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Please help - Baby or career now?

(32 Posts)
countrybumpkin2 Fri 28-Sep-12 13:25:10

I'm sorry if this is posted in the wrong place. Not been on this much yet.
I am not far away from being 25 and I will be married a year in November. My and dh have always said we would start ttc after our anniversary.
He now thinks I only want to get pregnant so I don't have to worry about my work situation.
Basically I graduated in 2009 with a Master is maths and physics. Due to where I live and there not being many jobs I have a full time job which has very little to do with my degree and I am probably overly qualified. I was fine with this until I started to have problems at my job with work colleagues etc and now my work is really starting to get me down.
My DH has picked up on this and sees me me wanting to have kids as avoidance on my part. No my Mum has picked up on how I am feeling and is pushing me to retrain as a teacher, something I have always thought about doing. She doesn't know I want kids soon.
I have always wanted to be a mum young, that is how my Mum did it and she got on very well. Until now DH agreed.
My question is, do I forget the babies thing now and go and do my teacher training like everyone wants and come back to the kids thing when I am 35 or so, or try for kids now and worry about a career later like I have always intended to do!
Argh! I just hate disapointing people....

CaipirinhasAllRound Sun 07-Oct-12 22:23:13

I would encourage you to think about your career and try for a baby at the same time. We've been trying for a baby for 3 years already and I am bored of my job but now feel I need to stay as they know we're doing IVF and so I can get all the time off I need. I know it sounds harsh but just because you decide you want a baby doesn't mean it will happen straight away and you don't want to be stuck in a job you don't like while you wait

Also, I've learnt not to feel too much loyalty for an employer having been made redundant out of the blue twice. Do what is right for you, an employer will cope if you get pregnant, even if you haven't been there long.

BoyMeetsWorld Sun 07-Oct-12 19:26:11

Hi Hun my situation was v similar to yours - all the academic stuff out the way with great results, I even had my pgce place (always knew I wanted to teach). But the more partner & I talked the more we wanted a baby. In the end I got BFP 3 months before start of teacher training. The Uni were amazing & offered to defer but somehow, after DS arrived, I never went back. It became a case of needing to make £ immediately to give him all he need / I wanted him to have. & my confidence (brain!) went crazily downhill during pregnancy. Years later & iv got a well paid job...but still feel bitter that I never took the chance to teach. My situation obv may be nothing like yours - I should def add that partner left me towards the end of my pregnancy so £ really was an issue for me & I don't drive so the idea of getting though the pgce on my own, being away from DS do much & having to fund childcare etc wasn't realistic. If your DP is supportive & well paid ul prob be fine. But I know it's a toughy weighing up career ambitions against when to have a baby. Both are amazing & sometimes the 'wrong' choice can actually become a lost opportunity

HoleyGhost Sun 07-Oct-12 14:22:41

Depending on family is not without its risks.

See the many threads on here about problem in laws.

BigBoPeep Sun 07-Oct-12 12:47:12

i was always career, career, career and didnt even like/want kids. then i accidentally got pg and mc'd, was relieved more than anything, but some kind of hormonal switch got switched and i wanted a baby. i'm really glad it did, i'm now 26 with a 6mo and wanting the next. being a young mum seems a bit out of fashion but my daughter is the best thing since sliced bread and i watch older friends 35+ with young kids or desperately trying to conceive and i'm glad thats not me. i now actually wish i'd started younger! by the time i'm 45 my kids will be pretty independant and i have all THAT time to devote to my career so i'm not getting on their nerves - life feels happier now i've let myself drop that 'i have to achieve everything now first while im young' drive.

yes, you might have to financially rely on husband and family more for now, but that really is the way of the world - how can you leave school and immediately land a great job and family home? its just not feasible for most. in most cultures, the older generations help 'set up' the younger with a new yurt/herd of reindeer/houseful of furniture etc when they marry.

i have therefore put my energy into not feeling guilty about accepting help, and doing my best to ensure i'm in a position to do the same for mine!! dd1 has a savings account already grin

LittleMissSnowShine Sat 06-Oct-12 08:53:53

I was in the middle of a phd when i got pg with ds in.late 2009, aged 25. Not great timing, not a lot of money, no job lined up. I finished phd and was sahm and when ds was 11 months i graduated and found a part time job only vaguely relatedcto ny phd which is a lovely place to work and so family friendly.

