There’s no way to fully prepare for the sleepless and uh, very sore, whirlwind after you leave the hospital with a new baby. And while moms want to take ample time off before returning to work, the U.S. doesn’t require that employers provide paid maternity leave, making it an insurmountable financial burden for many women. So one working mother stepped up with a website called Take12 that lets mothers crowdsource funds to extend their maternity leave.
It’s like a Kickstarter, Indiegogo or GoFundMe — just with the exclusive goal of more baby bonding time.
Take12 aims to help more mothers take a solid three months off before returning to the workplace. That’s the bare minimum that I think women need to create an adequate time to bond, figure out breastfeeding, and hopefully break off that exclusive — and very intimate — relationship with the ol’ perineum squirt bottle.
Oh yeah, and to adjust to having a tiny human who’s 100% dependent on you.
Cue the existential angst, grateful tears, and anxious anticipation.
As far as function, Take12 works just like a regular baby registry, sending out invitations to friends and family who can respond with dollar amounts that correspond to gifts of time, like $15 for a snuggle (yes, kind of cutesie but it works) or $50 for a full night’s sleep — or as close to a full night as a newborn will let you get.
It’s worth noting that the website does take about 6% in fees to help keep it running, but that also includes a small donation to The Newborn Foundation.
There’s nothing I love more than seeing moms rally to meet each other’s needs in new and innovative ways, and Take12 testifies to our problem-solving prowess. At the same time, I’m looking forward to the day that sweeping policy changes make 12 weeks of paid maternity leave a right, and websites like Take12 become obsolete.
And even better — 12 weeks of paid paternity leave too.