To stay unemployed?(25 Posts)
Need some objective advice, please!
I just finished a PhD, which I'm immensely proud of. What I'm realising now is that I live in an area where I'll have trouble getting a position in my field, and I am not native to the UK, so I don't have much work experience here...I was home with dcs when we first moved here, then I spent 7 years at uni.(Masters and PhD). I'm also in my 40's, and most of my work experience was done in my 20's/early 30's when I was living in my home country.
DH has been working away during the last few months of my degree, and when he comes back, his new job will require a fair amount of travel, so I'll continue to be the primary caregiver when he's back. One DC starts secondary school in September. His school doesn't offer after school care, and we don't live within walking distance, so it will be a challenge if I were to get a job longer than school hours; we have great friends, but no family in the immediate area. Younger DC has 2 years left of primary, where there is after school provision.
Although I feel like I should use the qualifications I spent so long working on, I feel like there are too many barriers to me trying to go back to work full time. We won't starve on one income, but it doesn't leave us much room for extras (which isn't really a huge issue...we have everything we need).
I don't mind being at home...i have a close circle of friends who are either SAHP or part time workers, so I'm not all on my own, and I am glad I can attend all the dcs school assemblies/plays, etc.
Am I making excuses? I know that there are plenty of people who have to deal with similar issues when they work full time, I guess I'm just not seeing how to manage them without a lot of effort. I'm also fairly discouraged at the job market, and the fact that I will start a new career from the bottom because of my lack of work experience here.
So, AIBU to just stay unemployed?
What did you study? Can you work from home in that sector? Offer yourself as a freelancer?
Sadly, no. My field was purely out of interest (library related), so it was definitely out of interest rather than for career advancement...the only real shot I'd have is working in academia, but with my lack of experience and the lack of universities in my area, the prospects aren't great.
What about tutoring in your subject area? Obviously your PHD will be pretty specific but if it's part of a broader subject area you could tutor in that?
That's something I've thought of Sugar, so I'm glad you mentioned it...I keep discounting it because it might mean evenings and weekends, but it would leave my days free, which is a bonus.
It think you should give thought to what you want in your future. If you choose to stay at home for another 5 years your PHD will be less current and you'll be late forties/early 50s still with no recent work experience. On the up side, you won't have childcare so will be freer to look for full time jobs .
Yanbu but think carefully about where you want to be in the future.
How about looking for a job in a school or college library? It wouldn't be a great wage but you would probably be snapped up pretty quickly with the added bonus of being around before and after school as well as having the holidays with your children?
MrsBobDylan...thank you. That's more along the lines of the advice I was after...my main worry is years from now, when all of my qualifications 'expire'. I have looked into a number of career opportunities, so job suggestions are just preaching to the choir, I suppose...i just need to consider any downsides to carrying on waiting for the dcs to get older. The problem of DH being away so much does add another difficulty...it means that evening and weekend work wouldn't be feasible while the DC are still a bit too young to be on their own.
Working in a school is appealing (I was a teacher), however, my research focused on school libraries specifically, and it's very difficult for me to go into that situation in this country knowing what I know. Many school libraries don't recognise their librarians as professionals, and though it would be a logical place to start, I wouldn't be happy working as an admin (which is pretty much what school library work is to the untrained headteacher). I don't mind advocating for school libraries from outside, but it doesn't really work when you're actually working in them (I do have minimal school library experience...thats what got me interested in my field.)
Gah! I guess I already knew the answer...I'm just tired of feeling pressured to take anything, just to make sure I'm using my qualifications.
YABU just because you have a PHD in a certain subject doesn't mean you have to work in that area. It's not a "waste" and your qualification will be recognised.
My brother and my best friend both did science based Doctorates and then decided they didn't want to work in science ever again! BF is a now a data analyst and DB is applying to work with HMRC.
After-school care provided by a secondary school is surely a rarity. But there's maybe some after-school clubs your DS can go to? I don't see what the school not being within walking distance has to do with anything. Few secondary schools are within walking distance, and many children will take public transport to and from school. Are you assuming you would need to pick him up from school? A child at secondary school might find that a bit embarrassing. If you want to go back to work, I think you should act sooner rather than later.
College or university guest lecturing or supply teaching work in your feild sounds like it would be perfect for you. It's just enough to keep you going in terms of keeping yourself up to date and still gives you flexible working for DCs as well as giving you a few extra pennies for treats etc!
It sounds like you don't really want to work, and if you can manage financially, then that's absolutely fine. But if I'm wrong, then I think you need to rethink your approach. You need to be more open to trying something that isn't perfect immediately, as once you start working, other opportunities should be more forthcoming. Everyone has to start somewhere, no matter what their age. Admin skills as a librarian might be transferable to something more intellectually stimulating for example. Or if you are only really considering getting a job so you have something to fill your time with - perhaps you can study something else with a clearer subsequent career path?
If I've understood correctly you studied your chosen topic pretty much for fun and not because you fully intended to persue that field as a career.
My field was purely out of interest (library related), so it was definitely out of interest rather than for career advancement
There's nothing wrong with studying for studying's sake but I think that saying that you won't work because you can't find a job which matches your qualifications is a bit of a weak excuse.
I don't think it's ever a great idea to be out of the job market for years on end. Once kids are at secondary school they don't really need anyone to look after them for an hour or so after school, although I appreciate school holidays are more of a challenge.
YABU I think you are making excuses
You will have one child at secondary school, so they will surely have a key and be fine for a bit after school. The other child has care available.
You should probably at least work part time? PT lecturer maybe? Or something completely different?
Why does a secondary pupil need after school care? And surely they will get the bus or cycle.
This really is just an excuse which makes it sound like you are making excuses in general.
Also, the key thing is to think about what you want to be doing in ten years.
Given rising pension age you are likely to be 70 until you can retire, so thirty-one twenty five years time. Do you never want to work again?
In ten years there will be no childcare consideration so if you start in a more junior role now then work your way up to a more senior role as childcare becomes less of an issue
YANBU, but you need to be honest with yourself about your reasons. What do you want your life to look like in 5/10/15 years ito work/what you do day to day?
Apart from anything else, you'd be giving back something if you went to work, after you've spent all that time getting your qualifications and being a student. Looking across all of society, it always seems a shame when people are lengthily and expensively educated and then can't give anything back.
Start a business.
Sounds flippant but you've got an intense passion for something (who else would do a PhD for the "joy" of it), you now have very specialised skill set, you've got time and you've got a generation of spenders who grew up with libraries, but are finding more and more libraries closing.
There is an opportunity in there!
What does your DH think?
YANBU to consider not using your PhD for the time being, but is your DH happy with the arrangement?
It does sound like excuses, every parent I know with secondary aged children work full time.
There are many opportunities for them at secondary as optional extras, it's worth the extra income for that much less helping your DH with the financial burden and gaining experience.
You seem to want the prefect job with few hours handed to you, life doesn't work that way.
I'm assuming (perhaps wrongly) that some of your knowledge will be in archive management. If any of this is to do with databases or electronic files, even if you're not an IT specialist, I'd have thought these were very useful skills that could be needed by many companies.
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