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Back to work after Stillbirth


Forum: Stillbirth

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  #1  
April 24th, 2009, 10:11 AM
Super Mommy
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: CT
Posts: 982
Just wondering: if you had a still birth, or a child pass shortly after birth, did you receive pressure to come back to work before the 6 wks were up for "maternity leave"?

As written in my contract as a teacher, After childbirth the teacher is allowed 6wks of *sick time*. If the teacher does not have enough sick days to fill the 6wks, she will receive the difference between her pay and the subs pay. Now its not a lot after insurance is taken out etc, probably will end up being about half of what I would normally get , but we need every penny and can't afford for me not to get a paycheck at all. There is an option for other teachers and the union to set up a BANK for teachers to donate sick days to an ill/injured teacher. Now I have not received my doctor's note to go back to work so I should be on *sick leave* right now......The assistant superintendent wrote the treasurer of our union an email saying that I'm not allowed to get a BANK as pregnancy is no longer covered by the sick leave bank wording in the contract...he also made the comment that as of today I've run out of sick days and will be going on unpaid status.

Actually I run out of sick days next week...not to mention that i should NOT be on unpaid status because I'm still considered *sick* according to their words of "recovering from childbirth"!!!

Luckily I have the Union to defend me on this but it appears they are trying to say that I am not on "maternity leave?" They all know my baby died....but that shouldn't make it any less "maternity!!"

grrrrr...

plus i've been having panic/anxiety attacks. I finally had to take 1 whole mg of Ativan the other day at dinner time to calm down(I'd been trying to just deal with it), as opposed to the .5mg I take sometimes to relax enough to get to sleep. DH and I agreed that its time to look into therapists and I have an appt. with my regular doc on Monday so I can get a doctor's note to be out of work past 6wks. DH is so ticked at my school system. I'm so glad I'm not going back there in the fall.....I got cut with the budget because I'm new (4 other teachers as well)
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Kathryn
Married to my best friend Tom since 2004 (together since 1999)
Mommy to two little boys:
Jamie ~ 7-12-04 ~ fun, crazy, transformer loving tough-guy mama's boy
and
Joey ~ 4-4-09 ~ born sleeping ~ held under my heart for 40wk1d, in my arms for just 6 short hours but he will be in my heart forever
And finally holding my little girl,Felicity Rose, Born into Daddy's loving hands on June 9, 2010

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  #2  
April 24th, 2009, 10:26 AM
AliciaF's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Southern Cali
Posts: 2,517
You delivered a baby. Your body needs just as much time to recover as any mother. It's totally unfair of them to pressure you like that
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  #3  
April 24th, 2009, 12:31 PM
rebeccabaltimore and more's Avatar (rebeccabaltimore)
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,842
I went back one week after losing Ethan (just 2 days after my emergency D&C). I work for my family's business, and my family thought that me going back to work would help me recover more quickly, so I was pretty much forced back to work (I had missed 10 weeks of work due to severe morning sickness).

It was not the right decision and I regret doing it. I wish I had stood up for myself.
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  #4  
April 24th, 2009, 01:26 PM
SimplyJenalee's Avatar Super Mommy
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Michigan
Posts: 789
I am so sorry they are pressuring you. My work was very understanding (I work at Domino's Pizza at their Corporate Headquarters an an accountant), they even gave me a week additional for bereavement leave. I came back a total of 7 weeks after I delivered Alyssa.
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  #5  
April 24th, 2009, 02:32 PM
Veteran
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 244
Well, my situation is a little different. I lost Logan, but did have Ella at home.

I was originally to be out 6 weeks, but I ended up taking 8. The owners of my company are my best friends (husband and wife) and were there with me all night the night we lost Logan and Ella was born. They completely would have understood me being out longer, but I went ahead and went back on Dec. 1st, knowing that Christmas was just right around the corner and I would have another week then. And I knew I could leave whenever if I needed to be alone or go cry.

I am so sorry you are being treated so horribly. I would definitely have the union fight it. That's ridiculous and horrible. It's insane the things that SHOULD be such simple decisions (such as this) and they end up being horrible situations where someone who has lost a CHILD is treated like crap! This infuriates me!

I am so very sorry.

*hugs*
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  #6  
April 24th, 2009, 02:44 PM
lunarmagic's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: MA
Posts: 4,037
Oh that is just terrible... I am so so sorry you are being treated that way. You gave birth, your body needs to heal... not to mention, your soul needs time to heal! Definitely continue to fight them on this through your Union. It is absolutely not right.

