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To chuck it all in and become a SAHM?

(89 Posts)
timeforacheckup Tue 14-Jul-15 15:59:06

I currently have 2dc (18mnths and 4.5yrs) and work part time. If dc are ill it is generally me that has to take time off to look after them (due to dh be self employed - very tricky for him to have time off as if not working no pay). We've had a run of sickness recently and so I've had to take quite a bit of time off and work are understandably getting annoyed.
I get so stressed when one of the dc are ill because I hate letting work down. We want to start trying for dc3 soon so it's not going to get any better and I just don't know what to do - I love working and would go mad cooped up at home and also worry that I'd never get back into work but I get so stressed about messing work around and worry what my absence record will be like for future job applications.
We have no other support network and the dc are both currently in nursery. IABU to think it would be best for everyone if I became a SAHM as I can't think of any other solutions.

chocbacktochoc Tue 14-Jul-15 16:09:18

depends on your finances, I suppose. would you cope on one income? how secure is DH's business? would it be risky to just rely on him.

if you want to TTC3, would it be an option to wait until DC3 actually materialises? you can then go on mat leave and make a decision then.

I personally would think twice about about leaving employment and being totally dependent on your DP but that might just be me smile

JadedAngel Tue 14-Jul-15 16:11:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

dietcokeandwine Tue 14-Jul-15 16:14:22

Based on what you write, OP, I wouldn't.

Because you say you love your work and would go mad at home.

If you'd go mad at home with 2 DC, believe me you'd go stark raving bloody bonkers at home with 3 (I am a SAHM of 3, by choice, and with all its positives it can be relentless).

Can you change your childcare is the first thought that springs to mind for me...a nanny? Friends with nannies seem to have much less stress with the whole 'kids being ill' thing because the nanny can just look after sick DC regardless - none of the nursery rules around sickness would apply.

Would that be an option for you?

howabout Tue 14-Jul-15 16:20:11

I think it partly depends how secure your DH's work situation is and how much he earns and more broadly how financially secure you both are and how old. Given that most job references these days do not say very much any work record is probably better than none so you may be better keeping your toe in work even as it is. If you are planning DC3 why not go ahead and have the full maternity leave to think about it rather than committing to SAHM and losing all the in-work maternity rights first? More generally I often think when I see "DH is self-employed" it makes a great excuse for some DH (not necessarily your DH) to work to suit themselves. My DH worked contracts for 5 years and he still managed to balance family responsibilities.

beanabonce Tue 14-Jul-15 16:49:13

Why would you want to pay somebody else to look after your sick children at home for you?

Topseyt Tue 14-Jul-15 16:49:31

This plus the fact that the cost of childcare for two (and then three) young children wiping out my entire salary and more were the reasons I was obliged to give up work.

I really understand where you are coming from. Whenever I had to take time off work because the kids were ill I felt terribly guilty. My manager was very good about it, but I still felt awful.

School hours and holidays were another factor, as I couldn't fit my working hours around them and back in those days working from home was much less accepted than it is now becoming.

A word of caution though, especially if you enjoy your work. A few years out of the workplace can make it very difficult to get back in again in the future, and your earning potential can often be greatly reduced by that.

You really have to do what suits you and your family best. There is no such thing as the ideal solution, or if there is then I never found it.

TreadSoftlyOnMyDreams Tue 14-Jul-15 16:58:51

Why would you want to pay somebody else to look after your sick children at home for you?

Because you might lose your job over it, but also because you can pick and choose which illnesses merit taking time off work, and which [partic with older children] simply merit some Calpol and cbeebies on the sofa, or observing the 48 hr post vomiting rule. Yes it would be nice to be able to be at home to cosset every childhood sniffle but not everyone has that luxury.

futureme Tue 14-Jul-15 17:01:39

Do you want to be a sahm? Can you make it work financially?

