To be annoyed at the situation we've ended up in?(151 Posts)
I should have seen this coming but genuinely didn't.
We have 3 chn born in the last 5 years. I was taken on part time approx a year before our first was born and have remained so since whilst my husband has worked full time. This was the only way we'd have been able to afford to live with childcare fees etc and as I was already part time (and breastfeeding etc) it made sense to stay so.
Our jobs have always been on a par financially and responsibility wise so any days off for appts/sickness etc have been shared between us.
However, my DH is now applying for the next step up in his job and I'm really pissed off at the idea of it.
It's going to mean my job, again, will have to take a back seat. (I've been trying to return full time as being part time in or profession = no career progression) his promotion will mean he'll be home later and less so I'll have to do more at home. It'll also mean that I'll have to take on all the sick days, appts etc
I should've seen this coming when I stayed part time for the kids but I'm still really irked at the fact he can get moving in his career and I'm frozen, or actually going backwards in the sense that I'll have to focus more on the family again than trying to push ahead and make up for lost time. I'm not expecting a solution just ranting at my stupidity at a standard situation for lots of parents I'm sure
Of he gets the promotion and is earning more will that enable you to pay for more Childcare and a
Cleaner to amble you to work more hours and progress your own career?
Have you told him how you feel? I agree if either partner is going to apply for a job that means they will be less available at home and will affect the other, they shouldn't do it without discussing it through and making plans about how home life will work.
Childcare yes but his promotion will not mean much more than that financially for a few years as he'd start at the bottom of a pay scale. It isn't just the cleaning really, tho obviously that's part of it. More the cooking, tidying up, putting kids to bed, sorting out school admin and nursery bags, all household admin etc which I do all of as I'm part time but just couldn't manage full time on my own. But his job would mean longer days and even less time home than now so less to do any of it. I think it's that his job will be more 'important' which means I can take prioritise any part of mine. He's offered not to apply for it but I don't think that's fair either.
O think these things have a way of working themselves out. Your children are still young but they won't always be so young and the older they get the more they will be able to do for themselves which will make it easier for you.
I think you are right to be sad about it affecting your own career progression but also right that it wouldn't be fair to stop your husbands career progression - unless you currently have the opportunity to progress yourself at this moment in time if you return to work full time.
FWIW - I gave up my career to provide full time care for one of our children as he has a severe disability. I feel sad for my lost career and it has been too long for me to return to it now even if I wanted to but the balance of being around my children is a far greater reward than any career could ever be for me. Obviously we are all different but I know my husband sometimes wishes that he was the sahp / carer as he misses so much due to his work hours.
^ He's offered not to apply for it but I don't think that's fair either^
Why is it not fair? He has 3 young children who deserve to have their father around more.
You're lucky to have a professional part-time position rather than have to put your DC in full-time childcare. Just enjoy your family and job without obsessing about career profession - both of you!
It might not be how you intended, but your post comes across as saying that he can't develop his career unless you can do the same at the same time. If that's the case then YABU. You are both allowed to develop your careers. the child care arrangements will fall in to place around that.
I totally see why you feel as you do. It's really hard.
It doesn't seem to make sense to stop him taking the opportunity, unless that opportunity will still be there if he waits four years. If he waits, and you go back full time, will there be a net increase in income straight away? Then after you have caught up, progression wise, can you both apply for promotions and still manage home/family life? Try and cost all the options and see what makes most sense in the short, medium and long term. Maybe you could do your progression push once the DCs are in school.
I agree, it's easy to get stuck.
It's of good points thanks, it's not that I expect things to happen at the same time I think I just thought it was 'my' turn for want of a better phrase.
I know it also sounds like we're both obsessed with progression and honestly we aren't. This opportunity that has come up is a rare one and prior to this he's shown no interest in going further. I've always wanted to go back full time as my job is such that it's frustrating and hard to do part time. At the point I went back, we'd always discussed maybe DH going part time for a few years until kids older. Which obviously isn't happening. Which is fair enough.
We do recognise how lucky we are job and family wise but I feel like I've got myself into a fairly common trap and am annoyed at myself for it. Why he gets to purely focus on his job whilst I have to have the million one other things AND my job to focus on.
Surely his career progression will eventually lead to a higher family income?
You are both making sacrifices for the children - his is time with his family and yours is career progression.
You will be able to progress when the opportunity presents itself and it is feasible to take the opportunity.
Have you looked at full time opportunities for you? Could you make it work childcare wise? If you were full time would he help out more at home? How often does he get a chance of promotion? How often do you get the chance to go full time. He has offered not to go for it so I think he is actually considering your point. We both worked full time for a year.. it was hard work and I wouldn't do it again but we gave it a go and decided it wasn't for us. Luckily I got to go part time but he still helps with the house/school admin
Seems to me that the resentment you feel now at just the thought of it will only intensify once it's happening.
