To not go back to work from mat leave...

(37 Posts)
bippitybopityboo Fri 11-Nov-16 01:22:14

Currently on maternity leave after having my 1st DC and due back in january. I have always worked but now the thought of leaving my little boy for 12 hour shifts makes me feel sick. I know mums do it its just one of those things but I just can't stand the thought of coming home from work and missing his 1st steps or something.
DH says I don't have to to back but our friends seem shocked that I would even consider not going back to work which makes me feel guilty. I don't like the thought of being unemployed but I just feel that I can't miss out on his early years.
AIBU to just think we should tighten out belts and enjoy our baby or should I go back so we will have more money to provide him with a better lifestyle I just don't know.

Can you try it and see? Go back and give it a month and see how you feel in reality - sometimes the fear is worse than the reality.

SilverHoney Fri 11-Nov-16 01:25:23

Yes I was going to suggest try and see. If you still hate it, put your notice in. Are there any financial ties around your maternity pay / returning to work?

bippitybopityboo Fri 11-Nov-16 01:33:56

No I'm on SMP with no enhancements I missed out on the new enhanced scheme by a month
I've worked there 5 years but hearing reports of it seriously going down hill in the past few months.
I'm thinking of looking for a different job with shorter hours and less responsibilities but I've been there 5 years and it was my 1st job so finding something new makes me feel anxious too.

YouHadMeAtCake Fri 11-Nov-16 01:37:38

Ignore your friends who would most likely quit work if they were able to do so. Spend time with your baby, as you are able to .You'll wish you had if you don't. They grow up ridiculously fast so please, enjoy every single minute. Work can wait.

HennaFlare Fri 11-Nov-16 01:54:17

Yep. Ignore your friends. You've said you don't need to or want to. It's a no brainer.

Enjoy your baby but plan for the long term too.

My2centsworth Fri 11-Nov-16 02:07:04

I definitely had the same feelings at the thoughts of returning to work but once I got back in I was fine. I did change my career to a more child friendly option so I have a lot of holidays but when we had the last recession and DH was made redundant I was extremely relieved we had made the decisions we did.

Konyaa Fri 11-Nov-16 02:07:55

You'll wish you had if you don't.

Do please speak solely for yourself. I love my profession and career passionately. I love my son with my bones. They do not work exclusively of each other. I am as much a researcher, an academic, an author, as I am mummum to a one year old. There are countless women like me. The OP may not be one of them, and that's fine, but do not extrapolate from that and conclude that the ops working friends would quit their careers if they could afford to.

MrsMcAvoy Fri 11-Nov-16 02:36:16

I have recently been on mat leave which ended in September, and have decided not to return to work just yet.

Like you I can't bear the thought of being away from DS, but also we don't really have anyone for childcare and didn't want to be working solely to pay for this.

Yes financially things may be a bit tight, but we will have to manage. I will probably look for something part time possibly next summer if we are really struggling.

If you can afford to have time off, ignore your friends and enjoy your baby. You'll never get this time back, and will probably spend all day at work wishing you were at home

YouHadMeAtCake Fri 11-Nov-16 02:52:10

konya I was giving an opinion. You don't like it? Scroll on.

OlennasWimple Fri 11-Nov-16 02:56:29

Well, I didn't spend all day at work wishing I was at home, I am a better mother for being at work and not at home all day with small people. hmm

If you just resign now, you don't get a (straightforward) chance to try going back to work; if you go back to work, it is straightforward to resign if it isn't working out for you.

In doing your financial calculations, do factor in things like pension contributions and other long term planning - it's not jsut about paying for the childcare now, it's about making sure that in 10 / 15 / 20 years you are still able to look after your family adequately

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Fri 11-Nov-16 03:03:53

Like all things, you do what is right for you and your family.

What anyone else (including us lot on here!) do/did or feel is irrelevant. You don't need permission to make a choice that's right for you.

I am presuming you are not a fool and don't live in a media blackout so you know about all the pitfalls of tying to get back into the workplace after a period away and the perils of juggling work, home and childcare etc etc.

waitingforsomething Fri 11-Nov-16 03:16:00

Yanbu if you can afford it and if it's what you want. I enjoy working part time: I love my career and I am lucky enough to be able to afford to work part-time so I can spend some time at home with my children while they are young.

