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AIBU to be fed up of being told I 'only work part-time' because I work compressed hours.

(68 Posts)
KitKat1985 Sun 13-Mar-16 17:00:58

I probably am being unreasonable but it's been one of those weeks so I guess I just need to vent a bit. I work as a nurse in the NHS. I work full-time hours but I have a flexible working agreement with so as that I work them in a compressed way (so I work three 13 and a half hour shifts a week). It's a busy and stressful ward and the long shifts are a killer, but I do it because I need a full-time wage coming in but we can only afford for DD to go to nursery 2 days a week (my third day at work that I do is always at the weekend when DH is off so we don't need paid childcare for this day). My work days are a 5.30am start and I don't get home until nearly 10pm (if I get out on time!) and I often work through my breaks (unpaid). It also obviously means there are three whole days a week that I don't get to see DD at all, which does upset me sometimes (I always think she's wondering where Mummy has gone today - she's only 18 months). The ward I work in a lot of people work 5 shorter shifts a week, or do a lot of extra shifts, so I get a lot of comments that I only work part-time as I 'only' work 3 days a week when most staff are in 5 or more days a week. My manager has even told me it's unlikely I will be accepted for a recent promotion opportunity due to my current working hours. On top of this I feel I am expected to do 90% of the work around the house because I 'only work 3 days a week' and family and friends always expect me to able to do various things for the same reason, as since I only work 3 days a week I must always be free to attend x, y or z. Yes I know it's nice to have 4 days off a week (and I know I'm lucky as I know many don't have this opportunity) but I guess I resent the assumption that working compressed hours is somehow the 'easy' option. AIBU?

VimFuego101 Sun 13-Mar-16 17:03:13

No advice, but you must be shattered. I would need at least one day of resting to get over working shifts like that - no housework, just sleeping late and vegging on the sofa. Why isn't your partner pulling their weight in terms of housework?

noddingoff Sun 13-Mar-16 17:04:45

YANBU. 4O hrs/wk is a full time job

cheminotte Sun 13-Mar-16 17:08:54

Blimey, I'm surprised that's even legal to be honest. Surely you are exhausted and need the following day to recover. People are often jealous of different arrangements. Try not to take it personally.

ctjoy103 Sun 13-Mar-16 17:10:42

Yanbu, those are pretty shattering hours! You are working a full week like everyone else.

KitKat1985 Sun 13-Mar-16 17:16:58

To be fair to DH, he has a 9-5 Monday to Friday job but has an hour and a half commute each way, so he leaves for work at 7.30am and doesn't get home until 6.30pm, so I don't really expect him to do housework when he gets home. He has DD for one whole day at the weekend on his own and seems to struggle to get anything else done on that day. On the one day at the weekend we all have off together we tend to like to do things as a family, so not much housework gets done then either. That's how I end up doing most of it on my other days off.

It doesn't help I guess that DD has never been the world's best sleeper and still wakes up most nights, and then likes to wake up about 6.30am each day (which is a nightmare if I get out of work late the previous day), so that doesn't help with the permanent tiredness.

SueTrinder Sun 13-Mar-16 17:18:12

I think any woman who has a work life balance arrangement gets this. I work 4 days a week. Am going for a promotion, spoke to the recruiting manager (who i have worked with for the last 2 years) and he said 'you work 60% don't you?'. Grrr. At least he had the decency to then say my current hours are not a problem.

TooMuchOfEverything Sun 13-Mar-16 17:21:23

I used to be in a similar position so I feel your pain. Now my DC are school age but I'm still sitting here with DH shifts and my work diary trying to figure out how to fit it all in. Argh wine

giraffesCantReachTheirToes Sun 13-Mar-16 17:21:34

Peoples attitudes are shit! Remind them you work X hours a week!

Maybe there are some things you can do to help with house work or sleep situation? (I don't mean that in a critical way, I mean maybe some MNers have some ideas of stuff that helped)

caroldecker Sun 13-Mar-16 17:24:02

It may be the promotion requires you to be around 5 days, so they have manager cover for example.

giraffesCantReachTheirToes Sun 13-Mar-16 17:24:18

I have been called a "part-timer" as I have Fridays "off". I don't.

I work Mon-Thur 8-6. Then 2 nights a week I do tutoring from 6.30-7.30

Once every 2 weeks after work I have a clinical supervision.

Once every 3 weeks I work an extra 2 hours at main job.

And on my day "off" on Friday I have an unpaid placement in a primary school and then have much paper work/reports/meetings around that work to fit in too.

twojumpingbeans Sun 13-Mar-16 17:24:45

I have started to notice in my emails at work when I say things like 'I only work part time' and change it to 'I work part time' - why do we feel the need to say 'only'? Drives me daft!

