To ask husband to look after DC while I go to work tomorrow?

(76 Posts)
fufflebum Tue 15-Jan-13 17:13:49

I collected DC from school today to be told she had complained of stomach ache and had 'loose' poo. School policy is 48 hrs at home after diarrhoea. I have never asked DH to stay home to look after any of our children when they have been ill (we have other children) as I have been SAHM. However I have just started new job and have meeting with manager tomorrow so I feel I must attend. DH is at a conference and facilitating a session. I have already sounded him out and he has said we will talk about it later. I think I can guess what is coming.

AIBU to ask him to stay home?

My parents would possibly help out if desperate but these are our kids!

CSIJanner Tue 15-Jan-13 17:20:58

YANBU - why one earth is it always expected that LO's are looked after by mum when they are ill? I realise that a lot if the time, LO's do want mum but as you've just started a new job have a meeting with your manager, he should cover just as long as you cover next time.

My OH has conferences and facilitates all the time - its pretty easy to get someone to cover for you if all the groundwork and prep work are done.

wibblyjelly Tue 15-Jan-13 17:23:27

It should be done equally, you shouldn't have to do it all yourself.

AngryTrees Tue 15-Jan-13 17:25:02

He should stay at home- this is a new job for you and it's important for you to make a good first impression. If he's never done it before then he needs to step up now.

bigkidsdidit Tue 15-Jan-13 17:26:47

While it should of course be 50:50 now you work, facilitating a session at a conference is a big deal

I'd ask your parents if at all poss

fufflebum Tue 15-Jan-13 17:28:03

Interestingly DC is running around showing no signs of illness, however as TA made a point of telling me in full earshot of other parents. Also if send DC in likely will get a phone call which would be worse tbh as would have to then drive 1/2 hr back home!

fufflebum Tue 15-Jan-13 17:28:48

Don't want to spread something unnecessarily!

LaCiccolina Tue 15-Jan-13 17:30:33

I think u need to discuss together what to do going forwards, more than this one time.

He is bu if he just thinks ur work can be dropped and /or ur parents should step up regardless every time. U need to see what he thinks first.

MavisG Tue 15-Jan-13 17:31:55

You have protected his career for years. Now he must accept the implications of having children and working. It's his turn.

LadyMargolotta Tue 15-Jan-13 17:33:51

TBH I'm surprised that you think it's acceptable for either of you to miss work because of having an ill child. Do you have no other backup?

HollyBerryBush Tue 15-Jan-13 17:36:59

Major wage earner goes to work.


Pigsmummy Tue 15-Jan-13 17:37:23

As it isn't just a working day for your husband I think that you to ask your parents to help tbh.

fufflebum Tue 15-Jan-13 17:39:31

Only just started new job, and I have left it this long because of attitudes like yours LadyMargolotta. Employers are expected to be flexible tbh but that is a whole other conversation....

When I was working before I had children concessions were always made for parents especially at Christmas time and I never objected to this. As a society we should support people who have children (and also people who have other caring roles).

Just having a dilemma about this situation......

C0smos Tue 15-Jan-13 17:40:53

Should be 50:50 split with the deciding factor being who has the most important stuff to do at work, for my DH and I it's client presentations as we both work in a service type industry.
Sorry but I think a meeting with manager can more easily be moved or conducted over the phone, facilitating a workshop would mean getting someone to cover who won't have done the prep etc..

SallyCinnamonandNutmeg Tue 15-Jan-13 17:41:05

Difficult situation.
In general I agree with Holly that major wage earner/ person whose work will be less affected by a day off should stay off with sick child - regardless if it's mum or dad.
But sounds as if in this case it's a pretty important day at work for both of you tomorrow. I would ask parents if I were you.

BlameItOnTheBogey Tue 15-Jan-13 17:42:50

I think you need to find a practical solution; what time is your meeting with your manager and what time is the session he is facilitating? Can you divide the day so that you can both make your important appointments?

SallyCinnamonandNutmeg Tue 15-Jan-13 17:43:26

LadyMargoletta I think your comment is a bit harsh. Lots and lots of people do not have family or close friends nearby who can provide backup in such a situation. What do you propose they do if their DC is sick?

StuntGirl Tue 15-Jan-13 17:45:56

Nope, one who can more easily take the day off with the least repercussions takes the day off.

Meeting the manager in the first few days of a job should be prioritised. First impressions and all that.

HighBrows Tue 15-Jan-13 17:46:54

Ask your parents. IMO neither of you can miss work tomorrow.

I also think the school is being over the top. One loose stool does not mean he has a stomach bug.

