How many of you have both parents working f/t?

(60 Posts)
YoSaffBridge Fri 21-Dec-12 23:01:32

Just saw a thread that made me think about this. I know I am in a rarity: DH and I both work f/t. Luckily DH works shifts so DD isn't in childcare any more than about 30 hours a week. Anymore than about 40 hours and I think I would prefer a nanny, which we can't afford. But at the moment, I am in a profession which is struggling through the recession so a f/t job is preferable to no job at all.

However I don't know anyone else who have both parents working f/t, or anyone else whose DH is probably doing more childcare. Now my friends are starting to go back to work, I'm beginning to get comments on us both working f/t.

I guess I'm just interested in a rough straw poll - how many people have both parents working f/t? I feel in a massive minority here.

Festivedidi Fri 21-Dec-12 23:07:36

We both work full time. Dd1 is now a teenager and she has grown up with me being a single parent working full time, then when she was 7 we moved in with dp and both of us work full time. She's happy, fairly successful at school, has friends, etc, fairly well-balanced as far as teenagers go.

Dd2 is 2years 9months. She has been at our lovely childminder full time since she was 6 months old. She's there from 8am-5pm Mon-Fri during term time. She absolutely loves the childminder and the other mindees, it's like having a second home, she actually said this the other day 'I have 2 houses, mummy's house and cm's house'. I don't know many families where both parents work full time but I do know some, and I have never had any comments about it.

solveproblem Fri 21-Dec-12 23:08:06

We're both working full time, both 9-5.

We also both work within a ten minutes walk from home/school/childminder so I can drop my eldest at school in the mornings which really helps.

Two year old with childminder 8.50-5.10 everyday and she also picks our 6-year old from school.

I grew up with working parents so in my eyes this is normality, but it is quite rare around here with both parents working.

lljkk Sat 22-Dec-12 09:41:20

(Not me, sorry, I have issues with exhaustion & couldn't do it). It does seem to be unusual in Britain. It's quite normal where I grew up, was the norm in my parents' generation, too, for both parents to work FT.

NotMostPeople Sat 22-Dec-12 09:43:46

I don't work, I'm not sure I'd do the same if I could turn back the clocks.

CMOTDibbler Sat 22-Dec-12 09:44:53

DH and I work ft, and both do some travel for work. No family help, but we make it all work out. DS is 6 now, and I went back to work at 4.5 months, so its been a long time!

HoleyGhost Sat 22-Dec-12 09:47:46

It depends on where you live. I've been a SAHM, now work full time. It is challenging in a different way.

Nevercan Sat 22-Dec-12 20:01:54

DH works full time and I work 3 days a week. We have dd1 1 yr and dd2 3 yrs.

ggirl Sat 22-Dec-12 20:13:57

both full time here but as children are older we don't have to use childcare , dh home in time for ds 3 days a week and me 2 days a week.
dd at uni

we use annual leave/babysitter/dd on schoolholidays

fluffygal Sat 22-Dec-12 20:24:42

We are both fulltime here, but I am f/t at uni (on placement) and also work part time on top of that. 2 year old DD at cm mon-fri 9-5 and other 4 children split between two cm's after school. This only started in september, before that I was working around DH so no childcare needed.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Sat 22-Dec-12 20:28:29

Both part-time. The only couple I know where both are full time have grandparents do the childcare lucky sods

gladyoucame Sat 22-Dec-12 20:35:07

I went back to work ft in Sept after just over 4 years as SAHM. DS1 (4) just started at school and DS (just 3) at nursery. PIL do afterschool/nursery Childcare. I love working Ft (+) and DH also does more than 9-5. Out the house at 7.45 every morning and hopefully one of us is home for 6-6.30, except at m/e when it's later. I love working again (but feel a bit guilty 'cos I enjoy it so much - it's easier than SAHM sometimes)

orangeberries Sat 22-Dec-12 20:35:23

theDoctrine I was going to say the same - without family support is very very difficult. I know people who both work full time but have no family around and they are exhausted all the time.

I work 3 days at the moment and just about cope. I do have 4 kids though, so maybe easier with less children, not sure. Just a huge juggling act, mainly due to illnesses and what feels like a constant stream of school demands (the last few weeks particularly demanding because of Christmas events, all happening at 2pm).

gladyoucame Sat 22-Dec-12 20:36:36

Btw was going back to work anyway if PIL not doing Childcare had decided to find afterschool nanny

SwedishEdith Sat 22-Dec-12 20:43:10

I did work f/t when I was a single parent, with no family support - had no alternative = knackered.