The point is me and dh wanted to have kids young and my career will pick up again when the kids go off to school - i think just do what feels right and job stuff tends to kind of sort itself out round your new responsibilities when the baby arrives, whether that means being sahm or working part time for a few years when your kids are young and then focusing when the time is right. Good luck with it all

TuesdayNightClub Sat 06-Oct-12 08:25:24

It's difficult to say what to do, as things don't always turn out the way you expect.

For what it's worth, I was in a similar situation to you a few years ago (now 28). Aged 25, I was quite newly married and kind of broody. I had worked very hard at getting a good career but was made redundant and my world was shattered. I thought that it would be a good idea to have a baby and think about my career later, once the economy had picked up etc.

We started TTC without any luck and i'm still not pg, but in the meantime I found my dream job and now love my child-free life. Personally, now that I am happy and fulfilled in my career (and more financially comfortable) the broodiness has died away and the TTC is on hold for the moment. I now feel too young to think about kids and have started really enjoying my nights out, long lies, holidays etc. Of course, you have to add into the mix the fact that we TTC for quite a long time without success. hmm

So, what I'm trying to say is that is really difficult to make these kinds of decisions, and what seems like a good idea can change over time. Having a job I love has changed me though and dramatically improved my life, so do not underestimate the importance of being happy in your career.

Chubfuddler Sat 06-Oct-12 06:55:07

DH and I started trying when I was 25. DS didn't come along until I was 28. Mind you I did my LPC while I was pregnant and started a training contract when he was just over a year old. It doesn't have to be baby or career, you can do both.

Do you actually want to be a teacher by the way? You said "like everyone wants me to". Do you want to?

cupcake78 Sat 06-Oct-12 06:50:37

It is possible to do both but you'll have to be a little patient.

I was made redundant on mat leave after taking 2yrs to have a full term pregnancy. I decided to go back to Uni, retrain for a few yrs (in my case 3yrs but you could do it faster). Full time MA - 2 placements and a 1yr old. I finished last year and am now self-employed and ttc dc%232.

It was hard, very hard but babies don't have to mean the end.

Your still young, you may get pregnant fast but you may not. Nobody knows until you try. You could retrain and then ttc and still be young enough.

It's something you and your dh need to discuss and decide together.

HoleyGhost Sat 06-Oct-12 05:04:37

Also, be wary of staking everything on the family farm. Even if you have seen the accounts, things don't always go to plan. And can get v messy when inheritance is taken into account.

HoleyGhost Sat 06-Oct-12 04:42:44

Being a SAHM on a farm is very isolating. Are you and your DH sure it is what you both want?

If so, go for it. smile

Otherwise, think about what you want from life. Anything is possible, but having a baby makes it very hard to establish yourself in a new career.

Whatever you choose, you should address your problems at work. Assertiveness training might help.

Leftwingharpie Sat 06-Oct-12 04:22:23

I agree with Bilbo that the first thing you need to do is properly and honestly assess the work situation and work out what it is you want long term and make sure you understand how your other choices are likely to impact on that. In this climate it could be hard to make a move once you bring children into the mix - but to a large extent that depends on what you want to do. I put babies on hold to get out of a bad work situation. I'm almost certain I did the right thing but I'm sad to come to motherhood so late; I'd have preferred to start my family earlier.

