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Boss upset me today over pg appointments - can she do this??

(29 Posts)
Alias78 Thu 14-Mar-13 19:59:22

My manager can be incredibly difficult, she's a bit of a bully and can be very personal and inappropriate. She has made several snide and upsetting comments to me relating to my pg. I'm 16 weeks pregnant and today I gave her an updated list of all my antenatal appointments including a therapist I'm seeing for my prenatal anxiety. She is now saying I am not entitled to time off for that particular appointment. She was quite nasty about it too saying "do you expect the company to foot the bill for ALL your time off?" and said I'd have to book it as holiday (the holiday i want to use to get away from her ASAP!) I was v upset and had an anxiety attack. I think I will have to have an HR rep there from now on when I deal with her.

Can she do this? Are "mental health" appointments for pregnancy anxiety not counted the same as for the physical/medical appointments?

scaevola Thu 14-Mar-13 20:01:40

"do you expect the company to foot the bill for ALL your time off?"

Answer: yes, because that's the law.

" I think I will have to have an HR rep there from now on when I deal with her"

Very good idea.

girliefriend Thu 14-Mar-13 20:04:09

She sounds like a right cow. Am pretty sure any pregnancy related appointments you are allowed time off for but you probably need to check with hr or occupational health.

Also fwiw write down any negative comments word for word, date and time them and when you have a few go to senior management with them or hr.

mabongwen Thu 14-Mar-13 20:05:07

Technically no sad By law employers are required to give you time off for anti-natal/midwife appointments.

HOWEVER if you can get a Dr to write a letter saying that the MH appointments are part of your regular anti-natal care, then you will be fine. I know it sounds silly but that's just how it goes.

But can I ask, if you had a high risk pregnancy resulting in multiple scans possibly weekly scans how on earth would she then react?!?! angry

stupid woman needs a kick in the fanny in my not so humble opinion!!

Chippychop Thu 14-Mar-13 20:09:39

Silly bitch. She sounds like my old li e manager. Stand your ground but speak to HR ASAP and let them know how you are feeling, hr bods are usually hot on discrimination and will suggest what you need to do. grin

Carolra Thu 14-Mar-13 20:10:00 here you go. You are ABSOLUTELY entitled to your appointments off from work. Anything related to your antenatal care.

Why is it women that put other women through this, I could punch her grrr.

I would have an off the record chat with HR, a sort of "could you advise the best way to handle this" chat rather than wading in with complaints. But I work for a massive company where HR is mainly on the side of the firm. Good luck xx

TripleRock Thu 14-Mar-13 20:11:25

I just tell my employer I have an antenatal appointment and what time I'll be leaving ans if I'll be back. Its none of their business whether its to see MW, consultant, blood test, scan.

Next week I have an appointment at asthma clinic, which has been booked due to my pregnancy. I class that as an antenatal appointment too.

Alias78 Thu 14-Mar-13 20:12:28

I did say to her while I was shaking that if this is the result of me trying to have a conversation with her then I would only go through HR in future. I also reminded her of some of the more discriminating comments she had made to me recently and she did back off after that. I've made a note of them all.

I will check with HR over the appointments. I've also emailed my therapist to ask if she could provide me with a letter to say its a pregnancy-related issue I'm having too. I'm sure that wont be a problem.

Alias78 Thu 14-Mar-13 20:14:11

I am a high-risk pregnancy with diabetes apps every two weeks and also regular scans! I believe that's why she's reacting like this.

Alias78 Thu 14-Mar-13 20:16:31

I think I'll go see HR tomorrow actually.

mabongwen Thu 14-Mar-13 20:30:24

She is an idiot, and should brush up on her employment law as a manager. She should know you are entitled to all your appointments as a high risk pregnancy. She is a fool!

Yes hun, don't worry or stress over this please, you seem to have enough on your plate. Go see HR and have a informal chat. You have nothign to worry about, your not doing anything wrong or anything, she is just a bell end!


Alias78 Thu 14-Mar-13 21:07:39

Thank you Mabongwen and all others who replied.

I'm really annoyed she got me that upset, I hope bubba wasn't affected. Though I don't want to fall into the trap of stressing about being stressed! i have promised myself not to let her get me in that state again. I'd rather walk out.

Only 8 or so weeks till I can leave.

AmandaPayne Thu 14-Mar-13 21:25:56

You baby won't have been affected. They are tough little things. Try not to make that a new thing to stress about smile.

