TTC and new job/fixed term contracts

Discussion in 'Trying to Conceive' started by BoJangles, Sep 21, 2016.

  1. BoJangles

    BoJangles Well-Known Member

    Aug 30, 2016
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    Ok so this may be a long one so apologies from the beginning!

    I work in a university in research, so I have always been employed on fixed term contracts that are associated with the project I’m currently employed on. You still accrue benefits (i.e. maternity pay) in the same way as a permanent post so long as you have continuous employment and go from one contract to another.

    I currently work for one of the heads of department, but my contract is ending at the end of the year. One of the other heads of dept. has a new project starting which I am interested in (and just about qualified to lead in) and I’ve expressed my interest and they’ve been encouraging. They’re a really lovely group and I feel like I get on great with them all.

    So, all good so far right? But, if I get pregnant soon, I will leave this project for 9-12 months, and its only a 24 month project. My question is, basically, if I get pregnant and they offer me the new role, do I tell them before I accept it? Or before I interview? I don’t want to jeopardise my chances of getting it but I also don’t want to leave them in a situation where they’re going to be pissed off because they think I’ve been underhand. I’ve had some time off for ovarian drilling (2 weeks in June) but I didn’t say what was wrong, just that I needed a small op. I also really want the bloody job so as much as I feel like if they offer it me I could tell them before I accept and offer to take up another role within the dept that is going to be available soon, I’m not sure I want to do that :/

    In amongst all this there is also the concern that if they *don’t* offer it to me then I am royally screwed because I’ll lose my rights to maternity pay if there is a break in my contract…

    Any advice or experiences would be much appreciated!!
  2. Luella

    Luella Active Member

    Sep 18, 2016
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    Hello, that sounds like a tricky situation. I'd be wary about not going for a job because you are ttc as these things can take time. Also if you tell them you are ttc you may find yourself under even more pressure to get pregnant as people know you are trying. There's probably no perfect answer to this, but at the end of the day if you do get pregnant while working in that role, they will survive. Not sure if that's much help but I hope you work out a good plan (and try not to put yourself under too much pressure!)
  3. CoolNoMore

    CoolNoMore Well-Known Member

    May 7, 2016
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    Go for the job! I'm in academia, as are a good few friends, and babies happen (and people are happy for you!). There is absolutely NO WAY you should pass up any opportunity that comes your way. My friend and I have been tcc since Jan and if we'd passed up contract jobs we'd both be sitting around, twiddling our thumbs, waiting to be pregnant. Which, you know, we're still doing, but at least we have somewhere to go during the day and money coming in!

    There's no way I'd tell anyone at work I was ttc, unless you are really close friends. In time the law will change to adequately support and protect working women, but until then, keep your cards close to your chest. There's no legal requirement to tell them what your time off is for as far as I know, maybe someone out there can clarify this?

    If you do get pregnant during the project, your absence might give a phd student or an early researcher the opportunity they've been dreaming of, and you can probably still be involved part-time or in some capacity (that would be deal in Humanities anyway). So you getting pregnant might be brilliant for someone, who knows?

    My opinion: go get your job!

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