AIBU to go back to work and leave daughter.(27 Posts)
I am a mum to 1 daughter aged 3, she was born with mutiple birth defects leading to life limiting complications.
She only got out of hospital just before her 2nd birthday and I am now trained in her cares.
I have never really left her apart from nipping to get clothes from home, running to shop for food.
Her health is still up and down and unfortuntly things will not get any better any time soon.
I love her to moon and back, she is my entire existance but I feel completely suffocated and struggling with the loss of identity.
She will start school nursery in september and I am considering going back to work.
Now the issue is she still sends a great deal of time in and out of hospital ( at least a week out of every month ).
Alot of this time she is stable and quite well and its just protocol.
I obviously could not find job that lloeed me to have this much time off.
I talk to alot of parents who have children with extra needs and all agree to dedicate their time to them.
Going back to work would mean the time she is on ward I would still need to go to work.
Would be part time hours so would be a good few hours a day.
She is very used to the hospital and knows everyone very well and the nurses do to.
I did ask a support group but they all agreed that they would never leave a child in hospital and that I should want to spend as much time as possible with her.
I feel very guilty for feeling the way I do.
What an awful situation. Don't be too harsh on yourself. What about doing voluntary work, which might be a bit more flexible around hospital admissions etc?
Work can be very good for your mental, emotional, and social health.
I would encourage you to find a little something that works for you.
I was going to suggest voluntary work as well. That could be a way of finding a purpose, gaining/keeping skills as well as having flexibility.
What kind of work would you like to do? Maybe someone can come up with some ideas?
You shouldn't feel guilty for wanting something for you though. Coping with a child with health issues is exhausting and isolating.
I suppose you always worry how you will perceived.
I have tried very hard to be a good mum, and I am sure I am one.
Before I had her, I had a home, car , job and partner.
I ended up having to relocate back to england losing my home and becoming homeless for 2 years, partner left when she was 2 weeks old and obviously had to quit my job and go on to benefits.
This was never meant to be how things turned out but they did and I would not change her for the world.
I just want some time I used to have.
Suppose I am also worried about other parents on the ward which sounds stupid but noticing she has not got her mum there and feeling sorry for her
I did think about volunteering to but even that I feel guilty on them as if I have said I will be there and then can not be, I do not want to let them down either.
You would just need to be honest with the charity about the situation with your daughter. You could volunteer somewhere first, and see how things work out while she is in hospital etc before moving in to paid employment. If you've never left her before then you need to know how your daughter will actually manage on her own at hospital before you can commit to paid work.
I hope it works out for you both.
I agree with Minnow.
Just be honest about what you are able to do and give it a go for a specified time period and then reassess.
Then if it's working then you could look at paid work
MMmm, tough break. You sound totally devoted to her but aI completely understand the want to have something. Else in your life. Does it matter what job you do? If you are not particularly trained in something specific what about just a casual job in a shop or something. Give you a chance to be a part of something else but woudl have to be a big enough place that they woeful be flexible with your hours. Some employers are better than others of course....
Yes shop work was what I was looking for we have the biggest sainsbury in england opposite our door and always looking for staff so would be ideal as not far to go haha.
Have you thought about volunteering in the hospital?
I know they are all different, but the hospital I take DD too has volunteers in the cafe, taking round tea trolleys, giving directions, popping in to see if patients who don't have vistitors need anything from the shop etc.
No defiantly not ha I am that mum that everyone knows from consultants to cleaners.
We are at the point where even doctors seem to have nicknames for me haha.
So would like it to be somewhere other than there.
Thankyou for the reassurance, I am going to look in to voluntering and also talk to the ward manager about the prospects of getting a paid job.
Thankyou for being understandind.
Don't bother with Sainsburys, I used to work there, their sickness and holiday policies are ridiculous.
Good luck with you search.
Maybe a zero hours contract suit you? A few mums at my work requested to be zero hours, and it works quite nicely for them.
Oh gosh, I would have complete sympathy for you going back to work. As an outsider I would not judge you a single bit, I think you're already a huge hero for everything you do for your DD.
I know it's hard not to worry about people's opinions but try and hold your head high and know you must take care of yourself if you are to be the best carer for DD. There will always be someone ready to judge who doesn't know the full story, whatever your life situation is, and you just can't please everyone. So put your family first and that includes keeping your own sanity.
As for how to find the right job, that's another question I guess. But if you were my friend I'd support your decision 100%.
I would go back to work in a heartbeat. Part time hours would mean that she would never be alone on the ward for long. (she would never actually be alone on the ward, those HCPs do a fantastic job and go above and beyond) You are still you and doing something for you is important and would ultimately benefit her anyway. Good luck, I hope you find something that fulfills you.
It would be lovely to think that there is a good employer out there who would accommodate your daughter's hospital admissions but it's probably unrealistic.
However a zero hours contract might work in this situation, as long as you were careful to avoid employers who think that zero is the number of hours they are obliged to offer but not the number of hours that the employee has to be available.
If DD is happy being in hosp with staff then I would do it.
I know of someone who has a ds with cerebral palsy and she works full time. I expect that DP and DGPs help out. I was shocked at first then thought yes definitely she should - why not?
At 3 she is still a bit small to explain things to. Perhaps she needs to be a bit older. But DCs accept their lives as the norm. They don't think to criticise. And the intensity of constant 1 to 1 is not necessarily the best.
Of course you should think about going back to work. Your mental well-being is essentially to both yourself and your DD.
Most parents need something else in their lives other than their children. Is there a social worker/benefits advisor at the hospital who you could speak with re finances and practicalities?
Best of luck.
If you're asking should you feel guilty about the thought of going back to work, then I would definitely answer, no. You sound like an absolutely terrific, devoted mother. Needing some you time is perfectly reasonable and I think healthy for your child if it's better for you. It doesn't really matter what other mothers in similar situations think. Mumsnet is full of people with completely opposing views, and often, in a way, both sets are right because it's how they feel.
The second thing is how it would work out for you. Zero hours might work well or you could try shop work and see how it works out. But either way, don't doubt yourself.
I used to work at a racecourse where they would text you on an as and when basis. If you could work the shift they were offering to text back, if not ignore. Sounds like the kind of "as and when" contract that would suit you?
I think getting some of your own identity back would be really healthy. Try it and see?
My friend's son was born with a very complex, rare and life-limiting syndrome. After the initial shock, she and her DH decided to lead their lives as normally as possible. Meaning she went back to work when she could and that he started school with his peers.
He's 12 now and has exceeded ALL expectations, attending mainstream school and doing well in all aspects. My friend still works in a demanding part time role and they all live their lives happily.
Oh what a situation.
I'd definitely do something. She is being well cared for. Have you thought of CAB? Very flexible, and good training where you'll gain some valuable skills. Unpaid, obviously, but they pay expenses.
I can totally see why you need some hours of normality every week, just to be yourself and have some conversations with adults about everyday subjects.
Be careful with your benefits though, zero hours contracts can be difficult for this, and also there can be limits for how many hours you can volunteer. I would get some advice first just to make sure and then head to the charity shops for a starting point. Our local charity shops are always desperately in need of volunteers to price/steam the clothing, they would, I am sure, be happy to have you for three weeks out of four, allowing for hospital admissions.
Alternatively, have you also thought of training as an adviser to families going through what you have been through. I know this means this won't take you out of the situation you are in , but you are now an expert in the system, and would be very valuable to those families just starting down the same route.
Good luck, I am sure you will find something really quickly!
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