All semester I have been working on a group project for my psychology of gender class. It is a group of 4 girls and 2 boys. One of the girls was a complete flake. Let's call her Jessica. So Jessica only came to one meeting and did not participate in planning the research at all. On Monday we all planned on getting together to run through our presentation since we were presenting on Tuesday morning. We get to the meeting... no Jessica. So we check our email and ten minutes before the meeting started she sent out an email that said, "Sorry guys. I won't be able to make it to the meeting. I am not sure if you knew, but I am eight weeks pregnant and nights are not good for me." We had no idea she was pregnant!
The next day was the presentation so we emailed her the part she was presenting. The next morning in class we waited to present last because we were waiting for her. She never showed up! So finally someone presented her part for her.
During peer evaluations, all three of the other girls rated her as inadequate (the only options were adequate and inadequate). Being rated inadequate by two people lowers your grade. Later that day we get an email from Jessica that says, "Thanks for being so understanding guys. I know I don't deserve full points, but you didn't have to rate me that way... I tried to help all that I could, but I really am sick, and unless you've been pregnant, you probably don't know what kind of sick I am." [This is copied directly from my inbox.]
I was furious when I read that. So being the rude person I am, I responded: "I understand that you feel sick and you have another life besides your school life. However, we were grading you based on your effort on the project and not on how sorry we feel for you."
She has not been to class since.
So the point of this is that when I am pregnant I will try my best to never use it as an excuse to ignore my responsibilities or get people to feel sorry for me. I will not use it to get out of anything.
I know that some people get really sick when they are pregnant. And there are certain times when you do not feel up to doing anything and you just want to stay in bed. But Jessica did register herself for classes. She did not tell us that she felt sick at night. And she did not work enough for the grade the rest of us received. I am worried for her child if she believes everything should be fair in life.
Update: I have offended a good friend because of this post. I would just like to reiterate that although I do feel sorry for her and I wish she did not feel sick, I graded her on her effort on the project. Everyone has things going on in their lives. Her "illness" does not entitle her to a good grade.
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