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To be being so utterly emotional about considering being a full time working mum?

(28 Posts)
MissingDietCoke Mon 21-Nov-16 22:23:31

Long story, will try and keep it shortish.
Work in a very male dominated industry, only woman in my office for most of my career. No issues until becoming pregnant with dc1 when I was made redundant at 6m pregnant (but that's another story).
Had a few years "out of industry" working part time after her birth and subsequent birth of dc2 but never felt fulfilled, career wise. Dc2 now 14months old, returned to work in my industry 6m ago working 4 days a week. Felt very lucky that I was able to swing the day off a week thing and very happy. Until last week when I received news out of the blue that I was at risk of redundancy - three jobs are going into two. Boss has made it clear that to be considered for one of the jobs I will have to go full time - times will be tough, workload will be heavy and he couldn't have a part timer filling the role. I understand this. So now I have to decide whether I want to go for it - he's made it clear he wants me to and that I am almost certain to get one of the jobs - or if I won't consider full time then I'll be the one to go.
My dcs are 3.5 and 14months old, the eldest starts school next September. I adore my job but I can't stomach the fact that I'll never be the mum at the school gates. That my dcs will be picked up by someone else, never have tea at home during the week, can never have their mates round for tea. I had a stay at home mum who was always waiting at the school gates, always had my friends round for tea, always had time spent on me and a mum who sacrificed her career to do that. Am I a bad mum if my dcs don't get that? I've been so happy the past few months, finally felt I was getting my career back on track, and that I still got a whole day with my precious dcs. And now it's all gone to shit. I don't know why that one day meant so much to me but it did - I thought that I'd at least be there one day a week, that we could fit fun after school things in at least one day a week, that I got the best of both worlds. But now that's not an option - what would you do? And if you're a full time working mum of young dcs then how do you do it while still making sure that you're around for them? Alternative part time job not an option - I was bloody lucky to get this job, it's not a massive industry and I'm with the industry leader with the most robust hr policies and flexible working options, alternatives are just not out there.
Aibu to be feeling so torn? Should I just get a grip and accept this is the way of the world now and not many dcs have mum waiting at the school gates every night he way mine did 30 years ago? Wwyd?

SheldonCRules Mon 21-Nov-16 22:36:59

I'd take the five days. Men don't have this dilema over working, it seems a female thing.

Children get far more benefits out of a working parent compared to being collected from school.

Xmasbaby11 Mon 21-Nov-16 22:41:51

I understand your sadness. I work 3 days a week and the dc are 2 and 4. Those 2 days doing the school run mean so much to me.

There are no easy answers but with working more hours perhaps you will have more money to enjoy time off - holidays, nice days out.

I'm not sure of your working hours but on my working days I work 9 to 5 and we all eat as a family at 6pm. We then do homework and put them to bed at 8 - so even on work days I have 2 hours with them which is not too bad.

wysiwyg16 Mon 21-Nov-16 22:42:04

I'd take the five days but keep an eye on the door/market. You might be able to leverage yourself into a stronger position in a few years like leaving at 3pm once/twice a week then working from home in the evening.

However, I'd also be questioning a long term future with a company trying to squeeze three persons work into two staff and the stress that's likely to bring.

Sunflowersmiling Mon 21-Nov-16 22:42:26

Hi. Im a single mum working full time, not by choice I should add! :-) but it's not worked out too bad. I still bake fairy cakes, have play dates and cover kitchen in glue and glitter during random craft sessions with ds.

Ok so I just wanted to say it's ok whichever way you decide your little ones know you love them...schools have afterschool clubs which my DS meets and mingle's with lots other children and when I pick him up he doesn't want to leave it's such good fun.
Is there any way you could go for full time but leave earlier on the friday...Make hours up one evening? Or someone else that could help you with childcare?

Personally I would probably go for the job, if it's not working you can keep looking for other jobs elsewhere. But then I have to earn to pay mortgage and all bills so not applying and risk redundancy would be a major factor in decision making.

Play dates can be at weekends, after 5 on a Friday etc. I know lots mums that work full time and still fit in lots of fun.

Best of luck :-)

fiorentina Mon 21-Nov-16 22:42:35

It's hard. A nanny can give you some of the things you think your DC will miss out on, play dates at home, after school activities etc. I had to go back full time and wish I hadn't had to but it's been fine. Can you go full time and then look for another role?

jeaux90 Mon 21-Nov-16 22:45:04

I am a single mum. I work full time in a large company, lots of travel and long hours. I have a live in nanny since my daughter was 3 months old. Don't sweat it. My daughter is 7 and she doesn't really consider that it should be any different! She loves it when I do get the chance to do the school run but it's rare. But I do make sure I am there for absolutely every performance, benchmark, occasion that happens. I am setting a great example for her is the way I see it (I actually have no choice but that's the way I have to spin it) xxx (ps if you can swing a work from home day here and there it helps)

MrsHam13 Mon 21-Nov-16 22:45:58

I'd start looking for another job. I gave up my four day job to become a sahm. I'm totally demented now and just got a part time job. I feel the same as you and I'm not willing, personally, to sacrifice being able to pick the kids up a couple of days a week etc etc.

It sounds like not only would you be doing an extra day, your actual work loads going to increase by the amount of half the workload of the job that's going? Seems a pretty shit deal.

Munstermonchgirl Mon 21-Nov-16 22:46:29

there is no reason why your children should miss out on play dates. A childminder can take them or you can arrange for them to go home with friends after school, and reciprocate when you're taking some leave, or at weekends. If they go to after school club for childcare they'll be with friends anyway.
I think the days of mums waiting at the school gate every day are in the past, mainly. And frankly it's over rated. I would organise your annual leave so your sometimes able to meet them because once in a while is nice but you really do not need to do it every day.

