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DH taking nearly all SPL

(72 Posts)
SPLhelp Thu 04-Apr-19 09:08:43

TTC, I run my own business and have 8 members of staff. I cannot see how I could manage to take ML without the business suffering.

DH works in the NHS and could take SPL.

I feel although this is an amazing opportunity for him, I would be missing out. I don’t really have any local friend (we relocated a couple of years ago and building the business has been my priority). I hoped maternity leave would be an opportunity for me to meet other local mums and make friends. Not really relevant but DH has quite a lot of local friends he has made through work/football/gym etc. I worry that he would struggle with SPL, I have one friend who’s DH who took it in London. He found that most of the activities were mum & baby and whilst he was welcomed he was the only dad and not really included - it was only after 6 months he discovered a great dads club. I worry that if he struggled in London how mine would cope here.

I don’t know any other family that have used SPL.

I guess my AIBU is around having a very short ML - will I manage, will DH manage, pretty sure baby will be fine. And AIBU to feel a bit resentful that I’m not going to have much time with my baby?

Has anyone taken SPL and how dad they find it?

AceOfSpades123 Thu 04-Apr-19 09:31:50

There’s not really any way around this is there? Are you sure TTC is a good idea while trying to get a business going? Wouldn’t it be better to do it when you can afford to hire an interim manager and take 6 months ML? If your business can’t support that right now then I’m dubious that having kids now is the right call. That 1st year is extremely hard work and sleepless nights/stress etc can be extreme. Not conducive to running a new business. Just my opinion but it feels like you’re making your life unnecessarily difficult/hard?

Eliza9919 Thu 04-Apr-19 09:34:20

What do you do in your business? Could you take your baby in with you and delegate more? That way you don't miss out on time with them.

killpop Thu 04-Apr-19 09:36:31

Please do not TTC whilst you have no friends around. This board is full of women who find themselves trapped in an unhappy relationship because they have children and no support.

PhillipeFellope Thu 04-Apr-19 09:42:51

I had no friends prior to having my DS due to relocation (I moved away, then cam back to my home town, everyone had moved in/was in a different place to me). You'll meet people on ML, I really wouldn't worry about that.

But if your business is in such a precarious position that if you took ML then it would really suffer then I'd hold off TTC until you're in a better position financially maybe.

Weepingwillows12 Thu 04-Apr-19 09:47:50

I only know people who shared spl so both off at the same time and they loved it. One travelled America in an RV, one couple chilled out at home.

Is there options to go part time with your business for a few months so you can all be together?

I think I wouldn't underestimate the time you need to heal and adjust. I know people do go straight back to work but it can be hard. However from what you said it makes financial sense to do things how you plan. I think baby groups all have different vibes and your dh will need to shop around until he gets one he likes.

RevRichardWayneGaryWayne Thu 04-Apr-19 09:49:49

We met some quite good friends at antenatal classes- so that might at least help with the meeting friends part?

Weepingwillows12 Thu 04-Apr-19 09:50:08

Oh and on the friends thing, I don't think I really ever made friends at baby groups. Just strangers to have a coffee with. I didn't try hard though as had pnd. School was easier for me on that. And honestly mumsnet helped me loads with my questions and fears!

Shoxfordian Thu 04-Apr-19 09:50:39

Maybe you shld should concentrate on your business and getting it to a place where you can take time off

Tbh wanting maternity leave so you can make friends is ridiculous. Start going to social groups like meetup now if you want to make friends.

NWQM Thu 04-Apr-19 09:51:00

Could your business cope with you working reduced hours or flexing hours so that whilst your husband is the main carer you can twice a week do x - mother and baby group, swimming group or whatever works. He gets some time to maintain some of his friendships / interests. The trick I think is the pattern otherwise work will likely always be too busy - you need to be unavailable Tuesday or Thursday mornings or whatever.

There is rarely the perfect time to ttc.

SPLhelp Thu 04-Apr-19 09:52:39

The business has been going 30 years. It is a family business (my parents retired). They have said they would help out as cover but not ideal as they like their holidays! I also don’t want to imposition them as they only retired last year, my dad hasn’t been well and are really enjoying not working. Finding cover outside would be tough, I get all the work in for the staff to do (it’s generally not recurring work) it’s not something someone else could just pick up for 6 months - it has taken me 4 years and a lot of support/introductions from my parents.

DH and I met at uni and lived outside my family town for 10 years after uni whilst I worked for other businesses in the same industry to gain other experience and so I didn’t “just” work for mum and dad! I have my parents and DSis nearby and also a couple of friends from school. Been with DH 15 years and married 10. Own my own house and am the higher earner so not really without a support network or financial freedom. We do want a family and rapidly approaching late 30s so I can’t really wait - appreciate it might not happen but I don’t want to put the business before everything else although I do love it.

We could employ a nanny, I had a nanny who was with my mum from the day she came out of hospital to help whist she was off and then take care of me and DSis when she worked. But DH doesn’t want this - he never had a nanny, his DM stayed at home.

We have discussed me doing 2/3 days a week whilst he is on SPL so we are both off together for a bit.

SansasSnatch Thu 04-Apr-19 09:54:44

Let him get on with it! I’m sure he’ll ge fine - especially as he has no issues with it and the fact that you have little other choice.