Panzee Sat 22-Dec-12 20:52:35

We did till husband got made redundant. Childcare was split between grandparents and childminder. Although I work term time only, if I didn't I would have probably gone part time.

DH and I both work ft, no family within 500 miles so do it all alone. Have 7yo, 6yo and 2yo. Older two are at school and youngest is with CM for about 34 hours each week.

I don't really see it as a struggle tbh, you don't miss what you've never had and I'm glad I made the decision to go back after having my first as I've continued getting promotions etc and managed to negotiate a huge pay rise (four figures) and flexible working -for returning from ML two months early after my 3rd.

Weirdly I find it much harder now they are in school, with the various events each week where a family member is expected to turn up - Xmas play, christingle service and Xmas walkabout all in the same wee grrr! Luckily I work flexible hours and from home 3 days out of five so can make most of these, but appreciate it may not be as easy for some.

For what it's worth, I don't know anyone else at either of my older dc's schools where both parents work ft.

solveproblem Sat 22-Dec-12 22:18:31

Superman: I'm starting to get really cross with everything going on at school all the time. I want to be involved but things are always at 9/10am or 2pm.

Had it been around lunchtime I could do it as I work near school, or if they had plays etc in the evenings....

That's one of the few things that make me feel like a shitty mother for working.

solveproblem Sat 22-Dec-12 22:20:22

Oh, and school never give us more than a weeks notice for these things so I can never plan meetings etc around it.

christmosschops30 Sat 22-Dec-12 22:21:43

We both work full time with three dcs! Am hoping to drop to four days in April though

NotSpartacus Sat 22-Dec-12 22:24:13

We do. We are unusual (the only parents who do this in my DD's class at school for example, and the only ones out of our friends).
Dh leaves at 7 and is back at 6. I leave at 8 and come back when I can. Sometimes we work from home. We have an excellent nanny. We couldn't do it otherwise.

PinotGrigioandaMincePie Sat 22-Dec-12 22:27:56

Both DH & me work 4 days a week so we need childcare for 3 days. This was partly by choice (me) and necessity (DH's hours got cut due to the recession).

ArtigeneAuberchoke Sat 22-Dec-12 22:36:45

DH and I both work ft (although my 41 hours ate compressed into 4 long days so I'm home Fridays). DCs are 6 and 4 but it's been like this since I went back when DC2 was 8 months. We have no helpful family and could not do it without a nanny.

I do have 9 weeks leave a year and take it all in the school hold. That makes all the difference in terms if my guilt levels. I enjoy my work but the guilt can be extreme. I wish there were more hours on the day so i could see the kids more and work. The continuity of a nanny the kids love also helps me feel less guilty.

This thread has made me realise that no other patents I know both work FT outside the home.

Balancedk Sat 22-Dec-12 22:38:35

I am the only parent and I work full-time, for me a good nursery has been the best choice. Time with my kids is quality time and my kids knowing that with our without my ex husband they can have a good standard of life is very important. Even when I was married I worked full-time. Every child and every family is different.Go with your gut...

Balancedk Sat 22-Dec-12 22:40:46

Do not let such things worry you, your kids know you are amazing.the will grow up with good social skills, a great role model and the ability to relate well to other people.Most importantly they will know how to share attention.

SeriousWispaHabit Sat 22-Dec-12 22:51:26

We both work FT. DH does 9-5 Mon-Fri and I do 4 long days with some evenings and the odd Saturday morning. I have some later starts though so get to do the school/nursery run on 3 mornings and DH does 1 morning.

DDs are 4 and 2. I went out for a drink with some friends the other night and had some 'helpful' comments about how I was very brave to work FT and miss out on their childhood. Nothing about how DH was missing out.

I do loads with the DDs and we are a close family who all spend a lot of time together and manage to eat as a family 4 nights a week on average. We both have more than average annual leave and use it to go on holiday or spend time as a family.

AuntieShirley Sat 22-Dec-12 22:53:57

Dh and I both used to work full time. I worked 7am until 8.30pm 2 days a week and 3 night shifts also. Dh 2 day shifts (similar hours) and 2 night shifts.
My parents both used to work full time too (Dad a farmer, mother a nanny, I used to roam the country side whilst they worked!)
We couldn't handle us both working and game up when dc4 was 3 years old. I was exhausted, dh was exhausted, and it was too much to work as much as we did and stay on top of four childrens life. I left work. I felt a bit defeated, but it was for the best (for me, I was going a bit insane, I think the kids would have been fine either way). Now dd1 has started secondary school I am really pleased I am home at 3 every day, as it has been a bit full on!

