Congratulations! Your partner has officially made it to the second trimester. Many parents and experts agree that this trimester is, by and far, the easiest of the three.

This is because many of the symptoms she experienced during the first trimester should go away or, at the very least, become less severe. Also, the baby and her belly haven’t grown to the point where simple physical tasks become more difficult – like they will next trimester.

The start of the second trimester is also a very important milestone because it marks the end of the period during the pregnancy when miscarriages are most common. So, if you’ve been waiting to tell people your partner is pregnant, now is a good time to start calling your friends and family to share the great news!

There are still a lot of amazing things happening this trimester and more for you to plan and prepare for as your baby’s day of birth will be here before you know it!

Jump to a week:
Week 13 | Week 14 | Week 15 | Week 16 | Week 17 | Week 18 |Week 19 | Week 20 | Week 21 | Week 22 | Week 23 | Week 24 | Week 25 | Week 26 | Week 27


Week 14

Your baby is the size of a peach!

This week your partner’s first trimester symptoms will continue to fade while your baby continues to grow and develop. If you still haven’t told the entire world about your soon-to-be new role as a dad, now might be a good time for you and your partner to come up with some creative ways to share your news.

Symptoms

Although some of symptoms your partner was feeling in the first trimester, such as nausea and fatigue, may still be lingering, they shouldn’t be as bad as they were a few weeks again.

This week she may begin to feel more round ligament pain from the baby growing and stretching things out. She may also be experiencing a more hefty appetite to help keep up with both her and the baby’s dietary needs.

She may also be showing more of a baby bump this week and experiencing more energy.

What do I do?

Continue to go out and have fun with your partner which she’s still sporting a small baby bump. Things will get more difficult for her once the baby gets bigger. If you haven’t done so already, now would be a good time to look in to birthing classes to learn more about what to expect on the big day.

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Week 15

Your baby is the size of a small orange!

This week you may notice your partner may be acting a bit more frisky this week thanks to a heightened libido. You may have concerns about having sex during pregnancy (many dads-to-be do) but unless your partner’s doctor issues any restrictions, having sex is completely safe.

Although there typically isn’t an ultrasound taken this week, the baby is doing some incredible things. By now, baby is able stretch and move all her limbs and joints, is probably squirming and moving all around, and may even start hiccuping – although she’s too small for you or your partner to physically notice any of these feats.

Depending on what you and your partner wishes, weeks 15 – 20 are the time to have the Multiple Marker Screen (MMS) and Amniocentesis tests are performed. Both these exams check for different defects your baby may be affected by.

Symptoms

From the aforementioned increased sex drive to shortness of breath, this week your partner may be feeling a number of different symptoms this week. Other symptoms include nosebleeds, heartburn, gas, indigestion, and swollen gums.

What do I do?

If you and your partner opted in to doing either the MMS or Amniocentesis tests, now would be the time to schedule those exams for sometime in the next few weeks. These tests can be the source of a lot of stress for your partner, so one thing you can do is buy her a massage or other pampering service, it will not only help her relax but you’ll get some mega good guy points, too.

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Week 16

Your baby is the size of an avocado!

Week 16 is another big milestone in the pregnancy journey you and your partner are currently on. First, this week may be the first-time you’ll get to feel your baby kick. If the idea of having a baby was still somewhat unbelievable, feeling that first kick will certainly make everything feel a lot more real.

Second, your baby will now be able to hear both your and your partner’s voices for the first time! So, watch your language and try to start setting a good example, the little one is listening!

Symptoms

Many women experience some positive symptoms starting this week like thicker, faster growing hair, radiant skin, quicker growing nails, and bigger boobs.

However, with all the good there comes the bad, too. Some of the symptoms your partner may experience this week include back aches, constipation, forgetfulness (also known as mom brain), and dry, itchy, and sensitive eyes.

What do I do?

Around week 15, if your haven’t done it already, is to schedule her mid-pregnancy prenatal visit with her OB GYN. This is typically done around week 20 and will be the first-time you’ll get to know the gender of your baby (if you want).

