Returning to work is an exciting and daunting proposition after you’ve had a baby. It’s hard to know what your family’s new normal should look like and what will work best when it comes to easing your little one into childcare – consecutive days or broken-up days with some respite in between.
A mum with this dilemma turned to Babyology readers for advice on this sometimes tricky transition.
#HELP! I’m going back to work after maternity leave. I’ll be working 2 days and then increasing that to 3 days after a couple of months. My bub will be going to childcare while I’m at work but I’m not sure whether it would be best if I work the 2 days in a row or break them apart. Going to work on consecutive days feels like it would be the better idea but I’m worried that 2 straight days away from my son will be hard for him and me. Any advice?
Here’s what our community of helpful parents had to say:
Two in a row
Lots of parents and childcare workers recommended consecutive days as the best option.
I would recommend taking him 2 days in a row and not days apart. If you have time before you start work I would recommend taking him in for a play or for half days to start with. – Tammy Brownhill
Consecutive!!! When I moved the new daycare only had certain days available and I had to change my work days around it!! I hated it and my son hated it! He got over it after a while… But when we were able to get consecutive days, everyone was so much happier!! – Shona Ewings
Depending on age (especially true for toddlers), I recommend consecutive days having tried both across my four children. Although it may take a little time to get used to – for both of you – it is good for children to have predictable routines, and settling in to day care routines over two consecutive days was easier for my kids. It’s also easier for Mum to get into the rhythm of work over consecutive days, I find. – Fiona Russo
Check with your childcare some have rules about broken days. Our childcare requires a minimum of two consecutive days. – Christina Carroll
Break it up?
But for some parents, a bit of respite between days worked best and even made their days at work run more smoothly.
We started doing 3 days spaced out and that was fine. But then I had to go to consecutive and I find that harder, especially because he’s now decided he doesn’t want to go and cries on drop off (thought I know for a fact he loves it there), so I think we would prefer a day break in between. – Katya Ellis
I’m not sure about what is better for the child (my son is pretty easy go with the flow) but in the beginning I always found it better to have a day in between daycare. The more days I had off in a row the more time I had to dedicate to sorting out emails which caused me issues. – Lindsay Trainor
I’ve worked 2 consecutive days, and am now working Mon/Thurs which I much prefer, I’ve found that it’s been better for both of us to have a breather in between and I feel as though I get more done. – Carly Claydon
You can read all the helpful advice given, on the original Facebook post here:
#HELP! I’m going back to work after 12 months of maternity leave next month. To start with, I’ll be working 2 days and…
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