BackforGood Sat 22-Dec-12 22:58:24

For the first 2 and 1/2 years we both did FT, but then I went down to about 34/35hrs a week. Much better. We had CMs when my dc were little, then breakfast club once they started it in the juniors, and a CM after school.

smugmumofboys Sat 22-Dec-12 23:01:16

We both work ft. DCs at childminders before and after school every day. As we are both teachers, we obviously have the holidays, but it is exhausting during term-time.

LavenderPots Sat 22-Dec-12 23:06:28

both work full time shifts around each other dont pay childcare as 1 of us is always home

scottishmummy Sat 22-Dec-12 23:08:02

we work ft.where we live it's not norm,at all.lots prosperous housewives doing sweet fa
I get the face or comments from the precious moments crew. I'm nonplussed
majority of pals work ft.i have good social network,and it's all well planned.

JumpJockey Sat 22-Dec-12 23:11:34

Artigene you know me... Dh works 9-7ish 4 days a week and 9-4ish the other, I'm 8.45-5 4 days and until 7 on dh's shorter day. Girls in nursery 8.45 until about 5.20 5 days a week(dh does drop-off, I pick up) and they both love it there, it takes me about 20 minutes to get them to leave at the end of theday as they're too usy playing. Am not looking forwards to dd1 starting school next year as the practicaliies will be much harder because of the geography, either she or dd2 will not get picked up til nearly 6, but then they'll be able to stay up a bit longer so will have more family time.

jelliebelly Sat 22-Dec-12 23:14:24

We both work FT with ds (7)and dd (4). I returned to work after 6 mths mat leave with ds and 18 mths with dd ( was made redundant and took my time finding another job). We used nursery when they were little and after school club now. We Both have well paying jobs but quite flexible so between us we manage school runs, activities etc 50/50.

JumpJockey Sat 22-Dec-12 23:15:04

Should add, i get preposterous amounts of annual leave (8 weeks including bank holidays, plus I earn another 3 weeks p.a. in lieu for the late shift) so get plenty of time off with girls. Would be much harder otherwise.

ninah Sat 22-Dec-12 23:15:52

I am a single parent and i work full time, it is fairly mixed among my friends, some are couples who work ft, others have their own businesses, some (male and female) work P/t with a f/t partner. I do have a few sah friends but don't have masses in common with them as we have v different lifestyles and priorities

redwellybluewelly Sat 22-Dec-12 23:16:20

Both my parents worked full time although DM worked as a consultant and was often around, we had a ft nanny in the holidays.

DH and I each work a nine day fortnight and DD is in childcare four days a week. I am pg so after maternity leave will be PT from when dc2 is six months to a year before returning to work FT. I enjoy my career and as an older mum don't want to let my qualifications slide

headfairy Sat 22-Dec-12 23:18:34

We both work ft, I also do shifts, long ones at that - 13 hours, so I only need to do three days a week. We have a nanny as dh doesn't get home until 7pm most evenings.

DingDongKethryverilyonHigh Sat 22-Dec-12 23:18:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

headfairy Sat 22-Dec-12 23:19:56

Sorry, forgot to say I work in an insanely competitive industry so working less tan I do would seriously jeopardise my future.

PortiaPony Sat 22-Dec-12 23:20:47

Both work full time, 9-5 mon-fri. Dd is in nursery and has been since she was 9mths old. No family near us, no network at all to help out. It's hard and you have to be super organised but we make it work. Having said that I dont think we'll have any more kids.

headfairy Sat 22-Dec-12 23:21:05

Both my parents worked full time when I was a child, from the age of 11 my mother spent about one week in three abroad. I was definitely in a minority.

