Returning to work triggers different feelings for every mom. For me, it was the most difficult part of my entire new mom experience. I could not imagine leaving my tiny 12 week old son with a stranger, but it was what I needed to do if I wanted to keep my job. The anticipation of returning to work may be more stressful than the actual return.
5 myths about returning to work after maternity leave:
1. Your baby will love you less
Going back to work, whether it is by choice or necessity, is a tough decision for many women. Deep down, I worried that my son would connect more with the nanny because she was spending more time with him. Getting past those feelings of jealousy was important for me as a new mom. My child has a special bond with his nanny, but it is very different than our mother/son connection. A child's bond with his mother is special and unique. Working parents have less time to spend with their children, but being a good parent is not about quantity; it is about quality time.
2. Working moms do not need mom friends
During maternity leave, I formed friendships with some wonderful women who had babies the same age as my son. We spent 3am texting while breastfeeding and 4pm at "happy hour" with our babies and beers. When I went back to work I was worried that we wouldn't find time to hangout. Some working moms I knew had not made the effort to make new mom friends because they knew they were going back to work...what would be the point? Almost 2 years later, we still text all day along and find time for mom night's out and toddler play dates. These moms continue to be my support system and my sanity.
Read the other myths on Verywell.