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Woman Gives Birth Without Knowing She Was Pregnant, Her Funny Chat With Coworkers Goes Viral
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Woman Gives Birth Without Knowing She Was Pregnant, Her Funny Chat With Coworkers Goes Viral

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An unexpected pregnancy can shake up a couple’s life. But what about an unexpected birth? How is it possible to carry a baby to term and not know they’re inside of you, you ask? Well, it happens, and it happens a lot more often than you’d think. At least this mom had a funny outlook on the situation, as she shared her story with her coworkers. One of them, Alysa, posted it on TikTok and it got almost 4 million views.

For some expertise on the psychological aspect of a cryptic pregnancy, Bored Panda reached out to Dr. Sarah Allen. She’s a psychotherapist specializing in working with pregnant and new parents and the Director of the Postpartum Depression Alliance of Illinois and was kind enough to answer a few questions. You can find her comments below.

This woman shared her surprise birth story in a friend group chat and the friends’ reactions were hilarious

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

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Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

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Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

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Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

The culprit of all this mayhem – baby Theo – came out perfectly healthy and cute

Image credits: alysamcwhirter

A cryptic pregnancy can be a real emotional rollercoaster

Image credits: Aditya Romansa (not the actual photo)

Giving birth is no walk in a park even under so-called normal circumstances. That is when a mother is aware that she’s pregnant, has a birth plan and is emotionally ready to deliver a baby. Dr. Sarah Allen says many women might feel anxious about the pain, their own or the baby’s safety. It’s also completely normal for mothers to feel things are happening out of their control.

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But a cryptic pregnancy adds another layer of fright. “Women who give birth unexpectedly could face all of those things plus the extreme shock of not knowing what is happening to their body and not having 9 months to mentally and practically prepare for the changes having a baby brings,” Dr. Allen explains.

As a psychotherapist for pregnant and new parents, Dr. Sarah Allen has a few strategies to help mothers deal with their new reality. “In order to process the shock of what has happened I would have her think, or write out, her birth story,” Dr. Allen says.

That means detailing the experience in full. The psychotherapist advises to think back to the moment the mother first realized what was happening. Then she would have the woman recount what she remembered about the birth and to think about the past and how she became pregnant.

“When she gets to the parts that bring strong emotions, we would deep dive into the experience. What she saw, heard, felt etc. That allows the brain to process what has happened. We would also talk about the emotions she is currently feeling and develop coping strategies.”

A birth of this nature can impact a woman’s future decisions regarding reproduction. “Something so important and life-changing can have a huge impact on her life and her anxiety about future pregnancies,” Dr. Allen believes. “It is important for women who experience unexpected births to be supported in understanding why and how this happened and what their future contraceptive choices are so they can be prepared.”

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It’s important to remember women in these situations have a choice. “Whether she decides to keep the baby or give the baby up for adoption, the woman would benefit from having support while she makes these choices and her emotions going forward,” Dr. Sarah Allen says.

How can a person give birth without knowing they are pregnant?

Image credits: cottonbro studio (not the actual photo)

The phenomenon is pretty much explained by its name. A cryptic pregnancy (also referred to as hidden or stealth pregnancy) is when a pregnant person doesn’t know they’re pregnant. Statistically, 1 in 2,500 pregnancies can go unnoticed until delivery. How can this happen, you wonder?

Cleveland Clinic writes that this happens to people who don’t experience any symptoms of pregnancy. Others can mistake symptoms like vomiting, fatigue and nausea for a virus. Pregnancy tests aren’t always reliable too – they work 99% of the time, according to Planned Parenthood.

There are people who might be more at risk of not noticing they’re pregnant. Those who use birth control, for example. Even when used correctly, there is a small chance of failure. Those who recently gave birth are also at risk. They might become fertile again sooner than expected.

Those who never have been pregnant might not know the symptoms as well and not notice they’re carrying a baby. Those who are in perimenopause might think they’re too old to get pregnant and mistake some of the symptoms for menopause. Also, people with PCOS can have a cryptic pregnancy due to their irregular periods.

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The people in the comments were just as humorous as the mom and aunties

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lismarie avatar
cherryblossomgirl904 avatar
Cherryblossom90
Community Member
4 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I just do 1 or 2 pregnancy tests every month besides accurate use of the pill. The 0.3% always creeped me out. Here in the Netherlands we have affordable tests (2 for 6 euro) so not that expensive and widely available. And I am now preparing for sterilisation. Doctors are not very happy to do the procedure but it's my wish so in my opinion not different than if they would do similar operations for women that want to get pregnant. But the extra pregnancy tests always kept me sane.

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binkstress avatar
Binky Melnik
Community Member
4 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Am employee’s mom called me once to tell me she wouldn’t be in to work because she’d given birth. I thought that was a crazy lie, but the girl was massively overweight and so didn’t have a period, so she didn’t have a clue she was pregnant. I was just 21 and thought I’d heard alll the excuses for missing work and thought that was the craziest, but nope: she had a pudgy roly-poly baby. The human body is insane sometimes! Back to the topic at hand: I didn’t understand 85% of the posts. I recognize they’re written in English, and yet I couldn’t make most of it out. I’m thinking in another 20 years that I won’t understand most text anymore at this rate!

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lismarie avatar
cherryblossomgirl904 avatar
Cherryblossom90
Community Member
4 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I just do 1 or 2 pregnancy tests every month besides accurate use of the pill. The 0.3% always creeped me out. Here in the Netherlands we have affordable tests (2 for 6 euro) so not that expensive and widely available. And I am now preparing for sterilisation. Doctors are not very happy to do the procedure but it's my wish so in my opinion not different than if they would do similar operations for women that want to get pregnant. But the extra pregnancy tests always kept me sane.

Load More Replies...
binkstress avatar
Binky Melnik
Community Member
4 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Am employee’s mom called me once to tell me she wouldn’t be in to work because she’d given birth. I thought that was a crazy lie, but the girl was massively overweight and so didn’t have a period, so she didn’t have a clue she was pregnant. I was just 21 and thought I’d heard alll the excuses for missing work and thought that was the craziest, but nope: she had a pudgy roly-poly baby. The human body is insane sometimes! Back to the topic at hand: I didn’t understand 85% of the posts. I recognize they’re written in English, and yet I couldn’t make most of it out. I’m thinking in another 20 years that I won’t understand most text anymore at this rate!

Load More Comments
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