Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

How do I tell him I don't want to go back to work?

(519 Posts)
DontGiveAwayTheHomeworld Thu 28-Aug-14 16:30:02

DS starts school in two weeks. He's going straight into full-time, which frees up a large chunk of the day for me. Because of this, DH has started on about me going back to work. The thing is, I don't really want to.

We don't desperately need the money, things are tight but we manage. I never had anything resembling a career, and the only work I could realistically do is shop/cleaning work - I was more than happy to give that up, and I really don't want to go back to that, particularly if there's no financial gain (which there wouldn't be after childcare.) Besides that, I've been working on a novel for the last year and a bit, and the dream is to write full- time. The extra time I gain from DS being at school would be the perfect transition to that, but DH sees it as just a hobby. Which it is, I guess, but I'd love to make it my career, even if I don't make much money from it.

I just don't know how to talk to DH about all this, he's all but decided I'll be going back to full-time work outside the home, to the point where he's getting annoyed at the fact I'm not really looking. It's really eating at my confidence - like I'm not worth anything without a job.

NorwaySpruce Thu 28-Aug-14 16:34:49

Can you not retrain in something you really want to do?

It does seem unfair to expect to live on one salary if you don't have to, especially if your partner resents it.

If you could retrain, would you be happy to work full time, and be the sole earner while your husband stayed home?

I work nights and weekends so that we don't have to pay for childcare, and that seems to be a compromise lots of people make.

Sunna Thu 28-Aug-14 16:48:08

I'm with your DH, you should be looking for work or retraining.

You can still write in your spare time.

If things are tight he probably feels pressured, being the sole provider.

Can you not work part time? So you are still earning, don't have childcare costs and still have time to write?

Vivacia Thu 28-Aug-14 16:50:54

You need to talk, and there needs to be a compromise. Perhaps he doesn't love going out to work or bearing all of the financial responsibility.

DontGiveAwayTheHomeworld Thu 28-Aug-14 16:51:14

That's the thing, the only thing I've ever truly wanted to do is write, so picking something to retrain in would be an exercise in futility - it would still only be a stop-gap until I can write full-time.

DH has an actual career, that he enjoys, so he wouldn't stay at home even if he could. He's had no problem supporting the family financially up to now, so I'm a little confused by the change in attitude.

I also don't really want to give up my nights and weekends to a soulless job that I'm only doing because I "should". It would take away from family time, and we have very little of that to begin with!

sonjadog Thu 28-Aug-14 16:52:47

What did you agree on before you stopped working? Did you say that you would go back to work then?

Cantbelievethisishappening Thu 28-Aug-14 16:53:40

He is entitled to feel very resentful that he is working to support the family while you enjoy time off writing a book. Why should he be the only one contributing financially to the household. You are able to work...yes??
I also don't buy this line at all It's really eating at my confidence - like I'm not worth anything without a job
You just don't want to work but are dressing it up with some sort of psycho-babble crud. You said yourself you were happy to leave your previous employment because you didn't like it. I would feel the same if I was in his shoes.

itsbetterthanabox Thu 28-Aug-14 16:54:02

Maybe college? Do some English courses or something vocational you would like to work in?
Or part time work?
Does your dp like his job? What if he wanted to stay at home and you work how would you feel?
It is hard when they are at school but still little because they finish so early. Maybe look for work in a school? You can still write?

To be honest if dh came home and said he wanted to give up work and write a book, I would be unimpressed.

Preciousbane Thu 28-Aug-14 16:55:41

Hardly anyone makes money from writing FT. I do have a couple of friends who are published authors but they both have regular jobs.

If you don't have a huge earning capacity then why not try to get something in school hours, I know its not easy and not what you really want but its a big ask for one parent to stay at home when things are tight and a lot of pressure.

AlpacaMyBags Thu 28-Aug-14 16:56:10

I think you're being a little selfish. Regardless of whether you think there's enough money coming in, it must be a bit of a burden for your partner knowing that he's the sole earner. You need to agree on this mutually, not present it to him as a done deal and without any constructive suggestions of how you will bring in money and support the family.

NickiFury Thu 28-Aug-14 16:56:55

I agree it's not fair for you to not contribute financially but think you should use the time to retrain. You've been out of the work place raising children. When you go back it should be something you really want to do.

Catzeyess Thu 28-Aug-14 16:57:10

What about doing something writing related to earn some extra cash like proof reading/editing/writing articles etc and go self employed then it would not only earn some extra cash but you can be flexible so don't need child care and it will prob help with writing the novel.