LadyMargolotta Tue 15-Jan-13 17:47:07

But what about the jobs where it really would cause a lot of problems to take time off to look after a child eg. healthcare professionals?

Children, especially small children, can be sick a lot. It is very impractical to the employers, colleagues, etc to miss work everytime a child is sick.

Of course it's different if it's a serious emergency, but I am very surprised that you have not foreseen that this could happen.

docsarah Tue 15-Jan-13 17:48:04

Don't think it should be major wage earner necessarily - how is the other person supposed to progress (especially if they've just started a new job) if it's implicit that their job is always the first one to get dropped? I also don't like the idea that just because you bring home the bacon you're somehow exempt from parenting issues like this.

Also, take home salary is not always a good indicator of how important a job is -many people are hugely committed to and enjoy their jobs even if they are taking home comparatively little compared to the main wage earner.

dixiechick1975 Tue 15-Jan-13 17:48:08

If child has no other incidents of the runs I'd send to school with a note saying DD has been fully well since pick up. Child may have just eaten 3 satsumas/choc bars from her friends lunchbox for all you know.

She only needs to stay off for d & v.

DeepRedBetty Tue 15-Jan-13 17:49:11

Agree dc shouldn't go to school, annoyingly they can be still infectious with d&v bugs even when apparently fit. Agree you shouldn't be taking tomorrow off at this stage of career. The unknown is the effect of taking a day off to look after children on dh career, only he can make an informed decision about that. In an ideal world all employers would be caring enough to view the odd day off to look after sick children as a good long term investment to help keep staff, but it's not an ideal world, and the jobs market is not something that anyone wants to find themselves entering right now.

I'd ring your parents and forewarn them that they might be needed.

Samnella Tue 15-Jan-13 17:51:00

Ordinarily I would say he should of course do it. We have a strict rule of sick child care being 50/50 in this house. However, sounds like neither of you can do it. Can you ask someone else? If not, can you rearrange the meeting with your manager as TBH it sounds like your plans are easier to reorganise than your DH. You also need to establish the rules going forward.

LadyMargoletta - Please share your plans in such situations. I am genuinely curious as we have no family nearby, most friends wouldn't be willing to look after a sick child particularly as most work and I wasn't aware there was a nanny agency of some sort that specialised in looking after sick children. I would be interested to know.

FYI at our school the policy is 2 loose poos/vomiting. A one off could be just that...curry for lunch maybe??

Pancakeflipper Tue 15-Jan-13 17:52:54

Also interested in Lady M's plans.

forevergreek Tue 15-Jan-13 17:53:05

For in future, can you register with an emergency nanny agency. They will generally covet most illnesses

Mintyy Tue 15-Jan-13 17:53:55

Lady Margoletta - who do you propose should look after sick children if not their parents? Can you please explain?

Samnella Tue 15-Jan-13 17:53:59

Major wage earner goes to work.

I disagree. I earn a third of what DH earns but my money is just as important and I don't think it would be viewed well by my employees if I was always the one having to drop out to look after the children. If you are both to work than this should be shared in my view.

LadyMargolotta Tue 15-Jan-13 17:54:23

Everyone I know who works has an emergency back up plan. I am often that emergency back up plan for friends. They help me if I need it.

I have never heard of parents missing work for a mildly ill child here in Belgium, maybe that's acceptable in the UK. It's considered to be the parents resonpsibility to have child care.

And that's another thing, I am surprised a stomach ache and one loose stoll is considered 'd&v'. She may be perfectly fine tomorrow.

Samnella Tue 15-Jan-13 17:55:32

I never knew that Forevergreek . Have you done it? I am not sure how I would feel leaving my child, particularly when unwell with a total stranger.

MistyB Tue 15-Jan-13 17:59:24

I don't hold with the major earning comment either. If the major earner goes to work every day, they might get a 2% pay rise at the end if the year but if the lesser earner is unable to create an impression of commitment to the new job due to having 100% responsibility for childcare then they may well find themselves with nothing if they are unable to keep the job. Not to mention the non financial value of both parties other needs being met and the value of time taken out to be a SAHP to the family and the other partners career.

Sorry op! Soapbox!! Stepping off!!

ENormaSnob Tue 15-Jan-13 17:59:30

One loose poo does not equate to diarrhoea.

I think if the child is ok and no d and v then I would be sending to school tomorrow.

flowery Tue 15-Jan-13 18:00:10

Of course it should be 50:50 for this type of thing. Completely unfair of a couple to decide that the employer who employs the one who happens to earn less should bear the brunt, and it puts that person's job at risk.

