Privacy isn’t just about the things you want to keep secret.
Privacy is about being able to hold knowledge that is for you, and you alone. It is a space for you to be yourself without fear of judgment or consequence.
So, what happens when someone decides that the inside info they have on you is something to be shared with the world?
That was the issue facing Redditor and Original Poster (OP) Austin-4throw when she came to the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for judgment.
“AITA telling my co worker that I will report him after he announced my pregnancy during lunchbreak?”
OP started with a little background.
“I (Female 33) have been working in this company for 4 years.”
“I have great relationship with my co workers and one of them is “Austin”. Austin is incredibly sociable and easy to adapt with new co workers.”
“We talk about all kinds of stuff while of course keeping it professional.”
Then she moved on to excellent news.
“I’m married and recently found out I was pregnant but only my husband knew about it.”
“Haven’t even told anyone in our families or friend circle.”
“The other day at work me and the co-workers were on lunch break and Austin was with us.”
“We talked then he suddenly got up from his chair and asked for everyone’s attention for a minute.”
Everything was fine, until…
“I didn’t know what that was about til he loudly announced that I was pregnant.”
“I was stunned, like mouth open eyes not moving just staring at him as he and the other rushed to congratulate me and flood me with well wishes and parenting jokes and advice.”
“I was in utter shock I asked how he knew and he said ‘remember when you gave me a ride the other day?”‘
“‘I saw your pregnancy test result on the dashboard’ my first action was lashing out at him in front of everyone asking why the hell he just shared a private medical information at my workplace.”
“He said he was just sharing ‘our joy’ with everyone else since only him and I knew.”
OP lashed out.
“Other co workers asked that I calm down but I meanly told him he was out of line and that I will be reporting him to my superior for this then stormed off while Austin just stood there.”
“My female co-workers came to tell me how rude I was towards Austin’s ‘nice gesture’ and insisted I hurt him and that I overreacted especially for saying I will be reporting him since he was just sharing happy news with everyone and I was just being too sensitive.”
“But I felt my privacy was violated plus I wanted to tell everyone on my own terms.”
“Still my co-workers tried to talk me out of it.”
“Not just that but apologize to him for lashing out like that.”
She was left to wonder,
“Aita for my reaction?”
Redditors weighed in by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Redditors decided: NTA
Some were very clear on who was at fault here.
“As someone who had a baby in the last year and had to hide their pregnancy due to the industry they are in, I can honestly say that you are NTA.”
“This is YOUR news to tell. Not his.”
“Also, what’s with his”
“Crap? Is the baby his?”
“If not, it’s none of his business. Having another man say that they are ‘sharing our joy’ sounds like you two were having an affair which you weren’t.”
“I’d report him for that insinuation alone.”
“Also, the nice gesture crap is not right. If you and your husband didn’t tell anyone, then it’s really an invasion of privacy.”
“Your coworker who said it was a ‘nice gesture’ should be asked ‘so if he told everyone that you were pregnant when no one else knew, robbing you of the chance to tell someone”‘
‘”Or if he told everyone you had cancer when no one else knew by looking at a note you wrote on your desk, you’d be fine with that?'”
“No, just no. Report away. This is a gross invasion of privacy.”
“Congratulations on the news.” ~ lightofashrah
There were personal stories to echo this thought.
“Speaking as someone who had their cancer announced without their knowledge or consent, you are correct in your parallel here.” ~ lydz31
“As a woman who can’t have children what if this was a token memory of a baby lost.”
“NTA. Austin deserves to be reported. Also really sad you have female colleagues who didn’t jump to your defense.” ~ blingo_o
“Yeah when I was pregnant everything I read and everyone I talked to always said to wait until after 12 weeks to tell anyone outside the other parent and immediate family.”
“The risk is very high and having to tell everyone you had a miscarriage would be awful.” ~ wackwithpoobrain
“I had a miscarriage with my first pregnancy.”
“For my second, I waited until I was past the first trimester before anyone except immediate family knew.”
“I would have been very upset if anyone had announced it because I would have felt like it was ‘jinxing’ it.”
