Childless Author Thinks Non-Moms Should Get Maternity Leave Too

Meghann Foye, who penned the controversial novel 'Meternity,' believes all women deserve maternity leave — get the details.
Meghann Foye, who penned the controversial novel 'Meternity,' believes all women deserve maternity leave — get the details. Jessica Peterson/Getty Images

Childless author Meghann Foye has come under fire. The reason: She believes that maternity leave is, in her words, a “time and space for self-reflection.” 

The magazine editor — whose new novel, Meternity is about a woman who fakes her pregnancy— explained how the book came about in a controversial essay for the New York Post. “After 10 years of working in a job where I was always on deadline, I couldn’t help but feel envious when parents on staff left the office at 6 p.m. to tend to their children, where it was assumed co-workers without kids would stay behind to pick up the slack,” wrote Foye.

That’s when the 38-year-old dreamed up the term “Meternity,” which she describes as “a sabbatical-like break that allows women and, to a lesser degree, men to shift their focus to the part of their lives that doesn’t revolve around their jobs.”

The New Jersey-based writer also feels that parents have an advantage in the work place. While working a desk job, “It seemed that parenthood was the only path that provided a modicum of flexibility,” she explained. “There’s something about saying ‘I need to go pick up my child,’ as a reason to leave the office on time that has far more gravitas than, say, ‘My best friend just got ghosted by her OKCupid date and needs a margarita’ — but both sides are valid.”

Me Meternity by Meghann Foye
Me Meternity by Meghann Foye

In a harsh rebuttal, the NY Post’s Kyle Smith called Foye “childless/childish.” 

"Have you recently had your body split open by a screaming, red, nightmare-lump of writhing humanity? Or taken on the hair-raising responsibility of parenting a little one with less ability to manage for him- or herself than a newborn kitten?” Smith wrote “Then, sorry. You don’t qualify for maternity leave.”

The father of two continued: “Wanting to order a case of chardonnay and settle in to binge-watch the new season of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt isn’t in the same category. If you’ve got a case of the sads, or sudden-onset reflectivitis, that’s just a personality problem — not a reason to take off work.”

Foye’s book Meternity is out now.

Sign up now for the Us Weekly newsletter to get breaking celebrity news, hot pics and more delivered straight to your inbox!

Want stories like these delivered straight to your phone? Download the Us Weekly iPhone app now!

Close popup

Welcome to In Motion

Bring photos to life with Us Weekly's exciting new mobile experience!

What's In Motion? Tell me more

What's In Motion?

Go back

How to Use In Motion

What's In Motion? Tell me more