Manumission Mon 21-Nov-16 22:47:15

Are you at a career stage where you could consider consulting or self employment?

JCleRoux Mon 21-Nov-16 22:51:11

Could you not negotiate working from one the one day? That way you will at least still do the school pick ups and drop offs.

I work full time as well and I travel about four or five times a year for work. I couldn't imagine it any other way and I love what I do. I get that you feel like you would be missing out on things but kids generally don't mind and they just get on with whatever makes you happy.

Good luck and try to not over think it.

thatstoast Mon 21-Nov-16 22:51:56

I would apply and see if you get it. But it sounds like you've already experienced discrimination for having children so you understand that you might not get the job. Especially if you only have 6 months service so you're not entitled to any redundancy pay.

Egoanono Mon 21-Nov-16 22:56:13

For me it was a really hard choice but I went with my gut feeling - time with children first. We aren't rich and have had to cut back but I will always be able to look back on lovely memories with my little ones.

MrsMargoLeadbetter Mon 21-Nov-16 23:00:31

I'd try the 5 days and see how it goes. You can then decide if it works. As others have said 3 jobs into 2 ppl sounds difficult.

It is a shame that the industry leader in your sector, isn't doing more to support the female minority. Do they have any 'female talent' projects etc?

My DS enjoys his After School Club as he gets to play football etc. Which he wouldn't if he was at home with my and his sister who is 5 years younger than him.

risinghighinapril Mon 21-Nov-16 23:00:45

I work full time.

As long as you're sorted for drop offs and pick ups then you're fine.

I don't get the guilt thing. I give my DC a great standard of living along with DH and they're well rounded, independent kids. Working has never had a detrimental effect on them.

My own mother worked full time after I was born in the 80s and most of my friend's mothers gave up work and it's resonated with me that You are entitled to have a life outside your children. You have annual leave that you can use to have their friends over if you're off for a day. They can come over at the weekends.

Do not feel guilty please!!!

Mondegreens Mon 21-Nov-16 23:01:15

I wouldn't think twice about taking the ft job. I'm never the mother at the school gates, DS eats dinner at his childminder' several days a week, and he doesn't have friends over during the week, and none of its has cost me a single pang. He's happy and loved and sociable, and it does him no harm at all to grasp that my work is important to me, just as DH's is.

MissingDietCoke Mon 21-Nov-16 23:08:21

Thank you to all that have posted, and to the many saying that they manage it, and what's more enjoy it and the dcs thrive as well. I know I am over thinking it. I think it's because I'm leaning towards the full time and wrestling with myself at the same time. My career has always been very important to me and a source of pride rather than a means to an end, but of course my dcs are enormously important too.

And of course to those that have said that I can always look try it and see if it fits then you're right, I can always look for something else or some more flexibility down the line if not.

JellyWitch Mon 21-Nov-16 23:11:32

Can your husband work flexibly or part time so that he can do some school runs? It doesn't have to be just a mum thing. M

But as others have said, so long as you've got the childcare in place then go for the job.

DonaldStott Mon 21-Nov-16 23:12:31

I used to work in a job where I was able to drop off and pick up dd. Good wages, but no security.

I now have a new job. Better prospects, good future. Will be there until I retire, but it is in the next town and I cannot drop off or pick up. Ever. Dd is very shy and doesn't like after school club. Dgp's pick her up Mon to wed. Thurs and fri are always cobbled together. It is a bit stressful. I can't afford to drop my hrs, but after I have been there for 6 months, I can apply for flexible working, so I am going to work longer days mon to wed and do pick ups thurs/fri. I think its a good compromise, but I hate the fact I cannot do pick ups anymore.

Is there any way you could do something like this?

Riderontheswarm Mon 21-Nov-16 23:12:35

Other people can tell you what they did but you need to work out what you and your DD can live happily with.

Mintychoc1 Mon 21-Nov-16 23:16:16

I wouldn't work full time. My kids are a few years older than yours and the time goes so fast.

BerylStreep Mon 21-Nov-16 23:17:02

How much is your income needed for the household.

How easy is it to get an alternative part-time job?

FWIW I have worked part-time (currently 32 hours a week, so not that part-time) since having DC, and I really am not sure how I would have managed working full-time, although I suppose a lot depends on how much family or other support you have.

Ginseng1 Mon 21-Nov-16 23:19:21

I think it's shit they forcing you into this position. I had a situation 4-5 years ago I was on 3 day week & I was advised by my boss to go back full time as redundancies comming up & if part time I'd be prime target. Years later I am still here (part time) & boss long since made redundant. If they value you that much they might still prefer you 4 day.

user1477282676 Mon 21-Nov-16 23:26:46

Children get far more benefits out of a working parent compared to being collected from school Sheldon...pardon my irritation but that's utter shit.

It's no more true than saying "Children get far more benefits out of a stay at home parent" so please don't tout your shite here as though it were fact.

OP....my DD has loads of mates who have parents in full time work and they're absolutely fine. Also as they get older, there will be plenty of playdates for them. Loads...they will be invited just as kid whose parents don't work will be invited.

Your memories of your Mum picking you up are lovely...but that was your childhood...your DC will have their own wonderful memories.

Ruralretreating Mon 21-Nov-16 23:27:15

YANBU to feel emotional. My DCs are 4.5 and 1. I work 3 days a week and just turned down a promotion I really wanted because it would have meant full-time or at best 5 days work in 4. It was a hard decision but I wanted time with the DCs for various reasons.

Is there another flexible working pattern that might be an option such as compressed hours, time working from home? I know people who do one day off a fortnight, or three full days plus two school hours days from home for example. They sound keen to keep you, can you push your boss/HR to think further about these other options?

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