Some co-workers of mine from another office play a "question game." I wasn't there for the question, but here it is:

Is it accidentally impregnating someone if you know you're trying to get her pregnant, but she doesn't?

It's obviously not accidental. Is there a word for this situation?

Edit #1: I mean a word for the whole situation, not just switching accidental for another word.

  • Surely the word accidentally is de trop. If it is non consensual, then it is rape. – KCH Apr 17 '14 at 16:45
  • Consider malice aforethought and deceit. Your hypothetical situation may not be criminal, but it certainly unethical and immoral. – Patrick M Apr 17 '14 at 18:46
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    @PatrickM In the U.S. and Canada at least, it is illegal, has happened, charges have been pressed, and people have been convicted. This has happened both ways (woman claiming she's on birth control but isn't, both sexes sabotaging a condom, etc). – Doc Apr 17 '14 at 19:35
  • I have a word for him: conniving. I'm sure you've heard the rest of the phrase in at least one of its iterations. – Mazura Jul 23 '15 at 21:45
  • If she doesn't notice that you're attempting to impregnate her, I believe you may be doing it wrong. – MrWonderful Jun 15 '18 at 20:17

Intentional: done deliberately; intended
deliberate: done with or marked by full consciousness of the nature and effects
calculated: undertaken after careful estimation of the likely outcome
premeditated: characterized by deliberate purpose, previous consideration, and some degree of planning
I would call this behavior insidious (stealthy, subtle, cunning, or treacherous) or duplicitous (given to or marked by deliberate deceptiveness in behavior or speech).

He duplicitously impregnated her against her will.

  • I may have been unclear in my question. I edited it to be more clear. You are definitely correct though. – Carlos Bribiescas Apr 17 '14 at 15:49

Consider "surreptitious."

They concocted the plan to surreptitiously impregnate the girl.


Not a single word that I know of, but the expression accidentally on purpose can be used for situations like that.


The whole situation? Sexual assault

  • This was the first thing I thought of as well. – anongoodnurse Apr 17 '14 at 21:03
  • It seems from the description that the sex is consensual, but not the impregnation. Sexual assault tends to be used more for rape and similar non-consensual acts. – IQAndreas Apr 18 '14 at 6:31
  • "Birth control sabotage and reproductive coercion may not become legal terms, as parts of those acts are already encompassed in various statutes, [including fraud]. But victims can still seek recourse and protection under the law." – Mazura Jul 23 '15 at 21:38

Wrongful conception: In a wrongful conception case, the plaintiffs claim that their doctor negligently performed a vasectomy, tubal ligation, or other sterilization procedure, resulting in an unwanted pregnancy and/or birth. The resulting child is usually healthy, though unwanted.[24]

I'm unsure if there is case law against a partner based on deception but it would not be sexual assault. The example stated the female partner was ignorant of the male partner's attempt at impregnation, not coitus.

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    It is definitely sexual assault in the US and Canada. Consensual sex that is conditioned on the use of contraception is sexual assault if either party intentional and surreptitiously tampers with birth control because the conditions under which consent to sex were given have been violated therefore the sex act is deemed to have been non-consensual. The person who tampers with the birth control knows that it is non-consensual. This is not hypothetical. People have gone to jail for this precise scenario. – Aaron K Apr 18 '14 at 9:42
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    closeronline.co.uk/2014/03/… – Aaron K Apr 18 '14 at 9:50
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    Where is the US case law? – Third News Apr 18 '14 at 10:06
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    Correction, it is only so in Canada. US law does not include contraception in the standing definition of consent. California is considering legislation. – Aaron K Apr 18 '14 at 10:24
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    This has veered off into a direction that wasn't intended... (But somewhat expected) – Carlos Bribiescas Apr 18 '14 at 12:01

This scenario reminds me of a discussion that came up years ago in a torts class at law school. In U.S. tort law, certain claims fall under the heading "wrongful death." But as our professor told us in connection with a hypothetical case involving a woman suing the maker of a birth control pill for its failure to work, "'Wrongful life' is not a recognized category of tort."

In any event, the closest I can come to describing the pregnancy in your scenario is as "partially unexpected." The impregnation itself, on the other hand, might be termed "insidiously conceived."


I'm sorry sweetheart, but the word for that situation is rape. The man has raped you. Tell someone, don't let him get away with this.

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    In Canada. Not in the United States. Most jurisdictions make force or the threat of force an element of the crime of rape. Even those states that have a crime of "rape by deception," the deception is limited to the identity of the accuse. – deadrat Jul 24 '15 at 7:08

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