If you do go back to work, however, you might enjoy the adult time/conversation and you may find a very secure childcare for your DS.
You could try going back like others have said, and if it's not for you well then stay at home with DS and enjoy it.

ManaFleet Fri 11-Nov-16 03:35:37

I'm in exactly the same position and I feel for you OP.

You must do what feels right for you and your family, whatever anyone else thinks.

HappyCamel Fri 11-Nov-16 04:01:29

I did. I hugely regret it. I'm fully qualified but after two kids and 5 years out of employed work I can't get a job. I even worked self employed for some of that time and that hasn't helped. I

HappyCamel Fri 11-Nov-16 04:01:53

I did. I hugely regret it. I'm fully qualified but after two kids and 5 years out of employed work I can't get a job. I even worked self employed for some of that time and that hasn't helped. I

CorkieD Fri 11-Nov-16 04:03:43

If you can afford it, you should give it serious consideration.

Do not make the decision lightly. How financially secure are you? If you did resign, how easy would it be to return to work in either a fulltime or parttime capacity? What would happen if your circumstances change, for example, if your marriage broke down or your DH loses his job?

grobagsforever Fri 11-Nov-16 06:31:16

If you don't return to work you are putting yourself in a very vulnerable position financially. Happy marriages can fail. Or people can become sick and unable to work. IMHO every woman should strive for financial independence. It also sets a good example to your son re feminism etc. But that is a personal view. Good luck.

Frouby Fri 11-Nov-16 06:42:34

I have done both.

I returned to work when dd was very young (a few months old). Regretted it, resigned and got a part time job. I loved the job (sales assistant, easy mentally and physically ok) and worked 3 days a week.

Got bored of it when dd was about 5 and found something office/sales based.

When ds was born (there are 9 years between them) childcare was expensive and awkward so I didn't go back.

Ds is now 3. I have loved being at home with him. Mostly. It has been lonely at times and I feel I need to think about doing something soon. Realistically I can afford to be at home until he starts full time school. But I don't know what sort of job I will find.

In an ideal world I would be doing some qualifications or training now. Which I am going to look at after Christmas.

I have always worked my way up pretty quickly in any job though. And am pretty good at passing exams and studying. Plus a sales background means I can usually sell myself at interview stage so I am pretty sure I will find something and be able.to.do it well.

Go with what works for your family. But cover your arse too.

DragonHorse Fri 11-Nov-16 06:44:09

It has nothing to do with your friends. If you want to be at home with your baby, do it. I did the same, and five years on have no regrets.

MoonDuke Fri 11-Nov-16 06:49:16

Speaking as someone whose went back both times at 6 months, I found that the DC 'saved' their firsts for me. Eg both first steps were at the end of a weekend I'd spent with them so I know for certain they hadn't done them before.

First sit up by himself for DS1 was missed by everyone - we'd popped into the kitchen and when we came back he was sitting...

Its a personal decision but don't underestimate how hard it is to get back into work.

HearTheThunderRoar Fri 11-Nov-16 07:28:59

I went back to work when DD was 3 months as I was the main breadwinner and there was no maternity pay in those days. DH was self employed and his earnings fluctuated a lot so I had no choice as we couldn't afford for me to be off any longer. I wish I did stay home a bit longer. Although DH worked night shifts which meant DD wasn't in Creche 9-5 every weekday so that did made it a bit easier knowing that DH was home some of the time.

However I am glad I went back to work, I have always had my financial independence and I feel proud to have taught my DD work ethic (absolutely no criticism to SAHMs, those values are just extremely important to me). Also my DH did get sick and he sadly passed away which made grateful that I wasn't just reliant on DH income, otherwise I could have been up the creek without a paddle.

bippitybopityboo Fri 11-Nov-16 07:55:59

Thankyou for everyone's opinions. I have lots to think about in the coming months. Am I right in thinking I can take an extra 3 months additional to my 9 I have just taken unpaid? This could be an option to see how things go then maybe return part time.
Thanks again for your experiences and advice smile

Lules Fri 11-Nov-16 08:06:07

To echo everyone else it's such a personal decision. There's no right or wrong. FWIW I initially went back full time and hated it - my job was very busy and I have a long commute so it would be completely possible not to see my DS at all for days. If you have a job with shorter working hours that might not be such a problem. I now work part time in a job with slightly less responsibility (but same money) and it's really the best of both worlds for the moment. I've probably got another 40 years of work to do so I'm sure that balance will change again in the future.

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