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To want to shout "THIS is why I have to work" !!

(114 Posts)
Blueskyblue Sat 23-Sep-17 10:22:17

I've recently returned to work after having DS. I work compressed hours, four days a week so that I get a day at home with my son. DH works full time, DS in nursery.

Like many people, I agonised over the decision to put DS into nursery, reading things about how bad it is for them before the age of 3. I also (stupidly) read stories and comments on the Daily Fail about working mums and have had a few comments and raised eyebrows from people at work.

This week, the following has happened:

* Someone crashed into my husbands car. It's only a crappy runaround but he needs it to drop DS at nursery and get to work on time. The car was virtually worthless so we've had to shell out for another car and will likely not get anything from the insurance

* Two days later the boiler finally packed up. It's been on it's last legs for ages but we hoped we'd get another winter out of it. There goes another £2k

* This morning the washing machine blew up, pretty much. Waiting for our plumber friend to come round but it looks like we need a replacement

I could cry. I can't believe what a shitty week this has been. The only saving grace is that we have just enough saved to cover these things, and with us both working, we can replenish our savings. Without the option of doing that, I think I'd be a stressed out, emotional wreck waiting for the next thing to happen.

This is in no way a veiled dividing thread pitting SAHP and WOHP's against each other, but when I hear people saying 'women' (never men!) only work because they want the latest phones, big TVs and foreign holidays and if we all just tightened our belts we could stay at home, I just want to scream/cry.

NotSuchASmugMarriedNow1 Sat 23-Sep-17 10:25:22

Sorry you had such a shit week

How old are your boiler and washing machine?

Blueskyblue Sat 23-Sep-17 10:27:24

Boiler OLD, had it fixed three times and they warned that the next time would have to be replacement as they were running out of parts to fix.

Washing machine fairly old too, a good 8 years.

OverOn Sat 23-Sep-17 10:30:13

I work FT and I can't recall anyone saying that I work for the latest phones etc. I work to keep a roof over our heads, feed my DC and pay for having some kind of lifestyle.

In an ideal world I would have liked to stay at home, but it isn't possible and therefore I feel no guilt or that I am somehow letting down my children. If I didn't work, I'd be a stressed out mum worrying about finances and dealing with the kinds of emergencies you've had this week.

You've made the right choice for you. Please don't feel guilty or that others are looking down on you for it.

MsVestibule Sat 23-Sep-17 10:31:53

I'm sorry you've had such a bad week, and pleased you've got savings to cover them.

I'd like to say I find it hard to believe that people actually comment to your face about a mother working full time, but I experienced it in the six months I worked full time after DC1:
- 'I don't know why women bother having children then come back full time' (she thought I was PT so wasn't intending to insult me).
- 'Do you have to work FT?' (from a man my age)

Mind you, I got far more negative comments after I became a SAHM after DC2, so I really couldn't win.

Looking back, I wasted far too much time getting pissed off with comments on my decisions. Try to come up with a stock response ("fuck off" should cover it) then try to let it wash over you.

ssd Sat 23-Sep-17 10:33:19

of course you are not being unreasonable at all

mostly people work for the money, the social aspect and their self esteem

plantsitter Sat 23-Sep-17 10:36:23

The Daily Mail bashes SAHMs too. We tend to just remember the bits that apply to us.

Don't feel bad about going back to work. I'm a SAHM and I've recently been thinking that if most kids go to nursery it might put my kids at a disadvantage to have been at home. Despite what many people on the SAHM/WOHM fight threads seem to think, there is no right answer. Often there's the only answer that presents itself at the time in any case!

Sorry about your boiler and stuff! Well done for having savings to sort it out though!

Stellato Sat 23-Sep-17 10:37:38

I've never heard anyone saying that if they tightened their belts one parent could stay at home?

Everyone family I know has two working parents, at least part time. They can't afford to have one parent not working.

opheliacat Sat 23-Sep-17 10:41:46

I don't get it either, OP, and let's be honest, it isn't just the Mail. I have seen thousands of posts over the years - not just on here - all so smug that they don't have the latest technology and go camping instead of fancy holidays but they do have a parent at home or working part time.

I hate being at home. It is dull, each hour lasts a day, each day lasts a year. I hate the noise and the mess and the lack of purpose to everything . Children are fine at nursery. Personally I'd choose a nursery over a childminder every time but if this bothers you is that something you'd consider?

BitchQueen90 Sat 23-Sep-17 10:43:55

YANBU. I'm a single parent so if I don't work, bills don't get paid. You don't have to justify your choice to anyone. Even if you can afford not to work but want to, that's good enough reason.

