That's one of the lessons in Sue Shellenbarger's latest Wall Street Journal column, which reports that pregnancy bias complaints to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission rose 14 percent last year to 5,587, a 40 percent increase from a decade ago. One woman in the publishing industry was fired while she was pregnant, supposedly for poor performance, yet those issues had never come up prior to her pregnancy. She wanted legal redress, but couldn't prove in writing that her bosses actually knew she was expecting. So consider sharing your big news over email.

Shallenbarger also writes that many American women, until they get pregnant, have no idea that they are entitled to no paid leave under current law. Indeed, a study from Harvard University last year found that of 168 nations worldwide, the United States is one of only four whose government doesn't require employers to provide paid maternity leave. The others are Lesotho, Papua New Guinea and Swaziland.

--Dana Goldstein

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