Can Toddlers Tell When Someone is Pregnant?

  • By: Sandra
  • Date: March 18, 2022
  • Time to read: 7 min.

It’s one of the most widely debated questions in the world of parenting: can a toddler sense when someone is pregnant? This question has no definitive answer, but there are some interesting things to consider.

Some people believe that a child can tell when someone is pregnant. This belief has been around for centuries, and some research seems to back it up. However, there are also studies that say children cannot tell the difference between pregnant women and non-pregnant women. In this blog post we will discuss the evidence behind these claims.

We’ve all heard the stories of parents telling us that their toddlers can sense their pregnancy before they have even tested positive with the pregnancy test. Is this just a coincidence, or can toddlers sense pregnancy changes in their mom?

What is the science behind this question – Can babies sense a pregnant woman?

Research has been done on whether a child can tell the difference between pregnant women and non-pregnant women. 

In one study, 58 children under age five were presented with four different photographs of females: two who were visibly pregnant (one at about seven months along, the other in her third trimester) and two who weren’t. The children were asked to identify which of the women in the photographs was pregnant, and if they didn’t know, whether or not it mattered. This study found that one-third of two year olds could correctly guess who was pregnant, but only 15 percent of three year old toddlers got it right.

Most studies have concluded that children cannot tell the difference between pregnant women and non-pregnant women. 

Another study found that older children were better at detecting a woman’s pregnancy status than younger ones, with three year olds performing the best of all ages studied (60 percent correct) and 18 month olds doing the worst (only 20 percent). In this study, researchers told parents to tell their children that one woman was pregnant and to try not to show any emotional responses when the toddlers asked about it. The other women were told to dress similarly but not tell their kids they were expecting. The toddlers were able to identify which women were pregnant at a much higher rate than random chance.

Researchers concluded that pregnancy is detectable by infants and younger children, but only when they have been told or if the mother has visibly gained weight due to her bump. 

Not everyone in the scientific community believes this though. Some researchers believe it’s possible that a child could sense pregnancy changes in their mom, but there is not enough evidence to support this claim.

So what’s the verdict? Can toddlers tell when someone is pregnant?

There is no definitive answer to this question – some research says that children can detect a pregnant woman, while other research says they cannot. It seems that it may depend on the child’s age, and whether or not they have been told that a woman is pregnant.

So what are some of the ways that toddlers can tell when their mom is pregnant?

Here are four signs:

-If the mother has gained weight due to her bump, the toddler will ask about it.

-If a woman is obviously pregnant, children may have more emotional responses to their mother’s bump (i.e., they might be jealous). 

-Toddlers can tell when a baby moves inside of them.  This occurs at around 20 weeks into pregnancy and becomes increasingly common as the child gets closer to their due date.

-If the mother is having morning sickness, her toddler may also be affected by it and experience similar symptoms.

How can you tell if toddlers sense pregnancy?

There are a few ways to tell if your toddler can sense pregnancy.

If your child constantly asks questions about why a woman looks different, or seems to be paying more attention to pregnant mothers more than others, they may be able to sense that something is different. Additionally, some children might start behaving differently around pregnant women – for example, they may be more careful with them or more affectionate. They may have come into contact with many pregnant mothers and become aware that they need to be gentler around them.

But do they have a sixth sense? If your child asks you about someone’s pregnancy, telling them that the woman is pregnant can help determine if they knew before you told them. This method of testing might not work well with young toddlers who cannot ask questions yet – but it could still reveal a lot to parents of older toddlers.

Do toddlers Act Differently When Mom is Pregnant?

It is a myth that some people believe when you are pregnant your child will act different. Babies and toddlers don’t really understand what it means to be pregnant so they can not tell the difference in their mom or anything else for that matter! I know this seems like common sense but I always get questions about how my son acts differently around me when I have been pregnant. He doesn’t! When you are in the pregnancy stage it is a good time to tell your child that mommy and daddy will be having another baby soon so when they get home from school or daycare, make sure to ask them if they know what it means for someone to be pregnant. When we told our eldest a new baby boy was coming, he was over the moon about having a baby brother!

If during this process you would like to have a little fun with your toddler, go ahead and ask them if they think that mommy has been eating too many cookies or candy during the pregnancy because it is making her belly all big.

On another note! Remember when you were pregnant how different foods made you feel? My favorite was pickles (gross I know) but for some pregnant women they cannot stand the smell of pickles. So if you are pregnant and your toddler asks about it, tell them that mommy is eating different foods now because she is growing a baby inside her tummy!

Do toddlers become clingy when mom is pregnant?

Some people might say that when a woman is pregnant, her child will become clingy because they know that mommy is not feeling well, which may be very obvious if you are suffering from morning sickness. This isn’t always the case! Some children may become more attached to their parents during this time but it really depends on the individual toddler and family dynamic. If you are worried about how your toddler will react to you being pregnant, try talking to them about it. Let them know that mommy is growing a new baby inside her tummy and that soon they will soon have a new baby brother or baby sister!

What if my toddler doesn’t want me to get pregnant again?

This is a question that I cannot answer for you because every family dynamic is different . There are a lot of different situations that can come up when you want to expand your family so I don’t know if this is something that’s bothering you or not but it would be best for you to ask the question. Sit down and talk with them about how mommy wants another baby but she needs daddy too! You need both of us to help take care of the baby! If they are still not okay with it, talk to them about what they are afraid of and see if there is anything that can be done to make them more comfortable.

Remember, every child is different and will react differently when mommy or daddy becomes pregnant again. Just because one toddler acted one way does not mean that your toddler will act the same way. But before you do that pregnancy test, it may be worth going over the scenarios and how you think they will react, so you are ready to respond appropriately. Its best to have them full prepared for when the new babies arrive home!

What if my toddlers starts acting differently when a pregnant women is around?

If this happens, do not be alarmed! Toddlers have short attention spans and tend to get bored very easily so they may just want you all to themselves for a little bit. If it seems like an overreaction, talk to the pregnant woman and explain this. She will understand completely! They may not be able to sense pregnancy they may just notice that pregnant mothers are perhaps getting more attention?

There is no right or wrong way for your toddler to act when you become pregnant again so if they are upset about it, don’t feel like something’s wrong with them! Most toddlers at that age do not want their parents splitting attention between them and the new baby. Just remember to talk to them about what is going on and how they are feeling!

Take Away

Some toddlers may sense pregnancy in their mothers, others will have no clue they are about to become a big sister until the baby arrives home! Just because toddlers talk about babies before the pregnancy test, it doesn’t mean they they can necessarily sense a pregnancy or know that a new sibling is coming. But if they do start acting out, be sure to talk to them and figure out what is going on!