Casmama Sat 22-Dec-12 23:24:12

My dh and I both work full time and woe betide anyone who would like to make a face or a comment about it [Grin]

bogwobbit Sat 22-Dec-12 23:24:52

Dh and I have both always worked full-time (my oldest two are now grown up, the younger two are 15 and 8) other than when dh was a student and even then he had an evening job. I would say that it this is probably fairly unusual amongs friends and accquaintances.
One of the worst things I find is having a longish commute to work as well as full time hours (2 hours per day) which although I'm used to it definitely makes things harder, particularly when after-school activities often seem to start at 6pm hmm

Casmama Sat 22-Dec-12 23:25:02

Bollocks grin

rosy71 Sat 22-Dec-12 23:26:33

We both work full-time - both teachers. Ds1 is 7 and ds2 is 4. They go to breakfast club every day and after-school club 3 times a week. Grandparents pick up on the other days. I've only recently gone full-time again - I was working 4 days a week. Until about 18 months ago, worked at the weekends and had days off with the boys in the week. I did notice things get harder to manage when he started working Monday-Friday again.

Both working full time, although I will be dropping to four days when things get less busy at work. I will have to work five days though from time to time and have to be contactable on my free day. I work 8:30-5, DH works at least a 12 hour day. It is hard but I don't want to give up work - I have worked my ass off to get where I am and I love my job (most of the time anyway). Children (3 and 1) are in nursery.

Most of my friends who have children of a similar age (pre-school) both work full time. I do think it becomes more difficult once they hit school age.

emsyj Sat 22-Dec-12 23:35:38

We both work ft at the moment, but I am 34 weeks pregnant and have arranged to return 4 days. DD is 2.5. I don't think we would manage long term with both of us doing ft - it's hectic. FiL & MIL have DD one day a week, she's with a CM the rest of the time. DH works at home 2 days and does drop off/pick up (I do a long day one of those days as I travel to a training centre and leave the house at 6.40am returning at 6.30pm) and I do drop off and pick up 2 days, we share the drop off to the ILs on a Friday and they bring DD home in the evening which is a help.

When I go back on 4 days I will be doing one long day (training centre), 2 normal days (flexible hours) in the office and one day at home (study). DH is going to drop a half day as he works a lot at home and in the evenings so he'll make up that time elsewhere (so effectively still FT, just re-jigged hours) which means DD will be at preschool 5 mornings plus at home with me one PM, with DH one PM, with ILs one PM and possibly with my DMum one PM and CM one too.... Baby will be 2.5 days with CM and 1 day with ILs.

It's all so bloody complicated and the logistics of pick up and drop off are what's tiring for us really - CM is 10 mins' drive away and it's not on the way to either of our workplaces, so it's an extra 25 mins at each end of the day. But DD is settled there so we don't want to move her.

I know a couple of other people who are both FT - one couple have ILs to do drop offs and pick ups plus they do 2 days of childcare a week, and the DH is a teacher who is home for 3.30pm every day. The DW works at home 2 days a week also. The other couple are both in nursing, she is a ward manager with a regular 9-5 job and they use the nursery that's on the hospital site which is £££ but convenient and good.

I don't know how people do it without flexible jobs and lots of help. My job is very relaxed and flexible and DH is very senior and can effectively come and go as he pleases so neither of us are tied to fixed start and finish times. If we were, I think it would be very very hard.

Arisbottle Sat 22-Dec-12 23:36:06

We both work full time, I would imagine that is the norm. Being a SAHM is not an option for most middle income types.

BlueyDragon Sat 22-Dec-12 23:36:44

Both full time under normal circs here (I'm on sick leave atm) with long hours. DCs are 5 and 2. It's difficult and exhausting but our respective specialisms don't really allow for PT so it's FT or nothing; I do have flexible working though so have some early starts and some late ones. Frankly without our nanny it would be almost impossible. We both work hard to make sure we have as much time with the DCs as possible. The precious moments brigade have nothing to say to me, probably because I'm at work grin. I don't feel I've missed anything and one or other of DH and I are at all DC1's school events, thanks to holidays, working from home or understanding employers. Maybe my DC will tell me a different story when they're older. It is easier now that more men are asking for time to go to children's plays and sports days, the corporate resistance seems to be less.

I know a few couples who are both full time but it is the exception rather than the rule. Usually one FT (usually the man) and one PT.

emsyj Sat 22-Dec-12 23:44:32

The other two couples I know who both work FT, the wife earns more than the husband (substantially more in one case). I am FT because I've just started a graduate scheme and I wanted to have a few months to find my feet. I can drop to 4 days without a problem, but I can't do any less for the next 4 years. Will see how things are then, and will consider dropping to 3 days - not sure yet.

We could afford for me to be at home, but I don't want to be - not all the time. I like my job and enjoy having a balance of work and home life, although I am finding FT is hard going and I'm looking forward to returning 4 days after mat leave.

