Job offer the day after finding out i'm pregnant?

(28 Posts)
Isthisusernamefree Sun 16-Oct-16 10:00:54

Hi everyone,

I'm hoping for some advice! Last week I interviewed for a great position at a new company, 10 minutes from home, great prospects, better pay, independent company, fab perks package, but the day after I interviewed I found out I'm pregnant - I received the job offer the day after. I know I don't need to disclose my pregnancy to an employer until much later, but is it frowned upon to start a new job pregnant? Or would it potentially get me in trouble?

So as not to drip feed, the backstory to getting a new job is that I had a MC at the beginning of July which I didn't cope very well with at the time. In my current job I was due to start a large training course which I felt I couldn't complete whilst struggling the way I was. I asked to defer a year and start it at the next intake to give me time to sort myself out. Long story short, I was told by my company either enrol on the course or you won't have a job anymore, all very stressful under the circs, I broke down and was signed off by my doctor as things were beginning to spiral. I had been very open with my manager about how I was struggling and had been 100% honest about what I could and couldn't cope with going forward and in the end, it was all twisted around by the senior management to make it seem like I was 'stalling' to allow myself time to get pregnant again so I wouldn't rack up more course fees in case I didn't come back. Which was not the case. In fact, past the initial frenzy of 'how do I fix this?? I'll try and get pregnant again' (which was my grief talking) I had no desire to try again any time soon.

After the MC my cycles were completely messed up and I had all the signs of not ovulating, so I was tracking my cycles and not DTD anywhere near what could have been fertile time. Only apparently I did it wrong, because on Thursday, boom, there was a positive test, which I only took to be able to put on the tracking app as negative in order to prove my cycle was still completely off course (was going to go to the dr with the evidence to check that this wasn't a problem!).

So being pregnant again so soon has it's own psychological challenges, but I don't feel comfortable working for my current company anymore, they made life much more difficult at a time where I really needed their support and I never thought things would have worked out this way.

Basically, I really want the new job, but can I take it knowing i'm pregnant? Albeit only 5 weeks pregnant?

Newlywed56 Sun 16-Oct-16 10:08:02

I really wouldn't even think twice about taking a new job pregnant, after all you interviewed the same as everybody else and you shouldn't not get it just because you're pregnant. What I would make sure though is you qualify for their maternity package if they have one, varies between companies. Some you have to work a year etc before you're eligible

AnotherEmma Sun 16-Oct-16 10:11:56

Congratulations on your pregnancy and job offer! smile
I really really think you should take the job. It's a no brainier, it sounds a million miles better than your current job.
Legally you don't have to tell your employer that you're pregnant until about 24 weeks (if I remember rightly). Legally your employer is not allowed to discriminate against you due to pregnancy, although in practice some do, of course, but the law is on your side.
Some people may argue that morally/ethically, you should tell your employer before starting the job, but I disagree with this. Many people start a job and have to leave within the first year due to unforeseen circumstances. Of course in your case they're not unforeseen circumstances. But I think 5 weeks pregnant is far too early to tell an employer anyway.
You will be entitled to maternity leave, you won't get Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP) but you will get Maternity Allowance (MA). SMP is higher than MA for the first 6 weeks of maternity leave, but after that they're exactly the same.

FWIW, I got pregnant the week after starting a new job. Told my line manager after my 12 week scan. I was nervous but she was absolutely lovely about it, thankfully.

MrsPear Sun 16-Oct-16 10:15:15

I wouldn't think twice! I had exactly the same thing when pregnant with ds1 and started my job in empire tops and trousers so I didn't show til late - my three appointments I booked as holiday. I told them at the last possible moment after my probation had ended.

Newlywed56 Sun 16-Oct-16 10:19:11

Another Emma , why would she not be entitled to SMP? Company I'm aware of maternity policy is that they must have worked for 6months first.. I know the criteria varies a lot but the op could qualify depending on the company.

fixyourgardengate Sun 16-Oct-16 10:22:53

Take it! Your current company sound like they have treated you appallingly. I realised I was pregnant on the first day of a new job. Dd is 3 now, I'm still in that job ☺

tinytoucan Sun 16-Oct-16 10:23:05

Congratulations on the pregnancy and the job!

