21 May 2024
Expat Support Family Family Activities Health Parenting Pregnancy & Baby


It’s FEBRUARY!! Or, as parents in Sweden like to call it, VABruary…

This month has honestly put me off having more children. Like an annual contraceptive. I can’t stand it, I’m moving to Antigua next February. Today is day ten of illness in our home and I’m freaking out that this is it, we’re in a spiral of sickness for the rest of our lives. Like a right of passage, especially during February, when all the children are back at school, all sorts of bugs hit the kids. If I were you, I’d book Sept and February off, now.

It’s a well known fact, almost a joke, that in Sweden the majority of VAB (vård av barn) days are taken in February and September…hence why February is known as VABruary.  Fortunately, thanks to the Swedish state, us parents are allowed a certain amount of time to take off to be with our kids when they are sick. “Vård av Barn” or VAB, loosely translated it means “care of child”.


 has a whole website dedicated to it. I guess VAB days are like ‘sick days’ but you let the state know you were ‘sick’ instead of your employer. Försäkringskassan has made a handy little calculator which tells you how much you are owed, too.

IMG_2762It’s not all bad. You get paid, for one thing. In fact, sometimes, when it’s not too gross and you’re not holding anyone’s hair back, you might even enjoy spending a little bit of time with your little one.  During my latest stint of VABbing, out of desperation, I came up with six reasons why VAB can be a good thing for you and the kids.

So, for the month of February, good luck and godspeed.

Littlebearabroad x


You can follow Littlebearabroad and their adventures in multicultural parenting on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Don’t forget to check out their website, too www.littlebearabroad.com

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