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When to start maternity leave?

Discussion in 'Parenting' started by hdavis7612, Apr 13, 2012.

  1. hdavis7612

    hdavis7612 New commenter

    I worked up until 38 weeks (was trying to maximise my time off after the birth), but if I had to do it again I would have stopped around 36 weeks.Also as my waters broke on my due date I only had 2 weeks to chill out before my daughter arrived! Like you I didn't have any health issues , but as I was in the Nursery, I just found it very physically and mentally draining towards the end. Also as my maternity cover wasn't organised until the last minute, the last few days were particularly stressful. I would just say listen to your body. Your health and your baby's are what's important. Don't be like me and worry about inconveniencing school should you want to leave earlier than what you originally planned.
  2. I became very poorly after an Ofsted inspection at 34 weeks. My HT was fab and I had a gradual decrease of days over the last 6 weeks without it kick-starting my maternity leave (which I started at 38 weeks). I was able to do work at home so that I was still paid normal wages and it really helped. Could you speak to your HT about something similar if you are feeling it's getting too much?
  3. I left when I was about 35 weeks pregnant and that was more than enough for me! I didn't have any health issues either but just felt really tired and uncomfortable towards the end. I teach at a sixth form college so not sure how that compares to Reception. I suspect your job is more physically demanding, so you may want to see how you go and possibly leave a week or so earlier. My original plan was to last out longer (as was the plan for two other girls in my NCT group) but we all ended up going earlier.
    Best of luck x
  4. emmac1982

    emmac1982 New commenter

    left at 37 weeks with son and 38 weeks with daughter. I wanted longer off when baby was here so just kept focusing on that. With my daughter I left at 38 weeks (last day of term before Christmas holidays) but didn't begin maternity until the first day back after the holidays.
  5. nmason

    nmason New commenter

    When are you due? I left at 36 wks last time and my lo was born the day before due date. I only worked 3 weeks after the easter holidays, so my head had my class covered by the teacher who was taking over covering the class and I did small group work and management stuff. It was perfect for me. My SIL worked up to 38 wks and she was on her last legs by the end. Her head had her covering her class right until the end even though it was only a week after half term. She thankfully ended up going almost two weeks over but still didn't feel ready for her lo as she was so exhausted that she didn't get anything done.
    I only work three days now so am aiming on getting to 38 wks this time as I need as much money as possible to keep my Lo in nursery a couple of days a week to secure his place and give me time with the new one.
    So basically it depends on how good your head is, when you are due and what you feel you will be able to cope with. If it is the heat of the summer you are due then I suggest the earlier the better as if you're anything like me you'll end up with swollen ankles. HTHs.
  6. Thanks for replies. I'm 28 weeks so due in the summer. Have just been wiped out since day one of pregnancy and I didn't even seem to get the second trimester energy surge that you're supposed to get!
    My school is supportive so think I'm going to aim for my original plan of 36 weeks but ask if they'll change it to earlier if needed. Just annoying that half term isn't sooner as didn't want to have to include that in my maternity leave.
  7. Mixedupchameleon - there's a Summer Babies 2012 thread on the Pregnancy board with plenty of women at a similar stage to you if you want to pop over & say Hi!
    If you are not coping with work before 36 weeks, your midwife or GP can sign you off - some of the Summer babies ladies have been signed off for part of each day (eg one has a sick note saying sh is fit to work up to 4 hours per day) Before 36 weeks, your employer cannot automatically start your maternity leave if you are off with a pregnancy related issue. After 36 weeks, they can. On that basis, your orginal plan of working to 36 weeks seems very sensible.
    Hope to see you on Summer babies soon.
  8. My maternity leave started the day after I had my son at 36 weeks. planned to have some time before having him but was not meant to be... went into labour at 35+6. Having said that all of my friends had late babies - you can only go with how you feel.
    Good luck

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