“When I miscarried the first time, it was hard having to notify all the people who knew so they wouldn’t ask about a baby that wasn’t there anymore.”
“Is this coworker also volunteering to be the one to share ‘our’ grief if she miscarried and make an announcement to the whole workplace?”
“You never ask a woman if she’s pregnant (even if it’s obvious). And you never, ever, ever even think about announcing someone else’s pregnancy without their permission.” ~ IntroductionKindly33
Some were just confused.
“Agreed, this was farrrr from a nice gesture.”
“And, you would think OP’s female coworkers would be particularly aware of how inappropriate, potentially damaging, selfish and downright disturbing Austin’s actions were.”
“This was NOT his news to tell.”
“He obtained said info by snooping.”
“He completely disregarded OP’s wishes.”
“Most people don’t share pregnancy news until they are past their first trimester since that period can be risky, he had no idea if OP planned to keep the baby, he didn’t care how, when or if OP wanted to share this news.”
“His actions are just baffling. Who would ever think this is OK?”
“Report him. What he did was just….. I can’t even put into words how much of a callous idiot he was to do this.” ~ Electrical-Date-3951
“That’s what I don’t get.”
“There are a number of reasons to keep a pregnancy hidden and in a group of women most if not all would understand why a ‘friend’ shouldn’t announce a pregnancy without consent.”
“And even if they were dumb enough to not get it, seeing the victim upset by the transgression should clue them in that this was not an ok thing to do.” ~ newuser60
“NTA and I have to be honest I’m a little baffled by all of the people who think that there is nothing to report.”
“HR isn’t the police.”
“Things don’t have to be explicitly against a rule in the same way they’d have to be against a law for police to take action.”
“Part of management and HR’s job is to correct employees when they behave unprofessionally. Which Austin most clearly did.” ~ Cambridge_Comma
Many questioned the purity of Austin’s motivation.
“Are you and Austin up for a promotion or competing in anyway?”
“A pregnancy could hurt you since you will be going on maternity leave and he won’t be.”
“This was not a friendly gesture at all.”
“Pregnancy announcements for women in the work place need to be timed so they do hurt income or mess up leave.”
“Austin was a complete AH, report him to HR.”
“This needs to be documented.”
“Btw, NTA.” ~kfisch2014
“All it was was a lot of scene-stealing by Austin.”
“A lot of ‘pay attention to me’ by Austin.”
“NTA, and I’d report Austin too.” ~ SodaButteWolf
“Right and he saw the medical documents in your car before?”
“So like why didn’t he say anything to you when he saw them?”
“Like if he had mentioned it, you could have told him to keep it to himself.”
“Idk maybe I’m reading too much into that, but it seems like he knew it was a secret and then chose to expose it in the most public way possible for his own attention.”
“NTA” ~ Big-Can4033
Commenters had lots of reasons why this should not have been announced.
“He wasn’t even supposed to know!!”
“I think it’s awful that he didn’t talk to you about it first even to confirm, there are many things that can go wrong in a pregnancy, it could be unwanted, or a health hazard to carry to term.”
“He doesn’t know and has no right to blab. He needs to learn to not gossip about other private information that he got by snooping.”
“Congrats on the pregnancy, I hope everything goes smoothly from here.” ~ Fianna9
“Or a baby she didn’t plan to keep.”
“Or was the product of an affair.”
“There are a ton of reasons his behaviour was stupid, ignorant and potentially very dangerous.”
“This goes from impolite, speeds past unprofessional and carries on past out-of-frickin’-order without slowing for a second.”
“OP, report him.”
“Don’t second guess yourself.”
“What he did was wrong. Like, really big letters carved in stone WRONG.”
“He had no right to give out your personal information without your permission. Who TF does that to a colleague?” ~ droppedelbow
Your information is much like your body, consent is required to interact with it.
Whether OP wanted to scream from the hilltops or tell no one at all should have been her decision, and in not getting to make that decision her consent was violated.
Be kind to the people you meet, but most of all be respectful.