Apalled at certain interview question

posted 1 year ago in Career
Post # 2
2794 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

That really sucks bee. I seriously doubt they would have asked you that if you were a man.. My legitimate response would have been “is it not illegal for you to ask me that?”

Post # 3
358 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

Yes, it is illegal to ask that. It’s also illegal to ask if you’re married. I would just say “I would prefer not to answer personal questions since they are not relevant to the position, and it’s actually against the law to ask questions like that.”

Post # 4
304 posts
Helper bee

Just curious- are these nanny positions you interviewed for, or other businesses? I only ask because I wonder if it is an attempt to understand  how much you like kids or general get to know you from people who don’t have HR knowledge. Still not ok. 

My answer would depend on if being asked that question made me not want the job. If I didn’t I would point out the question is illegal and thank them for their time. If I was still interested, I would deflect somehow…assure them my personal life will never affect my professional life or something like that. 

Post # 5
9580 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2016

ugh that’s shitty.  telling them its illegal will of course just make them decide you are, in fact, planning to have kids.  🙁

I’d answer something like “no plans at the moment” even though really you should be able to tell them its illegal.  

Post # 7
3057 posts
Sugar bee

mvz22 :  That is not Ok to ask in either situation, but especially for an office job!

I feel like parents interviewing may not know the ins and outs of what is OK to ask, but an office certianly should!

Post # 8
95 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2019 - Home

Yeah.. definitely not ok to ask during an interview. Honestly though if they are stupid and unprofessional enough to ask that I would not want to work for them anyway, and would definitely tell them so during the interview.

Post # 9
1946 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2017 - Pearson Convention Centre

I totally understand where you’re coming from but I have a different point of view because of one of my sisters. She hired a nanny who was great after she started working there for 3 months she told my sister she was going to start her second trimester and her duties would have to change. Had my sister known that she was pregnant or planning on having children soon she would have hired another nanny

Post # 10
304 posts
Helper bee

mvz22 :  yeah that’s not ok. I would see that as a huge red flag and wouldn’t want to work at a business asking that question. I would report them. 

Post # 11
484 posts
Helper bee

It’s illegal, and if they’re even asking the question, then they will likely be a terrible place to work if you do have kids.  You are better off going to a different company, preferably one that offers good family leave and health benefits.

Post # 12
325 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2018

I was asked this when interviewing for my current job.  I wouldn’t say I was appalled but I was little shocked that in today’s climate this question still came out of my interviewers mouth.  But I shrugged it off as just a misguided response to me sharing that my wedding was happening soon.  I answered vaguely, “Eventually but not right now…”  I think some men really are clueless and still don’t even realize what they’re doing when they’re talking.  But I didn’t see it as a probing question to gauge how seriously I took the position..more just poor conversation skills.

Post # 13
478 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2017

mvz22 :  How uncomfortable! I agree with others – unfortunately, answering an inappropriate question by confronting them with the fact that they are being inappropriate and illegal will, in essence, end the interview (which honestly wouldn’t be the worst thing if they are apparently going to give you trouble if you decide to start a family while also working. Ugh. undecided) It’s difficult though when you’re really working hard to get a job! In that situation, I might just ask in return, “Why do you ask?” and wait for their response. Maintain firm eye contact, remain professional, and perhaps they’ll squirm as they search for any acceptable way to answer that question. It forces them to address why they feel it is an appropriate question to ask in an interview, and gives you some insight into where they are and how you want to proceed. If they deflect with a “Oh, we are just curious” or something along that manner (not that they have the right to be curious, but if they get uncomfortable realizing they asked a stupid question it might be their easiest cop-out) it allows you to move along to another question and return to what the job requirements are for the position and how well you would be able to fulfill them. 

Post # 14
1677 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2018

mvz22 :  I have been asked that in person in an interview before and literally stood up and walked out.  I was furious, especially since I was the only female candidate.  

That sucks bee, hopefully you find a good fit.  

Post # 15
1216 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

Actually, it isn’t illegal to ask the question, but it IS illegal to take any answers to those sorts of questions into account when making hiring decisions, so most companies avoid the question altogether to avoid even the possibility of appearing of doing that. (It’s a common misconception that it’s illegal just to ask, at least in the US.)

That being said- still very much not an OK question. Like a prior bee said, I think “no plans at the moment” is the best answer. 

ETA: this article gives some great advice about the situation https://work.chron.com/illegal-ask-kids-interview-17872.html 

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