When Will I Feel Pregnant?

Archived Q&A and Reviews

April 2004

I recently found out that I am pregant as a result of an egg donor program. Since I had been told for such a long time that I couldn't become pregnant, I feel strange now. I don't feel pregnant. Sometimes I even forget that I am pregnant. I only remember when reaching for that soda or sushi I shouldn't have. I was, of course thrilled beyond belief when I got the news, but now it doesn't seem real. Is this normal? I'm only at 7 weeks now, but when will I ''feel'' pregnant? Not Feeling It in Oakland

First of all, congratulations! I think when you start ''feeling'' pregnant is very variable, and depends on how hard hit you are by first trimester symptoms of fatigue, morning sickness, constipation, moodiness etc. I, like you, found out I was pregnant long before I ''felt'' or looked pregnant. I found it helpful to follow along the chapters in ''Your Pregnancy Week by Week'' in the early weeks so I could visualize all the incredible changes occuring in my body even though I couldn't see or feel them. I started to look pregnant and not just ''thick'' at about 15 weeks. I didn't really *feel* pregnant until I felt the first fluttering fetal movements. Best of luck with your pregnancy. been there
Congratulations!! I am so happy for you! Consider yourself lucky that you don't ''feel'' pregnant yet because at 7 weeks, ''feeling'' pregnant means throwing up all day. That's the only reason that I felt pregnant until about the end of the first trimester when I began to show. But I think a lot of pregnant women have that ''glow'' about them even before they show. You will begin to feel it more soon. Good luck!!!!
Being pregnant is a state of mind :)

For some women the prengancy is never far from their minds because of morning sickness, exhaustion, breast pain, etc. But if you are not experiencing all of those it's totally normal that you would forget.

The prengancy will seem more real when you see your baby in the ultrasound - and then later, by 20-22 weeks, when you actually feel the baby moving. anon

