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Do you really "get" maternity leave when you already have children at home?

(30 Posts)
hattyyellow Wed 22-Oct-08 15:58:04

Just trying to figure it out. I have twins who are 3 and a bit.

Planning to start maternity leave either start or end of November depending on various factors to do with the pregnancy which should be determined following next scan.

Last time around I had no children so my maternity leave was straightforward.

This time around my girls will be at two nursery sessions (9-2pm) and one pre-school session a week. We can't really afford any more sessions on top of this as we've used all our early year vouchers and the double cost of childcare on one income is pretty high.

Due to low numbers at my pre-school, I'll be with them for most of the sessions as I'm rostered on to help out.

So is the key to make the most of those two nursery sessions and just lie on the sofa reading - or did you start demanding weekend maternity leave time as well?

I can't quite see how it's going to feel any different from a normal week as I'll still be looking after pre-schoolers while DH is at work/doing housework/going to toddler groups etc.

I'm not complaining..just wondering if maternity leave really exists second/third time around...and if so, how?

SummerLightning Wed 22-Oct-08 16:53:21

I don't get what you mean hatty, are you talking about time to yourself, or maternity pay as you are not working, or what?

What hours are you working now, and are you planning to stop completely when you start maternity leave, or are you working weekends (confused by your weekend maternity leave comment)?

I am guessing that maternity leave with the first one is a bit different to with the second ones etc, as you don't get to put your feet up!

LadyThompson Wed 22-Oct-08 16:54:59

Hatty, as you know I am expecting my first so I am hardly the expert on this. Personally I think you need to rest as much as poss (I hope you are better at it than me!) I think speak to the nursery when you are on, and explain you can't be as active as usual. And speak to your DH and see if he can do a bit extra with the girls at weekends, to give you a break...

ladytophamhatt Wed 22-Oct-08 16:59:19

I'm still on maternity leave with ds1.

It'll be 10 years in march.

Of course, any salary I got stopped about 9 yrs ago.

(That all means You don't get maternity leave once you've got children unless your working)

hattyyellow Wed 22-Oct-08 17:02:38

Sorry, not being clear!

I mean time to myself/resting time etc - so that when the baby arrives I feel like I've had a bit of a break beforehand.

Last time around we had no other children so I could sleep/read when I wanted during my maternity leave.

This time around I can't quite see how life won't carry on as normal during my "maternity leave".

I guess insisting on lie-in's at weekends might help?

I'm just wondering whether "maternity leave" as in a period of rest and relaxation before the new baby arrives actually exists once you already have small children at home!

LadyT thank you - I've told the pre-school that I can be there in spirit but can't be much use physically. Nursery sessions I drop the girls and leave them there - so at least that is some break for me!

MamaG Wed 22-Oct-08 17:05:55

I don't think you do, really, unless your DH will give you time to rest at weekends.

When DS ws born, DD was at school and now this baby is on teh way, I've just started maternity leave and DS is now at school! The key is large age gaps wink

I do "stuff" in the mornings (ok, its only my third day) i.e. housework/DIY bits then after lunch, my feet are firmly UP in front of a film on sky/nose in a book until its time to pick up the DC from school.

MamaG Wed 22-Oct-08 17:06:17

(do you have any family members who might have th DC one afernoon a week, so you can get some rest?)

ladytophamhatt Wed 22-Oct-08 17:11:55

Oh hatty.

I have an over whelming urge to chuckle at you in a really patronising way...Please feel free to slap me in a PG hormone rage.

There isn't any "maternity leave" when you've already got children. You just have to get on with it.

Just take any chance you get to waste hours on mumsnet put your feet up and rest.

As I said please slap my patronising face if you wishgringrin

SummerLightning Wed 22-Oct-08 17:13:01

Definitely tell DH that he is to give you lie ins then!! Sorry I think of maternity leave as the whole time you are off before baby and after so I was confused as to what you meant.

And do sod all when the girls are at nursery.

hattyyellow Wed 22-Oct-08 17:16:29

Thanks all!

LadyTophamhatt I think in my pregnancy addled brain I am realising that there is indeed no such thing as maternity leave once you have children!

Perhaps if you work f/t and your children are at nursery f/t and you continue their sessions there?

My midwife and everyone I speak to keeps asking me when I'm going on maternity leave and I keep thinking - but how exactly will I go on maternity leave?

So the key is to take every minute of free time I get and not waste the nursery sessions hoovering the carpet? Plus insisting on lie-ins wherever possible?

pointygravedogger Wed 22-Oct-08 17:17:11

not sure what you mean.

maternity leave does exist second time around because you are around for 24 hours if necessary to look after a small baby. That is what maternity leave is all about. The care of the small baby.