We dont have a support network and it was a factor in me being sahm. It has really eased the stress levels and it has been good to have been there for the kids.

JadedAngel Tue 14-Jul-15 17:04:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

timeforacheckup Tue 14-Jul-15 17:06:08

jadedangel I think you're right things will get easier as they get older, I just need to ride it out.
DH earns enough at the moment for me to be a SAHM but it's not guaranteed to last long term.
beanabonce What Treadsoftly said.

timeforacheckup Tue 14-Jul-15 17:08:27

I'm worried about the long term implications of being a SAHM. Sometimes it seems like the best idea in the world, sometimes the worst!
I couldn't earn anywhere near what dh earns even if I went fulltime.

whereismagic Tue 14-Jul-15 17:09:27

How do you know you'd get mad at home? Have you tried it before? Does your part time job pays enough to keep 3 kids in childcare?

DelphiniumBlue Tue 14-Jul-15 17:10:09

Hang on, your family can't afford for self employed DH to lose a days pay, but can afford for you not to work at all? How does that work?

I think DH is going to have to be the one to take time off sometimes, how is it fair that that the whole burden falls on you? He is a parent, time off to look after sick kids goes with the territory. And if he is self-employed, could he not just rearrange his hours, work longer the day the next day or at the weekend?
Are you able to work different hours or days, or from home if you need to?
I don't see why you should have to give up work completely, with all the long term implications that has on your future earnings, in order to protect his earning capacity.

Duckdeamon Tue 14-Jul-15 17:14:00

If your employment could be at risk your DH should be doing his share of parenting when DC are ill, unpaid days off or not. It will be far better financial sense for him to do this than you lose your job. Being self employed means there is financial risk if he's ill.

3 DC and a job with no local support could be hard.

If you did become a SAHm would you have confidence that your DH would be properly supportive (eg equal say about money) and support you if you later wished to return to work?

BellaVida Tue 14-Jul-15 17:22:40

I would stick it out until mat leave with DC3, take a year and think about it. It sounds like you would have one in school then and one entitled to free 15hrs at nursery. You may think very differently then.

answersonapostcardplease Tue 14-Jul-15 17:27:20

Im not sure it does get easier with sickness after preschool years. I have 4 and over the winter sickness felt never ending, 3 of them are school age. Deoending on whats wrong with teen could leave her at home alone and check in I guess.

Duckdeamon Tue 14-Jul-15 17:33:30

I think the problem is that you are shouldering much more of the responsibility, which could continue for a long time especially if you have more DC and a better solution would be for your DH to do more on that front.

If he is presenting you ceasing work as the obvious solution to the challenges of having 2 and hopefully 3 DC rather than being open to all solutions, be worried!

BathtimeFunkster Tue 14-Jul-15 17:36:06

Hang on, your family can't afford for self employed DH to lose a days pay, but can afford for you not to work at all? How does that work?


It makes no sense for you to take endless time off and puss your boss off when he is a his own boss.

timeforacheckup Tue 14-Jul-15 17:37:54

Dh is very supportive and does try to help as much as he can. He would fully support me whatever I decide.
I think sticking it out until I have dc3 and then reassessing is probably best.

JadedAngel Tue 14-Jul-15 17:37:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Duckdeamon Tue 14-Jul-15 17:39:43

But he isn't helping as much as he could, is he? He could take time off!

Duckdeamon Tue 14-Jul-15 17:40:26

Short term financial sense perhaps, but not long term.

timeforacheckup Tue 14-Jul-15 17:49:26

Dh is working himself into the ground trying to provide a financially secure future for us. He helps when he can but the last thing he needs is to be told he's not doing enough when he's giving everything he's got and more.

TendonQueen Tue 14-Jul-15 18:11:13

Your job provides the security for the family even if your income is lower. Wouldn't it be worth taking the financial hit temporarily of your DH doing at least some of the sick days, compared with the permanent loss of your income (and opportunities for career building) to your household?

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