Employment & Pregnancy
My experience telling my employment about my pregnancy.
I just started a new position and had no idea I was pregnant at the time! Facing the ethical dilemma was mentally rough. I just transitioned into a new law group. Going from Civil Litigation (high stress) to Justice & Education Law (less stress) I was so excited!
I was just ending my auxiliary position a month prior to obtaining the position I have now and it was a lengthy interview process. I was almost certain I didn't get the position because I hadn't heard back for two weeks. Thankfully my current supervisor called for a meeting to hire me! I was so nervous but so excited. I started the middle of February.
I found out I was pregnant two days after beginning my new position... My spouse and I wanted to have a family but hadn’t expected it to happen so fast. We somewhat planned for when he turns 30 or around the time.. So 4 more years away.. Clearly wasn't in the cards for us! I plan to work full time after the baby is born & I get my maternity leave. But what should I tell my employer?
I was so worried to tell my supervisor about my pregnancy, I was certainly feeling as if I was risking my position by telling them too early. Despite the fact that pregnancy discrimination is illegal. (An employer cannot treat a woman differently because she is pregnant, may become pregnant or because of a pregnancy-related leave of absence.) I still felt like it would happen one way or another.
I’m a realist. I was convinced I wouldn't keep my position if I admitted the truth early. So I remained silent as I flip flopped on the choice to tell my supervisor earlier than 12 weeks... When I became 12 weeks along. By the time, I was already mentally anguished of keeping the secret. It was overwhelming me and causing a bit of stress. I had to tell my employer...
I was worried because I have heard horror stories & losing respect in the workplace or being treated differently. I was so worried I would be then put in this stressful position of hating my new job!
All that worrying & stressing was for absolutely nothing. My supervisor & main boss were very supportive and made sure I had past my 30 day probation period in order to deem benefits etc. I was so relieved. It felt so good to finally get it off my chest and be able to embrace my pregnancy. The guilt I felt had completely vanished. If you know me personally you will know I love working & I take a lot of pride in what I do. I was feeling guilty because I just started this position with full intent to work a couple of years THEN start a family. I had a week of guilt and thinking is this right? Will this be okay for my future? Thankfully I reassured myself and snapped out of it.
In the end, any pregnant woman facing this dilemma needs to choose the best path for herself. A woman desperate for income and a job may find it’s just too risky to come clean before she is offered the position. And I wouldn’t judge her for that. Because given the choice between two-equally qualified candidates, wouldn’t an employer always chose the one who won’t be going on maternity leave? I think this is a fair assumption for any expectant mom.