If you are working as a pregnant mom-to-be, one of the many decisions you will need to make is whether you will go back to work after baby arrives.
This is a very personal decision and you shouldn’t let anyone else make you feel bad about the choice you make for your family. Many women find themselves in a position where they have to work for financial reasons. Others choose to work for equally as important emotional and social reasons.
If you choose to return to the workplace, be confident in your decision. You are doing the right thing for your family, and that is what parenting is all about.
It’s also helpful to know that you are not alone. In fact, mothers are the fastest growing segment of the US workforce. In the past 20 years, the percentage of new mothers in the workforce has increased by more than 80 percent!
With many of your friends and colleagues taking the same path you are, don’t be shy – ask them questions on what works and what doesn’t.
And if you’re planning on pumping at work, don’t worry! Many moms have been able to successfully breastfeed and work full-time! It takes some planning and commitment but is well worth the effort.
While you’re still pregnant, be sure to:
- Talk to your employer about maternity leave so you fully understand your benefits.
- Discuss your return plan with your employer. Many moms find it helpful to come back slowly or on a part-time basis to help establish breastfeeding.
- Make sure your employer knows you are planning on breastfeeding when you come back to work, and you will need a proper place to pump and store breastmilk.
- Arrange for childcare.
- Review your rights at the Department of Labor website
- Network with friends and colleagues who have returned to work as new and breastfeeding moms. Ask them questions and listen to their advice.