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Thread for those still working without childcare

(161 Posts)
WhereIsTheLove1234 Fri 03-Apr-20 19:10:57

Me and DH still both working. Not entitled to childcare as our roles are not on the list. I wfh, DH cannot wfh. Just to be clear I’m very very grateful for both our jobs right now. So far I’ve been able to reduce my hours but it’s getting more difficult to do. I don’t have anyone to talk to as I’m just so incredibly busy trying to work and do childcare (kids are young so it’s full on) while most couples I know have someone furloughed who can absorb the childcare and many are complaining of being bored and sharing what Netflix series to binge on. I just can’t relate at the moment. Anyone else in a similar situation? Just wanted to talk to people in a similar position.

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LittlePickleHead Fri 03-Apr-20 19:13:50

Yes I hear you, and as a third of our company has been furloughed those of us left have much more work. I feel so bad for my children this week, I've had so many work calls that they haven't had a lot of schooling at all (unless hours of horrible history counts?). They seem happy enough though.

I just can't think too far ahead as imaging months of this is overwhelming...

Direwolfwrangler Fri 03-Apr-20 19:22:34

I’m coordinating services in response to COVID19, all from home with a toddler. Husband has mainly been doing the childcare as he’s in a flexible industry but he’s had to work the past couple of days. It has been hard going, far more tv time than I would ever want in normal circumstances.

I take my hat off to anyone doing this all the time, I’ve been lucky to have support at home.

Lookingforwardtomyeastereggs Fri 03-Apr-20 19:23:37


Dh is still doing long hours outside the house. I'm wfh with two dc, big age gap too so very different needs. I can manage the dc just fine, but I can't manage both work and dc.

I'm finding it soul destroying. Yes I am grateful to still have a job and income, I'm grateful to be at home (although still feel at risk as dh is out working).

I'm off for a bit over Easter and to be honest I'm trying not to think any further ahead as I'm not sure how long it's sustainable.

MsJuniper Fri 03-Apr-20 19:24:41

DH and I are both wfh and are expected to be working our usual hours with two children at home. The first few days were a nightmare. Fortunately we've worked out a schedule which gives us both just enough time to keep on top of things, keep to our video/phone conferencing schedule and answer all our emails. We both do some evening working to catch up. We haven't told our respective bosses what our schedule is but our consciences are clear.

Our older DS has a schoolwork routine so it's just toddler DD who is the wild card. She is having to be placated with far too much tv and far more biscuits than normal. It's so hard and I feel bad that she isn't getting any of the development activities she would at nursery but what can I do?

WhereIsTheLove1234 Fri 03-Apr-20 19:40:49

@LittlePickleHead. When they talk about how long this could go on for I really wonder why parents weren’t offered furlough first. The parents have a huge job to do even without work on top.

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WhereIsTheLove1234 Fri 03-Apr-20 19:47:01

@Lookingforwardtomyeastereggs I’m considering taking some annual leave to help us through too.

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WhereIsTheLove1234 Fri 03-Apr-20 19:48:55

@MsJuniper it’s totally impossible. A toddler can’t do activities without you and there’s just no way you can add that on top of everything else! We’re trying to do some of that kind of thing at the weekends but obviously it’s no where near what they’d normally be doing

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notnowdennis Fri 03-Apr-20 19:51:51

Me too! Doing critical work for employer to keep them afloat and hopefully helping to saving hundreds of people’s jobs, but not a key worker so full time childcare too. Tbh, I wouldn’t want to burden the school or risk child’s health, But it’s chuffing hard work. Dp is at wfh for a big overseas company who also need his full attention right now. Poor DS is on his own for big chunks of the day. Need some balance.

DownyBuds Fri 03-Apr-20 19:54:38

And all the Facebook posts about spending “quality time” with the kids piss me off

SueEllenMishke Fri 03-Apr-20 19:54:40

Both of us are working full time from home with a 5 year old. We're both extremely busy - I'm completely shattered. We're very lucky to have jobs we know that and we have very flexible employers which helps.
I'm taking some annual leave next week and DH is taking the week after just so we can have a break from juggling everything.

One silver lining is that my employer has just given us some additional leave over Easter and has told us all to take a break and look after our mental health. It's really perked me up.

trilbydoll Fri 03-Apr-20 19:56:47

We are both wfh (so better off than people who are doing it solo) and the kids are 6 and 4 which is probably a good age for amount of schooling required vs ability to entertain themselves. But it's still exhausting. The kids cannot do the same activity, it would kill them to both play football, the minute one wants to do x the other demands to do y. So it's driving me slightly round the twist.

Could be worse. Could be married to a doctor, that would be hard work.

YakkityYakYakYak Fri 03-Apr-20 19:56:54

It was my first day back after maternity leave today, working from home in a senior position, whilst trying to look after a 9 month old. I feel like I utterly failed at both, I did barely any work and DD just cried a lot because she was being ignored. Ended up just doing what I could while she napped then more after she went to bed. Really don’t think I can face months of this. I love my job and was really looking forward to going back but this is just impossible to sustain.

