to want to accept amazing job opportunity without being judged for "deserting" ; my three children.

(558 Posts)
Shreddiez Wed 30-Apr-14 09:32:19

I have three children aged 8, 5 and 1. I have always worked a 3 or 4 day week since having them. DH works full time and travels quite a bit. We have no family help but we do have a live-in nanny.

I have been offered an amazing job. An opportunity like this will never come-up again: fascinating work, good money, chance to make a real difference.

The new job would mean a lot of travel and when home I'd hardly see the kids Mon-Thurs, by hardly I mean maybe 20 mins in the morn. But I'd usually be home all day Fridays and I would get nine whole weeks leave a year that I could take over school holidays.

I intend to accept the job but am shocked by people's reactions. A friend referred to me deserting my kids, my MiL (who NEVER helps with the kids) keeps making veiled references to how sad it all is, even the nanny keeps joking how the one year old will think she is the mother.

Is it normal to suffer such passive aggression for wanting to work? Is it so bad to be out of the house 4 days out of 7 if you know you can be fully present and involved for the other three days? Doesn't nine weeks leave actual mean I will see the kids as much as someone who works three days if averaged over a year? And why do I have to justify this? Why can't people celebrate my efforts to do well at work and at motherhood? I feel so judged and its making me second guess myself and my choices.

iwantsun Wed 30-Apr-14 09:34:56

They can't be real friends if they are reacting like this

Do you care what they think?

FourForksAche Wed 30-Apr-14 09:34:57

I think you're getting a certain amount of envy.

I'm not sure I'd be happy with those hours but this is YOUR life, you must do what you think is right. If you feel this can work, you don't need to justify it.

Forgettable Wed 30-Apr-14 09:35:56

No one EVER judges a father in a similar job

So unfair

Well each to their own and everything but personally no, I wouldn't want 3 children I literally see 3 days a week but if it works for you and your family then go for it.

The fact that you are second guessing yourself is a pointer that you are not 100% convinced.

I possibly would consider something like that when the kids were older but yours are still pretty little.

Why SHOULD your MIL help with the kids anyway - they are yours not hers.

Your nanny is right - your little one probably will think she is mummy and not you but a long as you can cope with that then no problem.

You don't have to justify yourself to anyone - as long as you and your children and partner are happy with the situation then it's no one elses business. No one would probably bat an eye lid if it was dad in this situation and not mum.

Forgettable Wed 30-Apr-14 09:36:33

And the nanny is WRONG

sarahquilt Wed 30-Apr-14 09:37:40

Tell them all to bore off. They're jealous.

FourForksAche Wed 30-Apr-14 09:38:39

No one EVER judges a father in a similar job

Very true and something that really makes me livid.

Can your H make some adjustments so the kids have a bit more parental input? It's fair that he has to help too.

How often does your DH travel? Does he go for long periods of time?

eddielizzard Wed 30-Apr-14 09:41:41

bloody hell. take the job! if they can't see it makes sense then they're not very supportive.

9 weeks is fantastic and you'll be able to really enjoy the holidays with them.

WilsonFrickett Wed 30-Apr-14 09:41:43

If the people judging you have ever made similar comments about your DH I'll eat my hat. It's sexism, pure and simple.

That said, I personally wouldn't be comfortable with us both being out of the country at the same time, but my first move would be to talk to DH about dialling down, rather than suggesting you don't dial things up.

Good luck OP and congratulations on your new opportunity!

DotToDott Wed 30-Apr-14 09:41:54

My mum worked four days out of seven when we were younger, and didn't get to take nine weeks leave over summer either, funnily enough i didn't start thinking my grandmother (who did most of childcare) was my mother and i didn't feel abandoned, nor did my siblings.

i think you should grab the opportunity with both hands and ignore the people who are trying to bring you down about it.

ultimitely if you think it's not working you can leave the job, but you wont know until you try.

Gennz Wed 30-Apr-14 09:42:24

3 days a week plus 9 weeks' leave a year sounds it awesome to me. When I go back to my job after mat leave I'll be FT (possibly 1 day from home) on 21 days' leave. And I think you're a great example for your kids.

