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29 weeks and really wanting to go on mat leave now!

(16 Posts)
cupcakeandtea Mon 09-Feb-09 11:35:26


I'm 29 weeks pregnant and so far have had a relatively problem-free pregnancy. However, in the last few weeks or so I've had days when I feel utterly exhausted and just 'not well.' I'm due to go on mat leave at 34 weeks which is 6 weeks away and it makes me weep to think i've still got that far to go.

I've had problems with my boss in the last month in that he doesn't realise that comuuting into London for an hour each way and then doing a full day's work is exhausting. In fact, he is the only cause of stress in my life at the moment and on days when perhaps I should stay at home I make myself come in to work because I'm too worried what he'll say if I don't.

The question is, do I bring my mat leave forward by two weeks (meaning I lose two weeks at the end of the year's mat leave) or do I stick it out? Would it be bad if I just 'went sick' this week?

andyrobo237 Mon 09-Feb-09 11:49:26

Oh I would go for a few days off sick, say Wed to Fri - not too much as in a whole week, but enough to allow you to catch up with some rest, as long as you do that, and dont run around doing loads at home. You could be suffering with lack of iron, which may make you feel rough, and I think around this time the baby is probably doing lots of growing!

6 weeks isnt that long (I know, I know), and you will appreciate the extra few weeks when you are coming to the end of your mat leave and due back to work.

Also you are haivng 6 weeks off before you have the baby and you may end up being bored at home just waiting, especially if you go overdue.

As i said, I would take a few guilt-free days and say you are having blood pressure problems, and they want you to rest. If possible when you go back, I would speak to your boss and be honest, saying that you struggle with the commute - are you able to do a day at home to save the travelling, or is that not possible? Does he have kids of his own - if so, get him to ask his wife to remind him what it is like, as men have no idea!

You need to keep healthy for yourrself and the growing baby!

firstontheway Mon 09-Feb-09 11:50:23

I started to feel that way about 29 weeks too sad

Is there any way you can work from home a couple of days a week? Or speak to your boss, be honest about the way you're feeling and see if you can cut your hours down without a pay cut for these last 6 weeks? Explain how awful you're feeling and say that you're worried you will have to go off sick soon unless something else can be worked out.

Otherwise, I'd go and see your GP and get signed off for the rest of the pregnancy. I know it seems like you're 'skiving' but tbh, pregnancy is hard and stressful enough as it is anyway, without the added stress of a horrible boss. I wouldn't move your mat leave forward though, Gps are good at signing pregnant women off, and this way you won't lose any precious time with your baby.

Bear in mind you'll be bored senseless though! I started to feel truely crap about 29 weeks (was also due to go off at 36 weeks) but also had pregnancy induced hypertension and was advised to stop work at 32 weeks by consultant. I did a week of 'short shifts' working only 3 days a weeks (boss was quite understanding) but it was still high so left work and have been bored senseless since!

I think your best bet is to be honest, ask to cut down hours or work from home some days... after all I'm sure they'd prefer you to do less hours than stop work altogether. If he's still being an arse, go see GP, get signed off and don't feel guilty about it. You and your baby are what's important in this scenario, not your company or your boss. And tbh, by the time you come back from mat leave, no one will remember or care about the circumstances in which you left. Just be sure you stock up on books, dvd boxsets and creme eggs wink

firstontheway Mon 09-Feb-09 11:50:53

Sorry that's so long blush

cupcakeandtea Mon 09-Feb-09 11:53:39

Thanks. That seems a very good idea and as long as I don't take more than 5 days I don't have to provide a sick note either.

Believe it or not, his wife has just had her second baby but he is totally unsympathetic. I've already had reason to complain about him twice to personnel.

I suppose half of it is that people keep saying 'pregnancy isn't an illness' and it isn't but by god it can make you feel really poorly sometimes!

cupcakeandtea Mon 09-Feb-09 12:05:03

I've felt really well up to now so it's been a bit of a shock to feel so knackered all of a sudden.

I'm going to see how I feel for the rest of the day and if I'm still feeling rough I'll take the rest of the week off. I'm finding the reaction of my boss extremely stressful but I am getting to the point where this baby comes first and he'll just have to lump it!

andyrobo237 Mon 09-Feb-09 12:10:02

Great to see that you are positive about going off and sod the work!! As firstontheway says, no one will remember that you had some time off sick before you go off on Mat leave.

I can beleive that about your boss as mine was similar, he said that he has a personal and work head - so he can understand the problems with pregnancy, but from a work and business point of view, you being off sick is a pain to them! Pants to them I say!!

duchesse Mon 09-Feb-09 12:16:30

If you are feeling ill, go to your doc and get signed off for a week. I would resist bringing your mat leave forwards because you will have less time with the baby at the other end of the leave. Have you had your iron levels checked recently? And are you continuing to take your folic acid? This is the stage when anaemia becomes a real possibility.

cupcakeandtea Mon 09-Feb-09 14:01:50

Thanks for all your advice. I've just arranged to work from home on Mondays from now on so that should help.

Seems sad that in these modern times women are still made to feel guilty if they feel ill during pregnancy!

firstontheway Mon 09-Feb-09 14:06:02

That's great!
Glad you managed to get something sorted

andyrobo237 Mon 09-Feb-09 16:31:31

Oh that is great - it should help you, and there is then the possiblity that you might be able to do another day at home in your last two weeks - you can only ask!!!!!

Enjoy your Mondays at home - you will get more work done in less time and save the commute time - happy days!!

georgimama Mon 09-Feb-09 16:42:06

Just to suggest the alternative POV, if you feel like you want to start ML now, I would.

I went on ML at 30 weeks and didn't regret it. That last 10 weeks of my pregnancy were the only part of it I enjoyed. I hadn't been ill but I had been stressed about the pregnancy, tired and emotional. As soon as I was at home I became relaxed and happy.

Many many of my friends and colleagues have gone on ML at 35+ weeks and by the end they were knackered. I don't think with your first you are really prepared for just how draining late pregnancy can be.

cfc Mon 09-Feb-09 17:23:04

I thought that if you went sick for a pregnancy related reason before your maternity leave was due to start, then it automatically starts the mat leave.

I might be wrong, but maybe look it up?

I sympathise, I have 7 weeks of hell left x

firstontheway Mon 09-Feb-09 17:28:00

cfc- afaik you can only be transfered into mat leave if you are off sick in your last 4 weeks of pregnancy, and this shouldn't affect OP as she is on mat leave from then anyway smile

cupcakeandtea Mon 09-Feb-09 17:29:17

I think I underestimated just how tired I would get and as this is my first I'm sort of flying blind. However, I'm going to bring the mat leave forward by a week as I'm owed a week's holiday so that's made me feel like there's light at the end of the tunnel.

There's alot of what I call Mummy Martyrs here - starting their mat leave until a week or two before their due date and making people like me feel guilty. I thought feminism was all about having the choice or maybe I've got that all skewed......

BlueSapphire77 Mon 09-Feb-09 17:42:49

I felt how you do too. I begged for my leave to start early so i could get away from having to look at my cheating shit DP who i work with.

That aside i regret it now a bit as i know it is time i won't get with DS but tbh i was knackered and had had enough.

Try to chuck the odd sickie but don't forget if you have preg related illness in the last so many weeks then your employer CAN start your leave early..

Congrats on your pregnancy Hope you feel better whenever you do start your leave .. its wonderful and peaceful lol

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