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Jahara Sara Seitz
Aug 11

Paid-leave for childfree?

2 comments

Hi all! I am so glad I found you... I recently made the mistake of posting a "hot topic" (ignorant to the fact that it was so HOT) on facebook: Frustrated that there is maternity leave but not "paid leave" -- like a sabbatical kind of leave for women who choose child-free. I was not stating that I think this is an absolute SHOULD be, but I was raising the question. I GOT SERIOUS backlash from every mom who commented; and a whole lot of support from all the child-free folks. Question posed to this group: is this an incentive thing for me to even discuss? As, all the mom's were super offended and obviously triggered. A lot of these mom's are beloved friends, sister-in-law, etc. -- I deleted the post within 24 hours because I got 70 posts in that amount of time -- all of which just didn't seem to lead to much of a resolution. I suppose this post here is a bit of a vent and also a call for perspective from all of you -- as I have been left feeling guilt over my post -- while simultaneously feeling sad that my voice wasn't heard -- that this idea of honoring, respecting, celebrating those of us who choose child free (and I think many of us might even choose it because we want to lighten the load on the earth/planet -- which btw when I stated this on my post -- I was told that was insensitive) -- and perhaps that "leave" could just be that -- a leave of absence for what you choose: child or no child??? I have no grand vision of what that might look like but really just felt moved to talk about it. Any and all feedback whole heartedly welcome!

FamilyOfMe
Aug 14

First of all, welcome to the forum! We're glad you found us. I'm sorry you took so much heat for your "hot topic". Who would have thought that paid leave for everyone would be such an unpopular opinion. I do support the idea. I think all employees should be given some form of paid leave because life is unpredictable. Yes, new moms and dads need paid leave to welcome their new child. However, non-parents need paid leave for any of the other things life throws at us, such as illness, caring for a loved one, pursuit of a professional certification, or personal financial or legal issues. There are countless reasons why one might need time away from work, all of which can affect both parents and non-parents alike.

Again, I'm sorry your Facebook post didn't go over well. It seems kind of entitled on the moms' part to think that only parents deserve paid leave.

Misty Violet Ross
Sep 2

I'd say it's hugely insensitive of them to deny that you might need paid leave to get a rest from work-related stress and/or to just do the things you enjoy, child or no child. I am lucky enough to live in NZ, where paid leave is a standard part of employment law - everyone is entitled to it, and it's accrued over time.

Don't ever feel guilty for asking a perfectly reasonable question - it was very disrespectful of them to shout you down like that!

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