You’re probably thrilled and want to shout the news from the rooftops. Or take out a few transit ads, anyway. Nonetheless, discretion may be called for. Tradition dictates it’s best to announce a pregnancy after the first trimester. Sometimes, however, you may want to wait even longer ‘ and in those cases an element of disguise becomes necessary.
‘I held off telling my workplace about my pregnancy till I was about four and a half months pregnant,’ says Kate Ferreira of Toronto. ‘This was due to the fact I hadn’t told my own family. I was travelling and I didn’t want to tell my mom until the last of my planned trips was over, because I knew she’d worry. And I didn’t want to spill the beans at work because it didn’t seem fair for my coworkers to know and my family to be in the dark!’
There may be reasons why you, too, want to stay mum about your impending mommyhood. Need to hide your growing bump? Here are 10 time-tested ways.
1. Sneak in your gi-normous lunch portions
Ferreira says one of her work pals had guessed her secret by the time she came out of the closet as a mom-to-be. ‘Apparently my bump hadn’t given me away, but my supersized, three-helpings lunches had!’ says Ferreira. Discretely munch on the extras for your ‘plus one’ when you’re alone at your desk, in the lunchroom, on your break or walking on errands.
2. Go for a boho look in summer
Loose, flowing sundresses help beat the heat while hiding extra weight in the bust and midsection. You can go long à la Nicole Richie, or keep it shorter for an even billowier effect, says Ferreira.
3. Or get arty with draping
Creatively draped (neo-Grecian) dresses are big this season, so if you have a special event to attend, look for a dress that offers strategic swathes of coverage at the torso. Highlight your glowing complexion with chandelier earrings.
4. Think loose on top, slim-fitting below
Billowy tops with lantern or batwing sleeves will disguise a burgeoning bump, especially if worn with slim-fitting jeans or leggings. Add a moderate high heel to elongate your silhouette.
Who’s going to notice a tiny bump if you’re rocking a killer lemon-yellow hobo bag? Or some edgy peep-toe boots? The right accessories steal the show. ‘You also need a lot of bright, short necklaces to bring the eye up,’ says Ferreira.
Throw on a scarf or cardi for adjustable warmth ‘ and camouflage.
7. Keep working out
Don’t go overboard, but do continue to work out regularly, if less vigorously. Not only will it keep you healthy, you’ll gain less overall, raising fewer eyebrows at the office.
8. Get a makeover
If you switch up your look a bit with a new hairstyle and/or way of doing your makeup, not only will you learn a few new tricks, you’ll keep people guessing.
Colleague A: ‘Does Suzie in accounting look a bit different today?’
Colleague B: ‘Yeah, it’s that new lipstick and the ash highlights in her hair. She was telling me all about it yesterday. Now I want to change out my hair for spring, too!’
9. Seem super-busy
Make well-timed comments about late-night romantic dinners with your man, or having a busy weekend. Seeming overbooked can explain tired eyes or constant yawning at work.
A happy, energetic-looking person often looks ‘ ironically, in this case ‘ as if they’ve just lost some weight!