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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just wondered if we might have a conversation about returning to the workplace after our babies are here- for those of us that work outside the home and plan to do so after the baby is born. I am really struggling with making decisions about the options that I have.

With my DD I was just finishing up in grad school when she was born. So there wasn't any issue of taking leave. With my DS I took 8 weeks off and then went back part time, ramping up to FT within another 8 weeks. That was hard, but it was only workable because I lived three blocks from the office and had enough flexibility in my schedule to come home during the day and nurse (in addition to pumping).

This time I am about three miles away (which isn't too far, but not that practical for frequent visits home). Although DH works part time evenings and weekends, he is a SAHD and the family needs my income to pay the bills. I can have a total of twelve weeks leave. I have accumulated a little short of ten weeks of paid leave that I can use for my time off, and will take the other two unpaid. However, I am not sure how I should do it. I need to work out an arrangement with my boss in January and get the paperwork all together by early Feb.

Should I take the full 12 weeks and then go back full time? Should I go back a little earlier (maybe one or two weeks) and work part time until my leave is completely up?
What is everyone else doing?
 

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i feel for your situation! my income is significantly more substantial than dh's. right now, i work full-time as a physiotherapist while dh is a sahd (although he is working part-time as a school bus driver since they put a carseat on the bus for dd). anyway, after dc2 i would like to work no more than .5. this will all depend on whether or not dh can find a fulltime, decent paying job once the school year is out.

i'll be home for 12 months regardless of dh's job situation so we have the luxury of time to make some more concrete decisions. i don't mean to rub it in or anything, but i totally feel so bad for you mamas down in the u.s. and barely getting anytime off. i don't know how you do it!
 

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Right now, we have a plan of me staying at home from 2 - 4 months and then we're not sure what's going to happen. Me staying at home is not really an option.. unless we REALLY want to struggle with money, which we don't! so I will probably go back to work somewhere in between there, hopefully part time 2 or 3 days a week.

( I will be looking for a new job though. I'm not really on "maternity leave" because I just graduated college and don't have a " real" job yet!)
 

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I get Short Term Disability through my employer, paid at 60% for up to 16 weeks (average of 6 weeks). After that is used up, I will take vacation, personal, and sick time. Then I will go back to work part-time, OR will find another job that I can work part-time at if that's not feasible. I make slightly more than DH, but we are expecting a huge income tax deduction next year, as well as me getting a big bonus at work in February, which will help us pay down a lot of debt so we won't have as many monthly bills.

It would cost slightly less to send her to daycare (and for me to continue full-time), but the difference is SO slight that we think it's worth keeping her with us. That way we don't have to worry about her safety, and we know that she will always be with one of us which will make bonding easier.
We really didn't think this would be possible, and it wouldn't be normally, but we've figured out a way to make it work. I will be part-time for at least a year, and then we will find some sort of childcare arrangement.
 

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I have 6 weeks of short term disability that pays my income at 100% if I have a vag birth. If I have a csection then it's 8 weeks (that's the only good thing about having a csection!!) . I can take up to 12 weeks with FMLA but the remaining time will be unpaid. I plan on taking the 12 weeks and we've been saving up money to cover our expenses for those 6 weeks.

I've already found daycare with a wonderful woman so that's taken care of but I know it'll still be difficult to go back to work and leave my baby with someone else.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by galincognito View Post
i feel for your situation! my income is significantly more substantial than dh's. right now, i work full-time as a physiotherapist while dh is a sahd (although he is working part-time as a school bus driver since they put a carseat on the bus for dd). anyway, after dc2 i would like to work no more than .5. this will all depend on whether or not dh can find a fulltime, decent paying job once the school year is out.

i'll be home for 12 months regardless of dh's job situation so we have the luxury of time to make some more concrete decisions. i don't mean to rub it in or anything, but i totally feel so bad for you mamas down in the u.s. and barely getting anytime off. i don't know how you do it!
I pretty much could have written that.

I so feel for all of you who only get a few way too short weeks. I think it's totally outrageous.

I'm going to stop working in mid-Feb (I'm due March 21, expecting another late baby).

Like Galincognito, I'm taking a year off. I get 93% of my full salary for 52 weeks on the condition that I work full time for two years (I think, maybe it's only one) after my mat leave. I plan on returning anyway, my dh is a sahd and we don't plan on him returning to work. My income is higher and I have good benefits and working conditions.

We're also thinking of pulling our 9yo dd from school for a year. Kind of like a sabbatical for everyone.
 

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I only work p/t as of now, but I am planning to return to work. I am taking about 5 months off, all unpaid. Since I work at a Mother's Day Out program, the baby will come back to work with me and go to the baby room (ds1 already attends). I'll be able to go nurse him on demand, so that'll be great. I feel really lucky that my boss was so flexible with this.
 