Also, you’ve probably already started this, but if you haven’t, now would be a good time to begin thinking about baby names. Start by having both you and your partner make a list of boy and girl names that you like then compare them to see if you have any in common.

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Week 17

Your baby is the size of a pomegranate!

It’s right around this time that you and your partner will be finalizing many of your plans moving forward through the second half of the pregnancy. You’ll schedule and attend your birthing classes, deciding whether or not you’ll learn the gender of your baby, and discussing who you want, and don’t want, in the hospital on the due date, among other things.

With all these decisions to be made, it’s easy for your partner to feel overwhelmed. If you notice she’s feeling the stress, offer to take some of the responsibility off her plate, or to do it with her – helping can relieve a lot of the anxiety she may be feeling and it also allows you to be a more proactive participant in the pregnancy (you know, since she’s doing all the hard work).

Symptoms

The baby is growing more rapidly now than before. Because of this, your partner may experience any combination of the following symptoms: increased bodily fluids, weird dreams, itchy breasts and belly, rapid weight gain, and stretch marks.

What do I do?

Simply be there and be an active participant in the pregnancy. Help your partner with any lingering tasks and decisions to be made moving forward.

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Week 18

Your baby is the size of an artichoke!

Your baby is beginning to get big! Your partner may be experiencing some pretty rapid weight gain at this point. That’s okay! In fact, it’s suggested that she should be gaining roughly one to two pounds per week at this point.

Some women may still not be showing at this point. If your partner is concerned that she doesn’t have her baby bump yet, you can put her mind at ease by reminding her that every body, and every pregnancy, is different and she’ll show in due time.

This week your baby going to be quite active. He or she will be working on developing muscles by acting like a gymnast – twisting, rolling, kicking, and even punching – inside your partner’s uterus. Baby will also be practicing to swallow, hiccup, suck, and yawn.

Symptoms

Around week 18, your partner may begin to experience some uncomfortable symptoms. These can include any combination of the following: swollen hands and feet, backaches, leg cramps, varicose veins, trouble sleeping, nosebleeds, and baby kicks and punches.

What do I do?

If she hasn’t done so already, encourage your partner to start sleeping on her side. If she lays on her back, the weight of your baby can put a dangerous strain on the veins, restricting the blood flow to her heart causing her to feel dizzy and lower her blood pressure.

You and your partner have undoubtedly been swamped with planning for the arrival of baby. However, most of that will likely be taken care of at this point. Now might be a good time to read up on what you need to do to take care of your newborn once he or she is born.

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Week 19

Your baby is the size of a mango!

By now your baby has developed all his or her physical features and will now be working on enhancing the five sense – sight, smell, sound, touch, and taste. Baby will also be doing a lot of moving at this point and you may or may not get to feel the super active baby floating from side-to-side inside your partner’s belly.

At this point, your partner should have gained anywhere between 8 and 14 pounds of weight. If she’s gained significantly more or less than that, it may be a good idea to talk to her doctor as it could be a sign of preeclampsia (a condition which can lead to complications for the mother during childbirth and should be treated as soon as possible) or the baby’s inability to get enough nutrients.

Symptoms

Most of the symptoms during week 19 are more of a nuisance than a severe problem. All of which are created from the continued growth of the little human inside her. These symptoms include: abdominal aches and pains, dizziness, leg cramps, and hip pain.

What do I do?

This is a good week to start researching and interviewing pediatricians. Most hospitals require the newborn to be checked out by a doctor shortly after going home. Finding the pediatrician that’s best for your family now will save a lot of stress later.

You may also want to talk to your partner about whether or not you want to store your baby’s cord blood.

Lastly, while it’s probably not what you want to think about right now, it may be a good time to look in to infant CPR classes because it’s better to know how to do it and not need it than it is to not know and find yourself in a situation where you do need it.

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Week 20

Your baby is the size of a banana!

Congratulations! You and your partner are now officially half way through the pregnancy. At this point your partner will either have already had, or is about to have, her mid-pregnancy exam.

That exam is a huge milestone because it’ll be the first time you’ll get to see your baby on the ultrasound and it will actually look like a human! If it hasn’t felt real for you yet, it’ll definitely sink in once you see the head, arms, and legs of your baby squirming around.

