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How to break the news I am pg (am in new job)

(22 Posts)
babyelephant Thu 10-Jul-08 21:46:41

I am 14 weeks pg with DC2 and have only been in my job for about 3 months. I will have to tell my boss very soon about the pregnancy, how do I best approach it? Do I apologise, or make an excuse like it was an accident/we thought we couldn't have any more? (Don't want to fib however should I give them something to go on so it seems less bald than "I'm pg, deal with it", as it were).

How do I open up the conversation? "I've got some news", "Can I have a serious conversation", feel clumsy but there has to be a lead-up to it.

I feel bad as is a very business-y environment and pregnancy/baby stuff just doesn't feature. There aren't that many women there either plus my boss is a woman although not a maternal type.

I never mention my DD and have no photos up as I know she wouldn't/doesn't approve.
This is really worrying me!

lou031205 Thu 10-Jul-08 21:49:05

Good morning. How was your weekend? I thought I should let you know that I am pregnant. I am due in xxxxx.

lou031205 Thu 10-Jul-08 21:50:09

That's what I did, when I found out I was pregnant a month after joining a new workplace. The response was "Oh, dear..." To which I replied that I didn't really see it like that!

babyelephant Thu 10-Jul-08 21:59:47

Thanks for your suggestion, that's a good, direct approach!

She is a direct person herself but would be affronted if I didn't show humility I think (she is a bit of a tartar)

Still, I guess it's got to come out somehow!!

I am also a bit embarrassed at the thought of what people think of me when they realise I am pg for as many months as I've been there.

Also as it is a mainly male environment I will feel awful walking round with big pg bump whilst trying to be taken seriously by men...

callmeovercautious Thu 10-Jul-08 22:04:26

Don't worry about it. Book a meeting and just say " I have some news, I am X weeks PG". Then stop talking.

I work in HR so get this alot. I secretly love hearing those words, my boss is not so keen but who cares, it is life and they will all love you waddling around the office really.

If you need Maternity entitlement advice come over to the employment boards and we will all help.

Good Luck. X

calsworld Thu 10-Jul-08 22:11:11

I also work in a very (old) male dominated environment and I hope you're as pleasantly surpised by their reactions as I was. None of them could do enough for me and for those that are completely inept at holding conversations with women, it gives them an easy conversation opener toosmile. (Although am getting a bit bored of "How's your baby doing? What did you have again?")

I'd be straight with them and not over dress it - you're in a business role, so its perfectly reasonable to be business like about it. And anyway, no matter how long you've been in the role you should never have to apologise for being pregnant IMO. Its not like you'll be finishing next week - they'll have plenty of time to sort out cover and its not like you'll be gone for good either.

Hope it works out OK for you, good luck smile

babyelephant Thu 10-Jul-08 22:11:29

Thank you CMOC, your post made me smile and that is a really really good sentence to use. Let her fill in the gaps!!

I do tend to waffle on esp with this boss as she makes me (and lots of others) nervous.

I will come over to the employment boards, because I am really not sure what I am entitled to. Thanks again xx

babyelephant Thu 10-Jul-08 22:16:55

This is it calsworld, my mum seems to think I should grovel about it to "sweeten the blow" hmm but I can't help thinking if I grovel it can only encourage them to be more annoyed, not less.

(My mum tends to think of others' comfort first and mine last but thats another story! smile)

chocbiscuits Thu 10-Jul-08 22:20:18

I reckon if she's direct she'll only dislike beating around the bush so out with it!

MsDemeanor Thu 10-Jul-08 22:21:32

Do NOT apologise for having a baby you nana! grin
Just tell 'em.

babyelephant Thu 10-Jul-08 22:35:52

I am so nervous about it though! It is taking the shine off what is otherwise a happy time. My DH keeps reminding me the baby is more important than work but I have a chronic fear of being out of work and then nobody wanting to employ me for being unemployed AND a mum...

Do I have ishoos or what... smile Gosh knows why I feel so damn subservient all the time!

babylove123 Thu 10-Jul-08 22:38:16


I was the same as you! Started new job in Nov, fell pg in Feb! Am 20 weeks now! Told my work @ 7 weeks (had hyperemesis so couldnt hide it!). I work in an all male environment too so it wasnt easy. I came in late after a docs apt and asked my boss for a quiet word and said "im pregnant". I will be honest and did say i was sorry and i believe the response was "shit happens" - nice eh?! Yeh so it wasnt the easiest thing ive done and the support hasnt been the best since but keep your head high! At the end of the day, they're less important than your little one!

callmeovercautious Thu 10-Jul-08 22:38:30

Please calm down a bit before you talk to the boss. However as tomorrow is a Friday speak to her then. She will have the weekend to process everything.

ChocOrange05 Fri 11-Jul-08 08:43:29

Babyelephant I had a similar thing, had only been in my job 6 months and I work in a mainly male environment but luckily for me my boss has 7 kids (!!) so he was very supportive.

I told them very early (8 weeks) which they seemed to appreciate so maybe tell them you only recently found out. Most (decent) people will appreciate you being upfront and honest. And if they are upset take it as a compliment!

