Do MI6 know about the deception pregnant women weave to keep their babies secret? If they did, they'd recruit them pretty quickly. Keeping that magnitude of a secret while under difficult physical and emotional pressures is no trivial matter! There is a tradition that most people only tell immediate family until the baby is in the second trimester. The risks of miscarriage are less then and a scan at 12 weeks confirms all is well at that point. This is when most people would share the news with wider friends and family.
Here's the problem. It's so hard to keep it a secret. First of all, you're very excited and can't think about anything else. You just want to blurt it out to everyone you meet. Then, you change some behaviours that might be noticeable to those that know you well - cutting down on caffeine and the biggie... no drinking. A woman of a certain age, in a long-term relationship and who usually enjoyed a glass of wine in the evening, will be under suspicion if they suddenly turn up and have an orange juice. The usual excuses - had to drive, taking antibiotics and hangovers look flimsy and you wonder who is fooling who anyway.
Another thing that can be tricky is hiding symptoms. I had no idea how many there were other than the dreaded morning sickness. You can also have indigestion, headaches, cramps, trapped wind, sleeplessness, tiredness etc. I had got off fairly lightly in the first eight weeks. In a small, intimate work environment any of these symptoms would have been hard to hide.
If you're anything like me, you'll have an almost physiological response to lying. I just can't do it. I also don't like doing it. Even when it's a little white lie like this that everyone will understand, I feel guilty about it.
Which makes me wonder... why do we hide it? Couples can be taking their time getting used to the idea. We might be worried about telling our employers in case there are any consequences at work. Some people are just private and want to keep the news to themselves for a bit.
Most of the time I think we put off sharing this news because we worry about miscarriage before 12 weeks. That you want to be certain before sharing. I have a slightly different take on this. The people I want to share my news with are the people I would turn to for support in the event of such terrible news. They would also want to be there for me. I think you can tell who you want, whenever you want as long as a couple you are both agreed and you trust the other person. The first trimester is a difficult time. You can feel isolated. I would completely understand a mother wanting to share her news during that time. I did and received only love and support.