Announcing a Pregnancy
I just found out recently that I am expecting. As an only child, I am anxious to tell my parents of the upcoming good news. However, I know people often wait a few months first. Is there any such requirement in Jewish law?
The Aish Rabbi Replies
There are no specific laws and customs in Jewish law for not announcing a pregnancy. Many have a practice not to tell anyone till the end of the first trimester – when the mother-to-be is beginning to show. The reason for this is presumably ayin hara – “evil eye” – a concern that drawing too much attention to one’s blessings will elicit the jealous stares of others. Such jealous stares can be harmful. When a person publicizes his blessings and arouses the envious notice of others, it invokes the attention of the Heavenly court as well. And this causes one’s judgment to be revisited: Does he really deserve this blessing which has engendered the ill-will of others?
Thus, although there is no specific law about not notifying others of a pregnancy, many try to be quiet about it – as we should be with all our blessings. This is certainly the case during the first trimester when most people would not know about it otherwise – and when the pregnancy is at its most precarious.
Nevertheless, since your parents would feel nothing but joy over the news, there is certainly no reason to withhold it from them for very long. Personally, we used to wait until the doctor detected a heartbeat – when we felt the news was a little more certain.
And finally, mazal tov! My wishes that the pregnancy and birth go smoothly and joyously.