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to change my mind about going back to my job?

(7 Posts)
mummywhodrinks Tue 16-Sep-08 11:02:00

Last October I took on six hours a week as a home help/cleaner for an elderly couple.

In April after the Easter holidays I realised that it would be pretty much impossible to carry on through the summer as I dont have any childcare and the job is too few hours to get any tax credits to pay for it. So I told them I was giving a months notice. The lady got very upset, saying I was the best 'girl' they'd ever had, and asked why I was leaving. I explained and she said that if I could find someone to cover for me over the holidays I could have the job back afterwards. A friend of a friend has been doing the job over the summer and I am due to go back in two weeks.

But the lady rang to discuss days/hours the other night, and said that she wants a guarentee from me that I will work for them for at least two years, as is 'too traumatic' for them to have to get used to new people all the time. I don't feel able to give this - what if my circumstances change, I want a full time job, I can't get childcare etc etc?? and so said I'd think about it, and dropped them a letter last night saying I would not be going back.

I feel very guilty about it all, like I have let them down, but I couldn't bring myself to lie and say yes, two years is fine, when I had no idea if it would be. I'm worried they will phone and try to change my mind - I'm not very assertive and find it hard to say no (hence the letter) and the lady is quite guilt-inducing. And also I think in a way she IBU for expecting that much commitment from a six-hour-a-week cleaner? Or AIBU for changing my mind after further thought?

TheCrackFox Tue 16-Sep-08 11:04:51

I think you have done the right thing. FWIW they are a bit cheeky telling you that you must do 2 years. Nobody knows what their circumstances will be in 2 years time and they have been unfair on you.

nellyup Tue 16-Sep-08 11:21:23

No employer is allowed to insist on a guaranteed commitment (except in cases where they have, for example, funded training etc). In effect, she's asking you for a notice period of two years! You did the right thing in saying no - if she rings stick to your guns and say you'll do the job but that you reserve the right to give a month's notice if your circumstances change.

bythepowerofgreyskull Tue 16-Sep-08 11:25:09

I think that if you have the time going to see her face to face to explain that you do want to come back and are happy working for them but you can't possibly see what is going to happen in the coming years - you totally understand what it is like for them getting used to a new person but that it isn't possible for you to commit.

If they were prepared to change their minds on the 2 years thing would you want to go back?

DoH!!!!!! Just re-read your post and you have already said you aren't going back... in that case don't worry about it.. they will find someone else.

Anna8888 Tue 16-Sep-08 11:27:10

No employer is allowed to ask for the kind of commitment that this couple were asking of you - they don't know employment law.

MaloryDontDiveItsShallow Tue 16-Sep-08 11:29:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mummywhodrinks Tue 16-Sep-08 11:46:58

Phew I'm glad I was not being very unfair.

They were very nice but very unrealistic and quite set in their ways. I wanted originally to quit, not take some time off over the holidays, as I knew the situation would arise again! But as I am not very assertive I ended up being talked into coming back, and its been bothering me ever since. Its only a cleaning job and I'll find another one that does not have guilt attatched to it. There's enough of that in my life!

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