In this situation it sounds difficult for both of you so as you are lucky enough to have parents within reach, I'd be asking them.

LadyMargolotta Tue 15-Jan-13 18:05:23

I just find it incredible that you think it's acceptable for either of you to miss important work meetings, with the career implications for yourselves, and the economic implications for your employers and clients, just because your child has had one loose poo. Especially when you say you have parents who can help.

AllDirections Tue 15-Jan-13 18:06:42

If your parents can look after the DC then that would be the best option in this case.

But I'm another one that has no back up plan. I'm not lucky enough to have nice parents and my ex married someone else behind my back and didn't tell me till I was pregnant. He's not around so that leaves neighbours and friends but they all work too. I wouldn't be able to afford emergency childcare.

Mintyy Tue 15-Jan-13 18:10:13

I just think its incredible Lady Margoletta that you have plenty of people on hand willing to look after an unwell and infectious child at the drop of a hat. People who do not live near willing family (and I should think even the most willing families could be forgiven for not wanting to put themselves in the path of a stomach bug - I certainly won't if/when I become a grandmother) have no choice but to look after the child themselves. That's what happens when you become a parent - shit happens and you sometimes have to shift your priorities. Ffs!

Portofino Tue 15-Jan-13 18:10:25

I'm in Belgium and have frequently missed work with a sick child. I don't have a back up plan. I am lucky that I can work from home if I need to, and tends to me that does it as my employer is more flexible about things like that than dh's. That being said, if I was running a conference session I would prioritise that over a meeting with the boss, which is easily rearranged. My mutuelle actually offers care for sick kids - whereby a complete stranger will come to your house for up to 2 weeks. I have never used it, preferring to be home myself, or dh, but can see it could come in handy if you really need it.

DSM Tue 15-Jan-13 18:11:21

ladymargilotta the OP has said that the school have told her not to bring her DD in tomorrow. Not her choice.

NumericalMum Tue 15-Jan-13 18:12:02

Lady who are these people who should help? I have no parents in the same country, a sister who works full time as do most of my friends. Even if they didn't I wouldn't inflict a sick child on them? When my DC is poorly I work from home or Dh works from home. We take turns. I have also recently started a job so he has taken a few more shifts recently but then I do more of the day to day leaving work early for pick ups etc. Intrigued to know who should have my vomitting DC for me!!

In response to the OP I would use the grandparents especially if he isn't that poorly, or ring the school and say your DC is absolutely fine!

fufflebum Tue 15-Jan-13 18:17:12

DC did go again when got home (nothing out of ordinary TBH) just aware that if it does happen again at school will be called back so probably better to err on side of caution. TA did say did not call only because it happened so close to pick up time.

LadyMargolotta Tue 15-Jan-13 18:17:37

NumericalMum - if you have a job where you can work from home, that's great. If you have employers that are not only compassionate but also economically solvent enough to cope with parents staying at home for sick children, then that is also great.

But not everyone has jobs where that can happen. Those people have to have back up.

And the OP does have back up, in the form of her parents.

McNewPants2013 Tue 15-Jan-13 18:19:27

it should be 50:50.

however my works are more flexiable and i can normally swap a shift at short notice, so i venture down that route first.

nextphase Tue 15-Jan-13 18:22:35

Lady - I'd also be interested in your back up plans? Are you saying I shouldn't work because we happen to leave 150 miles from our nearest family (because thats where we can get a job?)

OP:We decide who can most easily take the day off (or split the am/ PM if that solves the diary conflicts). Sunds like thats a difficult call for you tomorrow.

Longer term (when we end up with chicken pox or similar), we would sort the first few days til my Mum could get up for a few days.

I've had today off, as DS1 vomited at school yesterday, but my boss has kindly offered to let me work from home as much as I can, and then deduct those hrs from what I'll need as holiday to cover. thanks Dr New Boss.

ravenAK Tue 15-Jan-13 18:24:40

I have a similar situation when one of ours is ill.

I teach, so it's never ideal for me to take time off.

Dh has a fair bit of autonomy over his working week, being a senior managementy type, & can usually arrange to work from home if a dc is too ill for school. However, a few times a month he runs training courses & they generally involve anywhere up to 30 people, all of whom will have had cover arranged for them, sorted transport & accommodation - so he really can't knock short of being at death's door.

We work on the basis that whoever's inconveniencing other people the least takes time off!

Mind you I agree that one loose poo does not = d&v & I'd be sending dd in, with a note to the effect that she has no symptoms & you'd hate to bring their attendance figures down unnecessarily.

