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When to tell work?

21 replies

pizzanoodle · 09/06/2020 11:22

Hi Ladies, when did you tell your workplace about your pregnancy? This is my first baby so would love to hear when you told your workplace and what your experience has been like since doing so! Have you been treated any differently?
I was thinking 20 weeks so I can be more sure that the pregnancy is going well. Is that too late?
Also I have a male boss so would appreciate any suggestions on how to bring this up successfully! (:

OP posts:
glasshalfsomething · 09/06/2020 11:24

There’s a legal obligation, sure it’s 16 weeks before your due date.

At my last place, my direct manager knew (had been given discretionary leave for IVF so they kinda knew one way or another). I had to tell my MD though, and got rather emotional.

Just pick a day when you’re feeling ready to do it.

How’s your relationship with them? Do you see any issues?

pizzanoodle · 09/06/2020 11:59

Thanks glasshalfsomething. I think I have a good relationship with my company but don't know what potential issues there could be generally...!
Not sure when I will ever feel ready to do it!

OP posts:
MaryShelley1818 · 09/06/2020 12:05

It really depends on what you do for a living. I will need to tell my boss early as some of my work is risky. Not ideal but it is what it is.

2020Aug · 09/06/2020 12:37

I told my boss at 13 weeks because they need to plan for my replacement. I told the rest of my team at about 16 weeks as it was starting to become difficult to hide, but could have left it longer with now working at home.

Mademoiselle14 · 09/06/2020 12:51

I told work after my 12 week scan but I had parts of my job I’d been avoiding since I’d found out (manual handling etc) which I wanted to be open about and give them enough time to plan a maternity cover. Plus if anything had happened after that point I wanted to be able to take the time off etc...

Wise0wl · 09/06/2020 13:01

Hi @pizzanoodle I’m almost 17 weeks and haven’t told them yet but am trying to pluck up the courage to tell them next week...

I’m working from home but really nervous as nobody has gone on mat leave from my company the whole time I’ve been there, so I’m worried it’ll affect my career/don’t even know if it’s possible to go back after!

Superscientist · 09/06/2020 13:17

Due to risks associated with my job my company has a policy where they need to know as soon as possible. I told them at 5 weeks. I was quite glad not to have the decision of when to tell in my hands. I struggled with pregnancy sickness during the first trimester and has to have quite a few appointments due to my medical history. Both of these things were made easier as my supervisor already knew.

I was a little nervous as I was the first female member of my team to have a child but my supervisor was good with a male colleague when his missus was expecting both times and they were good when I disclosed a disability. So whilst nervous, I was optimistic. He took it really well and has been great since.

pizzanoodle · 09/06/2020 14:08

Thanks everyone for your replies! Really helpful to know your experiences. I agree with you @Wise0wl, I'm also trying to pluck up the courage to tell them...!
If anyone has good suggestions on how to make a smooth transition into a conversation about pregnancy please also do enlighten me!

OP posts:
Aereon91 · 09/06/2020 14:27

I told my manager when I was 11 weeks - but that's because I was on furlough and I needed to tell her to make sure it was safe for me to return to work (I work in what could potentially be a risky environment). She's been very supportive and I'm glad I told her early.

No one else at my work knows yet :) Not sure when I'll tell them because I might not see them for a while! Skeletal staff rota and all that. I want to tell my department manager soon as I want to give her plenty of time to find someone to replace me (we've had bad luck in the past). I'm currently 15+4

As far as telling them I think your best move would be to just ask to speak to your superior directly, get in the nice quiet room with just you two and come out with it :) No sense beating around the bush. I'm sure they'll be very happy for you!

SummerHouse · 09/06/2020 14:30

12 weeks for me. It's helpful in my place so they can plan.

xkjl1x · 09/06/2020 14:39

I told my boss at 8 weeks due to the long hours being a chef I work. They needed to do risk assessment and all that jazz.
Have to say he was lovely about it and it took me by surprise.
Everyone is different and depends what your job is x

Superscientist · 09/06/2020 14:55

I asked if my supervisor had 2 minutes for a quick chat and said that my partner and I had some news that week (he pulled a concerned face) and that I was pregnant (now had a smiling face). He congratulated me and said we would talk after Christmas as it was a few days before we finished for the break.
I told hr when I came back after Christmas, I emailed her to see if she had time for a quick meeting and just came straight out with it and she said she had guessed as soon as I asked to speak with her.

BeMorePacific · 09/06/2020 14:59

If I was on furlough/working from home I’d wait until 20weeks.
When I was in the office I told them at 12weeks xx

Oatmilk1 · 09/06/2020 15:23

There are many things to consider:

  • does your job require you to tell them (risks etc)?
  • do you have a particular job where arranging cover takes months?
  • are you feeling well/functioning fine at work or sick with HG?
  • is it a big company where they are used to this?
  • have you been with the company for a long time?

I would say wait as long as you feel comfortable (but tell them before the legal requirement of 15weeks before due date).

Many bosses (unless there is a risk element they need to manage or you are too sick to work) don't want to know too early. Anything can happen throughout the whole pregnancy but especially in the first 12 or even 20 weeks and so its not like they can plan much anyway in the early months.

I told my boss at 12 weeks, but only because we were about to go into a redundancy process, I have been with the company over 10 years and I felt it was the right thing to do - but that wouldn't be the same for everyone. Otherwise I was going to wait to at least 16 weeks. I still haven't told a lot of my colleagues/team yet and am 17weeks now...

As to how to tell them, if WFH, call them/wait for a scheduled catch up and just come out with it:
"Hi, I have some good news to share, I am pregnant, due in X month. I am feeling good/not good, and I will keep you posted over the next few months as to my plans for taking leave etc. "
pizzanoodle · 09/06/2020 20:54

thanks everyone, appreciate all the suggestions and very helpful to hear your experiences! @Oatmilk1, that's a great questions checklist, I'll be keeping that in mind. I'm thinking now that 20 weeks is a good time to tell my boss probably. Also thanks for the suggestion on how to bring it up, that's really helpful!

OP posts:
mrsof20118 · 09/06/2020 21:55

I think the above comments and whenever you feel comfortable. Legally you get protection for maternity discrimination only once you have notified your employer (redundancy etc).

Wise0wl · 09/06/2020 22:04

@pizzanoodle how many weeks are you? I will let you know how it goes next week!

MariaDingbat · 09/06/2020 23:22

I'm telling my line manager tomorrow, they've just brought in new Covid risk assessments and

MariaDingbat · 09/06/2020 23:25

Sorry, pressed the button too soon!. The new risk assessments have three 'at risk' categories, over 70s, immune compromised people and new and expectant mothers. It makes every site visit I do the highest risk so I need to tell her before we get requests for site visits! I'm 14 weeks today and staying to show so don't think I could hide it much longer anyway.

bishbashbosh22 · 09/06/2020 23:27

I told mine I was 5 weeks only because it was a week before lockdown and was worried about COVID. If COVID wasn't a thing I wouldn't of told them until 20 weeks

Rainbowafterthestorm · 10/06/2020 08:19

I told mine at around 7 weeks (but only HR). This was partly down to covid and partly down to the fact I work with chemicals so I had to be sure of what I could and couldn’t use. Mind sort of expected it as I had a misscarraige in January and ended up admitted to hospital.

I’d check your maternity policy first (you should be able to find it without asking anyone.. I have to inform my work place by at least 15 weeks before my EDU in writing. I’m going to do the official paperwork after my 20 week scan.

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