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Pregnant nanny options for return after maternity leave

(17 Posts)
HappyAsEyeAm Mon 10-Jun-13 20:48:29

I am a mum of two DC myself, and we employ a nanny. In the years since we have employed a nanny, we have only ever had two nannies, and both of them have been pregnant in the time they have been with us.

Nanny number one told us she was pg after about 11 months or so with us. She was 12 weeks when she told us. She decided not to come back to work after we refused her request to bing her baby with her, for a variety of reasons. It is not appropriate for me to go into those reasons here.

I appreciated her letting us know early as i t meant that we could be more accommodating of her, knowing what it is like to be pregnant. As she went on maternity leave at about 31 weeks, we also had that time to make arrangements for her cover.

We hired another nanny on a fixed term maternity cover for our first nanny. When she decided not to return to work, we made our second nanny permanent. Now she is pregnant. She told us at about 19 weeks. She has her own valid and personal reasons for not telling us until then, but I wish she had said earlier. I would have adjusted my expectations of her, and done some kind of risk assessment to make sure everything was safe and easier or her. It would also have given us more time to get our heads around it and make plans for our DC's care.

I suppose what I am saying is that I think you should tell your boss, and quickly. I appreciate that you are trying to make plans for your return, and of course, you have the right to return to your job. But she will be trying to think through how to cover your maternity, and she will know that, whatever you say now, you have the right to take up to a year off. The uncertainty about how long you will take can be difficult for parents, as employers, as temp nannies my always be on the lookout for permanent jobs, which can lead to instability. Not that this is your issue, but I think that, as employers, parents would appreciate as much time as possible to make arrangements. Also, whatever you say now about your plans, things can and do change for you and your employers. So nothing is set in stone.

Also, I think it would be helpful if you indicated when you think you would like to start maternity leave, although you can at a later stage bring this forward.

Congrats on your pregnancy.

RikeBider Mon 10-Jun-13 20:24:34

I guess I am quite a private person and didn't really want to announce it until after the 20 week scan!

I don't pump so wouldn't be expecting breaks in the day to do so. By 7 months and well on to solids it should be fine to skip feeds on 3 days and the baby can have food/formula.

I won't qualify for SMP but should get MA.

NomDeClavier Mon 10-Jun-13 17:19:35

Congratulations!

You have to tell her very soon and she probably isn't going to be happy because of the continuity issue. She shouldn't have asked you that interview (and in future you should deflect anything like that with 'Just in case you don't know, you aren't allowed to ask that question at interview.')

At 7 months breastfeeding supply may well be established enough without pumping if you don't mind formula during the day. Especially if you're happy to feed at night....

You know that the timing impacts on SMP? You need to raise that with your boss so they know they won't have to administer it and sort out maternity allowance ASAP.

sweetsummerlove Mon 10-Jun-13 09:48:17

I just don't understand why you wouldn't go out of your way to tell them sooner. Honestly I would view it as you hiding it, and as the employer be concerned.

..But then I also don't 'get' caring for someone else's children and sending yours elsewhere... I would be looking for a btwm position elsewhere if they made it clear they didn't want baby attending work with you.

Also if you plan to bf, and are sending dc to alternative care at 7 months you'll need to consider asking them for regular breaks to pump and keep your supply established, which would be very tricky...since nannies don't get breaks! ..I hope your meeting goes well, its a toughy.

RikeBider Sun 09-Jun-13 23:36:28

I only haven't told the mum yet as I don't think she's noticed and I literally see her for about 3 minutes a day - she is at the door ready to leave when I arrive and is always late in the evenings so I have my coat on ready to go. I have seen dad about 10 times I think since I started and he never makes eye contact with me confused

RikeBider Sun 09-Jun-13 23:32:49

Yes, bad timing and when she asked the baby question at the interview I was a bit taken aback! It's not always a straightforward question to answer with a yes/no anyway and I didn't really want to get into a discussion about it with a woman I had just met.

I have a school age child and a nursery age child neither come to work with me and haven't had any impact on my job. Baby would probably go to part time nursery and part time with family so it would cost me, but probably not more than 25% of my salary.

Blondeshavemorefun Sun 09-Jun-13 23:17:12

Very bad timing as in starting job and then finding preg esp after mb asking you if having another baby was in your future at Interview

1) you obv have other children - assuming either older and capable of being left alone or at school or your hubby/ gps looks after them - ie they don't come to work with you now

2) legally employers aren't allowed to ask of you are intending to have any children

But many congrats smile

Tbh I think your mb may a tad pissed off in the fact you have been there 5mths and are 5mths preg and haven't told her yet - tho legally think its 24ish weeks and you have to tell her

If she doesnt want you to return with baby then who will have bubs and will it cost you ie free via gps?

