to think that the further you are from the world of work, the crazier being a working mum sounds?

(1000 Posts)
StripeyBear Sat 09-Feb-13 15:06:38

I did it for 3 years - motherhood and a (part-time, but) demanding job... when you were always running from pillar to post, and buying take-away pizza, and feeling guilty because your child was crying when you left, and always being tired and hassled and answering your blackberry on your days "off" and being f**ked off because your job wasn't half as interesting as the work you used to get when you were childless and in the office full-time-plus....

Almost 2 years of being a SAHM later, my working-mother-friends come round for coffee on their day off and moan about all of the above.. It sounds familiar, but now even their moaning exhausts me. I'm more in a swapping recipes for lemon-drizzle-cake and making my own pizza dough sort of head space. These days I just potter around - my whole life has slowed down.....

Don't get me wrong - I realise I'm fortunate that we can manage without the wage (and not everyone can), but I find I am barely worse off (once the childcare is taken into account, and it is so much easier to spend money wisely, now that I don't have to buy crappy pizza because I am too exhausted to cook or book my holiday at the last minute because I wasn't organised earlier). And life feels so much better now that I'm not always exhausted... and I actually have time to do interesting stuff like read (grown-up) books... and there is no stress around childcare and the like....

So when my friends come round and moan about their blackberries ringing and being side-lined for promotions and feeling stressed about organising a child's birthday party when they have no time to really do it and so on.... instead of feeling oodles of sympathy... all I can think is... WHY? WHY? Why are you doing it then?

AIBU? I sort of suspect I might be sad

HandbagCrab Mon 11-Feb-13 09:26:56

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Jinsei Mon 11-Feb-13 09:29:18

I think the OP has a point in that it generally tends to be very junior staff and very senior staff who have the luxury of flexible working. Those caught in the middle are a bit at the mercy of their managers with regard to making it work. In that sense, I think it's often easier for older parents to juggle, as they tend to have climbed further up the hierarchy, have had more chance to make a name for themselves and are therefore more likely to be able to work on their own terms.

For those who really can't work flexibly, either because their organisations won't let them, or because they are expected to do FT work in PT hours, or because they get sidelined to crappy jobs like the OP, it is very difficult to manage both work and home and it must be very stressful. However, the answer to that isn't for more women to just give up and stay at home!! Surely what we should be doing is campaigning to allow more parents (men and women!) much greater flexibility in the workplace.

I am fortunate to be in a position where I can pretty much dictate the hours that I work, and I bend over backwards to ensure that others can work flexibly too. If I have good people, I don't want to lose them. And truly, there are very few jobs that can't be worked flexibly in one way or another.

comingintomyown Mon 11-Feb-13 09:31:03

Honestly what a lot of smug , self important nonsense OP

HannahsSister40 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:37:33

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janey68 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:38:17

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persimmon Mon 11-Feb-13 09:38:41

I've worked since DS was 5 months old. DH stayed at home with him for 5 years, though. Just the way it needed to be in our family.
TBH I have a couple of SAHM friends who are queens of moaning about how bored and frustrated they are, and about how their careers are shagged beyond repair.
I get very good holidays though, (education) so feel blessed to have had lots of time at home AND kept my career going.
Your OP sounds somewhat smug and judgemental, even if you didn't mean it to. My idea of hell is a toddler group.

HannahsSister40 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:41:32

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For anyone actually interested, my PhD is in virology, it's my full-time job, and yes, I need to it to get anywhere in my field, as you can't be a proper scientist without one. Okay, yes, I know a couple of people who have managed, but it certainly isn't easy. So, given the choice of remaining a low-paid lab-tech or actually having real career in biology which is slightly less low-paid, I think taking the PhD route makes the most sense.

But enough about me.....

EasilyBored - Dominoes pizzas are HORRIBLE! Yuk!! You really eat them? Urgh....

idshagphilspencer Mon 11-Feb-13 09:42:48

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Oh look, Hannah's here to wring her hands about how everyone on MN hates SAHMs and how persecuted she is. Hi Hannah. Didn't we have fun on the last thread about this?

HannahsSister40 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:45:11

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janey68 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:46:09

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HannahsSister40 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:47:31

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idshagphilspencer Mon 11-Feb-13 09:48:15

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idshagphilspencer Mon 11-Feb-13 09:49:02

Course you are love, course you are

HannahsSister40 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:49:44

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FirstTimeForEverything Mon 11-Feb-13 09:50:33

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idshagphilspencer Mon 11-Feb-13 09:50:37

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janey68 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:50:40

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HannahsSister40 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:52:19

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freddiemercuryismine Mon 11-Feb-13 09:53:26

What about all the people who Stripey and you have hurt Hannah don't they count?

HannahsSister40 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:53:50

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HannahsSister40 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:54:48

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HannahsSister40 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:55:36

the bullying on this thread is a sad indictment of the so called sisterhood

janey68 Mon 11-Feb-13 09:55:37

No, not months Hannah- not enough time for that, what with having a career yknow !

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