I have a coworker who I believe to be pregnant. Visibly, either she's put on several specifically placed pounds, or she's expecting. For the rest of this post, I'm going to assume she is.
In general, this wouldn't involve me, but I know I will be her backup while she is out; I work in the back-end, she is customer facing for our product area. Unfortunately, we don't work closely enough for me to ask her directly (and imagine the shock and horror if I were wrong!). Is there any path I can take to ensure I am prepared to take over her role during her maternity leave? Obviously if I do nothing it'd be just like she had to take an unexpected leave (a non-fatal hit by a bus so to speak), but I'd rather avoid the stress and confusion if possible.
Just to be clear, I know this is a Tricky subject, and I'm being entirely presumptive. I'm not trying to be offensive in any way, and I'm sorry if I am being so.
Edit -- To answer a few comments
- I will be her backup, similar arrangements have been made in the past for sick leave, but given that maternity leave is much longer I'd prefer to be properly trained for the position
- This is in the US, in Kansas in particular, I know that the US doesn't have any laws regarding maternity leave, but our company seems to offer a generous policy (or so I've gleaned from the length of the time previous mothers have been out). I'm really more asking about how to handle trying to broach the subject of KT
- This isn't based on a very keen awareness of my coworkers figure and physical measurements. It's fairly obvious -- If she is pregnant, she's well past the softball phase, possibly approaching football (US not EU). The only ambiguity is the fact that she hasn't even mentioned it in passing.
- I may not have emphasized enough -- I'm fully aware it's none of my business if she is pregnant -- I am only concerned about hopefully getting knowledge transfer for her possible absence. It's just that fact that medical disclosures (along with other factors) make asking "are you pregnant" extremely un-PC.