But yes ask to have a chat Alone and then say you would like to come back and see what options she offers

RikeBider Sun 09-Jun-13 22:17:05

Good to have an employer's perspective too.

I know it's going to be disruptive either way, but I'm happy to offer to either:
take a clear 9 months off then return on the same terms
return at 6 weeks and bring the baby with me, maybe negotiate a wage reduction
return at 6 weeks with the baby on a temporary basis until she's old enough for childcare

So, I think that gives some options.

I'd expect to sling the baby and breastfeed so hopefully there would be little disruption to the older children. I only do three days and we don't have swimming/classes just free stuff like toddler groups, library, play dates etc so I don't think that would be an issue.

I'm off for a week now so will arrange to have a proper meeting when I get back. I guess the worst they can do is make me redundant when I'm on ML.

bbcessex Sun 09-Jun-13 21:03:42

You know, as a parent it's not ideal when a nanny tells you she's pregnant (it's happened to me twice) but it's part and parcel of being an employer, and especially an employer who's employee market is (*mainly*) younger women.

Best thing you can do is ask to arrange to speak to your employer when the children aren't around. When you do that, they'll (probably) already be thinking along the lines of "RikeBider" is going to leave / go another job etc so you'll have given them a bit of a heads up.

Then tell them you're pregnant. Tell them you're open to their suggestions of how you'd like things to work. Tell them you're happy working with them (if you are), and you'd really like them to think about options of what could happen when your baby is born.

Then it's down to them really. If they don't want you to bring your baby, that's their choice; if they do, then you need to come to a proper arrangement regarding salary, who pays for what, activities etc.

First step really is telling them...

RikeBider Sun 09-Jun-13 20:59:06

Yes, that's a possibility. Hopefully several months' notice is enough though?

sweetsummerlove Sun 09-Jun-13 20:31:51

I gotta be honest. They are probably going to be pissed that you are 20 weeks pregnant and yet to tell them. (im a nanny)

RikeBider Sun 09-Jun-13 19:12:18

I hope she is 'normal' but she did ask me outright at the interview if I was planning on having another baby and of course I said no, so am slightly worried she will feel lied to/cheated.

Karoleann Sun 09-Jun-13 18:48:01

I'd just present the options to your employer, you sound very on the ball. KIT days would probably work less well as your employer will have to find someone to cover your mat leave anyway.

I'd just add - also find solutions to anything that's not workable at the moment with a baby. Maybe say I'll be able to use a sling so that the 2 year old can still use her buggy (she'll be out of it soon anyway) or dh can look after the baby when we have a swimming lesson on Friday?

Congratulations on your pregnancy and keeping it hidden!

OutragedFromLeeds Sun 09-Jun-13 18:02:31

I think what you've said in your OP is very reasonable. You're happy to take a short leave and return with baby or longer ML and leave baby in childcare, can't be fairer than that!

It does all depend on your employer though. There was a thread here not that long ago where the OP had found out her nanny was pregnant and was planning on emotionally blackmailing her into leaving because she didn't want the disruption for her children! It can really go any way!! If your employer is 'normal' then what you've said should be fine.

RikeBider Sun 09-Jun-13 17:55:35

I understand it will depend on our situation, but I don't want to start off on the wrong foot by asking for/suggesting anything too unreasonable or unworkable.

A paycut would be less than the cost of childcare, but I can probably arrange some paid and some family childcare so finances aren't going to be a deciding factor for me.

OutragedFromLeeds Sun 09-Jun-13 17:41:26

I think it's going to really depend on your personal situation tbh. First you need to find out if your employers are open to the idea of you bringing your baby. If they're not then it doesn't really matter what has worked for other people!

If you bring your baby with you, you'll probably need to take a paycut. It depends on your situation whether this would be more/less than the cost of childcare e.g. if your mum can care for baby and no childcare costs then financially better to leave baby at home.

RikeBider Sun 09-Jun-13 17:09:18

I've named changed just in case boss could recognise me.

I started a nanny job 5ish months ago and found out I was pregnant in literally my first week.

I'm now 20 weeks and want to tell my boss, but would like to have come up with some options for how things could work after the baby is born.

I look after 2 children who will be 2ish and 4ish when my baby is born. I work three days a week (long days).

I would be happy to either take a short ML and return to work with the baby, or come back to work without the baby but would want to wait til 7ish months before using childcare. Or possibly some combination/using KIT days as a phased return?

So, both nannies and employers - what have you found works? What scenario do you think would be preferable?

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