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To think that returning to work after three months is not that unusual?

(65 Posts)
Caff2 Mon 19-Aug-13 22:39:41

I did with both of mine, because I couldn't afford not to after the maternity pay went down a lot. A friend of mine seems to have forgotten I did this, and has just had her first, and is slagging off a member of her ante natal group with phrases like, "Why did she even have a child if she couldn't wait to get rid of him to a childminder?"

I love my children, I do my best for them, but both were in childcare whilst I worked full time from 10 weeks and fourteen weeks respectively.

Altinkum Tue 20-Aug-13 06:59:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PollyIndia Tue 20-Aug-13 07:05:54

I went back when baby was 2 months for 2 days a week. I am self employed, needed to keep the contract (and they weren't prepared to even wait a month). And as for pp saying you just spend less, well I am single, so not about spending, about paying the mortgage.
I carried on breastfeeding until he was 8 months old though and exclusively for 6 months (well with some expressing obviously).
One thing I have realised about this parenting malarkey is people love to judge others. You have to do what works for you.

peteypiranha Tue 20-Aug-13 07:10:53

I did and Im proud of it. It meant a total equal marriage with my husband sharing childcare and chores. I did it and it wasnt even that bad and still kept a solid marriage with my dh even though we were both in early 20s. It was our first and I did it and managed to get a 2.1 degree, still work etc and I only had 2 weeks off. I know loads a lot older than me at the time that couldnt manage that.

Dd is very confident and social now shes older.

LittleFriendSusan Tue 20-Aug-13 07:31:16

Perhaps more unusual now that SML is longer, but when DD was born in 2002 it was definitely the norm in my circle. I took additional leave so had 6 months off but IIRC the last 3 months were unpaid? Couldn't afford any longer than that, and it took us a long time to recover financially. I think by the time DS was born in 2004 SML had increased to 6m.

Quite surprised at some of the replies here actually (not knowing anyone who returned to work after less than 1 year in particular!), but on reflection I suppose a lot of it comes down to the age of your children... If you and all of your friends have younger children I guess 12m (paid) leave is more usual.

MrsMook Tue 20-Aug-13 07:45:52

It's not something many people would do voluntarily, but it does happen. My friend's husband was made redundant 3 days after they fund out about her pregnancy, and her income just about keeps them surviving. They couldn't afford to survive on SMP so she was facing a very early return to work. Fortunately he's just got a permanent job which takes them out of that position.

Another friend is self employed and RTW very early, but managed to care for DD while working in the early months, and meetings were topped up with care from GPs.

My mother RTW when I was 3 weeks. She still lived with parents so I stayed at home where my GM was a full-time carer for another family member.

YouStayClassySanDiego Tue 20-Aug-13 07:55:17

I went back full time when ds1 was 4 months old.

Financially, we would have been screwed if I hadn't.

sonlypuppyfat Tue 20-Aug-13 07:58:09

I've not gone back to work after 14 years!

SprinkleLiberally Tue 20-Aug-13 08:25:31

I know mostly teachers. They tend to be back about 7 months these days. A few years back it was about 5 months.

wigglesrock Tue 20-Aug-13 08:46:12

Dd1 was born in 2005 and I was back when she was 4.5 months, I took 9 months with dd3. My sister was back when her baby was 4.5 months, that was last year.

samandi Tue 20-Aug-13 08:51:24

Why did she even have a child if she couldn't wait to get rid of him to a childminder

Does she think that most men shouldn't have kids, then?

jammiedonut Tue 20-Aug-13 08:56:30

When is the appropriate time to return in her eyes then? In the US certainly maternity leave is 12 weeks, and unpaid in many cases. A cousin of mine is in SA and had to return to work 8 weeks post c-section! If you need to go at 3 months, don't feel bad. I'd gently remind her of the position you are in and congratulate her that she isn't in the same position.

Caff2 Tue 20-Aug-13 09:32:33

Thanks for all replies - it seems it is more or less unusual depending on who you know, but I don't feel bad anymore - she was indeed being a thoughtless sod smile

forevergreek Tue 20-Aug-13 09:41:17

I think it's more normal now to have shorter leave tbh.

Most places don't offer full pay for 9 months and many can't afford the drop in pay or just smp. Especially if you live in expensive areas.

I had 4 months and 3 months and we saved beforehand to cover all of that time

Pigsmummy Tue 20-Aug-13 09:51:03

I don't know anyone who has returned so soon nor do any of my childminding friends (we were discussing this recently in terms of the youngest children that they have cared for).

Your friend was discussing someone else not you, did she know you when you had DC? If so a gentle reminder might be a good thing? But really how she feels about someone else returning to work shouldn't really upset you. Maybe the Mum in question can't wait to get back to work?

LondonMother Tue 20-Aug-13 09:54:19

My daughter was born in 92. I got higher rate SMP (90% of salary) for the first six weeks, which could start at 30 weeks of pregnancy, I think, and then a much lower flat rate (a pitiful amount, IIRC) until she was about 7 months old. I think my job was held open until that point. I knew a woman who returned to work when her baby was 2 weeks old but this was extremely unusual. Most women I knew who returned to work after having a baby took as much leave as they could afford. It's always varied a great deal by the sector you work in - as well as by financial circumstances, obviously. My employer didn't offer any enhancement over the basic state provision but that was a smallish private sector firm. If I'd been in a public sector job or working for a very large private sector firm I'd have a lot more maternity pay but I'd have had an obligation to go back for at least three months.

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