I think I understand what you are feeling. I didn't feel ''pregnant'' at all for the whole first half of my pregnancy. My own and my mother's medical problems made me afraid that the pregnancy wouldn't last, and I just didn't gain very much weight - nor did I have morning-sickness. After the baby started moving, and I started gaining a little more weight, I felt a little pregnant -- but I didn't feel joyful, or like a mommy, until the day after my son was born (the night he was born I was too tired to feel much of anything). The next morning, however, the feelings hit me in a huge wave. So it could be awhile, but I think that's normal, especially when there have been medical issues. Karen
You'll probably get this a lot, but, be grateful that you don't have any symptoms!!! I had two pregnancies that had to be terminated at 10 weeks. Each one I was was horribly sick and tired. All the classic first trimester stuff. Then I got pregnant with my son ( 5 mo now) and didn't feel anything until I was almost 6 months. I finally started to believe those girls who give birth in the bathroom at their prom and say they didn't know they were pregnant. No mornign sickness, no fatigue, no weight-gain...It was erie. Around 4.5 mo I felt him move, but that was only occassional. It seems that everyone's pregnancy is different--I do know I craved the morning sickness or anything so that I would ''feel'' pregnant. Now, of course, I'm so glad that I didn't have a lot of pregnancy symptoms because in retrospect it all seemed so easy! (And after the first two pregnancies of vomitting from day 2, I was terrified that a baby brought to term would be even harder...) Congratulations!!! Anon
I think everyone feels pregnant at different stages. My home pregnancy tests (took about 10) were all negative until I was almost 10 weeks along. I had a blood test at the dr. at about 7 weeks that was positive but I just couldn't believe it...so I kept taking the home tests until I saw the two lines! I think I really felt pregnant when I felt my baby move--about 20 weeks, even though I looked pregnant early on. It's very hard for your brain to fathom what your body is working on. It can be an almost surreal experience I think and really processing it can take quite awhile. Congratulations! NMom
I did a lot of infertility treatments so I have some input but only from my body's point of view. I felt pregnant at 7 weeks (itching, swelling breasts, frequent urination) only the two times when I had ''normal'' pregnancies. (I didn't start feeling morning sickness until 8 or 9 weeks.) Two other times I did not feel pregnant, and the pregnancies turned out not to be normal--one was ectopic and the other was a sac without an embryo. If you have not had an ultrasound yet to confirm you actually have a ''normal'' embryo or have not had blood-work that confirms your HCG levels have climbed at the appropriate rate, I would insist on an ultrasound immediately. Of course, I have heard about many other women who felt nothing at 7 weeks, so please don't panic unnecessarily until you've seen your OB and gotten checked out. maria
About you're feeling pregnant. Well at the start.. it depends on whether or not you get morning sickness. If you're lucky you'll never get it.. but that doesn't help your desire to feel pregnant. You'll feel pregnant for sure once you start hearing your baby's heart beat at about 9 or 10 weeks.. I sat in my car and cried after that first time. It really made the experience real because until that point I never felt pregnant. All I knew was that I was gaining weight and not getting my period any more. Then at about 16 weeks I had an ultra sound done and saw my child for the first time. That also really helped. But I have to say my whole pregnancy experience changed the first time I felt him move. That was so exciting.. because finally it was as if he was knocking on my door saying ''hello, I'm in here''. And after that.. the bond, the attachment to my pregnancy was at full tilt. It was if some sort of sentry woke up inside me. I became very protective of my belly. I knew I was carrying a precious cargo and wanted to protect it at all times.. especially when I worked in the city. I stayed clear of homeless people (something I don't normaly do) afraid a wacko might punch me in the stomache. I glared at cars while crossing the street to make sure they saw the pregnant woman walking in front of them. Anyway, it may not seem soon enough before you start feeling pregant.. but just know you are. And remember that every second that passes that precious life, you want so much, is forming inside you. Enjoy your pregnancy.. and before you know it.. you'll be holding your child in your arms. Good Luck! Mom for 5 months and loving it!!
I am 24-weeks into my first pregnancy, and boy do I feel pregnant!! I barely did at all in the first trimester though. Not much changes in your body then so it takes a little time for it to sink in. In the beginning, all I knew was that I had a positive urine test and no periods, but I didn't feel pregnant either. I was super excited and I thought about it all the time, but it did not FEEL real. The first time it felt real was when I had a vaginal ultrasound at 10 weeks. I saw the baby and freaked! That was when it first dawned on me that I am REALLY pregnant. But, that feeling went away again after the doctor's appointment, and slowly I would start to feel pregnant as my body changed and as the medical visits came and went. (We got to hear the heartbeat and then I saw the baby again in an ultrasound at 15 weeks when I had my amnio.) Some days it was real, and some days I still thought I was dreaming. The 20-week ultrasound really let me get a good look at the baby.

I really know I am pregnant now because I have been feeling the baby everyday for about a month, because I am becoming increasingly uncomfortable (I have a real hard time tying shoes!), and because I am showing enough that strangers can tell that I am pregnant (and not just think that I have a fat tummy). The baby is kicking up a storm as I write this.

You are in the very early stages so it's not surprising that you don't feel pregnant. Eventually your body will change so much that you will KNOW that you are pregnant, but that takes some time. It's totally normal. Try to relax and know that nature will take its course and soon you will FEEL pregnant! Good luck! Andi

In my case, both pregnancies were diagnosed in the 16th week, and in both cases I was pretty shocked. (Long story about why I didn't clue in sooner, but for starters I did not gain weight, feel morning sickness, have tender breasts, or most of the other typical warning signs beforehand).

Even after I knew I was pregnant, apart from feeling exceptionally tired on certain days, I don't think I really felt particularly pregnant until past the 20 week mark.

Sorry if this is a disappointment to you (if you were anxious to feel it sooner), and of course your mileage will probably vary. In my case, I think I've been pretty happy to wait -- makes the pregnancy go faster, and believe me you will have PLENTY of time to feel that motherhood has changed your life forever. Pregnant Mom