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Right now, my job will pay 4 weeks at 100%. We're a non-profit so it would be silly to really expect more. They do abide by the FMLA so I can take the other 8 weeks unpaid, and burn up all of my accumulated time off (which sadly is not much) but luckily I'm with my mom right now and not having to pay rent. I do plan on heading back to work, probably after 10-12 weeks, as I don't have any real parental support so I'll have to go the childcare route. Unless my h suddenly sees the error of his ways, which is highly unlikely.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by lila2801 View Post
I have 6 weeks of short term disability that pays my income at 100% if I have a vag birth. If I have a csection then it's 8 weeks (that's the only good thing about having a csection!!) . I can take up to 12 weeks with FMLA but the remaining time will be unpaid. I plan on taking the 12 weeks and we've been saving up money to cover our expenses for those 6 weeks.

I've already found daycare with a wonderful woman so that's taken care of but I know it'll still be difficult to go back to work and leave my baby with someone else.
This is my situation, too.

I do believe the hospital at which I work also has "baby bonding time" which may be another 2 months.

When I do return to work, I'm planning on working 2 rather than 3 days/week. I'm hoping to work weekends since dh works during the week so we can avoid daycare.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I have oftened wished the US had even half of what Canada had in terms of leave benefits. I would love to have six months off. Lucky Canadians! I also heard that (maybe just in some provinces?) when you homeschool they send you the same amount they would send the school district to support your child's education!

Truly, I feel that for the US I am pretty lucky. I know that my job is secure right now and won't have to worry about that when I take my maternity leave (like I did the last time). I have accumulated 10 weeks of paid leave which I will use for most of my time off and won't have to worry so much about finances. I have great health insurance, that covers homebirth and naturopathic- and the premium for the whole family is only $43 a month.

At the same time, I really wish that I had more. I'd love to take six months off FT and go back to work PT for another six. I wish I could do that, and know I could still go back to my job, and not have to worry about finances.

Right now, though, I am salaried, but my hourly wage works out to 4 times what DH is making hourly. Even if he went back FT (which could mean a slightly better job and higher pay) his earning potential is half of what mine is. If we want to have a parent home and want to homeschool, it makes sense that I work FT. Plus I like my work, and don't begrudge being the breadwinner of the family at all. Just wish I had a little more time with this new baby though.
 

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I would strongly suggest working part time and gradually increasing to full time. I'm not a morning person so with my first I started off working afternoons. Then I did full days starting with 2 and slowly increasing. I started at 4 weeks so it could be very gradual. Now with my second I jumped right in to full time. I got very sick and had to be hospitalized. It took months to recover. During this time DH took a better job. Just when I was thinking about working again I had a car accident. Then I decided it wasn't worth it and I'm a sahm. Now that my kids are older I do very part time child care. I will just take a few weeks off depending on how everything goes.
 

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I also make significantly more than DH, so I have to go back full time. With DD i worked up till 1 day before she was born. I got 8 weeks (c-section) paid at 2/3 my normal rate. i had just started with the company so I had no accumulated time off, so I just went back full time after that.

This time i have a little accumulated time off, so I plan on dropping to 4 days/week in mid feb (taking Wednesdays off I think) till he is born. Then I will take my 6 weeks (VBAC hopefully) at 2/3 pay and use my vacation to make up the difference. Then I will use the rest of my vacation time for another week or so off, so I will be back to full time no later than 7-8 weeks. It really does suck though.
 

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I'm so sad about maternity leave. I'm a teacher in NYC, and our leave really sucks. I can take 6 weeks maternity leave, 12 weeks FMLA. That is ALL unpaid, unless I have any sick days to use up.


Which means I'll be back at work very soon after 6 weeks, and in a lot of debt.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Altair View Post
I'm so sad about maternity leave. I'm a teacher in NYC, and our leave really sucks. I can take 6 weeks maternity leave, 12 weeks FMLA. That is ALL unpaid, unless I have any sick days to use up.


Which means I'll be back at work very soon after 6 weeks, and in a lot of debt.
Yup, I'm in your boat, Altair. Unpaid and I don't even qualify for FMLA protection of my job because I haven't been here for a full year (our contracts typically are only 12-20 weeks long, which is how they get around paying us benefits and days off, too). So I'll be working up until labor, then I don't know what, because my contract will have ended while I'm having my kid and it'll depend on what shows need a person when I come back. I may have to jump on a show sooner than 6 weeks post-partum, if it's between that or not having a job for 6 months. Ideally, I'd love to come back and work part-time, but I don't know how plausible it is.

Boy, it makes the WAHM idea soooo much more appealing.
 
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