BearFoxBear Fri 03-Apr-20 19:57:13

Yes, DH and I both wfh - he does it full time anyway and I do maybe 2 days per week.

This week has been hard though because DH has covid, his boss has been a complete prick and expected him to work throughout (just as well its been mild) and he's trying to save his job as they've already been forced into dropping down to 4 days and lost all bonuses (we're down at least £15k across the rest of the year already). Major stress.

I work in PR and am flat out for obvious reasons.

Our 5 year old ds needs lots of attention and never stop talking! The only thing that's saved me this week while DH is unable to help is writing him up a school timetable based on a book a day. We read it, he draws and writes some sentences based on it, then does related crafts. Yoga and a science TV show, lunch, then in the afternoon it's maths worksheets and a couple of learning apps. I'd get nothing done otherwise.

I'm so lucky to have a really understanding and family friendly employer.

newwnamme Fri 03-Apr-20 19:58:15

Oh god me. Two toddlers, 3 & 19 months. I teach in HE, currently 17 contact hours a week. At 4 days notice I have had to learn how to deliver everything online. The planning, marking, meetings, admin etc etc is on top of that.

Dh is a keyworker. I had two days of thinking it was going to be ok because we could still use childcare before one of them got sent home sick. Before they were allowed back, the business has decided to close until further notice because its 'not responsible' to remain open when all keyworkers children have another parent at home.

Well, dh may well be a keyworker but sadly his keyworker wages would in no way pay our bills. The implication is clear though, as it is from countless threads here. Unless you're both frontline nhs, you are e expected to make it work.

How??? Like actually, how? Someone tell me please because I have no fucking clue how I am supposed to teach online for 6 hours in a day and simultaneously care for two young children.

Imicola Fri 03-Apr-20 19:59:18

I'm so sick to death hearing about all the fun things people are planning to do. We are both working at home with an 18 month old. Might be able to get key worker childcare, but so far we are managing without. Get up, child care, lunch, work, bed.

KatnissMellark Fri 03-Apr-20 19:59:25

Yes, WFH full time, as is DH. DS3, no childcare and 7.5 months pregnant blush

Kittywampus Fri 03-Apr-20 20:01:47

We're in the same boat too. I am just about keeping on top of urgent emails. I've attended a few virtual meetings. What I really struggle with is any work requiring long periods of concentration or attention to detail. It just doesn't work with constant distraction.

Kittywampus Fri 03-Apr-20 20:04:44

And don't even get me started on 'homeschooling'. My priorities are to get through this without anyone losing their job and with our mental health more or less intact.

10storeylovesong Fri 03-Apr-20 20:05:09

I'm frontline Police. DH is frontline NHS. Both still working full time shifts. We have a 2 year old who's nursery has closed and a 7 year old with chronic lung disease so won't send him to school. We are working our shifts around each other, so as 1 comes home, the other leaves. And trying to home school a very reluctant DS. I'm so tired I could cry. The house is a mess. I'm eating crappy convenience food and feel like I'm failing in every aspect of my life.

JollyYellaHumberElla Fri 03-Apr-20 20:10:33

Yes and I’m utterly exhausted. Two primary aged kids here. One SEN.

I WFH and not a key worker but my employer expects full time hours and ‘emergency response’ availability to our clients.

DH was initially told he’d be furloughed and it was such a relief. Now his entire team has been furloughed EXCEPT him! He’s now expected to do his own full time job plus ‘priorities’ from the rest of the team workload that needs covering.

I don’t think we will cope. I don’t know what to do.

LassoOfTruth Fri 03-Apr-20 20:12:01

Us. So grateful we both have our jobs, both able to WFH. But our jobs are quite demanding, so juggling that with DD2 is hard. I'm also 7 months pregnant, not sleeping well, so tired more easily these days. Makes it hard to log on again at night, nevermind face housework. Toddler is watching way too much TV on my watch but seems happy enough. I have some stiff targets to meet before going on maternity leave and just don't know if I can do it. DH is doing his share but is also feeling the stress. I think the first week, our works were saying to "do what we could" but now it's the new normal they expect business as usual. Not possible for parents!

browzingss Fri 03-Apr-20 20:12:12

What’s your husband’s job?

browzingss Fri 03-Apr-20 20:16:33

I work in finance, on the keyworker list but am able to completely work from home. It’s very difficult. Doesn’t help that management want us to take video conference calls all day, I feel like it’s counterproductive. Meetings that could have easily been an email now take a 30+ minute video call. Even normal phone calls seem to be taking ages as no one wants gets to the point🙄 We have a lot going on too, so I’m finding myself working until 11pm some nights. Finding a work/home balance difficult, especially as I don’t have a dedicated office.

JollyYellaHumberElla Fri 03-Apr-20 20:20:37

My priorities are to get through this without anyone losing their job and with our mental health more or less intact

Yes this. Although at the moment I’m thinking just one or the other is more realistic.

And I’ll be honest and say I could bloody weep hearing my friends compare home schooling triumphs and plans for weeks of fun gardening and home projects.

One of DH’s team Skyped to say he wished he was still working as he was so bored. I had to leave the room.

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