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Don't PanicFor the last week or so, I’ve been somewhat convinced that I’m pregnant. For the most part, this belief was paranoid, but also not entirely outside the realm of possibility. I had a proper French affair when I was in Paris a few weeks ago and at one point there was a broken condom situation, though we realized it was broken and replaced it with a fresh one prior to, ahem, any fluids reaching their apex, so to speak. But I know how babies are made and I’m a total hypochondriac, so when my period failed to arrive on the day it was supposed to, and the day after, and the day after that, and I started feeling gassier than usual, well, I began to panic. I started to type “gas sign of” into Google and the search engine, seemingly reading my mind, autofilled the rest with “early pregnancy.”

Oh god, I thought. It was all but confirmed.

“Everyone, I think I might be carrying the French waiter’s baby,” I announced dramatically to my coworkers.

“I really doubt that,” said Ami, “But why don’t you take a pregnancy test to be sure.”

As practical as that idea sounded, I wasn’t quite ready for confirmation of the status of my uterus just yet — mostly because I didn’t quite know how I felt about possibly being pregnant — so I decided to research all the possible reasons for why my normally prompt period might be late and I (and you, if you’re in a similar situation) shouldn’t be panicking. Here are the seven most likely reasons your period might be late besidespregnancy … and if you make it to the end, you’ll find out whether or not my panicking was all for naught.

1. A Change In Your Regular Routine: Did you start a new job? Change your wakeup time? Go on vacation? It can take your body a little time to adjust to a change in your regular routine and that can impact your regular cycle, especially if the change started at the time you would normally ovulate, causing a delay or even a skipped cycle.


Likelihood That This Is Impacting My Period: Moderate. I mean, I did just spend a week doing nothing but eating cheese and drinking wine in France. Usually my routine consists of working and then eating cheese and drinking wine, so…

2. Stress: Your emotions, particularly stress, can have a major impact on the regularity of your menstrual cycle. And if you’re stressing about why your period is late, that could actually delay its arrival even more. Mother Nature is a cruel mistress!

Likelihood That This Is Impacting My Period: High. Looking back over the last few months, I’ve been stresseda lot — about my dad’s death and dealing with his estate, about work, etcetera — and I might just be seeing the effects of that on my cycle now.

3. Illness: Being sick at the time you normally would ovulate can delay ovulation — and if you ovulate late, you’ll get your period late. So if your period hasn’t arrived on schedule, think back a few weeks — were you under the weather?

Likelihood That This Is Impacting My Period: Minor. I haven’t been sick recently, unless you count being hungover.

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  • DrSanity

    So I’m only 17, and yet my last period was on the 24th of September, but since October, I haven’t start, and I’m still not starting. I’m not pregnant, I know this for a fact, I did, however, start expecting some odd things.

    I get more stressed than usual.

    I just finally got done having the entire few weeks of throwing up, which caused weakness and massive weight loss, all right after I ate. I didn’t even have much time to fully digest or anything, it just came up because my stomach didn’t want the food for some reason.

    I have had at least one day of whenever I sneezed, I would get bad abdominal pains, but that was a day only.

    No, I am not experiencing signs of any sort of pregnancy, my left breast was hurting, but that happened even during my cycle, so I just massage it and its fine.

    What has happened BEFORE all of that:

    When I was living with my mother, she got a boyfriend who has a daughter that moved in. Countless days of arguing and tension between the boyfriend and daughter, and arguments make me very tense and stressed. Soon, my dad found a new house that we can move into, afterwards we ended up moving into that new house, the period did not arrive on October, which was the month my dad found the house and we were preparing to move out. I was relieved, but not relieved about no period. Soon, we moved in as of November, and there was no longer tension, stress, anything! However, I also sprained my foot while we were moving, a grade II sprain, it was from tripping and it caused my foot to roll, and it made me even more stressed, to the point of crying every night because staying inside while bedridden can make me very sick, soon the countless days of watching screens caused me to throw up all of the time, making me terribly sick. I’m able to move now, but the ligaments are probably a bit messed up, but I can still walk, which made me happy. After all of that, I still wasn’t starting. Later on in November, I started getting more stressed due to no period, causing me to have troubles with eating food, I could no longer eat at all otherwise I would throw up, no blood or anything, I just couldn’t eat! It made me gain more stress! Now, I am stressed more because of my boyfriend, he kept saying I was pregnant, he wouldn’t believe me, yet he has not ejaculated inside of me. At all. Only time we know its safe is if its after your period, all after, not during or before. The thing that upsets me most: he was talking about miscarriages and saving up for an abortion if I was pregnant. It lead me to tears and caused a lot more stress, this was a few days ago. Just because I agree that a woman should have a choice with abortion doesn’t mean I’ll do it. Its just I have those fears, you know? Tons of fears…

    I know I’m not pregnant, but I tried talking to my sister and she won’t listen to me, I can’t talk to my mother, I have special hatred for her, and I’m scared of talking to my friends about it…

    Can someone help me, please? Idk what to do, I’m too scared to talk to my dad about going to a doctor, but he would help, its just I’m scared, you know?…. I don’t know what else to possibly do… Please answer someone…

  • Stressed

    So I’m 20 days late (never regular) my bf is “fixed” but has had issues with his “procedure” n doc says its a 1 in billion chance of happening plus I’ve tried to get pregnant for about 5 years n nothing worked lol … Haven’t tajen a test. Frankly I’m tired of wasting the money … But I’ve been nauseous and my boobs r sore!!! Like REALLY! So idk wt should I do?

  • Izzy (help me)

    This article has given me a little less stress, but I’m still worried.
    I’m currently 3 days late for my period, and I’m 17 and normally it’s either dead on 28 days or 2 days late. I have all the “tail tail” signs of a period, spots on my chin, mood swings and cramps. However, there’s nothing yet. Although I am sexually active, me and my
    Boyfriend have always used a condom because I’m so freaked out by the idea and constantly worried. However, about two weeks from my last period my boyfriend penetrated me, for exactly ten second, without a condom. We only did it to see what sex would feel like without a condom, so (after checking there was no sign of Precum) I let him put his penis inside of me for literally 10 seconds, and he didn’t ejaculate inside me and when he pulled out he was pretty sure there still was no precum.
    Although I know the chances of me being pregnant are literally so tiny, I am literally so panicked by the idea.
    Any help? Does it sound like I could be?