I’m a contractor for a fairly large consulting firm. The client site I work at has a handful of government employees, and most of the rest of us are contractors. A handful of folks from the office next door got together and played a prank on one of their own that I feel is highly unprofessional.
This woman had the stomach flu two weeks ago, so they kept convincing her she was pregnant. Finally, someone brought in a home EPT kit for her to use to settle it once and for all. Unbeknownst to the victim, however, it was a fake positive test bought off Amazon. She started freaking out.
They finally let her off the hook, via a sign posted at the entrance to their area.
I don’t really have a question, just am wondering at the audacity of some people. Three of the four who perpetrated that joke were government employees (including the chief of the unit we all work at). Who does that?
I wrote a short personal response to this letter writer and was going to leave it at that, but by golly this bothers me. It bothers my so much that I’m going to write in all caps. PREGNANCY IS NOT TO BE JOKED ABOUT. Sure, you can make jokes about weight gain, craving, and coming to an agreeable name (Suzanne is always a lovely choice for a girl), but you do not joke about being pregnant or not being pregnant at all.
You do not post Facebook messages that declare you are pregnant on April Fool’s Day. You do not post that you’re pregnant and due on a certain date based on a code sent around to bring awareness to anything. And YOU DO NOT TRICK A COWORKER, FRIEND, RELATIVE, OR MORTAL ENEMY INTO THINKING SHE IS PREGNANT.
This is so horrible I don’t even know why I need to explain this to people. Do you know how women get pregnant when they don’t want to? Do you know that an unexpected positive pregnancy test can either be the best news in the world or enough to induce sheer horror? And then when she finds out it’s a “joke” the opposite reaction will then ensue. And here’s the deal–no matter how well you think you know someone, you don’t know she will think.
If this had happened under my watch, the “jokesters” would have been read the riot act. This is not funny. Not funny at all. Not remotely funny. It is not a good joke at work. It is not a good joke with friends. It is not a good joke on the internet. When you think you’re being funny by declaring yourself to be pregnant when you are not (ha, ha, ha!) you’re bringing unnecessary heartbreak to your friend struggling with infertility.