You’re Having A Kid! How To Tell Your Spouse, Your Boss, And Everyone Else

Realizing you’re actually going to be responsible for raising another human being is one of the most mind-blowing, thrilling, terrifying things in life. Once you come to terms with it, the next step is telling people about this imminent life alteration. But how do you deliver such a monumental message?

Sharing the happy news …

It used to be that you simply told people you were knocked up/expecting a child/in the family way/pick your synonym for pregnant or that you were adopting a baby. Today, however, pregnancy and adoption announcements are often full-blown productions with witty ways and surprise antics captured on film and shared wide and far on social media.

Whatever your preference, it’s important to keep in mind your audience when you’re letting people know you’re having a child and to choose your words wisely. Here are some things you may want to consider when you’re ready to let people know you’re enceinte (an adjective meaning pregnant with French and Latin roots) or adopting a child.

Telling your spouse

If you’re a do-everything-together kind of couple, you may get the results of the pregnancy test simultaneously while huddled in the bathroom over a pregnancy test. In other cases, however, one parent-to-be knows first, and it’s on them to deliver the news to the other. While some may go for the direct route, and just shout out, “We’re going to have a baby!” at the first possible opportunity, others want to take a more sentimental approach.

Words like transformational, metamorphosis, and life-changing—and their synonyms—may help describe the journey ahead, particularly if it’s your first child. If you’re spiritual, words like blessing, miracle, and destiny may be useful.

Telling your family

When it comes to family, there are lots of fun ways to let them know they’re going to be grandparents, aunts and uncles, or whatever the case may be. You can use everything from framed sonogram photos to T-shirts, coffee mugs, and even your pets to deliver the message memorably.

When talking about your expanding family, some synonyms that may be useful include clan, folk, generations, lineage and, if you’re fancy, dynasty.

Fun fact: the first recording of the word grandparent doesn’t appear until the 1800s. The prefix grand- means one generation removed, though we think this definition of the adjective grand is typically pretty fitting too: “magnificent or splendid.”

Telling your friends

When it comes to your friends, you have to determine which ones to tell first and how. Do you tell them individually or make a big blanket announcement on social media? This is typically where people like to have a little fun with clever pictures and riddles to announce the news.

Some creative announcements we’ve seen:

What has two feet/And a belly to tickle/And can cause a craving/ For ice cream and pickles?

Or the more humorous: I just found out that I have a parasite growing inside me. The good news is that it will eventually be expelled from my body and attach itself to my breast.

Just be sure to take into account when you announce the news—particularly if you do so early in a pregnancy—that if something should go wrong, there’s no taking back the news. Some people find comfort in the support of others after a pregnancy loss, but for others, it’s difficult to handle, and they may regret sharing the news so widely so early.

There can be many an occasion to share some good news about yourself. Here’s a guide on how to do so without bragging!

Telling your employer

A workplace announcement typically calls for a bit more restraint. Deliver the news in a professional manner and ask for clarification around any policies regarding maternity and paternity leave and other benefits. Out of respect, be sure to tell your boss first before sharing the news with coworkers and, preferably before your burgeoning bump or other telltale signs start rumors.

Experts say keeping the news short and sweet is best, allowing your employer to first digest the news. Down the road, you can discuss options for how your responsibilities may be handled while you’re out and the need for any accommodations you may need. You may want to stress your dedication and devotion to your job and your confidence in continuing to do stellar work during pregnancy and after.

Your other children

If you have other children, this is big news for them. Depending on their age and desire for another sibling, it can be met with ecstatic excitement, disbelief, or even a bit of begrudging resentment (sibling rivalry starts early).

If the kids are younger, be ready to answer some biological questions, such as how the baby got there, and also be ready for reactions that aren’t quite what you expected. In any case, be sure to reassure your existing children that while a baby may change things, one thing that will never change is your love for them.

WATCH: What's The Funniest Word Your Kid Has Mixed Up?

Oh, and about those gender reveals

Also, a word on gender reveals. The phrase wasn’t even recorded until around 2005 when people started making big productions of delivering the pink or blue news. While they can be a fun way to tell people the sex of the child you’re expecting (or a dangerous way that ends in a deadly forest fire), that’s what they really are—sex reveals.

One’s gender and one’s sex aren’t the same thing. While people substitute one for the other on the regular, their meaning and usage are significantly—and consequentially—different. One’s sex refers to the genitalia you’re born with, while gender has to do more with your behavior, your sense of self, and how you interact with the world. So, the fact is that one’s gender can’t be determined before birth, and pink and blue exclude the possibility that someone may be intersex or transgender. Gender is complicated, and gender reveals fail to take that into account. Some people choose not to reveal their child’s gender at all until the child is old enough to do so themselves.

Find out why the letter X makes a big difference when talking about gender and inclusivity.

A final word about announcing you’re having a kid

Finding out you’re expecting a child is exhilarating (usually), and wanting to shout the news from the treetops is understandable. Just remember that not everyone has an easy time getting pregnant, and many people have had miscarriages and lost children. So, while you may be jubilant about your news, try to be sensitive to those who may be suffering.

Also, maybe try to bottle just a bit of that jubilation to recall when you’re changing diapers at 2 a.m. after eight consecutive days without sleep. (Yay?)

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