(Closed) Did anyone take a maternity leave of less than 12 weeks?

posted 7 years ago in Babies
Post # 3
Member
7366 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2010

I took 9 weeks with my first daughter and will probably do about the same with this one (currently at week 3 1/2 of maternity leave).  Honestly, I would not be able to go back in a few days at week 4.  Maybe week 6.  It all depends on your situation I guess and you have to do what is right for your family.  I also do not get any paid maternity leave so we saved enough for 12 weeks just in case of any unexpected complications.

Post # 4
Member
801 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

I took 8-1/2 weeks (baby came on a Tuesday so I took an extra 1/2 week to be able to go back on a Monday).  I know for me around week 5 I was bored and would have gladly gone back to work.  However, around week 7 is when baby starts getting interactive and becomes fun so it can be difficult to go back to work.

Post # 5
Member
536 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2007

I went back at 9 weeks. I had visions of starting to do some work from home starting around week 4, and maybe even heading in to the office for a few hours a week around week 6, but that never panned out. I was pretty exhausted and overwhelmed for the first 6 weeks or so- there’s no way I could have gotten anything done. That 6 week mark was a definite low point- DS was still only sleeping two hours at a time, breastfeeding was still often frustrating, and there was a huge backlog of housework and bill-paying and sorting-of-baby-stuff and laundry to try to work through.

I think getting to get some decent sleep in would have made all the difference- for example, if we’d been formula feeding and Darling Husband could have split night feedings with me, or if DS had been a better/longer sleeper, I think I could have handled it.

For me, the upside of going back to work at 9 weeks was that DS wasn’t fun yet. He wasn’t smiling, he wasn’t interacting, he was just needy and exhausting. And going back to work was tiring, but also meant that I could go to the bathroom when I wanted, and eat whenever I wanted, and check my email, and talk to grownups, and not have a creature attached to my boobs all day. It was kind of a relief. Whereas if I’d waited another month, it would have been much sadder to leave DS, since by that point he was fun and I felt confident enough to go out and do stuff with him.

Post # 6
Member
2142 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

We get 8 weeks in NY State and like @Tatum: my firm is too small to qualify for FMLA.

I imagine I will take 8-9 weeks depending on if a holiday weekend falls on the end of my leave time. Per my due date now I might hit July 4th weekend. So we’ll see.

Post # 7
Member
9029 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

How do you know if you company is too small for FMLA? Did you just ask them directly? I work for a small company too so I’m interested to know about this

Post # 9
Member
7587 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2010

Have you asked if it’s a possible to work half days from home too? A good friend of mine was in a similar situation. Her employer allowed her after the first 6 weeks to work half days from home and half days at work. She was able to get her full pay and they were able to still have her working. 

Post # 10
Member
9029 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

Wow I never knew this, but when you apply for FMLA, you apply directly to the agency right? Or do you apply through your company.

What other options are there if your company is too small? THat would be so sucky not to get anything!

Post # 11
Member
2142 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

@Tatum:

Def 8 weeks for me. 🙁 States in the handbook. I’m sure if I chose to take an extra week they won’t be a stickler about it. But I wouldn’t push it to 12 weeks since they techinically only allow 8 weeks.

@mwitter80:

My husband and I are thinking a lot about this. The thought of putting our 2 month infant in daycare for 9 hours breaks my heart. If we have to we have to. But we’re thinking about swapping our hours so that he can drop the baby off around 9 and I pick up around 1 or 2. And swap pick up and drop off. We’ll see, he’ll be starting a new position soon that will hopefully allow for that kind of schedule.

Post # 12
Member
828 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2011

I work for a small company too and am planning on going back after 8 week full time. I’m hoping that all goes well and I can start working early, like 5 or 6 weeks, just for half days to get used to going into work, pumping and leaving the little boy home with his dad. I know it’s going to be tough!

Post # 13
Member
2201 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

I had a coworker that went back after 6 weeks (she had just started the job 2 months before she went on maternity leave so she didn’t qualify for FMLA). It can definitely be done, but it won’t be easy. But, based on your post, going back after 6 weeks will probably be easier than eating into your savings.

Post # 15
Member
2142 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

@Tatum:

UGH. I can’t tell you how much of a pain it was to find out information on this at my office. It’s not totally their fault. Thankfully a co-worker is almost due and she was willing to share information with me early on.

In NYS your employer is only required to give you 8 weeks of unpaid leave. However, you can apply for Disability which will give you 50% of your pay UP TO $170 per week. I’m sorry but is that even minimum wage??

Key thing to remember is you can not apply for disability until the condition exists. So basically yeah you apply when you’re going into labor. And it won’t likely kick in for a week or so. So make sure you have some vacation time to use for that week you’re waiting for that first check.

Thankfully, my employers purchased a policy that increased the max $170 to $500. Not all of my paycheck but better than $170!

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