This is also the exam where you get to find out the sex of your baby, if you want. This is a life-altering moment for a lot of dads. Now you can add all those kick ass little boy and girl items to your registry that your partner undoubtedly rolled her eyes at when you said you wanted it.

If you don’t want to know the sex right now, you can either wait until the birth or have the technician write it down and seal it in an envelope for you to hand it off to someone to plan a gender reveal party.

Symptoms

As the baby continues to grow, so do your partner’s symptoms. This week, she may feel any of the following, vaginal discharge, leg cramps, heartburn and indigestion, high levels of energy, swelling in the feet and hands, and shortness of breath.

What do I do?

If you’ve learned the sex of your baby, you’ll undoubtedly want to add or change some key items to your baby registry. Also, if someone hasn’t already started this, you may want to talk with your partner’s mother, sisters, and friends about hosting a baby shower – you may also want to talk to your friends about having a guys day at the same time as the shower.

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Week 21

Your baby is the size of an endive!

During the twenty-first week of pregnancy, your baby is beginning to prepare itself for life outside of the womb. She does this by starting to produce meconium, a tarry black substance, in her digestive system. So, if your baby’s first poop looks like a dark sludge, don’t be worried, that’s completely normal.

Whether or not you decided to learn the sex of your baby, he or she will continue to develop the reproductive system this week. If you’re having a girl, she’ll already have a lifetime supply of eggs in her womb. If you’re having a boy, his testes will still be in his abdomen and will drop as soon as the scrotum is done developing.

Symptoms

Think of your partner’s symptoms this week as a sneak-peek at what to expect during the third trimester. This week she can expect to experience any of the following: heartburn or indigestion, Braxton Hicks contractions, leaky breasts, dry, itchy skin, and stretch marks.

What do I do?

At this point of the pregnancy, your partner should definitely be showing a baby bump. If she’s feeling subconscious about her weight, try to encourage her by reminding her that it’s healthy to gain weight. Telling her how beautiful she looks is also a good move to make her feel better (and it helps you not look like an ass!)

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Week 22

Your baby is the size of a coconut!

Your baby is certainly getting big now and your partner’s body is surly showing at this point and may be feeling a whole new set of symptoms which will likely follow her into the third trimester.

With her new found baby bump curves, now’s a great time to start looking at getting some maternity photos taken.

Symptoms

Your baby is taking up a lot of real estate right now which is likely to cause several of the following symptoms for your partner: stretch marks, an “outtie” belly button, increased sex drive, increased vaginal discharge, swollen hands and feet, backaches, hair growth, difficulty catching your breath.

What do I do?

Do some research into local maternity photographers. Chances are, if you do a simple Google or Yelp search, you’ll probably find dozens of photographers in your area who specialize in pre-baby photo shoots.

As your partner’s body has changed over the past several months, she may or may not be feeling subconscious about the weight she’s gained thanks to the baby. Giving her the opportunity to put on some makeup, get dressed in something other than sweatpants, and helping make her feel pretty for a photo session may help boost her overall confidence and will create a special memory that will last a lifetime.

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Week 23

Your baby is the size of a grapefruit!

At this point in the pregnancy, your little baby is almost completely done developing, however, this week baby will be growing his or her nipples (very important!). After this week, up until the birth, baby will be filling out his or her fully developed body with a little extra body fat and continue to grow.

Your baby also continue to move around a lot and as he or she gets bigger, your partner will be able to feel the movements more and even get to know his or her habits, such as when baby is awake or asleep.

Symptoms

As the second trimester begins to wind down, your partner will likely begin experiencing symptoms which she’ll likely experience more as she makes her way through the third trimester. These symptoms include: swollen ankles and feet, Braxton Hicks contractions, Backaches, Bleeding and/or swollen gums.

What do I do?

Whether or not you and your partner decided to learn the sex of your baby, now would be a good time to start getting the nursery ready for after the birth. Painting walls, selecting and buying furniture, and finding the best gadgets are all things you can do right now to be prepared for when baby comes.

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Week 24

Your baby is the size of a cantaloupe!