Failing which, definitely ask parents - it's an important day for both of you. If that's just not possible, I think the only fair answer is 'who is going to cause the most buggerance to other people by not turning up' - which probably leaves you calling in this time, on the understanding that it's dh's turn next time.

fufflebum Tue 15-Jan-13 18:26:44

Thanks for replies xxxx

I'd insist that school take her if she's not actually ill, which she's not by the sounds of it.

MamaBear17 Tue 15-Jan-13 18:53:02

Hubby and I both work, me 4 days over 5 and him full time. We are both teachers although at different schools, I hold a more senior position than him. The rule we employ when dd is ill is that we take it in turns to alternate. Some times the MIL is able to step in which is always helpful, but other than that we split it equally. It is horrible for the one who knows that they have to make that phone call to work to say they are not going in, but dd is our kid, what else can we do?

MamaBear17 Tue 15-Jan-13 18:53:30

alternate being off with her^

mynewpassion Tue 15-Jan-13 18:53:49

call your parents to see if they can babysit for an hour or two while you are in your meeting or until your husband is done. you aren't starting work its just a meeting.

Arrianne Tue 15-Jan-13 18:57:28

It needs to be shared 50:50.
Lady Margoletta, please if a child is sick, they need their parents. No way would I give the responsibility to anyone else. Totally unfair on both child and carer. I am a health care professional. I work hard and juggle both child and career,and it is never easy, but DH and I take turns. It is accepted at work that sick children need their parents and that occasionally staff need to take time off. Why would you want anyone else looking after your child if they are poorly?

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Tue 15-Jan-13 19:02:54

I feel for you, OP - DH and I are always juggling "whose day can be more easily disrupted" along with making sure it balances out about 50:50.

TBH it sounds like you both have "unmissable" days so I would get your parents round if at all possible, as you have that option. Separately, I would make sure you and DH agree that it will be 50:50 in all but such similar situations.

Margolotta, in the UK it is the law, I believe, that parents can take unpaid leave at short notice to cover children's illnesses and the leave should cover sufficient time to make alternative arrangements (eg chicken pox - probably emergency nanny; bit of a temperature - probably covered by the unpaid leave)

lynniep Tue 15-Jan-13 19:06:09

OP I agree with suggestions that in this scenario you should call upon your parents. A 'normal' day at work is a bit different.
Lady M - I'm one of those folk without a back up plan. If one of my boys is ill, I dont go to work, or I ask DH (he wouldnt think to suggest it himself). I also keep my fingers crossed that they are only every sick on my day off (this of course never happens) I don't know what my backup plan is supposed to be? I have no family nearby. My friends also work. No childminder will take a 'sick' child. We had children and we choose to work (ok we need to work) and work has to accommodate this to a certain extent.

DoodlesNoodles Tue 15-Jan-13 19:09:57

Can you both do half a day, one of you go in extra early and leave at 12, then the other do the afternoon and stay extra late. confused

Obviously, this would only work in certain circumstances.

Alligatorpie Tue 15-Jan-13 19:13:50

I am another who doesn't normally have back up care for a sick child ( currently on mat leave, so not a problem now).
But, dh and I are both teachers and live overseas. If our dd is sick, we are screwed. We used to alternate staying home with her if she was sick, I can't imagine leaving a sick child ith a nanny they have never met. And who would possibly want that job?

Op- I would ask your parents, especially if your dd isn't really sick.

Alligatorpie Tue 15-Jan-13 19:15:16

Do I win the award for saying sick the most in any one post?

KobayashiMaru Tue 15-Jan-13 19:17:14

Send to school and both go to work. If I kept my kids home for loose shits they would have to be home educated.

marriedinwhite Tue 15-Jan-13 19:22:29

Use back up or if you can - share the time off. You get in for your meeting and he gets in for the next part.

There is some truth in the principle earner part but by the time I went back DH was the principle earner and senior enough to work from home if he could - which wasn't always.

If your dd doesn't seem at all unwell between tonight and tomorrow morning I might be minded to send her to school - esp if there is no temperature at all. A loose poo can be from too much sugar.

onedev Tue 15-Jan-13 19:26:16

I'd say you need to ask your parents as both of you sound like you need to be in work.

However, given how you've described her 'illness', I'd send her to school with a note stating that she's not unwell, it must have been something she ate! I can't imagine that 1 loose stool means you need to be off school??

DharmaBums Tue 15-Jan-13 19:28:00

Agree with Samnella

LadyMargoletta that's precisely the reason I, and several other mothers, feel they have to be SAHM's and why I left my previous job. Complete inflexibility and poor management. Hope you're not a manager!

