You are 12 Weeks and 6 Days 190 days to go…

It’s never too early to start planning what you’ll need to buy for your baby, even if you don’t want to start shopping just yet.

Your baby today

The developing eyes are now facing forward and the baby’s right ear can also be seen here. Your baby spends most of the time in a curled position, often with legs crossed, and hands close to the face.

Now that you’re in your safer second trimester, you may be tempted to start buying a few baby items, unless you’re superstitious and would prefer to wait. A good reason to start shopping in this trimester is that your energy levels should be at their pregnancy peak. In later months, you will find it too tiring to carry your belly, as well as your bags, around the stores and a shopping trip may not be your favorite pastime.

Even if you’re not shopping yet, start planning. Ask friends to recommend their favorite strollers, cribs, slings, and car seats, then check prices so you can plan your budget. You might also find that family and friends offer used goods you can buy or borrow.

If you purchase new baby clothes, leave the tags on and check the store’s return policy in case you have a baby who’s too big for the newborn clothes or you decide against the items you’ve bought.

… Your body
Managing hair growth

Changing hormones can play havoc with hair growth. To deal with any new unwanted hair:

  • Shave larger areas and pluck out the odd stray hair.

  • Depilatory creams and hair-lightening bleaches may be absorbed through the skin so shaving and tweezing are safer. If you feel you must use depilatory creams and bleaches, do a patch test first and keep the room well ventilated to avoid fumes.

  • If you’re waxing, be aware that your skin may be more sensitive during pregnancy.

… Doctor
Q: I’ve just told my parents I’m pregnant but they reacted very negatively because they don’t approve of my partner. What can I do?
A: First, give them time to come to terms with the news. Creating a baby with someone is the ultimate commitment, and marks an important life-changing event. For your parents, it is a signal that your partner isn’t going anywhere, however much they might disapprove of him.

Once things have calmed down, suggest that your parents take the pregnancy as an opportunity to reestablish their relationship with your partner and wipe the slate clean. Reassure them that you and your partner very much want them to be a part of their grandchild’s life, and that you’d rather clear the air now, so that there aren’t any negative feelings and tension once your baby is born.

Remember that all is likely to be forgotten when your parents hold a much-loved grandchild in their arms, and since part of that baby will be your partner’s that should help them to feel warmer toward him.

You are 13 Weeks Exactly 189 days to go…

Your hormones have done all the hard work to establish your pregnancy and as they settle down, so should your nausea.

Your baby today

This 2D black-and-white ultrasound scan is similar to the scan you may see and may be given. The baby is the white area, and the amniotic fluid is black. This type of scan is the best way to measure your baby’s length at this stage.

Morning sickness usually subsides around the start of the second trimester. It’s believed that the rapid hormonal changes required to establish and maintain the pregnancy in the early stages may cause the sickness. By this stage your pregnancy is well established and your baby’s major internal organs and support system are fully formed, so these hormone levels start to stabilize. This may be why the nausea passes. Furthermore, there is a theory that nausea is the body’s way of protecting your baby from harmful substances in the early crucial stages of development, so you become naturally adverse to alcohol and junk food, for example.

If your nausea and sickness hasn’t begun to subside by this stage don’t worry since for some women it does continue into the second trimester. See your doctor if you are concerned about your level of sickness.

Your immune system weakens during pregnancy to stop your body from rejecting your developing baby.

This, unfortunately, makes you more prone to colds and bugs. As an added burden, pregnancy hormones can worsen a stuffed nose and nausea.

… Mom
Q: My partner hasn’t wanted sex at all since I’ve become pregnant. Will he ever desire me again?
A: Yes! Although it’s difficult, try not to take his reluctance to have sex personally. When I was pregnant, my husband didn’t want to have penetrative sex, and most of his fears centered around harming the baby or me. This was made worse by the fact that I’d taken a long time to get pregnant, and was also having a difficult pregnancy, with lots of nausea and sickness.

We spoke to our doctor and she was able to reassure my partner that he couldn’t harm the baby in any way by having penetrative sex. She also told us that it wasn’t uncommon for either partner to experience a reduced sexual desire in pregnancy for a variety of reasons. Although many women experience an increased libido at this stage of pregnancy, the same may not be true for their partner.

It’s important that you talk to your partner to find out his fears and explain your own thoughts and feelings. Don’t let this issue cause an argument between you. Each couple is different and you will need to talk to each other to find your way through this problem.

You may also find it helpful to talk to someone who isn’t so closely involved, such as your doctor or a trusted friend.

There doesn’t have to be a loss of intimacy, even if you and your partner are having less sex. Take the time to be affectionate and show your partner you want to be physically close.

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