This is the last week of the second trimester, your partner is officially done with two-thirds of the pregnancy! At this point, your baby is continuing to grow. His or her skin, which has mostly been transparent up to this point, is beginning to develop pigment and become more opaque.

It’s around this time that your partner’s doctor will have her take what’s called the Glucose Challenge Screening Test, an exam where she drinks a foul tasting liquid and has her blood drawn to see if she has any early signs of gestational diabetes. If the test comes back negative, she’s good to go. If not, she’ll need a few additional tests done.

Symptoms

Just like last week, your partner may be experiencing symptoms directly associated with the growth and overall size your baby inside her. These symptoms may include any combination of the following: swollen ankles and feet, leg cramps, backaches, linea nigra, and stretch marks.

What do I do?

If you started getting your nursery ready last week, this week you’ll want to start thinking about baby-proofing your home. Sure, your child won’t be crawling and climbing for awhile, but it’s always better to be proactive about this sort of thing – the last thing you’ll want to think about is baby-proofing your home while your kid is halfway up your bookcase.

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Week 25

Your baby is as big as a cauliflower!

Your partner will likely still have a good amount of energy but may feel weighted down by all the extra weight. As dad, it’s important to understand that things she does may not go as quickly as how it was before she was pregnant. This may be a point of concern for her, so feel free to catch some good guy points by helping out more around the house.

During this week, your baby is also putting on the pounds, adding fat as he or she grows. The baby may even be growing more hair, will start understanding up from down and continue to use it’s freedom of movement to tumble around the womb.

Symptoms

As baby continues to grow, your partner is likely to experience several symptoms unique to the third trimester. First, as the baby gets bigger, he or she will begin to run out of real estate in the womb which means more pressure on your partner’s organs, including her bladder, which means she’ll have to pee … a lot.

Other symptoms include: trouble sleeping, constipation, hemorrhoids, gas and bloating, heartburn, and Braxton Hicks contractions.

What do I do?

As your partner gets further along in pregnancy, she may or may not become more dependent on you for little things that she used to take for granted before pregnancy. Some of these little tasks might include tying her shoes, getting a glass of milk in the middle of the night, or helping her up off the couch. Whatever she needs, help her; that’s your highest priority throughout this entire journey.

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Week 26

There have been a lot of amazing milestones your baby has made throughout this journey so far. Want to know what incredible thing he or she is doing this week? Baby is starting to take some breaths! I know what you must be thinking, how is my baby breathing when he or she is still in the womb?

Well, the baby isn’t breathing air, he or she is taking small breaths of amniotic fluid. Doing this actually helps build the lung muscles and gets baby ready to take his or her first breaths of air. How cool is that?

Symptoms

Here are some of the symptoms your partner may be experiencing this week: trouble sleeping, swelling, headaches, forgetfulness, Braxton Hicks contractions, high blood pressure.

What do I do?

Around this time, you and your partner will want to start thinking about taking a tour of the maternity ward you plan on having your baby at. Doing this will help familiarize yourselves with the hospital’s procedures, the ward itself, the staff, and the directions to the hospital – you don’t want to get lost on the big day!

Many hospitals also allow patients to preregister. This will save a lot of time at the beginning of labor and will get you in a room faster. It may not seem like a lot, but your partner will greatly appreciate it when it’s time for baby to come.

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Week 27

Your baby is the size of a head of lettuce!

Whoo! Your partner has finally made it to the last week of the second trimester. We’ve said it a lot about other weeks, but the same goes for week 27 as well – this is a big week for your baby!

Not only is he or she continuing to work on breathing, but this week doctors can officially see signs of brain activity, which means not only is baby getting bigger, but he or she is also getting smarter!

Symptoms

These are the symptoms your partner can expect to experience this week: leg cramps, backaches, constipation, hemorrhoids, skin, hair, and nail changes, inability to control her bladder when she sneezes.

What do I do?

If you haven’t done so yet, this would be a great week to pick your pediatrician, decide who will (and who won’t) be in the delivery room, and develop a birthing plan (and also prepare yourself to throw it out the window once labor starts!)

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