In terms of fertility issues, yes there is a risk and you must factor that in - but bear in mind that you have asked this question in a forum which is not a representative sample of the population.

portiathecat Fri 05-Oct-12 23:58:38

I think that there are two issues here.
1) your husband is thinking that you want to get pregnant to get out of work obligations; and
2) when do you want to have babies.
You REALLY need to talk to each other frankly about your thoughts, dreams, expectations, etc. NOW!
I took my fertility completely forgranted, until I had 2 miscarriages. I'm now trying for my 3rd, aged 37. I started TTC aged 35. This is a really tough road, but my reassurance is that my husband and I are completely 'on the same page'.
I hope that you will be successful first time, but please understand the precious gift that you are creating, and the risks involved.
Forget about careers, this is a life you are talking about.

wanderingalbatross Fri 05-Oct-12 23:05:39

I have a young DD and when thinking about ttc had a similar dilemma to you, but I was 5 years older with a bit more work experience behind me smile I didn't want to wait to settle into a new job before kids, but was quite keen to escape the old one! So, while planning to ttc and being pg i asked for more responsibility and put into place a few changes that made the job much better. Then, as it happened, a great opportunity came up while I was on maternity leave and so I ended up resigning in the end!

I'd say that at 25 you still have many years to balance work and kids, so it's worth thinking about the future now, even if it all changes! Do you really want to be a teacher? Maths and physics makes you highly employable, although you say the area isn't great for jobs. Can you turn your job into something better? Start a company? Work further away? Do some more study? You probably have more options than you think smile

countrybumpkin2 Sat 29-Sep-12 10:45:56

Thanks again for your replies.

Dh is not worried about being the sole earner. We have talked about that side of things and he was the one saying money shouldn't be an issue. He works on the family farm so we have a house and car for as long as the farm is going (hopefully well on into future generations!). We could live off his salary.

I have always thought that I wouldn't go back to work until after any kids we had were at school but I am starting to think I may want to go part time before that. On top of that My plans have been to train as a teacher later in life as I am not a good student and my horrible time at uni is still all too fresh. I still don't feel ready to go back. I think I want to teach. I love helping others and finding different ways of explaining maths things so they understand (I have lots of younger family that I occasionally tutor).

My problems at work are difficult to explain, it's just a very strange small office to work in with lots of odd working relationships. Sometimes I just feel under appreciated really. Two people are leaving in the next month so I think things might change. For now I am looking at other jobs but there are so few and rarely does one come up that sounds better. I am loathed to give up my current job in some ways as they are so flexible and I think they would work round things to offer me part time work if I was to have kids.

I will try and discuss it with Dh again soon. I think he just thinks babies happen when they are supposed to without him having to think about stopping using contraception...

kalidasa Fri 28-Sep-12 17:12:57

I think it makes sense to do both in a way. If you're keen to start a family (and you are sure you would be even if you were enjoying your job more) and so is your dh then I don't see any reason to wait, you could ditch the contraception and see what happens. (Though definitely find out what is worrying him about this first.) But at the same time, if you dislike your job you shouldn't put tackling that on hold just because you are thinking about starting a family. I can't imagine much that would be more depressing than finding yourself spending several years in a job you dislike and find stressful while struggling to conceive, or after a miscarriage. Of course you might get pregnant straight away and it will all be perfect, but if anything about it is difficult then it will just be made more difficult by being worn down by a job you dislike. If you are keen to teach eventually (or do something else) then you could apply for the course or whatever and set that ball rolling. Even if you get pregnant just before/during/just after a PGCE it's not a disaster, especially in a shortage subject like Maths.

HaveALittleFaith Fri 28-Sep-12 16:10:34

As someone who was partly TTC, well hoping to get pregnant! to get away from a job that I hated, I have a slightly different view point. We started TTC when I was 27. I ended up changing roles but within my company. It took us 2 years 8 months to conceive. Not because of age because of previously unrecognised health problems. I'm glad we started TTC when we did seeing as how it took so long. However, I'm glad I changed roles because it was something to get my teeth into whilst the fertility problems were in the background.

