I have a coworker who is brilliant and sarcastic and wonderful to work with. She's also hilarious when she gets drunk. She starts oversharing, and gets very self-conscious about being judgmental. But I love her most of all when she's being judgmental; her judgment is generally spot on.

The last time I was at a party with her, she got drunk and started fixating on how she's a bad feminist, and apparently I am such a good feminist. I thought this was particularly funny because I don't remember ever identifying myself as a feminist to her, so it felt like a nice compliment if that's how I come off.

The opinion that she shared (and was self-conscious about) was how angry she is at another female coworker of ours that got pregnant. She said that she thinks it's wrong to get pregnant at a company if you haven't been there long and haven't proven your worth to the company yet. She seemed to think this was particularly true for people that came into the company at a high level, as she and the other woman both did (they are both PhD's - higher level scientists than me). She apologized profusely for this opinion, and reiterated many times that it makes her a bad feminist (or sometimes "anti-feminist") to have these feelings.* I told her all feelings are valid, but that I think her anger is coming from two things: her dislike of this woman in general, and how the pregnancy is reflecting on her own choices. She said this was true - she has been holding herself back from getting pregnant, and now she feels like she has to wait longer so there aren't a bunch of people on maternity leave at the same time.

I thought it was an interesting topic. How do people feel about this idea? Should you prove your worth to a company before asking them for maternity leave? The person we were discussing is what I might consider an extreme case. She has been at the company over six months, but hasn't produced anything as far as I can tell. She has stepped on a lot of toes though, trying to push into other people's projects and taking credit for other people's work. So I can understand the feelings that she's taking advantage of the company. But I also feel like I can't judge her for getting pregnant. Who knows if it was even planned?

*As a side note, it is now a running joke between me and another coworker who was at the party to constantly add to conversations "as long as you won't think I'm a bad feminist!"

ETA: It probably makes sense to add that I am in the US, and my company doesn't really offer "maternity leave" so to speak. I think we get something like a week of paid parental leave? And then people use short term disability, which I think is 60% of your pay for 3 months.


ETA2: If it wasn't clear, these opinions were not shared with the pregnant lady in question. They were shared privately to me.