It is less relaxing second+ time around because you are looking after other childrne too. But mat leave is never guaranteed to be relaxing.

memoo Wed 22-Oct-08 17:20:00

Maternity leave is leave from work not from your other children.

It is hard second time round because you definately don't get time to rest but thats just the way it is i'm afraid!

hattyyellow Wed 22-Oct-08 17:22:09

Very true, pointy, I know the small baby bit won't involve much feet up time!

I just didn't get the pre-baby arriving/not working period of maternity leave.

Think I'd better get someone to proofread the piece of work I've been doing this afternoon. I dread to think what incoherent rambling it reads as if my posts on mumsnet are so rambly today!

When does pregnancy brain go again? wink

Neeerly3 Wed 22-Oct-08 17:27:54

hey hatty - i am almost in exact same boat - in that I have 3.10yo twins and one on the way...however I work and when I go on mat leave the boys will stay at nursery for 3 days a week (they are currently full time), and I will use those days to do NOTHING!

In the meantime, while I am still at work, DH is doing all the getting up in the mornings at weekends and takes them out occasionally to give me a break. I'm only 22 weeks at the mo, so not particularly large, but am starting to struggle a bit now.

shubiedoo Wed 22-Oct-08 17:30:30

As a pregnant SAHM of two, I assure you there is very little time for yourself the second and third time around!
Although I'm lucky that my eldest is at school now, so I do get to nap, mumsnet or read while the 2nd is napping.
Last time ds1 was 3, and I really didn't have much time in the day, just weekends.

JamInMyWellies Wed 22-Oct-08 17:34:14

Hatty I think the simple answer is no last time tound by thi stage I was sleeping in snoozing in the afternoon basically doing sweet FA. This timer ound I am at my wits end being run ragged by a 17mth old terror toddler and a bonkers dog. Take this afternoon for example out walking said bonkers dog DS screaming in the buggy and the dog went after a rabbit cue me screaming after it trying to catch the dog before it killed a rabbit.

So I would say any time you havnt got the girls take it as me time lie on the sofa watch daytime telly and rest.

pointygravedogger Wed 22-Oct-08 17:40:15

my memories are of: first baby - blissful
seconda baby - hellish

hattyyellow Wed 22-Oct-08 17:50:53

Cheers so much all. So really grab every minute I can, including time to MN whilst still at work! And don't fill up weekends and evenings with trips to Ikea etc!

Jam you poor thing with the dog and rabbit! I would be puffing like a steam train having to run like that at this stage of pregnancy!

Neerly I didn't know you were pregnant again - congratulations! That makes a lot of sense to keep the boys in nursery.

I am very grateful for the two nursery sessions I have per week. This thread has made me resolve to rush home and do as little as possible rather than hoovering etc!

I've been working 3 days but am just finishing a contract in the next few weeks.

I e-mailed my SIL about what she did the few weeks before her third was born.

She said she got so tired the week before she asked friends to help out where possible taking her DC for a few hours - so I might try that if I get really knackered. She also suggested stocking up on children's videos from the charity shop and having a video session in the afternoons- sitting down is always nice!

BabiesEverywhere Wed 22-Oct-08 17:50:59

Ha Ha Ha....No, you don't get maternity leave for a second child..nice idea mind.

Neeerly3 Wed 22-Oct-08 18:05:22

thanks hatty (don't see u on the multiples thread much anymore - I announced on there, but don't post on there much, can't keep up!)

hattyyellow Wed 22-Oct-08 18:13:31

Neerly will keep you posted on having a new baby and twins! Do yours start school next year as well?

I have a friend with twins who had her third baby when the twins were 18 months! Dealing with two pre-schoolers and a new born doesn't seem as exhausting as that!

Neeerly3 Wed 22-Oct-08 18:31:53

no way i could have thought about no. 3 before now - at least boys can kind of entertain themselves and dh is far more competent at looking after them alone so give me and new baby some peace.

Yes they start school next Sept, so for 3 months we have to fork out for 3 x full time childcare, but cost should go down after that.

I am really excited this time 1) because it's just one, can't wait to use a single buggy! 2) it was planned! 3) can hopefully go full term and have a NORMAL birth!

Good luck and yes keep me posted on how it all goes!

MrsMattie Wed 22-Oct-08 19:24:51

I have a 3 yr old, granted I am a SAHM at the moment...

Maternity leave? <blinks in confused fashion> What maternity leave?

Work would be a nice break grin

TheInvisibleHand Thu 23-Oct-08 12:37:34

Hatty, must confess, am staying in work as long as possible this time round as being at home with DD doesn't really seem like the restful option for maternity leave...

DarrellRivers Thu 23-Oct-08 12:40:42

Stay in work as long as possible grin

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