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To think I may never work again?

(55 Posts)
GreenHairDontCare Mon 08-May-17 08:37:56

I've worked all my life until a few years ago when I had a huge, awful breakdown. My MH is now the best it's been for ages but I still struggle, there are days I can't bear to leave the house and my immune system is on the floor so I get every bug going.

I'm in a great routine now of school runs, housework, plenty of time to myself and very little stress. I'm fairly sure that that's key to my continuing recovery.

Dh earns very decent money and I have no qualifications, so any job would be a minimum wage gig. I did have a brief stint as a sales manager before my crash, but as it turns out I got that job bullshitted my way into it while hypomanic and it wasn't sustainable. I have three DC and the thought of going back to the merry go round of holiday childcare and before and after school clubs leaves me absolutely gibbering. We wouldn't see any financial gain when you take everything into account. I'm also in a bit of a benefits trap in that if I get a job I'd obviously lose ESA, and then if it doesn't work out I'd have to go through the whole awful process of reapplying.

No one wants me to work, dh and the kids are very happy to have me at home (they're very happy to have me alive, frankly) but I do get the fear and guilt sometimes over being a drain on everyone. I was reading a thread earlier about a SAHM with a teenager and she got absolutely slated, and I worry that people think I'm just a lazy cunt who leeches off dh.

Should I just make peace with the fact this is how it is? Is anyone else in a similar situation and knows what I'm babbling on about?

BarbarianMum Mon 08-May-17 08:40:59

I think you could make peace with the fact that now is not the right time for you to find a job without closing the door on that possibility forever. Not because you're a "drain" on your family, more because one day you may want to work- or need to.

mousymary Mon 08-May-17 08:41:11

Don't worry, OP.

I have felt down when reading the SAHM bashing threads. Dh gets really mad because I mope around and say that I'm a bad influence on the dcs/a drain/a - what was it? "Unemployed prostitute" was someone's delightful term.

Do what works for you and your family. If you want to ease yourself back into a bit of work in time that's all good, but all the faff of holiday childcare and making yourself ill isn't worth it if you can afford to stay at home.

Writerwannabe83 Mon 08-May-17 08:42:23

Have you thought about doing a job where you work alone and in your own pace?

My mom earns quite a nice amount of money st times by being a Betterware / Avon catalogue worker so she gets to deliver/collect the catalogues in her own time, she isn't on any horrible merry-go-round and she finds getting outside and walking around in the fresh air is really good for her. She also delivers phone books and the Yelllow Pages for the same reasons.

You imply your children are all school age so this kind of job would mean you could do the work whilst they're at home and then you can still be at home for them and no childcare to worry about.

It's not for everyone but I just thought I'd suggest it.

I'm glad you are feeling well flowers

MrsRaymondReddington Mon 08-May-17 08:42:23

I wouldn't worry about what others think or what you've seen on here. If you're in a good place now and your DH and kids don't want you to go back to work, then what else do you need to persuade you? I'm a SAHM and don't intend to go back to work, obviously completely different circumstances to you, but you need to do what keeps you and your family sane and happy.

CazY777 Mon 08-May-17 08:42:29

That other thread is a totally different situation. You must do what's best for your family and your health so if that's staying at home then do that

GreenHairDontCare Mon 08-May-17 08:47:05

Thank you for the kind words. I'm just having a bit of a wobble today I think.

Topseyt Mon 08-May-17 08:49:03

I don't think you are a lazy cunt. You are doing what is right for you and your family. Sod what anyone else thinks. It really isn't any of their business.

I was a SAHM for 15 years. It took until my youngest (who is now 14), was of secondary school age for me to be free of the shackles of childcare, which would have wiped out my earning capacity anyway.

You are happy, your mental health is improving and your family are happy, so ignore everyone else.

I know of other SAHMs to teenagers. There can be many reasons for it. Not just the children.

RedHelenB Mon 08-May-17 08:49:43

Time will come when your children are maybe older when you may feel it beneficial to have some sort of a job.

Laiste Mon 08-May-17 08:50:28

What's the other thread?

OP no matter what you do there will always be people who think badly of it. Some random somewhere will say what they are doing is right and what others do is wrong. Then you have the vast majority rest who realise that it's none of their business to care and won't give a shit grin

For what it's worth i'm in the same boat a bit. Not as bad a mental health situation but hit the rocks a bit a few years ago and gave up work for a short break. During break fell for DD4 (planned, but long term TTC with fading chance of success so unexpected) and have been out of work now for 5 years. DH doesn't want me to go back. I don't really want to go back. We're about to get a mortgage - not 'living on benefits', no one's beeswax but our own IMO.

Mulberry72 Mon 08-May-17 08:52:14


I finished work late 2014, due to illness/disability and have never been back due to my condition remaining largely uncontrolled by medication.

I am now a SAHM with 1 DS, DH earns a very good salary and I'm entitled to a very modest amount of benefit. We have a fortnightly cleaner & gardener as I'm unable to manage either just now.

As a PP said, I consider myself unable to work at present, if my condition can be controlled then I'm more than happy to go back to work, not full time but certainly part time.

Take each day as it comes, I've realised that, for me, this is the best attitude and bugger what anyone else thinks!

elephantscansing Mon 08-May-17 08:52:15

I think you could make peace with the fact that now is not the right time for you to find a job without closing the door on that possibility forever.

