So the Great British Summer is here (apparently) and it is pretty clear that there is no way I am squeezing my ever expanding baby bump into any of last years summery outfits. All the pretty vests tops, little dresses and those high waist shorts I wore to death last year will be staying hidden away in the deep dark depths of my wardrobe this summer – and don’t even get me started on all my bikinis *sob*. Although I am a bit sad I can’t fit into these clothes anymore, I am overjoyed to have a baby growing in my belly and what a great excuse to go shopping for a whole new wardrobe. Finding nice maternity clothes can be a bit of a challenge as sometimes they just look a bit frumpy but I have found some really lovely outfits in the Dorothy Perkins sale perfect for the – hopefully! – warmer Summer months. View Post
Being pregnant the second time around is so much harder than I ever expected it would be. I am, of course, over the moon that we are having another baby and that Leo is going to be a big brother, there are just times when I feel a bit overwhelmed. The fact that in a few short months a newborn will be joining our family and things are going to change (big time!) really does stress me out sometimes. Things are already starting to change now and baby hasn’t even arrived yet. Being pregnant and having a very energetic two year old don’t really work together harmoniously, there have been times in the last 23weeks where I have worried that my second pregnancy is turning me in to a bad Mum. View Post
I love a good night out and by night out I mean an evening out of the house with friends than involves lots of chatting, dancing and, of course, a gin or six. Being 22 weeks pregnant and already a mum to a two year old, my nights out are extremely rare, and the nights like the one I describe above are now just a happy yet some what blurry memory. View Post
Can you believe that I am now half way through my pregnancy? I sure can’t! Since I last wrote a pregnancy update, when I was 16weeks, my bump has probably tripled in size and I definitely feel pregnant now.
So apart from having a bump that is growing bigger by the day. here is what has been going on with me and baby bump lately. View Post
I found out I was pregnant this time around when I was already 5 weeks gone, I probably knew I was pregnant from about 3 weeks though. I don’t know if it is because this is my second pregnancy or because Oli and I were very much trying to make a baby but I knew I was pregnant at least a week before ever reliable Aunt Flo decided not to show up. When I sat on the loo and took a test on that Wednesday afternoon in February, I was positive it was going to be..well..positive!
At one point or another, we have all had a secret we have kept from everyone else. A little bit of information we have held on to tightly and guarded as if it were gold. If and when we decide to disclose this precious truth, great thought is given to who can be trusted with it. View Post
I have some exciting news.
I don’t know about you but when I was pregnant I worried about every little thing. Should I be eating this? Am I exercising enough? Have I bought enough baby grows? Early on in my pregnancy, besides the health of my growing baby, the thing I worried about the most was telling my boss the good news. I was new to my job and was nervous about telling my new boss I was pregnant as I was yet to feel like a fully established member of staff, I was very much still the new girl.
My 12 week scan was rapidly approaching and I knew it would soon be time to tell my employer about the pregnancy, I wasn’t going to be able to hide it forever. The day after my scan I decided to tell her, I convinced myself I was stressing over nothing. Yes I was new but I was doing well in my work and we seemed to have a good relationship, surely I had nothing to worry about.
Unfortunately, I was right to be so concerned.
I was not greeted with congratulations and well wishes, instead I was told it was very likely my employment would be terminated as my boss wanted someone who was fully committed to the business, I had every intention of working up until the very last few weeks of pregnancy and planned to only take 6 months maternity leave, it was my first job after university and I was eager to make it work. I was never able to prove what the business meant to me, the following week I was told the job was no longer mine.
3 moths pregnant and unemployed. Not exactly the ideal situation.
Friends and family told me it wasn’t fair – ‘she can’t do that?’ , ‘is that even legal?’. As it turns out, no it is not legal. My not so lovely boss had breached discrimination laws set out in the Equality and Employment rights acts. A quick phone call with citizen advice bureau revealed what happened to me was not just illegal but I also had a strong case for compensation.
This is not what I wanted when I first found out I was expecting. I wanted my boss to be OK with it and to have my job waiting for me when I came back from maternity leave. I did not want to be dealing with a solicitor and a messy compensation case up until the time I was 8 months pregnant. I did not want to have to read my now ex employers defence statement, full of lies, painting me as an incompetent employee, when in fact I worked hard every single day.
We don’t always get what we want though, do we?
After everything, I only came away with £4000 in compensation. Just over 4 months worth of wages. 4 months I could have still been working for her, by that point I would have been 7 months pregnant and still very capable of sitting at a computer answering emails and making phone calls. This £4000 by no stretch of the imagination covered my loss of earnings, let alone my loss of maternity pay. This was a settlement reached out of court, a trial could have resulted in a much higher payment but could have also resulted in nothing. It all would have depended on how the judge was feeling on the day. 8 months pregnant, extremely hormonal and stressed, I decided to settle out of court. I could not stand to listen to my boss tell the judge her web of lies, so for my health and my baby’s, we took her offer.
Now I am not saying this is going to happen to you or you should try and claim compensation if it does. That decision is up to you. All I am saying is know your rights before you tell your boss about your pregnancy. It is better to be informed, just in case.
As a pregnant employee you have 4 main rights –
1. The right to paid time off for antenatal care
2. The right to not be treated differently/discriminated against due to your pregnancy
3. The right to maternity leave
4. The right to maternity pay/maternity allowance
If your employer denies you of any of these things then they are breaking the law. Also, you do not have to tell your employer you’re pregnant as early as I did. If you have a physical job that may put you or your baby’s health at risk you may wish to share the news early on, otherwise you can wait until you are 25 weeks before you tell your employer. How I wish I had waited that long. If I wasn’t such an honest idiot and just invested in some baggy tops, I could have worked an extra 13 weeks. But I didn’t and there is no point looking back now.
Anyway, there is no way I would have swapped spending these 2 years I have had off with Leo for more time working for an employer who ultimately, wasn’t that nice or caring anyway.
How did your boss react when you told them you were pregnant? Did you have a similar experience to me? If you are pregnant now and are looking to tell your boss soon, good luck and don’t worry, luckily my story is quite an uncommon one.