McNewPants2013 Tue 15-Jan-13 19:32:29

i would rather lose a days earning than pay someone to look after my sick child.

trying to get a babysitter for DS is hard enough due to him having austism never mind when he is ill and confused more than ever

thegreylady Tue 15-Jan-13 19:35:00

Generally I would agree about dh doing it but given conference situation I think you should ask your parents this time.

FelicityWasSanta Tue 15-Jan-13 19:35:29

OP have you asked your parents?

fufflebum Tue 15-Jan-13 19:41:12

DC has had another couple of 'loose' poo's so I think may be something (sorry for too much info!)

DH has just arrived home so a decision will be made soon......

Thanks for your posts replies have been helpful.

Feeling mothers guilt as want to stay home but as am new to this job it is important to make good impression. Have put my needs behind everyone else for so long now, taken kids when having a smear, cancelled plans to accommodate kids etc (all part of being a parent I know) but this time feel DH may need to do this. Just feel the guilt......

mynewpassion Tue 15-Jan-13 19:53:27

did you or did you not say that your parents could watch the child for a few hours? if yes why are you not asking them?

PrideOfChanur Tue 15-Jan-13 19:57:12

Hmm.I'm not convinced even several loose poos in an otherwise well child equates to D and V.if you really think she is ill,then this sounds like the time to call your parents,it doesn't sound as if either of you can easily take the day off.

We alternated,more or less with bias towards DH - who worked full time ,with flexitime,staying home because his work was usually easier to rearrange than my part time but involving fairly rigid schedule job.We had back up till Dh's Mum got too elderly to cope with toddlers,and friend who would help - if she was free,her own DC was well and she felt being exposed to an outside bug was something she was ok with at that point in time. I love this idea that you must have cover so neither of you has to have time off - how??

MerylStrop Tue 15-Jan-13 19:57:58

Ask your parents to help
Or split it between you
Attend your meeting, and make your day short
Your DH is facilitating a conf session it would be unprofessional for him not to do that, though conf as audience member easy to get out of - he could arrive late or leave early to accommodate your meeting potentially

Squitten Tue 15-Jan-13 19:58:28

Have you not asked your parents? If you both have important commitments, which it sounds like, why not ask them? If you're only going to a meeting then they just need to cover a few hours?

TheSecondComing Tue 15-Jan-13 20:06:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CrunchyFrog Wed 16-Jan-13 08:45:07

XH and I fought about this every fucking time, which were many as DS1 had allergies that the CM insisted looked like conjuntivitus so kept kicking him out! I was the higher earner, but he didn't want to take time off. I ended up paying an emergency nanny (on top of regular CM) several times, which meant I wad actually paying out to go to work!

MrsMelons Wed 16-Jan-13 09:27:31

I think it is unfortunate as you both have stuff booked in at work today. Doesn't really sound like youe DH is that able to take time off today whereas I would expect my manager to be understanding and maybe swap a meeting?

I usually end up staying home as I can work from home but if I asked I expect DH would if I really couldn't.

I do feel I should try most of the time as I have gone back to work after maternity leave so they know I also have a committment to my DCs. They are generally very understanding.

I work 4 days a week so I can swap my day off if need be, that is the main reason I do not work 5 days - too much pressure all round!

FelicityWasSanta Wed 16-Jan-13 09:29:20

Did you go to work OP?

choceyes Wed 16-Jan-13 09:56:59

Did you go to work OP?
I would've asked your parents in this instance. Sounds like you both have important days at work. I would hate to not turn up for a meeting with a manager on my first day back at work.
We have no back up either. No parents or friends that can look after a sick child. Either me or DH has to take time off work. DH is a teacher. His school is OK about him taking a day or two here and there (not more than 5 days a year I think is their policy), so he has stayed with ill DCs at home a couple of times. My work is pretty good about me taking him off too, although I do have to take it as annual leave now (last year different manager allowed me to take it as paid leave for family emergencies - 5 days a year...he was lovely...but new manager not so generous). Luckily DCs have not had to miss nursery due to illness for nearly a year now, so we have been fortunate not have been in this dilemma for awhile now.

milf90 Wed 16-Jan-13 10:11:00

Did u sort it out?

fufflebum Thu 17-Jan-13 07:31:06

Thanks for input, could not update yesterday as went to work!

Had snow over night and school was closed DH stayed home....

FelicityWasSanta Thu 17-Jan-13 10:33:53

Great, glad it was sorted out properly.

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