If he's offered not to go for it then take that offer. Seriously. Life is lived in the day to day.
Dh and I both work full time and share the running of the house, including the thinking. Yes, we each pick up the slack for the other at times but I can't imagine sharing my life with a largely absent co-parent. Not for me. And it sounds like it's not for you either.
Although he worked longer days, I presumed he worked full-time before, and will be doing so again, but with longer days. Therefore, he still will be able to take days off to do appointments etc. Surely that hasn't changed.
Six is the magic number I think the op realises all that and that's why she's frustrated
Obviously, you nee to talk this over with him.
Are you actually in a position to go full time or otherwise progress your career right now? You say you've been looking to - are there no opportunities or is it not the right time or what? When will that change?
I think if you don't have a definite and coherent plan for your career, he may as well go for his. Would be unreasonable to stop him on some vague notion of what you may or may not do.
If you do have a plan, you'll need to work out if you can do both. Can you afford a nanny, for instance? Flexible working?
OP what do you mean you've been trying to return to work full time?
What has stopped you doing this? If it's finances / childcare and if your in the same type of job has your OH considered going PT and you FT? How much discussion have you had with your OH around the implications of him not applying?
I would be annoyed if it was just assumed that I would be staying at home, however working hours and conditions both in and outside the home were always something discussed as our family evolved.
My example is that I took a long career break and as a consequence since returning to work I have not reached the same promotion level as I would have. However I would not trade that for the time and freedom I enjoyed with my children. My DH had the opportunity of working away for much larger financial reward but I wanted him home, my father worked away, we missed him and mother was sometimes lonely and I did not want that life.
This would not suit others and they may have chose differently. My point is that all decisions should be discussed, considered and where necessary a compromise reached otherwise resentment sets in if we feel our partner is being selfish.
Should also say that 3 kids in 5 years was always going to mean someone's career suffered. You must have known that. I guess the issue is just who's.
I don't think accepting a promotion is making any sacrifice, it's the staying at home that is the sacrifice.
I think you should continue as planned, op. Can you look into hiring a nanny to come to your house? We did that when we had 2 preschoolers as it was cheaper as well as being great for the dcs to be at home with their comforts.
Our nanny has no problem still coming if they have colds, although i don't ask her to cover stomach bugs. She can also do the nursery drop offs, get provisions if we ask her etc.
I think it's sad you resent your husband a rare opportunity. Marriage is a partnership. My DH left the house at 6.46 and got home after 9 when the children were small. I have worked full time since they were 6 and 9 and have always run the children and home. Took them to school in the mornings, au-pair until 6. Did reading, homework, cooking, getting ready for tomorrow, admin etc.
DC are 22 and 18 now. I still do all the home stuff and might be promoted.
Have a little look at your glass op and try to make it half full. Lovely children, part-time job motivated husband. Have a little think about lives where the dh has mh problems and struggles to hold down jobs and the dw struggles along with tax credits and a bit of cleaning or care work.
But the op clearly isn't happy with a little part time job.
Your children are still young, you will have more time when they get a little older, with all due respect, you did have 3 children in 5 years so you must have known your career was going to be put on the back burner for a while.
The very real and serious problem with one of a partnership pursuing career development at the expense of the other needing to stay part time is how vulnerable it makes the part timer. There is only so long you can stay part-time, in many jobs, without it affecting long-term prospects of being attractive as a full timer with promotional prospects.
I had that situation in my first marriage, due to his long commute, and sadly he got cancer and then died. Building my hours up to full time so I could support our DC was bloody hard at short notice. Likewise, I've had friends who 'compromised' and stayed part-time for their DH's career, who then get divorced and struggle to provide for themselves.
If you're actively going after full-time then it isn't a good time for him to chase promotion. If he does, he needs to understand that he can only do so if he finds a way to continue to pull his weight: that usually involves spending more money in the short term, as well as going without much leisure time and limited sleep!
OP I could have written your post some years ago. My DH took a new job when the DCs were young which meant longer hours and I picked up the slack 'for the sake of the family'. As a result my career stalled and has never really recovered even though the DCs are teens now and I am working more or less full time.
And 10+ years I still resent DH and his career. I resent the fact that running the family is and always has been down to me because of his job. I resent the fact that if we had done things differently my career would have progressed and I would be earning more than he is now. So think very carefully before going down this route. The resentment has nearly cost us our marriage at times.
Being blunt, and intended kindly rather than rudely, you made a choice to have three children. Having had them, they needed care, and you made a choice that that would primarily come from you.
Now, complaining about it is futile. Far better to accept that those were the choices and really, are you unhappy with them?
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