As if your 1 year old will think the nanny is the mum, how ridiculous (& rude)

DougalTheCheshireCat Wed 30-Apr-14 09:43:28

No, YANBU, they are. I guess at the bottom if a lot of that passive aggression is envy. Your job offer sounds great, AND you have three beautiful children. You will get Fridays off and plenty of leave to spend with them. And a job you enjoy an will be well paid for it. It sounds ideal. How did you MiL arrange things? Although the juggle is still hard, I think we all have many more choices and options in how we arrange our home and work lives than our mothers generation did. I think this can be tough for them, when they see if up close. More chances, more opportunities, more freedom, probably more money. It's easy, then to sit back and judge you for not making the 'sacrifices' they did rather than be honest that they would have loved such an opportunity. Possibly something similar is true for your judgey friends too? Doubtless your hard work so far has brought you this opportunity, well done on getting the job. Take it, enjoy it, and maybe push back on the judgers a bit: there are lots of positives to being a working mum and if they can point out the worries, you should feel free to emphasise the upside. Good luck grin

Shreddiez Wed 30-Apr-14 09:46:19

DH is going to try to do a half day Monday when in the country so then the kids will have him after school one day a week and me before and after one day a week PLUS the nine weeks leave and DH will take at least a week of his five weeks leave at a different time so that's 10 weeks a year with at least one parent always present. Plus four weeks a year where we are on leave/ holiday together just the five if us 24/7.

I do feel its sexism. Nobody thinks it is sad DH works full time and travels. We will earn exactly the same though I will work fewer hours yet his career is accepted and mine is a shocking choice.

struggling100 Wed 30-Apr-14 09:46:28

I agree with those who say this sounds far more like envy than any rational judgement. Congratulations on the job - go for it, girl!

Gileswithachainsaw Wed 30-Apr-14 09:47:08

Take the job smilebookie tubules don't arise every day, between after school clubs brownies and play dates just how much do people really see of their children anyway,

If you pass it up, by the time they are at secondary school and spending their free time on their rooms like pre/teens do you would have passed it up for nothing.

Congrats smile

Gileswithachainsaw Wed 30-Apr-14 09:47:34

Wtf damn iPhone.
Opportunities (that's a weird typo)

Antidote Wed 30-Apr-14 09:47:38

Take the job. Throw yourself into it.

Be thankful that you have three whole, lovely days with them a week.

Remember that you'll probably see the little one lots during the night!

And you will have those fantastic holidays.

The naysayers can fuck the fuck off etc.

ikeaismylocal Wed 30-Apr-14 09:48:24

No one would judge a father who did this as they would assume the mother was at home looking after the children. I would not judge a mother who did this if the father was at home with the children but I would judge a couple who choose to have a one year old that they only saw for 20 minutes a day. The nanny will be the one year old's primary carer as the nanny will spend more time with the child than you spend with the child.

What if the nanny leaves? That will be the child's primary attachment figure gone.

CbeebiesIsAboutToPop Wed 30-Apr-14 09:50:37

Take the job, enjoy it. Fire the nanny for stupid remarks and get a new one who supports your working decisions (ok I know this isn't technically possible, but I would be keeping an eye, of course the baby won't think she's the mummy, that's your job and yours alone regardless of how much time you spend working and any decent nanny will support this)

Enjoy your new job and enjoy quality time with the children even more smile

WilsonFrickett Wed 30-Apr-14 09:50:50

bookie tubles is possibly my favourite autocorrect ever grin Giles

14 weeks is a third of the year. One or other or both of you will be home for one third of the year plus every Friday plus weekends...

I might have to go and do a sum...

FourForksAche Wed 30-Apr-14 09:50:59

bookie tubules?

Shreddiez Wed 30-Apr-14 09:52:37

Ikea, over the year as a whole we will care for the baby for many more days than the nanny. We will also do all night wakes etc. why will she be the primary attachment figure?

I do have misgivings, or course I do, but I have bigger misgivings about not grabbing this opportunity. Everything is a trade off when you are a working parent. Or at least everything is a trade off when you are a working mother.

Gileswithachainsaw Wed 30-Apr-14 09:53:20

In all fairness my iPhone is fucked it regularly crashes and doesn't register words/letters I'm typing

grin

I think MN and replying broke it. Should I ask Hq to replace? grin

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