Do You Have To Tell Your Boss You’re Pregnant?

                    

When I was pregnant with my third child, I had just started a new job and had recently been released off of my training period. I struggled with the decision if I needed to inform my boss that I was pregnant.

I read an article in a parenting magazine that recommended pregnant employees tell their bosses about the pregnancy as a “courtesy, so they don’t hear the news around the water cooler and feel blindsided.”

I have to say, I took a slight offense to the tone of the article. It seemed to me that it was implying that pregnancy was indeed a negative event that needed “confessing.”

On the other hand, I recognized that however my boss would view my pregnancy, the fact is that my pregnancy meant I would be taking some time off and that would need to be addressed. The question of whether or not it is “rude” to keep mum before my bump became known was an entirely different issue.

In the end, after word had gotten out about my pregnancy and I was starting to show, I popped into her office and casually mentioned my pregnancy. In my mind, she didn’t “deserve” to know, but because my co-workers knew, I made a point to let her know, albeit in a nonchalant way.

When it comes to discussing your pregnancy at work, you are in charge; The Pregnancy Discrimination Act makes it pretty clear that you can’t be discriminated at work because of your pregnancy, so you can let your boss know in a way that makes you the most comfortable.

Regardless of how and when you decide to tell your boss that you’re pregnant, you will eventually have to discuss maternity leave. The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) ensures that pregnant women are entitled by law to take up to twelve weeks of maternity leave. Generally, if you are a full-time worker, at least six weeks will be paid, while the rest can vary on your organization’s policies and/or your saved paid time off.

If you happen to be a part-time worker like myself, or work for a company that doesn’t have at least fifteen employees, you’re on your own when it comes to maternity leave. I saved up as much as I could before the baby was born and took off as much time as I could afford afterwards.

When did you tell your boss that you were pregnant? 

ADVERTISEMENT

Photo credit: Flickr/Vivian Chen

What do you think?

Do You Have To Tell Your Boss You’re Pregnant?

Chaunie Brusie is a writer, mom of four, and founder of The Stay Strong Mom, a community + gift box service for moms after loss. ... More

Tell us what you think!

8 comments

  1. jesster131 says:

    I told my boss pretty quick. I work in housekeeping so the cleaning chemicals were an issue I wanted addressed right away & my pregnancy was considered high risk. I was not going to take any chances.

  2. Isaiah says:

    My manager didn’t mind that I was pregnant, they just wanted me to be safe

  3. Mouse says:

    While FMLA is only for companies of 50 employees or more and is unpaid, be sure to look at state laws as they tend to be narrowly focused, some down to like 15-25 employees. Paid time of is not required in this country, although normally you use up any paid time off such as vacation or sick time before going to no paid leave. Even dads can use their pto this way (unless the union rules state otherwise).

  4. Janice says:

    I would, so my duties could be adjusted for safety reasons, and in case you have an accident.

  5. Capucine says:

    And the law only applies if the employer has at least 50 employees and it is unpaid leave.

  6. vperry says:

    Keep in mind that employers also do not have to follow FMLA if you have been employeed with them for less than 12 months. The federal law only protects your job and does not require any paid time off to be given. Paid leave is given based on state laws or company policies.

  7. I was just wondering about this. I’m a part-time worker and I doubt any paid leave option is available so since I don’t see my boss (I’m a home health care provider) so for now I’ve decided to keep quiet and save as much as I can.

  8. Jeanetta says:

    At my job we don’t have to tell the boss anything, we have to go to HR for everything…

Advertisement
[x]
×

EverydayFamily.com Week-by-Week Newsletter

Receive weekly updates on your pregnancy or new baby’s development as well as Free Stuff, Special Offers, Product Samples, Coupons, Checklists and Tools you can use today, and more from EverydayFamily! Plus all new members are entered to win FREE diapers for a year! Receive weekly updates on your pregnancy or new baby’s development as well as Free Stuff, Special Offers, Product Samples, Coupons, Checklists and Tools you can use today, and more from EverydayFamily! Plus all new members are entered to win FREE diapers for a year!

Due Date or Baby's Birth Date


By clicking the "Join Now" button you are agreeing to the terms of use and privacy policy.

Send this to a friend