Good luck, and remember however they react that this is a happy time for you!!

hopefully Fri 11-Jul-08 09:35:57

Babyelephant definitely don't do any grovelling - it will make them (subconsciously or otherwise) take advantage of your guilt, meaning that you might end up feeling you have to work if you feel rubbish, start mat leave later than expected, not fight for any maternity rights you have etc. I speak from experience, and am now trying to claw back some respect from my (female, but not maternal) boss after being v apologetic about being pregnant! I'm only beginning to recover it, and I go on mat leave in 3 weeks...

babyelephant Fri 11-Jul-08 22:05:25

Thanks everyone for your replies, it is appreciated.

Am going to speak to manager next week as she has been v busy this week so there hasn't been a good time to catch her.

This is it hopefully, I really can imagine my manager thinking I've let the side down big time by getting pg. I think she sees me as being just as ambitious as she was so I can imagine she will almost be disappointed in me too for being "girly" after all and getting pg. (She is like Gordon Gekko. With a hockey stick, a pair of hiking boots (favourite hobbies) and a tendency to overuse the phrase "blue sky thinking") grin

I mean, what can she do. Except make my life a misery for the next 5 months... It doesn't matter what HR say about supporting you, they aren't there 24/7. And worse still she's best mates with the senior HR bod.

hopefully Sat 12-Jul-08 12:40:03

Babyelephant, are you me? I swear our boss is the same person, and I work in a team of blokes, so I know we don't share her!

My boss made it perfectly apparent that I had let her down by not being as career minded as she thought I was (I'd recently had two really good promotions, and I think she was thinking I was going on to great things. She doesn't seem to realise I still may). I was really apologetic and grovelly, and it's definitely affected the way she thinks of me, and I think that more than anything made her think less of me.

Have just about persuaded her now that I do care about my job etc, but it's definitely been more of an uphill battle than it would have been if I'd just been firmer from the start!

Totally agree on the HR front - your boss will be able to make it patently obvious she is unimpressed without saying a single thing that you could complain to HR about, which is another reason why coming across as strong and not the sort of person to be cowed by silly comments will help, as with a bit of luck she won't bother.

StealthPolarBear Sat 12-Jul-08 12:43:52

Do not grovel, apologise or sweeten the blow! It is none of their business if it was planned, a lucky accident or unfortunate accident?

Both sides should be professional about it - their response should be "Congratulations", anything less is dreaful.

Do you know if you will qualify for maternity pay over SMP?

StealthPolarBear Sat 12-Jul-08 12:44:51

blush that question mark makes me look like I am asking the question.
I am not! Congratulations!!

People can ttc for years, should they neglect doing anything in their career in case they get into a situation like this?

hannah001 Sat 12-Jul-08 13:08:51

i felt pretty sheepish when I told my work - I work in an all male team with a male boss. I switched to the team when I was about 7 weeks pg and suffereing from appalling morning sickness - had to take 5 weeks off almost straight away. Told the boss after the first 2 weeks off sick- and EVERYONE was very nice about it. Actually I think men in that environnment are better than women though - I had just moved on from a software team with a female boss and I was absolutely dreading having to tell her as she had very scathing views about mixing careers with familes.

babyelephant Sat 12-Jul-08 19:18:09

hopefully, it is scary to think there's more than one of her out there!!!

To paint a clearer picture, she is the sort of person who cows other people easily. Behind her back she is called "the Witch" etc because she's got bad habits of being rude to people when she thinks she's being "business-y". ie even if you just say her name (to ask if you could have 5 mins with her later) she will hold a hand up and say something like "Not now", like you are 5 yrs old. Or "Do you think it is possible for me to continue with my work if you are asking me questions" even if you haven't yet asked her an actual question hmm. She also has the most awful habit of stopping people mid-flow with "Stop and be quiet. I want to think".

Having said that she is an expert in her field which seems to justify the rude way she handles colleagues.

SPB - thanks! Even though I know you haven't asked wink, it was planned in the sense that we had stopped using contraception but thought it would take years like DD did. So when it happened immediately we were shocked. I was pondering over telling her this but TMI really.
If I had any inkling we were going to strike lucky I would have waited until I could get better maternity pay. At least I won't cost them much.

I must have actually conceived during my first week at work, but with the two weeks added on for my LMP date it looks like I got pg two weeks prior, IYSWIM. Hence I don't think I qualify for stat mat pay as I understand you need to have worked there for 26 weeks 14 weeks prior to the EDD and I will have been there 24 weeks as such.

From that I gather I can have mat allowance instead? which seems to be the same amount anyway?

I looked in my contract details and it says (think this is what it said, skim-read quickly one lunch) Stat mat under the above conditions, unless you have worked there a full 52 weeks in which case the co match the stat mat pay. (£112 pw or whatever stat mat is).

My friend's work paid her 90% of her salary for 26 weeks as she had been there for 6 months when she got pg. Is this standard or generous does anyone know (should go over to employment thread I guess).

silvermum Sun 13-Jul-08 08:34:11

90pc salary for six months is generous....i got five months full pay, and that is quite unusual. a few companies are more generous than that even (i think the NHS has a very good scheme) but lots are pretty stingy.
i also work in a very male environment. i think the only approach is to be brisk and businesslike about it. if they react badly, i'd keep a note of it for your own protection.
you can always say that you'll be giving 100pc to your job between now and when you go off on maternity leave and, (if its true) that you fully intend to come back and pick up where you left off. If it's any encouragement to you, i survived all this, did well when i came back to work after six months off, and recently persuaded them to give me a good pay rise. it IS possible to get your career back on track! if you want to, that is!

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