I agree it's not going to be 10 years til you can TTC if you do decided to train as a teacher. It'd be maybe 3 years and you'd be 28. that's not exactly ancient or reaching past the fertile time.

So my question would be: do you really want a baby now? Or do you want a baby to get out of your work place?!

NapaCab Fri 28-Sep-12 15:25:27

Your DH is right that trying to have a baby to avoid a job you hate is a really bad idea. I stayed in a job I hated much longer than I should have because I was in it for the maternity leave, basically. In the end it took me over 2 years to get healthily pregnant past 12 weeks and it was a miserable time.

So I would say, go and do what you want to do and fit children in as they come along. Don't start out with some 5 year plan or 2 year plan, saying I will have kids after this date or before that date. Just progress with your life as normal and don't build everything up around having children.

Bilbobagginstummy Fri 28-Sep-12 15:07:48

And by the way, my mum had job she hated at 24, gave it up with relief to have me at 26, didn't work then until she was 36, then took up teaching and was head of a school 12 years later. So don't think you're definitely choosing to stay at home for ever.

But do keep talking to your husband - it's got to be a joint thing(anyway but particularly in terms of financial planning if you are planning on him being the only wage-earner.

Bilbobagginstummy Fri 28-Sep-12 15:02:31

Babies aside for a moment, what do you want to do as a career?

Going into teaching isn't something to be taken lightly or done because your mum wants you to. I have a physics degree and HATED my PGCE; I went into an accountancy-related field and it's much more interesting and varied.

Teaching is full-on hard work with nightmare hours and levels of stress in term-time. My sister is a teacher and really likes it - I think you've got to really like the people side of it - so it certainly suits some people.

But I do think that on the career side your husband might have a point. Now if you're definite about quitting your job and bringing up babies on one salary then that's not really a problem as your job is a short-term thing, but if you're planning to run working alongside child-rearing, you really need to tackle the job/career issue now because it will not get any easier as the demands on your time from family increase.

Good luck with your decision.

Or you can keep your current job, have children, and retrain after they are school age. I think your DH worry is you will pull a SAHM forever on him. It's a very hard burden to be the sole earner for the entire family. I think what I'm saying is talk to him. Be honest, tell him your plans for your career. Or even ask him if he's worried about being the sole breadwinner.

You really don't need to have two years under your belt before TTC. Not everything is so black and white. Maths teachers are very sought after. You can work part time after children to keep your experience. If you do quit its no so easy to start again even if your have 2 year experience as a teacher.

IShallPracticeMyCurtsey Fri 28-Sep-12 14:50:18

Can I ask you a bit more about the problems with your colleagues. Apart from your original wish to start a family young, do you think there's any truth in what your Dh is saying, that you're avoiding the work issue? Is this something you need to address, do you think, outside of the family question? Sorry if that sounds out of line.

headfairy Fri 28-Sep-12 14:43:50

I had my children late, partly because I didn't meet dh until I was 32. Married at 35. First baby at 37, second at 39. I wouldn't change a thing to be honest, I really enjoyed my 20s, travelled loads, had lots of fun with no responsibilities. I was ready to settle down and do the nightfeeds and no sleep thing to be honest. But that's not to say it's right for everyone. I have many friends who've done it in a similar way but regret not having their families earlier.

I must say that my career has stalled somewhat since having children, only just getting it back a bit now dd is 2 and I can focus a bit more during my work days. I think if I'd had children earlier in my career I would have missed lots of the opportunities I have had. But then that could be the industry I'm in. It's complicated.

Please keep talking to him... If you choose career over baby trying then you may be disappointed if in the future you don't concieve easily
We are TTC in late 30's and its difficult that its not happening straightaway.
There's an element of 'judging' as well that I have to deal with when people assume I chose career over baby - almost like an 'it serves you right' attitude you get.
I accept it as life - but it doesn't make it nice!

SleepyFergus Fri 28-Sep-12 13:58:21

Meant to add that we needed fertility treatment to conceive dd1. Dd2 thankfully was much easier!

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