Stacey Solomon Says She Won't Be Taking Maternity Leave
X Factor star, Queen of the Jungle and Loose Woman panellist, Stacey Solomon has just announced that she is expecting a baby with boyfriend Joe Swash.Swash revealed Stacey’s pregnancy with an Instagram picture of her sleeping and a caption to explain her pregnancy tiredness.
However, following the news, Stacey Solomon confirmed that she won't be taking maternity leave, and the reason why might come as a bit of a shock.
During an interview with Chris Evans on his breakfast radio show, she revealed that she wasn't planning to take any time off workduring her pregnancy.
Explaining the decision, Solomon said, "I'm self-employed so if I don't work, I don't get paid. In this industry, you can only earn while you're earning and it might be a situation that I have work now but in six months’ time I might not. I will carry on working.”
As a freelancer, this struck a chord with me. Being self-employed it can be scary when not working means effectively no income, especially, like Solomon, when you have other children at home!
It also shines a light on the fact that not everyone can afford to take maternity leave, especially if you're a freelancer with no protections from a permanent employer.
Solomon's situation echoes that of Ferne McCann, who, following the arrest and imprisonment of her ex-boyfriend Arthur Collins, became a single mother during her pregnancy. McCann did not take any maternity leave following the birth of her daughter, Sunday, and "threw herself back into work".
McCann's journey to motherhood was documented on her series Ferne McCann: First Time Mumand as she went back to work on the show, she was met with a torrent of insults online. She justified her decision on the first season on the show, stating that there are still bills to be paid and her daughter is "solely reliant on her".
Do you think mothers who are self-employed or freelancers should still get paid maternity leave? It is just as important to the baby as it is to the mother to spend those first few precious months together getting to know each other and learning how to live this new life together.
For women who cannot take maternity leave, this also makes it very difficult to breastfeed exclusively if they wish to do so. Are they losing out on that too?
Or do you think that is just the job they have chosen and, unfortunately, that is just one downfall of having such a job?
We would love to know your thoughts? Should all women be given the opportunity for paid maternity leave, regardless of job or situation?
Laura Doyle, Mum of 4. Kyle 9, Noa Belle 4, Briar 2 and Milla 12 months. Breastfeeder, co-sleeper, coffee drinker. Staying positive and inspired by the chaos of it all. Follow her on Instagram.