Blueskyblue Sat 23-Sep-17 10:45:10

No, DS has only been at nursery a few months but he loves it. It's a really fantastic nursery and I'm very happy to continue sending him there. My angst came from when I was on mat leave and reading things I really shouldn't have.

MeMeMeMe123 Sat 23-Sep-17 10:47:40

OP sounds rough.

You have been fortunate with your machine lasting so long! What's the secret (i replace mine every 3 years or so)

Hope you have a relaxing weekend

rebelnotaslave Sat 23-Sep-17 10:48:15

I've had people say that they went part time because they just made choices not to have holidays, latest stuff etc. I wanted to scream at them that we also didn't have holidays or the latest stuff and were still living pay check to pay check with two full time workers!

I found it wasn't so much direct comments as passive aggressive stuff about how they did it differently in their day (often older women who bought houses when you do it on one salary).

rebelnotaslave Sat 23-Sep-17 10:48:26

I've had people say that they went part time because they just made choices not to have holidays, latest stuff etc. I wanted to scream at them that we also didn't have holidays or the latest stuff and were still living pay check to pay check with two full time workers!

I found it wasn't so much direct comments as passive aggressive stuff about how they did it differently in their day (often older women who bought houses when you do it on one salary).

IshouldntcareaboutthisbutIdo Sat 23-Sep-17 10:49:29

Sorry you have had such a shit week OP. People return to work for many reasons and remember that there is always going to be some rude idiot who is going to slag people off whatever their choice. There is no right or wrong - all families and children are different.

Ignore them!

RunRabbitRunRabbit Sat 23-Sep-17 10:49:30

Nobody has ever said any of those things to me, or at least I didn't notice or take it personally. I wonder if you are oversensitive through self-imposed misplaced guilt? The agony over something so completely ordinary as using a nursery makes me wonder.

Women sometimes describe themselves as if being a SAHP is the default normal option. "Working mothers": I don't hear men describing themselves as "working fathers".

You are a woman with a career and a child. You can have both. It's OK. You don't have to justify it to anyone. Even yourself.

Other people's opinions on your life choices around childcare should be given no more credence than their opinions on your haircut, favourite supermarket, frequency of eating out in restaurants. Their opinions tell you about them, it doesn't tell you about you.

Stop with the guilt tripping on yourself. You are making the best choices for your family, your life, your future. If someone else doesn't approve, so the fuck what?

IshouldntcareaboutthisbutIdo Sat 23-Sep-17 10:50:54

ps: I work p/t and my brother can't seem to understand why "my money" doesn't buy me smarter clothes/car/holidays... different priorities I suppose!

Fairyliz Sat 23-Sep-17 10:51:53

I think its only human nature to remember the 'bad' things/comments.
I am sure 99% of the population would understand why you work and the others are just stupid/thoughtless.
Its expensive and hard work bringing up a family but you have made the best decisions for your family so ignore the nutters.

JWrecks Sat 23-Sep-17 10:54:31

Could cry? I WOULD cry! You've had an awful week! I'm so sorry. sad

Whenwillwe3meetagain Sat 23-Sep-17 10:54:35

To have two kids in nursery three days a week in zone two london I'm going to have to find a £55k job (so 33k for 3 days) just to pay for nursery, travel and about £200 per month left over. It's so depressing. I wish it was so we could have the latest phones etc. I don't want to be a SAHM but looks like I will be for a couple of years...

Pikachuwithyourmouthclosed Sat 23-Sep-17 10:57:28

Sorry you had a shit week.

I work because I choose to, not because I have to, and that's okay too smile

Iheartjordanknight Sat 23-Sep-17 11:03:33

OP I hear you so so much. When you're juggling so many balls it's so so stressful when suddenly things like this get thrown at you all at once.

This is why I find it a bit hard to understand why people calculate they can afford to stay at home within the safety net of a few hundred pounds a week spare. I couldn't live with the worry of situations like this

Lovemusic33 Sat 23-Sep-17 11:05:46

I'm a single parent and I have to work to pay for things.

This week has been a tough one for me too, I had a vets bill for £1800 after my dog became very ill last weekend and then I had to pay £700 for my car to be fixed (only bought the car a few months ago so didn't expect to be paying out to fix it). Things always tend to go wrong all at once.

It's no ones business why you work and why your ds attends nursery, some people can afford to stay home and others (most of us) can't.

Orchardgreen Sat 23-Sep-17 11:08:23

You could ask on Freecycle if anyone is getting rid of a washing machine.

Autumnskiesarelovely Sat 23-Sep-17 11:08:51

I've been a working mum and a sahm. Only the latter because husband number two is a good earner. Husband number wasn't so I had to work to pay our mortgage. It can be a great role model for the kids to see that parents are a team, and also to see that women can work.

So don't beat yourself up.

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