Pregnancy Emotions: Exploring the Mood Changes During Pregnancy

Wondering when those pregnancy mood swings kick in? Let’s dive into the shared experience of mood swings during pregnancy and figure out how to sail through the waves of emotions! If you’ve been pondering, “Why am I so emotional during pregnancy?” then this blog is definitely for you!

Imagine this: you’ve just got the amazing news that you’re expecting, and now you’re likely wondering when those mood swings might start kicking in. Maybe you’re already experiencing the ups and downs of an emotional rollercoaster, and you landed here because you’re wondering if this is just part of the journey.

The culprit? Hormones! Your body turns into a hormone factory, messing with your brain’s normal vibe. Estrogen, the mood maestro, and the placenta, our ’emotional pregnancy HQ,’ team up to crank up the feels.

Here’s the scoop! Your pregnancy emotions are genuine! Sure, they might be amped up, a tad more intense, and possibly even crazier than your usual emotional spectrum, but rest assured, those feelings are absolutely VALID.

And it’s more than just hormones playing games. Stress, fatigue, nausea, and the looming labor anxiety pile on extra layers to the emotional mix. Growing a tiny human is no small feat, and it’s totally normal to feel tired and emotional.

During my first trimester of pregnancy, my husband walked into the kitchen while I was preparing dinner, he took one look at my face, and asked me “What’s wrong?”

To which I reply.  “There is no Havarti”

And immediately burst into tears. 

It’s like I logically knew that I was overreacting – but I couldn’t help it – the fact we had no Havarti cheese was terribly upsetting to me at that moment.

Even to this day, we call that a Havarti moment – that moment when you are crying about something that is nothing in the grand scheme of things but you’re still so upset.

Those moments are like emotional speed bumps on this pregnancy road trip. Don’t overlook the challenge these moments pose for partners; they unexpectedly find themselves navigating the Twilight Zone of your emotions.

Beyond the hormone hustle, there’s a psychological twist. Motherhood flips your identity on its head, stirring up anxieties, childhood memories, and those heart-melting baby dreams. Toss in the uncertainties, body changes, and self-image shifts, and you’ve got a recipe for a rollercoaster of emotions.

When do these emotional changes typically make their entrance?

The Mood Swing Timeline

As early as 4-6 weeks into your pregnancy journey, practically right after that moment you eagerly pee on the stick, your hormones kick off a rollercoaster ride with your emotions.

Why? Well, it’s all about Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HGC), making a grand entrance into your system the moment pregnancy begins. Check out that steep climb in the purple line between month 1 and 2 – it’s no joke!

Now, let’s talk about how hormones impact your emotions. These tiny messengers in your brain, influenced by hormones, can really shake up your mood. In the early months of pregnancy, there’s a surge in hormones that peaks in the first trimester. However, as you reach the middle of your pregnancy, things might calm down a bit emotionally.

Hang on, as you move into the last stretch of pregnancy, a bunch of hormones like progesterone and estrogen start surging. That’s the pink and blue lines on the chart. This surge stirs up a whole new set of feelings.

Picture it as catching a wave of hormones, ladies, it’s kind of similar.

Just remember, everyone’s experience is different, so these emotional changes might happen sooner or later for you. One thing is for sure, your emotional landscape is in for a change!

If you notice yourself going from big laughs to sudden tears within minutes, don’t worry, it’s just the hormones taking you on a ride. It’s all part of the journey.

5 Strategies For a Happier and More Emotionally Stable Pregnancy

1. Lean Into Your Support System

This is the time to lean on your partner, friends and family.  They’re like our emotional lifeguards. Pregnancy can be emotionally and physically challenging, so don’t hesitate to seek support. Request assistance when needed. 

If finding it challenging is due to your accustomed independence, consider it as valuable preparation for post-baby days. You’ll reap additional support benefits during that time too.

2. Embrace Self-care

I want you to treat yourself, mama!

Whether it’s creating a spa day at home or diving into a good book, it’s crucial. Take a moment to think about what brings you a sense of stability and grounding. 

Perhaps it’s jotting down in a journal, a therapeutic method to process emotions and gain a deeper understanding of yourself.

A relaxing soak in the tub or a refreshing shower can literally wash away the frustrations, irritations, and even the tears of pregnancy.

For more ideas, check out my article on Simple Ways to Pamper Yourself During Pregnancy, whether you have 10 minutes or an entire day.

3. Learn Relaxation and Mindfulness Techniques

Yoga, meditation and deep breathing can be lifesavers. Mindfulness can help you become more aware of your emotions and provide a healthy way to respond to them. 

Actually, I crafted a unique mindfulness meditation to help you navigate pregnancy emotions. Click here to access it on YouTube!

4. Connect with Other Expectant Mamas

Consider joining a local prenatal yoga class, or an online community of expectant mothers. 

I want you to have a space for sharing experiences, advice and emotional support.  Connecting with others who are going through a similar journey validates your feelings and helps you feel more normal.  
Here’s an invitation for you to be a part of the Holistic Bump, my pregnancy support group, where you can experience the benefits of connection and community.

5. Take Stuff Off Your Plate

Throughout pregnancy, it’s vital to focus on what truly matters and, at times, release less important obligations. Review your to-do list and identify tasks that can be delayed, shared, or removed. By minimizing unnecessary stress and duties, you open up room for emotional self-care. Plus, we’re all better at handling emotions when we’re not worn out.


Here are 3 things you can do right now to strengthen the bond with your partner

1. Set Aside Time to Communicate & Share

Engage in open and honest communication with your partner to help them grasp your experience. Share your feelings, fears, and hopes, and crucially, inform them about how they can offer better support. Also, take the time to listen to their thoughts and concerns. This shared understanding will assist both of you in navigating the emotional highs and lows together. Consider setting aside a daily time for sharing. Whether it’s in the morning or maybe as you walk the dog together in the evening. Whenever it is, just be intentional about it.

2. Show Appreciation

Take the time to express gratitude and appreciation for the support your partner provides during this challenging time.  Small gestures like a text message, thank-you note, or affectionate words can go a long way in making your partner feel valued and loved.  

3. Plan for the Future

Share your dreams and aspirations for the future. Have open conversations about how you want to parent, prepare for the arrival of your little one, your career aspirations, and the vacations you dream of taking. Planning for the life you both envision is like keeping your eyes on the prize. It helps you stay excited about the big picture and the amazing journey you have ahead as a family.

And there you have it! Use these tips to forge a stronger, more resilient partnership with your significant other.

Now, here’s a question for you, “Can you commit to trying one of these strategies tomorrow?” The real magic happens when you put these techniques into action.

Pregnancy is a rollercoaster with its ups and downs, but it’s also a beautiful, magical journey that’s completely worth it. 

Hang in there, mama!

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