I don’t agree with the waiting. In reality there’s never a perfect time and also friends are fickle creatures and I certainly wouldn’t base having children on whether I had any or not

Wallsbangers Thu 04-Apr-19 09:55:26

I've made lots of friends on ML but it's hard going. There are lots of awkward conversations!

Don't underestimate the time you need to heal and how strongly you might feel about leaving your baby. It's probably worth having proper plans in place for cover for your business.

For your DH, I think it depends what sort of guy he is. My OH would hate having to go to groups even if there were other men there but he's more than happy to walk for miles with the pushchair.

corythatwas Thu 04-Apr-19 09:57:16

Serious question: if you are unable to take the maternity leave you want (which I could you understand), why would you think a paid nanny better than the child's own father?

Lost5stone Thu 04-Apr-19 09:59:09

I'm your position I would crack on and let DH stay at home. A nanny won't be better than the child's own father. Under 6 months you might get away with bringing baby into work a bit

eddielizzard Thu 04-Apr-19 09:59:12

The timing isn't going to get better. I can see this working. Let your DH get on with SPL. It's not forever, just a few months. Then as your DC get older, childcare options become easier. You can make this work, but you both need to compromise. You in terms of being the breadwinner and not being a SAHM, your DH in terms of being the SAHP for a bit.

It is hard, but not impossible. You can make this work.

TheInvestigator Thu 04-Apr-19 09:59:22

He doesn't want a nanny because his mum stayed at home.... but does he understand that you're not staying at home and when he goes back to work, there will still be a baby who needs care? Or does he have the vision of you staying at home?

I think you have a husband problem as his view seems to be centred on the stay at home mum.

SPLhelp Thu 04-Apr-19 09:59:23

It is really useful getting other people’s point of view. Whilst I do have a couple of school friends most moved away / we lost contact when I moved away. I don’t imagine I will acquire a whole new friendship group whilst on ML but a few people in my area at the same stage of their life would be great.

I had loads of friends where I worked before but being the boss in a small team means I’m not really “friends” with my colleagues - we do have occasional nights out smile

CMOTDibbler Thu 04-Apr-19 10:02:07

I honestly think you are over thinking it all. Your DH will find his own way on paternity leave, and if you own your own business, then you will have flexibility to go to a baby group or two in the week, both while he's on paternity leave and when you start using child care.

Fairenuff Thu 04-Apr-19 10:07:26

I think your dh doing the childcare is the perfect solution.

TheBestSpoon Thu 04-Apr-19 10:09:44

How long would your ML be? I'm doing SPL with DH (6 months each, I'm currently 4 months into my stint), and while I'm looking forward to returning to work at that point, I would really have struggled to go back before 3 months. The physical recovery was MUCH tougher and longer than I expected (straightforward birth, some complications after requiring a few extra nights in hospital but nothing too exceptional - almost everyone I know had some issue of some kind, be it a c section, problems feeding etc). Adding in the sleep deprivation of the first few weeks and getting to grips with parenthood meant I was also struggling mentally. I only really felt back to "myself" at about 12 weeks.

Also, if you would like to breastfeed, you'll need to be around 24/7 at the start to get it established, although appreciate you may not wish to do so.

SPLhelp Thu 04-Apr-19 10:10:17

DH doesn’t want a nanny because he thinks we can manage with SPL and use a nursery when he goes back to work.

To be honest the nanny/nursery discussion for a hypothetical baby is a bit far off for me! hmm

It’s more about whether others have managed only having say 8-10 weeks ML and then using SPL and how it worked for them in a practical sense. How they coped going back to work, did they feel they went back too soon? Whether they still made friends with other mums, did they feel they had enough time with the baby and the one I’m worried about did they resent their OH if they felt they missed out on any of these?

My business could manage for me to be off for a couple of months with my mum/dad covering and to do less days short term.

Fairenuff Thu 04-Apr-19 10:15:32

I think you're going to find it incredibly tough if getting back to the business asap is a priority tbh. You just don't know how you will feel or how the baby will be. My dd spent her first 5 weeks in hospital and I would not have been able to work during that time.

It's impossible to predict how it would go for you but with the added pressure of having to get back to work it could be a very stressful time for you, rather than a pleasant one. Plus all the usual lack of sleep stress.

OneStepSideways Thu 04-Apr-19 10:20:48

I would get a nanny unless your DH is really keen to be a SAHD. I think it's hard for men to make friends on SPL, there was one who attended all our local toddler groups trying to chat, it was awkward as they're such a female dominated place. He used to sit and listen to us discussing our birth injuries/blocked ducts etc, which seemed a bit creepy at the time though he probably just wanted company!

NoSquirrels Thu 04-Apr-19 10:25:35

I think it sounds absolutely perfect!

You family can cover your short-term ML and you don’t need to train anyone up.

Your DH has a stable job with the option of SPL.

You can go back to work on whatever pattern suits you and the business - short days, mornings only, a 3-day week etc. You can do a gradual return, and see how you’re feeling.

If your DH is a capable, supportive type, and your DPs are also capable, supportive types, then I think it sounds great.

Sign up for NCT and you’ll meet people, keep some mornings free for baby activities and meet-ups etc., and you’ll all be happy.

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