4 hour daily commute - reduced working hours

(9 Posts)
mummyb1982 Sun 16-Mar-14 19:43:49

Hi Ladies

Hoping for your thoughts on my situation...

- Currently 32 weeks pregnant and have a 4 hour daily commute
- Nature of my husband's means that we cannot move to reduce my journey
- Looking to return to work when baby is 6 months old and part-time not an option
- Ideally I would return to work from 8.30am-4pm but would reduce my weekly hours to 32.5 hours p/w
- Is baby's routine likely to work with these timings? I would leave home at 6.30am leaving my husband to drop off at childcare, I would be home at 6pm for feed, bath, bedtime etc...

Has anyone else experience of similar situation - have I got any chance of the flexible working request going through and these timings working in practise..?

Thanks! xxx

Unexpected Mon 17-Mar-14 14:06:54

Can't comment on whether your flexible working request will be approved, sounds like a reasonable reduction in hours, although not if e.g. you are working in a customer-facing role and there will be no-one to cover the times after you have left.

More generally, a four hour commute is a killer for anyone, more so when you have a new baby and are coping with night wakings and a reduced amount of sleep. Is there no possibility of getting a job nearer home? Otherwise, you need to be prepared not to see your child in the mornings and only for a bit in the evening when they are likely to be a bit tired and you are rushing to sort dinner, bath and bedtime.

However, if you have no choice and your dh can do drop-offs (and pick-ups?) you will probably make it work if you have to. One thing to consider would be if one or other of you can collect your child from nursery/childminder if they are ill? Two hours away is a long time if you need to get back quickly.

mummyb1982 Fri 21-Mar-14 07:54:46

Thanks for replying - unfortunately my job won't move but can request flexible working hours. The good thing is that my husband will be a few minutes from the nursery which is at his place of work.

Can't wait for 8 months of no commuting! I can't say it's much fun at this stage of pregnancy!

I would definitely be looking for a new job. I imagine a 4 hour commute costs a fair bit so you could afford a lower salary with a job near by? I know for maternity pay reasons it would not be ideal to find a new job right now but I think you would be so tired and barely see your baby during the week that it warrants a career/family rethink long term.

Katisha Fri 21-Mar-14 08:09:23

Is it possible to work at home at all, on work enabled laptop say?

chutneypig Sat 22-Mar-14 07:26:56

My biggest reservation would be not being able to get back quickly if needed, but with your DH so close that offsets that. I've done a longer commute than that pre children and it was tiring, but I think again with your flexible request that would work too. Six isn't an unusual time to get home.

Depending on how the commute is, you could end up coming back relatively refreshed. Are your driving or public transport? I would be a bit hesitant at a long drive when tired, but I do miss my train journey and the reading time. It must be exhausting now but how was it before you were pregnant?

OhNoYouExpedidnt Sat 22-Mar-14 07:42:52

It's do able but will be very hard work. It also seems like such a waste of 4 hours a day! You will be working reduced hours in order to work a full days work once commuting is factored in.

You can only give it a go though and see how it works. Little ones routine won't really come into it as you will only be there for about an hour of it a day by 6 months.

Is there any way you can postpone going back?

My friend has a nearly 2 hour commute and a 1 year old. She hates the commute but they seem to have got into a good routine.

GoooRooo Tue 01-Apr-14 08:50:10

I have a six hour daily commute - although luckily only have to do it twice a week and work from home two days a week.

I'm lucky that my husband has a job which allows him to work from home permanently so it can work for us. On the days I'm in the office, he has to do the drop offs and pick ups from nursery and give DS dinner. He does bedtimes anyway so it doesn't affect that part of the routine. I basically don't see DS on those days, but if you can be home by 6pm you will at least get to do bedtime!

If DS is ill, nursery call DH instead of me and it works okay. Having a baby has affected his working life much more than mine.

I have the best of both worlds as I get to see real life people a couple of times a week and then get a couple of days with no commute. Before having the baby I used to commute five days a week and I think I'd find that a bit much now to be honest.

GoooRooo Tue 01-Apr-14 08:51:39

Also to add - I went back to work when DS was four months old as I am the main wage earner and am self-employed so got sod all maternity benefits except for maternity allowance. He's been fine - he loves nursery.

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