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Non-pregnant women getting maternity leave

(32 Posts)
sophiegall123 Wed 04-May-16 09:28:42

Just saw this article this morning - metro.co.uk/2016/05/02/author-argues-women-without-kids-should-get-maternity-leave-too-5853651/ -

Do you think that all women should be entitled to maternity leave breaks without even being pregnant...? I'm really not convinced..

LeaLeander Thu 05-May-16 22:40:12

Here's a worthy commentary on "Meternity leave."

www.huffingtonpost.com/sarah-a-ford/in-defense-of-meternity-l_b_9816198.html

LeaLeander Thu 05-May-16 22:37:45

Also, I kind of object to the idea that maternity leave gives women 'me time'.

I don't think it gives a woman "me time" in the sense of relaxation but it does afford her the opportunity to take time off to pursue what she considers a worthwhile and fulfilling endeavor. There are many worthwhile, beneficial-to-society endeavors that do not involve procreation and with reproduction being a 100 percent voluntary choice, it would be nice if all workers could take leave to pursue their voluntary choices as well.

If every worker received, say, one six-month break every five years, she/he could use it as she sees fit, for reproductive purposes or otherwise. We'd all be funding one another's leave and there wouldn't be so much resentment and disdain.

AlexandraEiffel Thu 05-May-16 22:33:15

I loved the stuff about the bear. That really resonated and isn't often talked about

WellErrr Thu 05-May-16 06:19:45

Same cold

AyeAmarok Thu 05-May-16 01:51:21

The OP article and the Huffington Post article are both hilarious. Although I appreciate only one was meant to be.

ColdTeaAgain Thu 05-May-16 00:59:46

I almost feel sorry for her for being such a fucking idiot.

Strokethefurrywall Thu 05-May-16 00:31:32

I know, I roared laughing reading it.
If you have a second meternity leave you're required to get an affectionate but obstinant baboon to look after - brilliant!
To be honest it summed up much of the first few years or parenting very accurately!

AlexandraEiffel Wed 04-May-16 22:06:48

Stroke - I was going to post that too grin

WellErrr Wed 04-May-16 22:02:39

She sounds like a misogynistic fool.

Strokethefurrywall Wed 04-May-16 21:54:59

This was my favourite response to her article - absolutely spot on.

www.huffingtonpost.ca/elizabeth-bromstein/maternity-leave-without-kids_b_9811462.html

QueenLaBeefah Wed 04-May-16 15:52:55

I think (unpaid) sabbaticals are a great idea and I wish more companies would allow it

I also wish there was some type of carers leave (preferably paid) as we have an increasingly aging populations.

I found maternity leave very hard work and lonely. Also the money was derisory.

YorkieDorkie Wed 04-May-16 15:44:06

No, it is not your employers or the governments job to fund your "me time".

Fourormore Wed 04-May-16 15:40:36

What happens when a woman falls pregnant for a third time, holidays?

holidaysarenice Wed 04-May-16 15:37:54

I think it should be two paid breaks of nine months for all. Use them for holiday or maternity but once used that is it.

Much fairer.

29redshoes Wed 04-May-16 15:37:07

I guess she wanted the publicity, and it's worked! It is very insulting to paint maternity leave as "me time".

I do agree it would be good if it were easier for everyone, men and women, to be able to take sabbaticals/career breaks though.

MyLocal Wed 04-May-16 15:35:35

If it meant I could palm my DS on her for 6 months following birth, she could have had my maternity leave willingly, even decades later I recall the exhaustion and delight at returning to work which was less tiring.

He was a very hard baby.

BowChickaBowWow Wed 04-May-16 15:31:58

When will people realise that maternity leave isn't a holiday?! Yes, I had a lovely time, for the most part, whilst I was off after having my DS, but it's because I bloody deserved (and made sure that I had) a nice time as I had grown and birthed a (not very small in my case!) person! That takes it out of you. I was shocked how long it took for me to feel human again, it was months, rather than weeks as I'd assumed/hoped. Looking after a needy baby all day is exhausting too. My 'me time' during the 9 months off work consisted of an hour or so here and there when he napped and I had chance to drink a coffee whilst still hot. My 'personal goals' consisted of eating a meal that wasn't a microwave ready meal, and being able to eat it with 2 hands!

If people want sabbaticals from work, go for it, but do not equate it to ML!

VimFuego101 Wed 04-May-16 15:30:30

What she is looking for already exists and is called a sabbatical.

The ridiculous thing is that she's in America where maternity leave barely exists. You are considered unable to work for a few weeks as you've just given birth, but you're unlikely to get paid unless your company offers short term disability insurance. Most women work until their waters break and then return 6-12 weeks after giving birth.

butterflylove16 Wed 04-May-16 15:29:07

My bil is having a sabbatical later this year (4-5 months) to do some travelling & I imagine to truly focus on himself. This is what this lady is talking about, not maternity leave. To compare it to maternity leave is pretty insulting.

DaisyAdair Wed 04-May-16 15:15:56

Well said BoffinMum, excellent post.

sepa Wed 04-May-16 15:05:58

She is an idiot to say about getting maternity leave. It makes it sound like we are sat round doing bugger all except spending our time thinking about what to do next!

My baby is an easy baby compared to most but you have to feed them, clean them, watch for sickness. Bath them and keep them entertained all day whilst awake. When they are asleep (if your lucky to have a baby who sleeps away from your arms) then you have housework to get on with and a constant stream of new BFFs (because you have something cute to look at) all the while crying because of hormones and recovering from the birth. If your lucky You have a straight forward birth and you recover quickly. If you have a complicated birth you are still recovering (both phisically and emotionally) for a few months post birth! and breath

sophiegall123 Wed 04-May-16 11:09:47

This is the first time I've posted to mumsnet so thanks for such a great dicsussion guys!! Great community grin

BoffinMum Wed 04-May-16 09:51:13

(Do they realise it's hard to find time even to have a shower?!!!)

BoffinMum Wed 04-May-16 09:50:02

I think they have fundamentally misunderstood the impact of childbirth on the human body, and the physical and psychological risk involved to some women of rushing back to jobs where they may not have a lot of autonomy and may be required to do pretty physical or demanding work (it is much easier if you are the boss or run your own enterprise/projects and get more of a say in how you plan your time and effort). It also underestimates the sheer effort involved in caring for the very young, and the lack of sleep.

It's actually pretty insulting and devalues the contribution to the human species made by people who are procreating on behalf of everyone else. And makes babies look like a designer lifestyle accessory rather than accepting this is about as fundamental to the human condition as you can get.

Much better to make arrangements for everyone to be able to have sabbaticals, if we can afford that as a nation, and this incidentally should include people who have given birth otherwise they will be deprived of reflection and personal development time simply on the grounds that they gave birth - pretty sexist when you think about it.

Fourormore Wed 04-May-16 09:49:16

If someone offered me "me time" where I was being woken up every 45-90 minutes for 9 months, I'd rather just work to be honest.

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