Infertility coming out at work

Yesterday, besides having a big panic attack on my IVF plans, I have also managed to get some drama at work. Yes, it was quite a day!

I had my evaluation for 2013 and, despite having worked below my average productivity, I got a really positive evaluation. Yuppy! Towards the end of the evaluation my boss and I discussed the team situation and both agreed that last year was a bit hard since we had a big turnover. He then added that he was pretty confident that this year there would be no changes and we could all focus on work. Unless I got pregnant.

Instead of staying calm and ignoring this sentence or saying something smart, I panicked and said not to worry because there are no chances I would need to take maternity leave this year. (Why can’t I ever stay cool and shut up?!?!!? What is it that connects by brain to my vocal chords so quickly??)

Again, instead of shutting up he went on asking whether it was medical or our choice. Then he corrected himself saying “whoops I shouldn’t have asked that”. Yeah, he shouldn’t have.

Tears were coming up at this point (why why why do I have to be so emotional?!?!?!). So he went on saying how if I did get pregnant I wouldn’t have to worry about work and about my job, that he would find something etc. Now this would have been great to hear in my old job where I have seen girls getting fired because they were pregnant, but in my current job this is a given. He is really not supposed to talk about it.

I couldn’t keep it together and ended up saying something along the lines of “it’s a miracle if I ever get pregnant and if it ever happens I will not worry about work”.

Congratulations to me for the best infertility coming out ever: in tears and underlying I don’t give a damn about my job.

After a good night sleep, a few exchanges on twitter (thanks guys!!), and after talking to both my parents, I decided at this point I may as well explain the situation. At least he’ll understand that I’m not just being over-emotional (I mean I am but I’ve also been going through a lot of shit). This morning I went to see him early, apologized for getting all emotional, told him about IVF and adoption and asked him to avoid questions and remarks (e.g. my favourite: “she is the one who goes to far trips because she doesn’t have kids”). I told him the incentive for him to avoid asking me questions is that my productivity goes to zero when I’m upset. That made him laugh. At least one of us finds this funny..

Let’s hope I won’t have to regret this…

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31 Responses to Infertility coming out at work

  1. Tales of a Twin Mombie says:

    Augh, that sounds awful! Sorry you had to go through that!

  2. carolina647 says:

    I can’t believe your boss said something like that! They are not supposed to but unfortunately it happens all the time, I am glad you were able to talk to him about it later.

  3. I am SO like you ! I never manage not to get too emotional at work. It’s awful. If you feel good now, then it’s better you’ve told your boss. At least you won’t have to hide yourself and your everyday life ill be easier. In which country do you live? I have “fallen” on your blog from one of Little Wife’s latest post.

    • kiftsgate says:

      Yes, I hope it will at least be easier now. But I’m not 100% sure. He normally becomes very controlling when I have doctor’s appointments and that’s added stress. But we’ll see. Maybe he will become nicer..
      Little Wife is a little angel. I got a lot more ideas of my embryo drama thanks to her link! 🙂
      I like the translation of “je suis tombé sur ton blog” 😉
      Finally, I think we live in the same place, at very least the same country 🙂

  4. barrenbetty says:

    That’s so tough. I’d have been mortified too if my boss said something like that! It might not feel like it to you, but it sounds like you handled the whole thing really well!! At my last job, the managing director came up to me (in the middle of an open plan office) and asked me why I’d been off. It was just after my second operation for severe endo, and when I’d found out I needed IVF. I said “just a small operation but I’m fine now” and he pressed and pressed until I had to go into great detail about the state of my ovaries and reproductive system in front of the entire office!!!! I nearly died!!! His parting comment to me was that, “oh well, it happens to loads of people”.

    Anyway, I for one think you handled your boss really well… and maybe it’s best that he knows why you might need time off for appts etc? Might even make work life a bit less stressful! xxx

    • kiftsgate says:

      OMG, that’s horrible!!!! Who is this boss of yours!??!?! I would have hated to be put on the spot in the middle of people like that. At least we were alone and I could ask him to keep it to himself..
      “It happens to a lot of people”!??!!? Thanks for the sympathy…
      I’m really sorry you had to go through that. And you really handled it great. Congrats for not slapping him or running away!
      I do wish we were a bit more manly and able to stand up to them and say something like “that’s private info”.

  5. damelapin says:

    I hope too you won’t have to regret it. My boss knows my situation but i’m afraid it will be remembered when i’ll ask for a rise… Otherwise it’s been ok. Xx

    • kiftsgate says:

      ahahha I know, I thought it was completely dumb to do it just as they were about to decide on my pay rise.. but I didn’t have much of a choice. I’ll let you know on what he decides..
      Maybe we should start hinting at the fact that treatments are expensive with Bambi eyes…

  6. Hopefully he’ll now be so worried about saying the wrong thing that he’ll just leave you alone xx.

  7. Titine7831 says:

    Me who wants try to speak more English, I find the good blog !
    I understand perfectly your problems at work. Personaly I am too expressive, I know it’s my worst default at work… And with the hormones injected, it doesn’t help !

    Finally did you make a transfert at J3 or J5 ?
    Personaly I hope that my PMA center will be agree to make a J5 transfert. But nothing is sure…
    My ponction was yesterday, and now I wait the phone of biologists…
    Really I hope for you a beautiful ++++ ! Good Luck !

    • kiftsgate says:

      Glad I can be useful for something! 🙂
      I didn’t actually have a transfer. I am planning ahead and trying to chose between two clinics (two gynecologists) with different approaches. I’ll start injections as soon as I make up my mind! 🙂
      How did the egg retrieval go (ponction) go? Best of luck!!! Hope it’ll be a +.

  8. Kitten says:

    Well, it wasn’t cool or smooth, but you did it, and I’m proud of you! Hopefully he will honor your request not to make comments or ask questions.

  9. Logan says:

    I cannot believe your boss said what he said… so unprofessional! But I’m so proud of you for approaching him about it the next day. I don’t know if I would have had the guts to do that!

  10. I’m just happy for you that you went back and explained – even making a joke of it!

  11. What a total nightmare! I also have a boss that says insensitive stuff about fertility when she knows exactly what I’m going through eg telling me about her friend who had an abortion after having sex in and car park and ‘isn’t it funny how people who don’t want to get pregnant so easily?’….ermmm hilarious?! Well done you for being honest with him though hope it reduces the comments xx

  12. My boss is a lot more understanding. I think it can help to let them know because then they’re aware of when productivity might slip. We are only human after all.

  13. E v e l y n says:

    I regularly get emotional talking about infertility. I think it’s because unlike grief as time passes you can work on healing but with infertility you are living it continually until you have a baby or stop trying.

    I think you should try to look at this as a positive thing. Maybe connecting with him on this level will make for a better relationship and he’ll probably give you a little space and let you call the shots when you need too. None of my supervisors questioned time off requests when they knew I was undergoing treatments and I didn’t have to make up lies about why I was being evasive about which days I wanted off.

    • kiftsgate says:

      I’m going to try and be positive, and see the advantages, but I’m also a bit scared: he’s very controlling. But right now I’m off home for a couple of days so I can get a break and come back more relaxed! 🙂

  14. Holly E says:

    Sorry your boss was such a jerk!! It sounds like he could use a lesson in professionalism. I’m so glad I’ve worked with my boss for almost 10 years (on and off and at multiple places) AND I know his wife. So if he ever said anything stupid to me, I can be sure she’d pop him in the head for me 🙂

  15. Pingback: Infertility coming out at work (part 2) | Today I hope

  16. Pingback: Telling the outside world | Today I hope

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