I had a similar thing- found out I was pregnant the same week as a job offer. I accepted the job and told them I was pregnant during my first week working there (so earlier than you legally are required to but not before I'd started). I felt awkward about it but my manager was lovely and there were no problems with my probabtion or anything like that.

booksandchoc Sun 16-Oct-16 10:23:54

To qualify for SMP you must have worked for the company for 26 weeks at 15 weeks before your due date (so 25 weeks) so technically to qualify for SMP at any company you have to work for them before you fall pregnant

tinytoucan Sun 16-Oct-16 10:24:21

I didn't qualify for SMP by the way- but I get maternity allowance which is the same amount.

AnotherEmma Sun 16-Oct-16 10:26:02

Newlywed

SMP is a statutory benefit which means that the entitlement rules are the same for everyone no matter who their employer is. It's paid by the employer but I believe it's reimbursed by the government. You can only get SMP if you started the job before getting pregnant (and even then, given how the dates are worked out, you actually need to have started the job at least 2 weeks before you conceive).

I think you're getting SMP confused with enhanced maternity pay, which is a contractual benefit i.e. it depends on the employer and the employment contract. Enhanced maternity pay is more than SMP (it can't be less because SMP is the legal minimum). However it is extremely unlikely that any employer would offer enhanced maternity pay to an employee who was pregnant before they started. They usually need to be at the company for at least a year before getting pregnant.

If it's still not clear you might find this info helpful:
www.maternityaction.org.uk/advice-2/mums-dads-scenarios/pregnant/pregnant-at-work/

OP

You might find this reassuring?
worksmart.org.uk/work-rights/family-friendly-work/maternity-leave/if-i-go-job-interview-do-i-have-tell-them-im

AnotherEmma Sun 16-Oct-16 10:26:36

Wrong user name! Last post was me, I'll ask MNHQ to change my username on it

needaplanjan Sun 16-Oct-16 10:27:43

You can honestly tell them you didn't know you were pregnant when you do eventually tell them.

Go to the new job, it's a no-brainer.

Your current job is no place for a pregnant woman. Run for the hills and enjoy working at your new company. Put off telling them till you need to, certainly not in your probation.

dementedpixie Sun 16-Oct-16 10:28:03

I agree with not qualifying for SMP as technically you have to be working there already before falling pregnant due to the qualifying conditions (having worked for 26 weeks when you are 15 weeks prior to your estimated delivery date)

MercuryRising Sun 16-Oct-16 10:28:15

I also had the exact same thing happen when I found out I was pregnant with DS1. As others have said I qualified for MA and the company were lovely and supportive. Enjoy your new job and pregnancy.

OhTheRoses Sun 16-Oct-16 10:30:58

SMP requires you to gave been in post for 26 weeks, at the start of the 15th week prior to the Expected date of confinement. You probably will only be eligible for maternity allowance.

If the new employer is difficult, potentially it's sex discrimination.

It worries me that the miscarriage has,affected you so badly. I know they are hellish; I had many but my Employers only knew about the one at 17 weeks, I had two weeks off and they were very supportive. They had no idea about the other mc's.

Have you had any counselling support to help you get over the miscarriage. I am concerned at how you will cope in a new job, newly pregnant, if you aren't over the mc. You do need to be mindful that if you don't perform you will be on probation, will have minimal employment rights and little job security.

Do you have the strength of mind to work without taking time off for the next twelve weeks or so? Will your previous employer be disclosing your absence history in references. TBH OP I'd withdraw the offer based on that potentially if I didn't know you were pg.

PumpkinPi84 Sun 16-Oct-16 10:32:21

Double check you could cope financially on maternity allowance, and if you can, take the job. If your current employers have already shown themselves to be unsupportive then the unknown is definitely better than a pregnancy there and negotiating a return to work. I felt badly treated by my employer whilst pregnant and the worry about negotiating a return to work put a shadow on my mat leave. It's always a risk to move job, but sounds like the unknown is better than the present.

