View Full Version : Maternity leave - Do I or don't I?

21-04-2014, 02:54 PM
Hi. Can anyone offer advice for maternity leave - any experiences you can share to help me decide whether I should take just a month off for maternity leave or the full 39 weeks? I keep changing my mind and want to give parents enough notice. Baby's due early October - 4th baby so I know what I'm doing :-) I really don't want to let anyone down but with my 3rd child - 16 months ago, getting dressed in the morning was difficult but other than that I was in my routine pretty quickly with her. The only other issue I had was that her tongue tie wasn't diagnosed until she was 9 weeks so I had 9 weeks of constant mastitis - severe flu like symptoms and some days I was in so much pain I couldn't even pick her up - I persevered with Breastfeeding though until she was 1 and plan to do the same with this one. Is Breastfeeding hard when you're minding? I'm going to get this baby checked out for tongue tie before before leaving the hospital so hopefully the same won't happen again. Sleepless nights I know would be hard, but a pro to continuing minding would be that the other children really entertain my daughter - she's bored when I'm not minding! Money wise - I'd be taking a cut to go on maternity leave but the time with the newborn I'm sure would outweigh this. I really don't know how long to take off!! Please help! X

21-04-2014, 05:40 PM
I'd have 6 months off... long enough to get established on routine, bond with new baby, sort any health issues if there is any and start the weaning stage etc.

So I would be off October and tell parents you be back for business April x

21-04-2014, 06:09 PM
I only planned on taking 6 weeks but due to mindees leaving ended up taking the lot and was so glad I did. I was still breastfeeding when I went back to work but was in a fairly good routine bt then so it was easy. I also suffered with mastitis a lot tho but other than on one occasion when It was really bad I didn't really need to take that much time off because of it hth

21-04-2014, 06:44 PM
I took about 3 mths and then did a month of afterschoolies before the long summer hols (and no mindees) started back with EY mindees and full time Schoolies in the sept.

Good luck x

21-04-2014, 07:08 PM
Take as much time as you can!
I came back to work when ds was about 2 months as I didn't want to let parents down and 1 family who had been with me from the start were really struggling, the week before I was due to go back mum emailed me notice as she was giving up work.
Anyhoo, I went back to work, albeit part time, rushed back into it, and have found it wry difficult trying to juggle everything, ended up with pnd and in a few weeks am taking a break from childminding to get myself back on track, I absolutely wish I had taken at least 6 months x

21-04-2014, 11:50 PM
Agree - take as long as you can afford to.

This time is very precious and doesn't last very long

Enjoy all the quality time with them that you can and while you can - congratulations by the way :) xx

22-04-2014, 07:30 AM
Thank you all. I'm so tempted to take the full maternity leave - we don't get much time off do we? - there's plenty of years for working. We're looking at moving after christmas as well - 4 children in a 3 bed house is going to be a bit cramped! So it could all tie in well if maternity leave takes me into the new house so could start up afresh in a new area! Too much to think about lol, but thank you for all your advice, those early days are precious! X

22-04-2014, 01:09 PM
Would love to take some decent time off expecting my 3rd in September and am planning on taking 2 weeks off!!! Husband is my assistant so he will be at hand to help but I know how difficult it is but with both of us childminding, we cannot afford to take any time off :(

22-04-2014, 07:18 PM
I think if you are able to financially then have a good few months off, you don't get the time back :o

22-04-2014, 07:32 PM
It's a very personal thing and what's right for one isn't necessarily right for another. I took 4 months off after my 2 youngest were born. I have to be honest, by then I was itching to get back to work. It just didn't suit me being a stay at home mum and not working. I don't think there's anyway I could have taken any longer off.
Having said that, I only worked 4 days a week and was glad I didn't do full-time.

I'd say go by what you want. If you can afford not to work and would like the maximum time off, then do it :thumbsup:

22-04-2014, 07:38 PM
Is stat maternity pay the same if you take 26 or 39 weeks off? Just stretched over the time? And does anyone know, if you go back early, I guess you give up your mat rights? X

22-04-2014, 09:49 PM
I do know if you go back early your maternity pay/leave ends but I don't know about the 26 or 39 weeks. I'd be getting maternity allowance as I was employed at the start of my qualifying period but as I'm self employed now I'd get maternity allowance - I just put all my details into the maternity allowance calculator and it told me what I'd be entitled to for up to 39 weeks. I can see me itching to get back into childminding by the time the baby is 4 months old. I've told parents I'll be taking 1 week before due date (my 3 others were early), then 3 weeks after so I'll be off all of October, but I've told them all this could change - may even postpone it until after christmas, baby will be 3 months then. If I lose all my mindees I'll just have to advertise again and stop maternity leave when I manage to fill a space.