I was off work for 8 weeks, my originally planned maternity leave. I didn't get paid. (The org is financially struggling... the downside of working for a non-profit.) But I needed all of it and it was still very hard to return to work afterwards.
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  #7  
April 24th, 2009, 03:26 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,304
i didn't go back to work but went back to university 4 weeks afterward. It was hard. I hope you fight this through your Union. Pressuring you is just horrible!
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  #8  
April 24th, 2009, 04:11 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 2,095
I'm Canadian. We get 15 weeks maternity leave and 35 weeks parental leave (all at 55% of normal pay). I was still entitled to the maternity leave because I had given birth. I took 9 weeks. I think it is disgusting that they are treating you this way. Seriously, what is WRONG with people these days?
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  #9  
April 24th, 2009, 04:59 PM
Brittanie's Avatar just me
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Location: Littleton, CO
Posts: 43,573
My manager called after 4 weeks, instead of the originally planned 6. Someone had quit and if I came back they wouldn't have to hire someone else. But then again, I ended up quitting shortly after that because I couldn't handle having a different regular customer ask me every day how my baby was.

It's horrible that they're doing this to you though. You deserve as much as any mother who took home a baby, if not more!
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  #10  
April 24th, 2009, 07:06 PM
Super Mommy
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: CT
Posts: 982
Thank you for your responses. A mom on another board told me she tried to go back very shortly after her loss as well and it was not a good decision emotionally. I was on the fence about whether I could handle it after 6wks, but at this point I really don't think I will be able to. Like what you were saying Brittanie, about facing people asking about the baby....I emailed my principal and my fellow science teachers and the principal let the rest of the staff know, but instructed them not to tell the students. So I'm sure things have gotten around plus the obituary was in the paper... But there will only be 4wks of school left, 2 of teaching, 1 of review and 1 of finals.

Frankly I think the kids will all be so sidetracked by me being back and asking questions I don't want to answer. I was 13wks when I told them, plus Joey had an omphalocele so I actually used it as a teaching tool because fetal development is totally relevant to Biology so it was pretty cool...but the point is that many of the kids were emotionally invested in my pregnancy, as they experienced ...um...doing the math lol...25wks of it with me (13-38, when I left because my blood pressure was raised). I delivered Joey at 40+2, he probably died on his due date in the evening.

Plus the stress of lesson plans, writing a final, lab plans, meetings etc....I just don't think it would be a good combination. But I just wanted to hear from other moms who have "been there" and see how going back to work was for you. Thank you again.

I am lucky to have a great Union rep, he teaches next to me and we have actually become close because our rooms adjoin. His kids are my age too so he's kind of "dad-like". He called me before school this morning saying that the situation was bothering him so much he barely slept last night. He has calls in to the superintendant and advised me to have the doctor write up something about post traumatic stress. Basically I have to think about what I want the doc to write...I know everyone so well in my primary care's office I just don't want to face all the girls right now so I'm going to the doctor (who is a mom herself) my mom works for...she is awesome and so easy to talk to, she told my mom she'd do whatever I needed. I'm so thankful for all the caring people around us....my husband and I are just in awe of the outreach we have received from people we barely know.
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Kathryn
Married to my best friend Tom since 2004 (together since 1999)
Mommy to two little boys:
Jamie ~ 7-12-04 ~ fun, crazy, transformer loving tough-guy mama's boy
and
Joey ~ 4-4-09 ~ born sleeping ~ held under my heart for 40wk1d, in my arms for just 6 short hours but he will be in my heart forever
And finally holding my little girl,Felicity Rose, Born into Daddy's loving hands on June 9, 2010

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  #11  
April 24th, 2009, 07:54 PM
Proud Momma
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 3,781
Quote:
Originally Posted by ~Laurie~ View Post
I'm Canadian. We get 15 weeks maternity leave and 35 weeks parental leave (all at 55% of normal pay). I was still entitled to the maternity leave because I had given birth. I took 9 weeks.
I'm Canadian as well and like Laurie said I was entitled to take up to 15 weeks after I lost Katrina (normally would get a year altogether if Katrina survived). I ended up going back after only 5 weeks b/c I thought I would just sit at home moping around. In retrospect I wish I had taken more time off though. It was very tough emotionally for me to go back after only 5 weeks. Physically my body was doing fine, but just having to deal with people that knew I was pregnant and having to tell them I wasn't anymore was emotionally draining so soon after it happened.

I'm sorry you have to deal with this on top of losing your precious baby.
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  #12  
April 25th, 2009, 12:15 PM
Newbie
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 2
I was out for just short of four weeks when the buisness owner called me back in. I was 35 weeks when I lost my son and not the least bit emotionally ready. I can't help but think under different circumstances he wouldn't have asked. But I was the store manager and felt obligated and lucky to have been paid for my time off because I worked for a very small company that didn't have to pay me for my leave. It was hard but I'm glad I went back.
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  #13  
April 25th, 2009, 02:16 PM
Dacontay4's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: WI
Posts: 2,058
I'm sorry that your being pressured You need time to grieve before going back, it's totally unfair to be pressured! I was in school when my son died. I delivered him on January 3, during winter break, and I started the next semester as normal, on January 18. It was not nearly enough time, and a horrible semester.
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