Good luck, and hope you have a sticky bean!

dementedpixie Sun 16-Oct-16 10:34:11

We don't even know how long the OP was signed off for. You don't sound like you'd be a very understanding employer!

Moofin Sun 16-Oct-16 10:34:42

Happened to me! Like you I had also had a recent MC so certainly didn't want to not take the job and potentially end up with no baby and no job - by the time my crb and notice etc where through I was 12 weeks and had my scan the week I started!

I fessed up to the new boss before I started so I could have these appointments off - this was the worse bit! But it was all fine in the end, and I'm back to work in January 😢 I won't be starting back pregnant though!

You may not be entitled to SMP but if not you should get maternity allowance which is the same amount just claimed in a different way.

I still got my occupational pay as I was moving from one Nhs trust to the another

I felt awful telling my boss but it really all worked out fine

Moofin Sun 16-Oct-16 10:42:32

Ps. I got pregnant the next cycle after my early MC - and discovered I was oreganant 2 days after accepting my new job - if was terrifying! It wasn't until I was settled into my job and had seen my baby on the scan that I felt I could relax

I now have a job I like and a gorgeous little boy ! So congratulations

Mamushka Sun 16-Oct-16 10:48:18

Pregnant women/women in general face enough discrimination as it is, definitely don't sabotage your own career because of it smile

LyndaNotLinda Sun 16-Oct-16 10:50:05

OhTheRoses - you have no idea how late the OP's MC was or the context. It's really unsupportive to denigrate other women for not coping well with one.

OP - congrats on the pregnancy and the job offer. I'd take the job. Sounds like you could do with a fresh start

AnotherEmma Sun 16-Oct-16 13:39:22

It also sounds as if the OP's employer contributed to her stress by being complete arseholes very inflexible about her deferring the training.

Coping with a miscarriage when your employer is not being understanding or accommodating is a very different scenario from settling into a new job when pregnant - which can be challenging but is very doable (I did it). Even if you need a bit of time off for appointments or because of sickness, most employers are reasonable about it, and if not, they're not the kind of employer you'd want to work for, are they?!

Isthisusernamefree Sun 16-Oct-16 17:39:07

Thanks all for the feedback! I'm so glad you've all said go for it, I was worried it was going to be frowned upon! It's so good to hear of others who were in the same position and that being pregnant isn't the end of the world for new employers!

Ohtheroses - I can completely see your point, to be fair, the way i've handled the whole thing has not been my finest hour and others have been through far worse and coped much much better. I've also had to come to terms with my own shame at my emotional response. Basically, I had a missed miscarriage and so found out at the 12 week scan, I was incredibly naive and didn't even know about mmc's, I thought that if you got through the first 12 weeks without any bleeding you were going to be ok. The process after that scan of losing the baby really affected me and almost haunted me, it was all I could think about. Women go through this every day and are strong and brave, I was so ashamed that I couldn't get past it and that made everything worse.

Having had time off away from all the pressures work then began piling on me while I was already drowning in my own head, I've come to terms with what happened and I'm doing so much better. But I need a fresh start I think.

Hopefully I'll be able to do both and everything will work out for the best this time smile

AnotherEmma Sun 16-Oct-16 17:49:11

Oh OP, please try not to feel ashamed about how you felt, it was a perfectly normal and natural response. Grief is not a competition and you are perfectly entitled to feel the way you do.

We all deal with different things in different ways, the important thing is that you're in a better place now and you've even managed to get a great new job smile

charlybs Sun 16-Oct-16 17:55:40

OP there's nothing to feel ashamed about - grief is so tricky and everyone copes differently. People you might think are being strong and brave were probably struggling in their own ways.

Definitely take the exciting new job and best of luck with that and the pregnancy smile tell the new job when you're ready - 5 weeks is SO early, they won't expect you to tell them that early anyway x

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now