WelshMoth Sun 13-Mar-16 17:32:29

YANBU OP. I agree with pp who said one of your home days should be spent resting as much as possible. You're doing crazy long shifts and it's a physical job.

Try to ignore what others tell you. I'm a teacher and am constantly being told how wonderful it is. So wonderful, that I'm trying to look for a different career.....

Writerwannabe83 Sun 13-Mar-16 17:34:20

Fellow nurse here who does three days a week too. I'm out my house for over 14 hours so when I do two shifts in a row I am exhausted!!

My DS goes to a CM twice a week and my third day is always at a weekend so DS is with DH. So I'm in exactly the same situation as you OP

I also feel like I should do the majority of the housework because I'm at home four days a week despite still working full time hours.

It's lovely only having to work three days a week but it means that I work very long hours, I still have to do the majority of the housework and I also have to do the majority of the childcare too.

I'm permanently tired.

KitKat1985 Sun 13-Mar-16 17:41:28

Thank you for your posts. It's nice to hear that I'm not being completely unreasonable. All I seem to hear at the moment is 'oh it must be nice to have 4 days off a week' and I don't think people realise sometimes the sacrifices that come with it. Sigh. Particularly nice to hear from someone in the same boat Writerwannabe83. Still I know I'm lucky to only have to pay childcare 2 days a week. There would literally be hardly any point me working finances-wise if I had to pay for nursery 5 days a week.

scallopsrgreat Sun 13-Mar-16 17:43:15

But why is it OK for you to do all the housework but it's OK for your partner to put his feet up when he comes in. You are out of the house longer than him. You work more hours than him (if he does 9-5 then he only doing 37.5 tops per week). You are then working on your days off with your DD and housework. When do you get to put your feet up?

So why are you doing the compressed shifts? Why not do 5 shifts like he does? Or why doesn't he compress his shifts (if he's got a 1.5 HR commute that would make more sense?)

MadameJosephine Sun 13-Mar-16 17:44:06

The cheek of it! Perhaps these people would like to try doing 6 of these long shifts in a row (which can be a regular occurrence on the wards where I have worked) and see if they still think you work 'part time'

originalusernamefail Sun 13-Mar-16 17:44:35

Same here OP, me and DH both work long days (I do 3/4 long and he does 2 long 2 short). We also work opposite shifts to avoid paying out for child care. It most certainly is a full time job! As for housework we do the minimum to avoid total squalor blush I'm dead tired when I'm at work (yay mat leave). I think it's very telling we refer to a 9 hour day as a short shift tbh.

scallopsrgreat Sun 13-Mar-16 17:45:03

Sorry x-post. Why are you having to pay for nursery? Your work is valid too in more than monetary terms, too.

Pseudo341 Sun 13-Mar-16 17:45:34

Whenever anyone says anything say "I work 40 hours per week", and keep saying it, and keep saying it, and keep saying it. Hopefully some of them will eventually STFU.

KitKat1985 Sun 13-Mar-16 17:48:11

Scallops there isn't really an option for DH to work compressed hours. It's an office based job where the building gets locked up after 5pm.

TheCrumpettyTree Sun 13-Mar-16 17:50:07

YANBU. I'm a nurse too and have done long shifts for years, most nurses I know do. It does mean I can squeeze more hours in over the days. I do two a week which is 24 hours.

Why would you not be accepted for promotion because of your hours? It shouldn't make any difference. You can apply as much as anyone else, don't t let it put you off.

DolorestheNewt Sun 13-Mar-16 17:50:36

No, you're not being unreasonable. I work 32 hours a week over four shifts, and I get a bit snarky about the part-time thing. Back in the day when I worked Monday-Friday in an office, I worked 9.30-5.30 with an hour off for lunch=35 hours. So calling 32 hours part-time seems a real misrepresentation.
Having said which, for myself, I am always quick to acknowledge that a 4*8/7 working week makes a massive, massive difference. Your working hours sound absolutely murderous, so you make me feel quite ashamed!

PutTheBathOnPlease Sun 13-Mar-16 17:55:16

I work 26 hrs a week in a job and at least 10 doing housework and childcare - I try to avoid saying "I work part time" as I would rather say "I am paid part time"! smile

AdoraBell Sun 13-Mar-16 18:02:30

YANBU, but people can be a bit dim sometimes.

I would point out the number of hours you work and ask how it compares to theirs. As for DH, he lives there too so he can contribute to keeping his environment clean and making sure everyone is fed.

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