No, not me silly. But that caught your attention, didn’t it!
I just read this article discussing why women hide their pregnancies. This has come up surprisingly often, even where I work, a large government org (aka UA), where clearly there would never be discrimination. Right?
But it’s been an issue for many people I know, and even for the not-pregnant, or not-yet-pregnant, or trying-to-conceive, there’s an underlying bias, I fear, about Women of a Certain Age. A relief when a new hire shares that she’s “done having kids”. I fear that for women over 20 and under 45, especially those with partners, their potential employers are wondering if and when they will start a family.
What about men? A man could interview for a job while his wife is in early labor and no one would know, or, frankly, care. Because a father’s ability to do a job well, even while co-parenting and all the sleepless nights that entails, isn’t in doubt.
Of COURSE a woman is more intrinsically involved in certain aspects of having kids–most women become mothers through becoming pregnant and giving birth, which requires some time off to recover.
Nursing moms need breaks to pump (and in my case, time to eat giant burritos on a daily basis to keep up with my ravenous daughter) and if the baby won’t take a bottle or if the family otherwise decides to nurse exclusively, the mom is that much more tired.
We’ve been told that women can’t have it all (see recent Atlantic article, much buzzed about). That we can co-parent, but only to a certain point.
When pregnant women are scared to apply for jobs it makes me mad. Not that it is anyone’s business to disclose one’s personal life (after all, someone could be mid-divorce, newly recovering from drug addiction, or in other situations that could be perceived as “distracting”, making them less desirable candidates). I don’t think a pregnant woman has any obligation to share her status with a potential employer. After all, how many soon-to-be fathers would mention in an interview that their partner is pregnant? It’s irrelevant.
In some cases it’s just plain obvious–if you’re the pregnant one. I interviewed for a job seven months pregnant, and was a very qualified candidate, and was hired. I couldn’t have hidden my “situation” if I wanted to. But realizing that my husband never had to consider our growing family in his professional career makes me bristle.
So, I ask–did anything about you–your age, your pregnancy, your sexual orientation, marital status–did any of that concern you when searching for jobs? I know it’s illegal to discriminate, but we all know that there are many reasons an employer can give for finding another candidate preferable. I’d love to hear, anonymously if you wish, of any experiences with this, positive or negative. And your partner, male or female? Any experiences s/he had in regards to family status and employment?