Obsessive Worrying While Trying to Get Pregnant

ByJayme M
Nov 2012
Hero Image
Photo: Shutterstock / The Bump

When there’s something that you’re looking forward to and desire, you just naturally think about it. You can’t help it. Pregnancy is no exception. For me at least, when you’re trying to get pregnant, it’s on your mind all.the.time. It’s like hoping that Christmas will be coming, but not being certain exactly when it will be here. For close to the last three years (except when I’ve been pregnant), I’ve taken my basal body temperature to determine where I am in my menstrual cycle. I’ve already gushed about how much I love having that information — from a purely practical stand point.

While charting gives a woman the information that she need to be smart about trying to conceive, it also gives her information on how to obsess about pregnancy. Because, let’s be honest: just about every woman who is trying to get pregnant is going to obsess (to some degree) about the process! Today, I’ll introduce you to Conceiving Connie, who is hoping to get pregnant.

Early in her cycle

Conceiving Connie thinks: “I didn’t get pregnant last month. I guess I won’t have a June baby, after all. That’s too bad as my nephew was also born in June and maybe they could have shared a birthday. But I think a July baby would be great!”

_Conceiving Connie does: _She’ll go through a minor grieving process, coming to terms that she won’t be having a baby in the next nine months. She adds in Ovulation Predictor Kit (OPKs) this cycle, just to ensure timing is right.

Getting closer to ovulation

_Conceiving Connie thinks: _“Okay, we’re getting close. On this OPK, does this line look darker than the control line? It’s darker than yesterday, but is it dark enough? Is this temperature high enough to indicate a spike?  I just felt a twinge on my left side. Could that have been an egg that just released, like, five seconds ago?”

_Conceiving Connie does: _Starts using OPKs.  Makes sure she and Conceiving Charlie are having sex every other day.  Gets real vigilant on taking her temperature every day.

Confirming ovulation

Conceiving Connie thinks: “Oh, that was enough of a temperature spike. Ovulation confirmed! Here we go!”

_Conceiving Connie does: _Looks up her estimated due date to see when the baby would be due if she was pregnant. Looks and her (and Conceiving Charlie’s) timing to see if it was good. Rests in the fact that what’s done is done and she can’t change it now.


_Conceiving Connie thinks: _“Oh, I think I just felt a little cramp! Could that have been implantation? There was a tiny bit of blood — was that implantation? My breasts are a little sore — is that pregnancy hormones or PMS? If I’m pregnant, how should I tell Conceiving Charlie that he’s going to be a father? When can I start taking a pregnancy test? I don’t want to get a negative test just because I’ve tested too early.”

_Conceiving Connie does: _Monitors her body for any possible sign of pregnancy, even though it’s likely too early to have any. Continues to take her temperature, watching for lows and highs. Looks for ways to take her mind off peeing on that pregnancy test. Can’t resist the pressure any longer, so she starts taking tests about 10 days post-ovulation. Tries to be optimistic without setting herself up for major disappointment. Is either thrilled when she gets a positive test or gets disappointed when she gets her period and starts over the next month.

All that thought — and that’s if that cycle is normal! If Conceiving Connie wasn’t charting, she’d still be spending her time thinking about getting pregnant, but she wouldn’t know what to think about. Should she be fighting off the desire to take a test or is it okay to take a test? Should she still be focusing on timing intercourse well? What should her obsession be focused on?

I know that obsession and overly worrying about conceiving isn’t helpful, but it’s human nature. So I Conceiving Connie like it when I Conceiving Connie can obsess with a purpose!

Did you obsess while trying to conceive? If so, about what?

All That Stress May Be Hurting Your Chance of Getting Pregnant, Study Finds

Stephanie Grassullo
Associate Editor

How Can I Relate to My Friends With Babies?

Linda Burke-Galloway, MD, author of The Smart Mother’s Guide to a Better Pregnancy

Talking About TTC

Elena Donovan Mauer

Tiffany Haddish Reveals Heartbreaking Reason She’s Afraid to Become a Mom

Nehal Aggarwal
Associate Editor