LadyWidmerpool Sat 22-Dec-12 23:48:31

Both FT. Only way we could afford to start a family so we always planned it like this. It's not easy but what is? It works fine for us overall.

scottishmummy Sat 22-Dec-12 23:51:20

my parents worked ft when I was wee through school
I wouldnt have it any other way.I need stimulation and brain food of work
mn seems skewed to housewives and pt work,not so many ft two parents on mn

Flosshilde Sun 23-Dec-12 00:31:33

We both work f/t, albeit I do my hours across 4 days with evening and weekend working at home and a late finish every other week. We also both have a 30ish mile commute which takes around an hour.

DS is at nursery and I have also booked a place for DC2 as I have every intention of going back to the same working pattern after mat leave this time.

It has been fine, generally, but very difficult for me during this pregnancy as I have been constantly sick and exhausted. ILs help out in so far as they will cover if my DH wants to go out to his hobby at 7pm and I'm not in till 9pm, say.

My job is reasonably flexible and I have no problem leaving at 4.30 every day other than when I have an evening meeting. DH happily takes leave to cover me when I have to work on my usually non-working day, every couple of months or so. He has no limit on his leave, but he isn't paid for it.

It does seem to be unusual though and I do get some hmm looks when I have the temerity to say I work because I love it rather than being forced to by financial necessity.

drcrab Sun 23-Dec-12 08:26:11

We both work full time and until dh got made redundant he had a 2 hr commute each day so was out of the house 7.30am-7.30pm everyday. He's now set up by himself so works for himself which is probably more hours (nights etc) but its made it much easier in terms of work life balance (eg he does drop off at school and pick up although I do 1-2 days) and I drop off and pick up my younger at nursery.

We can't do without both in ft jobs ESP after he got made redundant. I cannot imagine what would have happened if we didn't have my job bringing in the money for bills!!!

Recently was at a school parents meal and I mentally took a poll and realized that all the mums there bar me were working part time or not at all. All in career type jobs but all pt. most of them also of the brigade of cake making for Christmas fair (I don't have a problem with that but I don't appreciate the comments like 'oh are you mum? Haven't seen you before...' And other similar bollocks). hmm

housesalehelp Sun 23-Dec-12 08:33:05

we both work full time - but its only be since september and my DS1 is just 7 - part-time before then I do have a flexiable employer/boss - I know a few people would work full time hours but its often at least some days start early and finish early say so they can do some school picks up - I think its still quite unsual - most mums I know work part-time

redskyatnight Sun 23-Dec-12 19:33:09

We both work f/t but our children are in school. We have no family help but I start early (dropping DC in breakfast club) and am home by 4.30, and DH works flexible hours so he can do after school pick up and then works later when I get home (he works from home!). I'm finding more and more families where both parents work full time as the children get older. Also, in the current recession, people are losing p/t jobs and then taking any job they can find - which is often a f/t one.

Also know many couples where e.g. they work different days (e.g. dad works Mon-Fri and mum Wed-Sun) or different hours (one works days, one evenings/weekends) to minimise childcare.

AnnoyedAtWork Sun 23-Dec-12 20:37:33

Very exhausted with no family help but a school that runs 7.30am to 6.30pm means we can both work full time (in London so 30-45 mins travel just from work to school then 15min home). I work 6/7am to 5.30pm and DP works 8.30ish to 6.30ish. He does morning school run I do evening. I do laundry he does cooking. Wish we could have better work life balance but we are lucky to both have good jobs and we are building a secure future for us and DD (7).

AnnoyedAtWork Sun 23-Dec-12 20:44:21

Wanted to add, no idea how we could have a baby in our current setup, not only cos double FT childcare cost but also sheer logistics. Really hoping to get to a point in career (soon?) where one or both of us could WFH a couple of days a week. I also have no social life or time for hobbies, but I guess that is normal for working parents shock

AfterEightMintyy Sun 23-Dec-12 20:44:43

Have to say I am scratching my head to think of partnerships I know where both work full time.

I suppose my boss does, but between them they earn an absolute fortune and employ a full-time Nanny.

I has never been possible in my marriage - my dh works 60+ hours a week sometimes, often away at a day's notice etc, and if I had worked full time too then my dc would barely have ever seen a parent. Which is not what we wanted for them.

AnnoyedAtWork Sun 23-Dec-12 20:47:28

All the parents (that i know of) at DD's school both work full time. It's nice to be around fellow evil careerists people

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now