Please help me figure out maternity leave! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 09-19-2010, 03:11 AM - Thread Starter
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Last pregnancy, I was working from home and my boss was totally fine with me just letting her know when I thought I could come back. I started working part time at about 3 weeks. No troubles.

This time, new employer, outside the house. I am TRYING to convince them to let me come back part time for a period of time before full time. They are expecting full time. I know lots of people do it and survive just fine, but I am not sure I can be one of them.

Baby is due in early March. 7 weeks later, DH will be home for the summer. If I went back part time then, and worked through the summer (when my job is slow anyway) I could go back full time in Sept when the kiddo is 6 months old. Work is less than thrilled with this idea. Their expectation is that I return full time ASAP.

Recently, they've started talking about hiring a part time person to make up for my maternity hours and a co-workers extended vacation. I work at a non-profit and we HAVE to work a certain number of hours to keep our grant funding. We wrote a grant saying we'd work # of hours during the grant period, and we have to actually work that many by the end of it. I wasn't there, but apparently there is no room for maternity leave, vacation time, etc. At least, not the way the employees actually need it.

So, I need to figure out how many weeks (unpaid, benefits COBRA) I want before going back full time. I think I've already laid out clearly my transitional part time preference, but I need to give them a hard number for maternity leave before full time work.

How long did you all take? Was it horrible? Doable? Better than you expected? I already have a DD who will be 18 months when the babe is born. Was going back to work after #2 really that much harder?

Also, I might have the option of working from home again. The work is unfulfilling, and I find myself very difficult to live with when my work is so mundane. I am a better wife and better mother with my out-of-the-house job. But maybe in this instance the benefits of staying home outweigh the financial and emotional costs?

Sorry if this is blurry, vague, or difficult to understand. I am a tired, pregnant, unsure mama.

Sarah. Married to my Mirus, raising my DD1 (Aug. '09) and my DD2 (March '11) and waiting for my newest (April '14)!
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#2 of 5 Old 09-19-2010, 03:49 AM
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What a decision! It would totally peeve me if my job did that kind of thing--ASAP and everything, give us your decision now, blah blah. For goodness sake you're barely second trimester.

I took 6 weeks off--used up all my accrued vacation time. While I was "full time" I also stopped by dd's daycare a couple times a day to nurse her, and my work did take a hit during that time, but I recovered.

What if you took your home-based job out of the home during the summer? Like, run off and work from a coffee house or something while dh is home? Is it that type of gig? And then return to a job, maybe your grant thing, when you're sure about what to do about childcare, etc.? In the meantime tell them three months? That's pretty standard. Then return when you want. At least now that'll give you some head space for the rest of your pregnancy, etc.

SMC to dd 4/07.
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#3 of 5 Old 09-19-2010, 03:58 PM
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I would do the 7 weeks then back full time. Maybe WAH for some of the hours. But for us we can't afford for me to be home unpaid or part time. FWIW I went back full time when DD1 was 7 weeks, and I will be going back full time when my new one is 7.5 weeks. The first couple weeks are hard, figuring out pumping, the kids adjusting to care, etc., but then it settles in and isn't too bad.

Good luck!

CD'ing, homebirthing, milk making school teacher. Supporting my family on my income and trying to get out of debt in 2013!
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#4 of 5 Old 09-19-2010, 04:06 PM
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do you have any vacation?

I did the 12 weeks plus 3 weeks of vacation. My coworker was able to do 12 weeks + x amount of weeks taking t-th off. I think it's working well for her.

Texmati-- Knitter, Hindu, vegetarian, WOHM. Wife to superdadsuperhero.gif and mom to DS babyf.gif24 months, and DD boc.gif 8 months! .

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#5 of 5 Old 09-20-2010, 01:11 AM - Thread Starter
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Unfortunately, I have zero vacation time, don't qualify for ANY paid leave at all, and am not entitled to even have unpaid leave. FMLA does not apply.

Working from home during my mat leave is a good idea. I'm researching my options for telecommuting work just in case this new job doesn't pan out. I'm not sure they really want someone there who is raising small children. Maybe I'm imagining that, I don't know.

Anyway, it is encouraging that going back full time can be done at 7 weeks. I'm nervous about pumping. BFing did not go well AT ALL with DD and I am nervous that pumping so early will adversely effect us.

I think I'll ask for 10 or 12 weeks and expect them to counter with a shorter offer. I'll tell them that if the do hire someone, I'd prefer to start at 20 hours and move to full time later. If they don't hire someone, I am still tentative about it, but maybe it won't be as bad as I think.


Sarah. Married to my Mirus, raising my DD1 (Aug. '09) and my DD2 (March '11) and waiting for my newest (April '14)!
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