Pregnancy really is contagious – and scientists say they have the research to prove it!

A study, published by The American Sociological Association journal, looked at 1,720 women who participated in the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (ADD Health) in the United States over a ten year span from the 1990s to 2000s.

When the women started the experiment they were 15 years old and researchers found that more than half of the women in the experiment had a child by the end of the study.

One of the most mentioned factors for having a child was things such as “friendships ties”.

This cites a probable reason for a strong “contagion” explains the study notes, as humans tend to behave to suit their environment and “interpersonal relationships” also helps influence the decisions we make.

“We found this effect to be short-term and inverse U-shaped: an individual’s risk of childbearing starts increasing after a friend’s childbearing, reaches a peak around two years later, then decreases,” concludes the study notes.

“We anticipated that a friend’s childbearing experience may be an important source of learning, because it provides relevant and useful information about how to face the transition to parenthood,” say the study notes.

Did your friends fall pregnant around the same time?

Share your comments below


  • Surely this could just be related to friends being around th same age and in the same life stage.

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  • When I felt pregnant with my daughter there were five ladies at work who were all pregnant within weeks of each other along with that two of my sister in law’s were also pregnant all weeks apart from each other.

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  • Not for me. I do have a lot of friends from school who had kids around the same time as me but I think that was just because we’d finished university, had done some work and travel and had settled down about the same ages as every one else.

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  • I was the first out of all my friends. And quite a few followed right after that.

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  • Yes it’s contagious !

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  • Ive seen this amongst others before

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  • I did when I worked in childcare

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  • You’re more likely to have friends of a similar age and similar goals which would also explain the timing.

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  • When I fell pregnant with my daughter two of my sister in law’s were pregnant, two work colleagues were pregnant and my best friend fell pregnant a month after me.
    We all had babies months apart from each other


    • Your case really confirms the results of this study then. :-)

    Reply


  • I remember a few years ago at one TV station there was several female staff and mens’ wives/partners who were all pregnant and had their babies all within a month or so. One joke circulating was that there must be something in the water. By coincidence they all lived within approx. 20km of the TV station too

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  • I think this is more of a coincidence.

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  • I suppose if you’re close in age to your friends then there is a higher likelihood of this happening.

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  • Interesting finding. I guess we tend to gravitate towards people going through the same life states so might make sense.

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  • No, I had problems of infertility so I became pregnant way later than my friends.

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  • Nope, I didn’t have any friends so it was all done off my own back and decisions. At my age, I seriously hope I don’t cone in contact with a pregnant lady so I don’t ‘catch’ it

    Reply

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