Congratulations on being pregnant!! That's terrific! I'm 28 weeks now and aside from being big, I don't really feel pregnant at all. I get a reminder every time the baby kicks, but other than that, I feel like I did before I was pregnant. I didn't have any morning sickness (aside from being tired and that started about 7-8 weeks). I have been extremely fortunate. Good luck with the rest of your pregnancy, Jen
Don't worry, it'll happen! I was the same way, in fact I wound up taking a 2nd pregnancy test at 9 weeks since somehow (despite the positive test and, of course, still not getting my period) I just couldn't believe it. Then around 9- 10 weeks, the symptoms I did get (extreme fatigue) seemed not very specific to pregnancy. Be grateful that you're not suffering from morning sickness. Soon enough, you'll get to hear your baby's heartbeat, and it will start to feel very real indeed. Congratulations and enjoy!
What you are ''not'' feeling in your 7th week is absolutely NORMAL for any pregnancy. The little one growing inside of you is smaller than a pea still. You will probably get a vaginal sonogram in the next week or so and when you see your baby on a screen, it will bring the reality of your pregnancy to life for you. You may notice breast growth soon - and that will act as your first indicator of pregnancy. In terms of ''FEELING'' pregnant, everyone is different. I started showing late in my 4th month, and started to feel movement then as well. But, the kicks were not obvious until the end of the 5th month. It really becomes real as your body takes on those fairly obvious changes (big belly, bigger breasts, waddle, etc.) but it is truly a magical feeling when you and your loved ones can feel (and see) the baby moving from the outside, because at this point you can share the experience with others. It's good in some ways that you have not experienced the initial feelings of pregnancy (morning sickness, nausea, etc.) so count your lucky starts. Good luck
Dear ''Not Feeling It'' When we found out we were pregnant at 5 weeks, it was a complete surprise. I was on the pill ... and we weren't planning on babies for another few years. We went through a period of mourning all the plans we would have to put on hold and a short period of resentment. I think part of my not feeling pregnant was part denial, part shock. Now, looking back at those first few months I can't believe I had those feelings. We are now thrilled to be having our first child and could not imagine a better/happier time, but it took some time to adjust. It sounds like you were ready for this baby to come so you may not go through those periods.

Even after we had the first ultrasound at 5 and 1/2 weeks I still could not believe it. It was just a little jelly bean on the screen. Apparently his heart had just started beating within that day or so. While it was amazing to see, and I shed a tear, I was still convinced that we would get a phone call soon from the doctor saying it was a mistake.

You're only at 7 weeks right now and your body is getting used to having a little alien in there, give it some time and trust me - you'll feel it. Especially between the 8th and 12th weeks. You'll just want to get home after work/school and crash for the rest of the night. You will not believe how exhausted you'll get. If you're one of the lucky ones, you'll not get nausea or morning sickness. My best advice is to get all the rest you can now.

One moment of starting to feel pregnant was about the 4th month when I had to put away all my cute tight-fighting clothes because they simply would not fit anymore. And if I tried to close those pair of ''awesome'' jeans -- well, breathing was a problem.

It comes around very suddenly. One mornign you'll wake up and your bras will not fit anymore. Your shirts and pants will feel like they are about to pop open. Then you'll start noticing an increasingly large pooch in your belly area. You can hide it -- for a little while. You'll go through the transitional period where you look like you're just putting on a few pounds. Then it will be obvious that it's not just the morning donughts that are making your clothes fit tighter.

I am currently 7 months pregnant and didn't really ''feel it'' until about the 20th week or so -- when I started to feel like a little goldfish was swimming around my belly. Now I swear he's doing the chicken dance in there!

Surround yourself with good friends who know your moods and tell you what you need to hear when you need encouragement, someone to lean on, and someone to point out reality too. A great way to get more information on your pregnancy and developments is by going on-line to www.babycenter.com This gives you a ton of information on gestational development and all the symptoms you will/may encounter during your pregnancy, including some of the latest advice available. You can also start or join a chat group with other women with similar due dates. It's good support! Best of luck to you! 29 weeks and counting...

Many people told you, as I would, that you might not feel pregnant right away, and be grateful, because you will, eventually. The flip side of that is that it's possible to ''feel pregnant'' even when you're not. I figure I still ''feel pregnant'' every few months because I attributed pre-menstrual feelings to my pregnancy, which is to say I didn't feel pregnant either, apparently, but desperately wanted to feel it! And don't believe any of the less-informed doctors who may tell you that feeling ill is a good sign. janet