AnotherFurry Thu 28-Aug-14 16:57:15

The problem is that you are putting all the responsibility of earning money on your DH who is entitled to want to share that responsibility with you. What if he decides he doesn't want to work anymore and pursue a hobby?

At the moment it doesn't sound like you have a plan to bring home any money with your writing so I can see why he is getting annoyed.

You said you feel like you are not worth anything to him unless you have a job but that is completely separate. I am so much more than my job but equally I need to contribute to the household and unless it is agreed by both parties that usually means bringing in some income.

FolkGirl Thu 28-Aug-14 16:57:57

Well it's not about not being worth anything without a job. He probably assumes that, with your son starting school, you'll start making a financial contribution to the household again.

It's not that being a SAHP isn't valuable, at all, but it sounds as though you returning to work when your child started school was part of the original conversation/arrangement/agreement. If you want it to be something different now then you need to broach it with him. You can't be surprised he's annoyed you haven't started looking for work if that was the arrangement and you haven't told him otherwise.

I agree that you can write in your spare time. It's hard to make a career from writing.

When I was on maternity leave, I did a diploma because I knew I'd get bored otherwise. But when my maternity leave was over, I went to work, and studying became a hobby I either did or didn't have the time for.

I think women are in quite a privileged position with regards to this, to be honest. Maternity leave/SAHM isn't easy, but it does free up time for us to pursue other interests if we organise ourselves well enough. I think that that is a freedom it can be, understandably, difficult to give up. But sadly, unless your husband is earning a high salary and is in agreement with you staying at home indefinitely, then it comes to an end at some point.

rookiemater Thu 28-Aug-14 16:58:28

I enjoy writing as well. If we won the lottery I'd give up work instantly and enrol on a creative writing degree. But I don't <sigh> so I go to work.

Be honest with yourself - writing is a hobby and the chances of ever making any money from it are very, very slim.

Is there not some mid way solution - cleaning jobs presumably could be done whilst your DS is at school, so no childcare is required ( worry about school holidays later) or try looking for part time work - tricky I know, but you don't know until you try.

Vivacia Thu 28-Aug-14 16:58:36

That's the thing, the only thing I've ever truly wanted to do is write, so picking something to retrain in would be an exercise in futility - it would still only be a stop-gap until I can write full-time.

What percentage of the working population do you think are actually in paid employment doing the thing they would happily do for free?

itsbetterthanabox Thu 28-Aug-14 16:58:50

Xposted with loads of posts!
I think English and creative writing courses are a good idea. That gives you a real grounding for making money from writing.
Start writing short stories and sending them into magazines and writing scripts for radio 4 (they take submissions from anyone and sometimes make them). Anything local offer to write for it. Charity's, church newsletters anything!

hamptoncourt Thu 28-Aug-14 16:59:44

I am a published author but I also have a "proper job" that I also love.

How about you work part time rather than full time?

This would still allow you time to write and you might be able to do something that fits in better around school? Something in a college maybe?

You say that finances are "tight." Maybe your DH is worried about what will happen if mortgage/rent goes up or maybe he would like a nice holiday or something? I do think you are being a little selfish to be honest.

Vivacia Thu 28-Aug-14 17:00:03

I also don't really want to give up my nights and weekends to a soulless job that I'm only doing because I "should".

This is just a bit mind-boggling.

Polocake Thu 28-Aug-14 17:00:03

What happens if the writing career doesn't work out? You assume you'll be able to do it full time and making a living from it, but very few people actually do. Your assuming you'll be able to find a publisher and then actually get people to purchase it, but it's incredibly hard to do that.

Have you thought of any of this through?

DontGiveAwayTheHomeworld Thu 28-Aug-14 17:01:29

Can'tbelieve actually I've been writing a book between housework and childcare. It's hardly been a year off. And it's not psychobabble, it's seriously knocking my confidence.

LuvDaMorso Thu 28-Aug-14 17:02:44

So you'd have to do a crap job?

There are lots of crap jobs where you only work school hours so the childcare things is a red herring.

Writing is nice. Lots of people love to write. It can be done in the evenings. As a career? Well, have you had anything published anywhere, ever and got paid? If not, have you ever sent out your writing to a magazine etc?

Why should he work when you don't? That is seriously unfair. If you were a bloke there would be cock lodging allegations.

Cantbelievethisishappening Thu 28-Aug-14 17:03:17

Dont I was alluding to your FUTURE plans to stay at home and write a book

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