Thanks Ana, I would do it exactly the same way if I were to go back in time, I had to do whatever it took for me to get through it! xx

  68. July 10, 2017 / 1:31 pm

    The world knows so much about you, it doesn’t need to know everything.

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