Yeah I said it! But no, Eddy hasn’t gone sexist on you! Now that I have your undivided attention, here’s what I really meant to say, "Why Women Shouldn’t Be Forced To Work When Pregnant." You’ll see where I’m coming from by the end of this article so bear with me.
Recently we experienced somewhat of a sever winter ice storm here in New York. My wife and I live in the suburbs. God that feels so weird to say as a former Bronx Bomber! In any event, as nice as it is living in the suburbs when it comes to winter weather, we get the doodie end of the stick.
So when this ice storm hit New York City, it was far worst in the suburbs. The sanitation department is slower to react here and honestly most businesses just shut down. That’s just the way it is. But in New York City, it takes more than Mother Nature to shut it down. Furthermore it just doesn’t get as bad.
So my wife is about 8 months pregnant and works in the city as we like to call it. She struggled to get up, as usual. Then prepared to go to work. Ever since "knocking her up" (Yeah, yeah I know it’s not the proper term.), I’ve become very protective. Before that, not so much. (Just kidding.) But I am definitely a lot more protective of her now that she’s carrying my first baby girl. So I wasn’t really keen on the idea of her trekking out in those conditions. But I just kept it to myself and said a quiet prayer as I was brushing my teeth that she would get to work safely. (Sorry about the morning breath God.)
2 minutes later she was back in the house. Apparently, she damn near fell up the ice covered stairs. And even with that she still was a trooper and tried to reach her car. But everything was covered under a sheet of ice. After her good sense finally kicked in, she decided to bring her cute waddling butt right back home.
Needless to say I was very happy. She goes into the next room to call into her job and lets her Boss know that she just couldn’t make it in. Considering the circumstances I expected that it wouldn’t raise any eyebrows. But when she got off the phone, she seemed upset. When I asked what was wrong? She said her Boss sounded a little annoyed.
Guys, you know how I am. I said "Oh F’ing Well." (Excuse my French.) What did he expect her to do? Part of me was in a rage and the other part felt this overwhelming feeling of guilt, as if I worked for her boss. I guess it brought me back to a few months ago when I was still working for "The Man". I hated calling in for things like that or family emergencies because you would always get that funny look. You know that look, it’s the one you give your kids when they’re acting up in public.
In any event when I was still an employee I was very lucky to have a great manager so he never made me feel a way. But it was the people above him and even some of my super corporate counterparts that made me feel uncomfortable.
My wife is already stressed out trying to figure out when she needs to leave work so that she can still receive an extra check during her maternity leave. Between that and this recent situation with her Boss, it really lead me to feel that pregnant women shouldn’t be forced to work or even worry about things like maternity leave. This is why working at home is so important. Pregnancy is stressful enough especially for new parents like ourselves. But when you add the stress of work on to that, it just doesn’t make for a good experience for anyone.
I’m praying there is a day when we all can work at home but especially pregnant women. I think it’s totally unfair that they are put in compromising situations because they’ve made a decision to start a family. It’s a sad day when women have to choose between family and careers or in my wife’s case her freaking safety.
So I’m more determined than ever to ensure that we’re all able to work at home in one capacity or another. Because I’ll be damned if my wife or any other women are put in these situations.
Sorry for this venting post. But I had to get that off my chest. Has anyone else experienced these situations or am I just overacting and being an "Angry Black Man" (lol)?