I was at work last week, and everything was going great, as it does, because I still seriously LOVE my new job. There was a little notification that popped up telling me I had a new e-mail. Naturally, I thought it would be something important, so I click. BAM! BABY IN MY FACE! A new mom fresh off maternity leave wanted to share with everyone her little bundle of joy's face and brag about how he's the reason she's only part time now.
That's cool, I mean I get that you want to share with everyone because you're proud or whatever, but I don't even know you, I don't want to see your kid in my inbox.
A few days later, another staff-wide e-mail popped up. Of course, I click, because it might be something relevant to me. BAM! UTERUS IN MY FACE. Yes, someone (who doesn't even work in our particular office anymore), sends an ultrasound picture announcing that their existing kid is going to have a sibling. Greaaaaaaaaaat. Not even ten minutes later, ANOTHER effing employee decides to flash her uterus all over our inboxes too. "Oh, so and so is going to be a big sibling, yay, and look at you, all infertile with nothing ever in your uterus but disappointed hopes" (I'm paraphrasing of course.)
At lunch, I talked it over with a few other people that I'm close with, and they agreed, "I don't want to see that crap in my inbox. I don't need to know" It definitely made me feel very uncomfortable and knowing that others weren't a fan either, I decided to talk to HR.
I didn't realize how much it affected me until I was trying to explain it to my HR rep and I started crying. Wow me, really? Why you gotta play me like that? I totally had it together and hadn't cried about my IF in a long while. I guess it's just that those little painful reminders cut a little deeper than I thought. I told her how I understood that people were excited and wanted to share their news, but that some people aren't comfortable with seeing it at work. For some people it is a painful subject and being blindsided by it, makes for an uncomfortable workplace.
They're going to see what they can do, if anything. I appreciate the gesture. Perhaps now if I see an e-mail has been sent to everyone, I'll take a moment and stare at the subject line and make sure it is something that actually applies to me before I click all willy-nilly.
I get that people get excited about things and want to shout it from the rooftops. Stop and think though, "Hrmmm, I'm at work, maybe I shouldn't share my personal life with complete strangers who happen to work in the same building as me." Put a birth announcement up in your cube or something and the people who are actually friends with you will eventually see it. Invite your close work friends to a baby shower or something with a tactful hand-delivered invitation. Work is work, and home is home. The only people who NEED to know you are pregnant are you, and your supervisor so they can work out your maternity leave. I, personally, do not give a f*ck, and I'm willing to bet that the majority of your co-workers don't either, but are too nice to say anything about it. Leave your ability to reproduce out of my inbox.