Hopingforno2 Thu 14-Mar-13 21:28:47

Hi as far as im aware anything pregnancy related is classed as ante natal and they have to give u time off, my company until i finished recently had to and im the same as you im a type 1 diabetic and have had appointments every 2 weeks (theres a thread for diabetic mums btw)

Fairlygrounded Thu 14-Mar-13 23:04:44

Hi I work in HR and I would class that as pregnancy related and would have no hesitation in telling her to pipe down - she sounds like a witch.
I agree with the less is more approach - just tell them you have an ante-natal appointment, less detail as possible to avoid being drawn in to such discussions. I reckon your GP would write anything was preg related at this point so you can always get a note to 'prove' it.
I've classed sinusitis as pregnancy related illness - couldn't take medication due to being pregnant, therefore off work, therefore covered by pregnancy related illness - they don't argue with the pregnant ladies, HR are too busy dealing with the proper absence issues!!

SayCoolNowSayWhip Fri 15-Mar-13 08:36:47

Anything even vaguely ante natal related is paid time off allowed. That's the law. Even if its an antenatal class like NCT for example.

Your manager is walking thin ice with regards employment law and discrimination - I'm guessing she doesn't have kids?

You poor thing. Try not to let it get to you (easier said than done) and just concentrate on the fabulous baby you're creating. And don't worry about the baby being stressed - they are tough little beans!

TheBookofRuth Fri 15-Mar-13 08:52:14

I was an HR Manager pre-DD and would be very cross to hear about something like this. I would suggest you email your boss, copying in HR (don't blind-copy, you want her to know you mean business), including the relevant link given up-thread, and say something like:

"It is my understanding that I am entitled to time off for all antenatal appointments, including counselling as it is for a pregnancy-related condition. As this does not seem to be your understanding, I have copied in HR for clarification.

To avoid further misunderstanding, I have listed all my current antenatal appointments below. Unless I hear differently from HR I will assume that I am entitled to take time off for them."

Then follow up any further meetings or discussions with your boss about your pregnancy with an email covering the main points, copying in HR whenever disagreements occur. It may not make your boss any pleasanter, but it should prompt HR to get her wind her neck in on the subject of your pregnancy.

Alias78 Fri 15-Mar-13 11:27:44

Thanks ladies.

No she doesn't have kids.

The sad thing is that what she said re:my appointment isn't the worst/most discriminating thing she's said to me during pg. I repeated some of her more shocking comments back to her yesterday though once id composed myself and she certainly backed off. She tried to be nice after that.

I've recorded everything. Thanks for advice on wording that email Ruth. I will do just that.


GoByTrain Fri 15-Mar-13 12:55:26

Best of luck Alias. I'm pretty sure she is doing this partly because she's frustrated and angry ('I don't have children, so why should I bend for you?') - not that this helps you any...

To those who seem to know, can I ask a related question? Are women entitled to take off time for NCT related sessions (such as a breast feeding workshop that lasts all morning)?

GoByTrain Fri 15-Mar-13 12:56:08

Sorry - must read thread - I see my qu has been answered above. Ignore.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Fri 15-Mar-13 13:01:24

Is your boss Katie Hopkins?

GoByTrain it depends how generous your work place is. Antenatal appointments need to have been recommended by your doctor /midwife and they may ask for evidence of this.

forgetmenots Fri 15-Mar-13 13:19:31

Excellent email from Ruth. The fact that she is behaving like this when your appointment is anxiety related is bullying, too. I'm afraid if there's another peep from her I would be straight to my union rep/HR contact to discuss her general behaviour towards a pregnant employee.

Alias78 Fri 15-Mar-13 14:37:42

I'm hoping there won't be another peep from her. But if there is, I am confident HR will step in. I've been reading up on employment law, pregnancy, mental health act etc etc. she is clearly in the wrong

AmandaPayne Fri 15-Mar-13 14:57:27

Yes, agree with IAGTBF SayCool - the wording of the legislation (from memory) refers to antenatal care. Now clearly that can be wider than actual ante natal appointments, and the OPs counselling seems to me to clearly fit the bill. It is less clear when it comes to NCT classes, etc that they are actually 'antenatal care'. Most employers allow them, but I've heard of them kicking up a fuss and requiring proof that the midwife has actually recommended the course as part of the programme of care.

GoByTrain - does that kind of answer your question too? The answer is it's not totally clear. Most employers will, some are arses. If you have a midwife who fights your corner with the arses, it's hard for the employer to overrule her as she's advising that you attend. Things like pregnancy yoga wouldn't be covered as they are very much optional, unless say they were part of a programme of support for a pregnancy exacerbated back problem.

forgetmenots Fri 15-Mar-13 14:58:19

Good for you alias. I hope you're feeling a bit better after your anxiety attack, not pleasant at the best of times. Stay focused and I'm glad you feel HR would deal with her if you need it.

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