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can they force me to take extended maternity leave???

(19 Posts)
brandnew Fri 25-Mar-05 14:06:31

went to see a lone parent advisor as dont want to return to old job, i am currently on paid maternity leave till next month then it stops- lone parent advisor said to tell work i am going back then go on sick- will they pay me sick pay or force me to take un paid leave??? i really cant face going back to work yet but cant afford to go on social, does anyone know where i stand??

colditzmum Fri 25-Mar-05 14:11:04

go to the cab, I am sure you can't be forced back on to maternity leave.

brandnew Fri 25-Mar-05 15:33:10

i went but they couldnt help, he was foreign bless him and didnt have a clue what i was asking after explaining 10 times and after waiting 3 hours to see someone i gave up and came home- so am none the wiser

moondog Fri 25-Mar-05 15:45:48

Sorry, but I think this is rather irresponsible advice. Where would we all be, if people decided to take sick leave because they couldn't face going back to work?

Life is tough. That's the way it goes,

essbee Fri 25-Mar-05 15:53:02

Message withdrawn

brandnew Sat 26-Mar-05 13:59:57

dont think i have pnd but am very weepy still,i panic at the thought of going back- am a single mum, baby only 16 weeks and still wakes about 4/5 times during night-sometimes hungry sometimes just because- i think shes too young to go to a nursery and dont have anyone to mind her, dont think its a question of life being tough and getting on with it,should i strap the baby to my back at my desk moon dog??

cazzybabs Sat 26-Mar-05 14:45:40

i had to go back when my dd1 was only 13 weeks - it is possible but very hard leaving her in that nursery. I cried for a month before - it was awful, but I had to do it because my dp was doing a PhD and we had no other money, so I am afraid I am sticking my oar in and agreeing with Moondog. And TBH I found the idea of it worse than the reality, because she was fine and is now a very happy well adjusted 2 year old. I still hate my job, but hey ho she loves nursery!

brandnew Sat 26-Mar-05 15:14:56

this wasnt supposed to be a moral question-im not saying im never going back to work or that i will claim dole or social im saying i dont feel fit enough to go back to work so will get sick pay from them- why should i put myself through the pain you did when i dont have to? life doesnt have to be tough- going down the hard path in life doesnt make you a better person- is staying at home a bit longer with my baby so bad?

lunavix Sat 26-Mar-05 15:16:24

Find a local childminder! What area do you live in, maybe pop round and see a few. If you think someone is fantastic then go for it.

Roobie Sat 26-Mar-05 16:47:13

If you are sick when the time comes for you to return to work after maternity leave (you having given the requisite notice of your intention to return) then the your employer will have to apply their normal sick pay routine - they cannot force you to take extended maternity leave.
So, if you are sick you are sick (you will obviously need a doctor's note) otherwise you should take extended maternity leave if you simply are not ready to go back. If you need the cash then, as others have said, at least investigate your childcare options - the chances are you will be OK once you bite the bullet and go back...

Tanzie Sun 27-Mar-05 20:30:33

If you are not well enough to go back to work (NB, not well enough, not don't feel like it, or don't feel ready for it or up to it) then go and see a doctor and get signed off. If the doc thinks you are well enough to go back then I'm afraid you will either have to bite the bullet and look for childcare and do it, or see if you can take more maternity leave (which will presumably be unpaid).

I'm sorry if this sounds harsh, but I agree with Moondog. I've also had to cover for someone with kids the same age as mine who didn't turn up for work if she "didn't feel like it" or "was a bit tired". And it wasn't fun.

uwila Mon 28-Mar-05 13:50:29

Hi Brandnew,
It a tough position to be in. Single mum, and having to return to a job you hate. I sympathise. I really do. But, I also believe that staying home with your baby is a priviledge not a right. I am pregnant and will be returning to work when the baby is 12 weeks old due to financial necesity. I am none too happy about it, but life isn't always what we want it to be. With my first child, I was working contract and so only qualified for SMP which I couldn't possibly afford to live on. So, I worked part time for two just before the baby was born (by emergency caesarean), then took the next two weeks off (which is actually required by law), and then worked part time again from home for two weeks. Four weeks after birth I was back in the office full time (and still in maternity clothes!).

I tell you this story just to let you know that do have company. I find that there is a lot of pressure to stay home longer in this culture. I wish I have a penny for everytime I have horrified someone with my maternity plans, but hey when they want to come pay my bills then I'll be glad to stay home and hang out with my kids for a bit longer.

And none of this is meant to say I'm happy about it. I have certainly done my share of complaining about how everyone around me seems to manage much more maternity leave than I ever get. But, at the end of the day, I must pay the bills, and that means I must go to work. Fact of life, I'm afraid.

morningpaper Mon 28-Mar-05 14:10:04

Sorry but this is really irresponsible advice, I agree. It could also really affect a small company. I have several single friends who are working part-time or claiming benefits and they survive. You can't just abuse your company. Do you have any other single parent friends that you could ask for advice? Good luck.

Preggars Tue 29-Mar-05 10:31:22

Hi Brandnew,

I went back to working part-time when my DS was 5 months, and felt worried sick about for the 3 months up to starting work. In fact, it wasn't as bad as you think it is going to be. I too would love to afford to be at home with my DS, but cannot afford to. This is very common now with such high mortgages and generally the cost of living.

The advice you received is very short sighted. Do yourself a favour and be proactive, and find childcare you are happy with. Its all about team work with kids and you need to take charge and find a team you trust and can rely on. Doing this will make you feel much more in control and probably a lot happier. It won't get any easier putting off starting for another month. Babies adjust a lot quicker to this than us Mums do!

This isn't supposed to be a lecture. Good luck to you.

mummytosteven Tue 29-Mar-05 10:43:38

i don't think we know enough about brandnew's situation - i.e. whether it is just a "monday morning" feeling or whether she has debilitating PND or indeed any other physical illness to comment. Brandnew what are the main issues/anxieties from your POV re:going back to your old job?

lisalisa Tue 29-Mar-05 12:13:53

Message withdrawn

Tinker Tue 29-Mar-05 12:34:44

Could you go back part time? I too had to go back to work full time as a single parent when my baby was 16 weeks. Didn't want to at all but had no choice. If you do have pnd you will be signed off but otherwise the options are limited. The thought is worse than the reality though.

brandnew Thu 31-Mar-05 17:31:31

thanks mumtosteven, yes situation is a lot worse than i put on here but i didnt want advice or a chat about PND or other illnesses, i didnt post this in depression for a reason- iv taken all whats been said on board and am actually glad that there are so many people that think scrounging is bad- my question was answered anyway- thanks to all

morningpaper Thu 31-Mar-05 18:02:24

Good luck brandnew I hope things work out for you.

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