This ^

No need to write yourself off forever. That's very negative and may well lead to a self-fulfilling prophecy.

The dc won't be kids for ever. When they've grown up and you have no school runs, etc., then you may feel differently.

Or there are loads of things you could do now during school hours to not be a burden on society - there are loads of ways to volunteer, for example.

Rossigigi Mon 08-May-17 08:52:50

OP I'm in a similar position except I have numerous qualifications. I often wonder when I will get back into work, then I have a bad day and I can't imagine ever going back.
It's really emotionally draining when you feel like you are just a drain on society and you wonder what people think of you.
Even people who are close to me don't see everything, they just wonder why I've not been in contact for several weeks they don't see it that I've been really unwell.
I have also been like you- got good jobs when I've been hypomanic and it's hard when you have the crashing lows afterwards.

Ocies Mon 08-May-17 08:54:24

The point is you do what's right for you and your family. At the moment it is right for you to not have a job. No one else's opinion should matter. Just be open to the fact that you may feel differently one day, or you may not. Just enjoy your life.

Henrysmycat Mon 08-May-17 08:56:45

Do what pleases you and it is best for you. And I am saying this as someone who always worked and studied and has an awesome career. It would be better for you to stay put and get better and enjoy life as it is. You do not know anything about the future. Things might change or you might do. Just do what it feels best for you. I absolutely hate bashing SAHP. Everyone does what they think is best.
My only advice if you want to feel like you work would be to volunteer, at school, charities etc. I did with the foodbanks and it was amazing rewarding and I learnt so much.

GreenHairDontCare Mon 08-May-17 08:58:23

Thank you. Yes, it's better to think about in terms of I can't work right now. I've actually never stuck at any job for more than a few years, my longest stint was as a childminder but I can't go back to that. So it's difficult to imagine I'll ever be truly productive. Dh says (kindly) that I'm just not cut out for work. I think I need to accept that I'm lucky enough not to have to and count my blessings instead of seeing it as a failing.

Awwlookatmybabyspider Mon 08-May-17 08:59:10

Of course you're not lazy if you don't work. There are lots of reasons why a person may not work.
However I do have to say. Imagine the 1000s of people dreading going into work as I type this. I hope you count your lucky stars that you have the choice and yes the luxury of staying home and do not have the pressures of looking for work.

GreenHairDontCare Mon 08-May-17 08:59:47

I will look into volunteering, I do things for the school as often as I can, reading and going on trips etc. Any volunteering I sign up for will have to be something low commitment, it would be awful to let people down.

WateryTart Mon 08-May-17 09:00:27

Maybe you could look at doing some voluntary work when the time feels right. If you feel you are being a "drain" then that would be a way of putting something back.

I was an almost SAHM until youngest was 6. I enjoyed my time but did do a bit of evening work so I still had "my" money.

Awwlookatmybabyspider Mon 08-May-17 09:00:50

'DH says (kindly) that I'm.just not cut out for work."

Well not everyone, is. Just like not every child is cut out for school

Moanyoldcow Mon 08-May-17 09:11:47

I'm glad you're on the mend. I think if I were in your position I'd have a think about what I'd like to do in the future. Take a course, retrain but at your own pace but with a view to getting back to work when it suits you. You have no reason to feel like a drain and if you don't feel able to go back then that's fine too.

Your husband sounds lovely, like he loves and values you and you can just read a handful of posts on the Relationship board that see that's not everyone's experience.

Hoppinggreen Mon 08-May-17 09:13:42

I have had periods of not working myself and I don't judge anyone else who doesn't as long as they don't rely on the state to fund it ( obviously if the person is unable to work due to health or other issues then I have no issue with the state funding that)
However, I'm slightly confused as to why at least 2 posters say that their husbands earn good money but they get benefits. Perhaps some benefits aren't means tested but if you don't need them why wouid you claim them?

mugginsalert Mon 08-May-17 09:16:35

"Dh says (kindly) that I'm just not cut out for work."

Sorry, this may be kindly meant but it's a very generalised judgement especially if you are tempted to internalise it - is he saying there are no circumstances in which he could see you earning an income outside the home?

It sounds like staying home is the right thing for you for now and there is no need at all to feel guilty etc about that but if it were me I would feel a bit trapped if I knew that other people thought I had no choice.

MissBax Mon 08-May-17 09:16:37

If you and your husband are happy with your arrangement then it's noone else's business. However I will say for your own sake that it would be worth trying to tackle the anxiety of work you have as one day, for whatever reason, you may have to work and prolonging it will only make it harder to do. Maybe look at volunteering somewhere once a week, or attending an adult learning class to update your qualifications or something. You'd probably be surprised at what a positive impact it'll have on you.

temporarilyjerry Mon 08-May-17 09:18:34

Unless you sit at home painting your nails and sipping prosecco all day, every day, you are not a drain on everyone.

How old are your children? If they are still young, it benefits them to have you at home. The rest of us work to earn money or because we need the stimulation of our jobs. If your DH earns enough to support your family and is happy for you to stay at home and it's what you prefer, that's fine. Don't let others judge the decisions you and your DH have made for your family.

Your situation is different from the woman on the other thread.

You don't need to make decisions now for the rest of your life. For now, you have decided not to have a paid job.

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