Redditor throwawayobv456789 has a work dilemma and asked strangers online for validation before making a tough ethical decision.
She is a woman working for an unnamed “big company” who discovered she was up for a job promotion.
But all her hopes were dashed when HR recently revoked the opportunity due to a coworker’s questionable status in the company.
When she discovered the infuriating truth, she visited the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit and asked a hypothetical “Would I Be The A**hole” (WIBTA) question:
“WIBTA if I report a coworker for faking a pregnancy?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“I (20’s F) found myself at a crossroad recently and thought posting here could help even though I’m almost sure this will be voted YTA/YWBTA.”
“I don’t want to be too specific, but I’ve been working at a big company for a few years now, and the work I do always requires teamwork and technical precision.”
“However, ‘Eliza’ is known by colleagues for being someone who does not pull her weight, she never follows procedure which results in someone having to clean up after her to save projects.”
“HR has basically moved her to every position possible hoping she would fit somewhere so they don’t have to fire her, but she recently made a huge mistake due to neglect that cost the company a big client.”
“So, a couple of weeks ago HR called me and asked if I would be interested in filling the position Eliza currently holds, we even discussed salary and certain conditions, it seemed that Eliza’s firing was being negotiated.”
“Yet Eliza arrives at the office the next day and, wouldn’t you know, she just found out she’s pregnant, which means she can no longer be fired at all.”
“I was bummed out because HR immediately informed me that they can’t afford to still promote me due to losing that big client and Eliza’s position isn’t vacant anymore, but fine I wouldn’t want to have a pregnant woman fired over me anyway.”
“The thing is that Eliza’s mom (who she lives with) is a distant relative’s friend, I only saw her in person a couple of times and I’m sure Eliza has no idea about this since we never met at family gatherings and don’t really know each other.”
“But three days ago I saw her mom at said relative’s house and congratulated her on being a new grandma, she laughs and says Eliza was never pregnant at all, I must have heard a rumor that was wrong.”
“I go home and that night, said relative sends me a video taken that day of Eliza downing a bottle of alcohol with the caption ‘2-month pregnancy celebration!’ Basically mocking me for thinking she’s pregnant while girly is out here getting drunk.”
“I obviously haven’t told anyone that I thought that because Eliza said it to everyone in the office.”
“I just lost a huge opportunity and salary raise to someone who is so careless with her job she cost the company a big client, and she was never pregnant.”
“I know this is her private information but she lied and will have to lie again about a miscarriage (which will still protect her from being fired for a while under my country’s law).”
“WIBTA If I anonymously report it so maybe HR investigates it further?”
“I definitely don’t want to send that video even though it’s evidence and it’s timestamped, I feel like that’s too far.”
Strangers on the internet were asked to declare one of the following:
- NTA – Not the A**hole
- YTA – You’re the A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everybody Sucks Here
A majority of Redditors thought the OP would not be the a**hole if she reported Eliza for faking her pregnancy.
Many encouraged her to report Eliza.
“NTA. Report her.”
“She is lying to the company with the intent to actively hurt you and them.” – wpel_142
“Yeah… not sure how telling the truth with backing evidence makes YOU t a… You shouldn’t feel bad for telling the truth. You should feel bad for her…”
“NTA on every level.”
“Report her and bring the video.” – wernercd
“OP probably feels guilty because they know that if they send that video then Eliza will get fired and OP is gunna be blamed for it most likely (if Eliza finds out OP got their hands on the video).”
“I don’t think that makes OP TA though cause Eliza sounds like a terrible coworker and is making OP’s job harder + costing them a promotion.” – jtheminipony
“Please report her. As a woman without children I can only see other women struggling with keeping their careers and being a mother.”
“This Eliza of yours is truly harming us women in general. It’s difficult enough not to be given permanent contracts ‘in case’ you become a mother.”
“I’m not blaming the companies, I understand their position too, but women like this are just like women who cry rape; they hurt us all.” – Large-Tip-9433
“To add.. her disclosure throws HIPAA out the window :)”
“If you say the company is looking for a reason to fire her, this is it. This is exactly what they want / need.”
“HR will thank you later :)”
“Also, don’t do it anonymously. Do it in person, so that you can give proof of your information. They’ll need that.”
“There’s nothing wrong with doing it in person. If she posted it to social media, Eliza will most likely know it was you anyway. No need for that level of drama.”
“If she confronts her, tell her she’s a bad person and needs to evaluate her life choices.” – Nix-geek
This Redditor cautioned the OP about possible consequences of reporting Eliza but ultimately said it was the OP’s decision.
“NTA, but your HR is putting you on.”
“They cannot fire her for being pregnant – true”
“They cannot fire her for sucking at her job now that she is pregnant – false.”
“You can be fired while pregnant, they just have to be able to prove it’s not pregnancy related, and if they’re a large company, they know this.”
“If you want to report her, that’s up to you, but you should be aware of a few things. 1) just because she told work she was pregnant doesn’t mean she told family. I was required to notify work first because of some items we handled at the time, so they found out before my parents.”
“2) not all pregnant women are good pregnant women – some drink to excess, smoke, and do drugs regardless of the impact on the unborn baby. What I’m saying is, unless she herself says she’s lying, you don’t actually have anything more than circumstantial evidences that she’s lying.”
“Keep your own work image in mind before you go to HR. Are you going to look like a sour employee trying to sabotage someone so you can take their job, or do they know you better than that?”
“Take the path that leads to the least problems for you in the long run… and remember, at the end of the day pregnancy only lasts 9 months. Either she has a kid at the end, or she doesn’t, and the company will need to figure out a way forward.” – aSeaPersonByNight
“NTA report her, seriously. Shes just avoiding her fate, nudge it along and let HR know that you’re ‘concerned for her and her baby’s wellbeing and you don’t know how to help her’ and tell them and show them what you know.” – AthenaAscends
“Ok, I’m going way against the grain here, but I want to offer a different opinion: you wouldn’t be an a**hole to report this, but I still don’t think you should.”
“At worst, you’re going to need to wait about 5 months for her to be fired, because this sounds like an employee who your company does not want around. If she’s not pregnant, the charade has to end at some point, and your company can handle it then.”
“There is a significant chance if you do report her that you’d be outed somehow as the employee who reported this, and while many colleagues probably would be on your side, not all of them would be, and there’s a serious chance Eliza could spin this against you (or gossip gets mistranslated).”
“It might scratch your itch for justice—I know I’d be seriously tempted—but I think this is a case of letting Eliza reap what she’s going to inevitably sow, rather than putting yourself in a tenuous position.”
“That’s just my two cents; I really think you could go either way here and be morally in the clear—I’m just not convinced it’s professionally the smartest or safest thing to do, and I’d be asking myself: am I trying to get her fired because I want her job immediately and can’t wait? Because she’s a liability to me personally? Or because I’m offended she’s lying like this so brazenly?”
“And are those enough to report her? Idk! It’s a weird situation and she seems to suck.” – strawberrysasquatch
Regardless of whether or not the OP decides to report Eliza, many Redditors believed she would not be the a**hole if she did.
One thing Redditors agreed on was the fact that Eliza would be TA if she did truly fake her pregnancy to keep her job.