Is it worth it UC?

(79 Posts)
Schoolsout2 Mon 07-Sep-20 16:34:26

Hi all for the last few years me and my ex have been co parenting my DS who is now 5. Things are not perfect but he does take him twice a week 6pm on an evening so I can go to work (sleeps overnight). Then he will drop him to school on a morning and then I will pick DS up after school and go and do my night shift again. My ex also has his Son once a month for the full weekend. He pays for his Son through CMS.

Here’s the problem when we were together me and my child’s dad he didn’t pull his weight and the relationship changed drastically after giving birth almost instantly. He did not move in with me (major red flag I know now), when I was on MAT leave he said it was my responsibility as I was the parent at home and it was my job role. He said he was paying my taxes so I could stay at home (not true I worked and still do that job role till this day). Fast forward I moved from my flat into a bigger house and my ex moved in with us. I returned back to work when my Ds was 13months old.... finicial abuse had started and he didn’t want to pay his way other than £200.00 a month. To cut a long story short I split up with him but feared that I wouldn’t be able to maintain my current job.

Today we have had a massive bust up and I’m at my wits end that he thinks he can dictate to me because he helps out with childcare so I can do my job. This is an ongoing problem and I am seriously considering giving my job up telling him to F**k right off and go on UC.

Single mums tell me is it doable???

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Waxonwaxoff0 Mon 07-Sep-20 16:45:45

You can't. When your child is school age you're expected to work and you will be made to job search. You can't just decide to go on UC and choose to stay on it with a school age child.

You can get help towards childcare costs with UC if you work. Then you won't need to rely on him for childcare.

Waxonwaxoff0 Mon 07-Sep-20 16:46:50

Ah, I missed that you do night shifts. Can you look for another job?

Schoolsout2 Mon 07-Sep-20 16:53:43

To be honest this has all happened today. But it’s not just an argument and then something I have thought up. It’s an on going issue. I am willing to work as I said I have always worked it’s the same job role I have done the last 9 years. I feel ashamed that my life is like this and to apply for another job and work in another field seems very daunting let alone in a pandemic.

I don’t have another job lined up for now and I have no support network hence me staying in my role and my hourly rate is decent but I can’t go on like this until my DS is old enough not needed to be watched when your init it’s a long time. In fairness I feel like I’ve done my absolute best.

UC would be my short term plan. Until I found another job.

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Waxonwaxoff0 Mon 07-Sep-20 16:56:35

I'd avoid it if you can. Due to the age of your child you'll have to jump through a lot of hoops to get it. Plus it's very difficult to live on. I was on income support and it wasn't a lot. Do you own your house or rent?

Schoolsout2 Mon 07-Sep-20 16:57:15

Waxonwaxoff0

You can't. When your child is school age you're expected to work and you will be made to job search. You can't just decide to go on UC and choose to stay on it with a school age child.

You can get help towards childcare costs with UC if you work. Then you won't need to rely on him for childcare.

I pay childcare costs anyway during the school holidays if DS doesn’t attend a play scheme it means his dad will drop him off at 9am at my house then I’d be up all day then to work a night shift. I used to do it as he was a baby but it’s difficult and DS is quite an active boy and gets board easily.

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Scoopstroop Mon 07-Sep-20 19:36:07

You might be entitled to some uc as a single parent if you work.
Have you checked?
Ive found it more generous than tax credits as a working single parent.
You need to start looking for a job that doesn't rely on your ex for childcare.
Shit I know but it will mean he has no control to piss you around anymore.
I had the same with my ex for a while, when I worked weekends it shifted the power balance in his favour when he wanted to play silly buggers
As soon as I got a 9-5 he started behaving much better towards me and in his attitude to contact.

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ThighthighOfthigh Mon 07-Sep-20 21:11:25

I agree that it's best not to use anyone who wants to piss you about as childcare. Can you look for a similar role with school friendly hours? Or even a school job?

You might make less than you do now for a few years but you can increase or change your hours again as your child gets older

Schoolsout2 Mon 07-Sep-20 22:17:38

No I can’t look for a similar role the working pattern is similar and I would have the same problem.

I have looked for jobs before and I’ve had not much look. The interviews that I was offered I didn’t take the job because of the money difference. My hourly rate is around £16 per hour. Which means I work only 2 shifts a week because that’s enough for me to juggle along and it’s means I’m not leaning on DS dad too much.

I will ring my manager tomorrow and ask if I could be transferred within the NHS to another role as it’s desperate times.

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ThighthighOfthigh Mon 07-Sep-20 22:27:48

Yes I think speak to your manager as night time childcare must be really difficult.

OR before you do that say to the ex that you're thinking of doing that. Maybe just say it and don't wait for a response as you handover. I mean don't get into a back and forth just drop it in to conversation.

It puts him on notice that you do or can have options. It might just trickle into his brain and he might stop being stupid.

Schoolsout2 Mon 07-Sep-20 22:34:31

@ThighthighOfthigh thanks for the idea. It won’t work I’ve tried it before. I went on sick last year due to stress and he happily went by 2 months and didn’t get back in contact until a family member called him.

He will be quite glad for me to find another role as it gets him off the hook!

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JustFrustrated Mon 07-Sep-20 22:40:35

Get an au pair? You got a spare room?

Schoolsout2 Mon 07-Sep-20 22:43:21

I have a spare room. I only rent. To be honest I wouldn’t want someone in my house that I didn’t know. Plus my salary would not cover any sort of nanny or child minder over night.

It’s either I give up my job and hope I find another.

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ThighthighOfthigh Mon 07-Sep-20 22:49:27

OK looks like the ex is basically crap and you will be a lot happier not relying on him. Look for a school based job, you won't need any child care at all then and no juggling. You'll get some UC top up - play around with the figures on Turn2Us.

Don't be ashamed, you're doing you're best and you've got years and years to work more when your child is older.

And speak to your manager and see what he/she says. If you need to cut back or change your hours fine but it'll be difficult to get back on the horse if you stop working altogether.

Babyroobs Tue 08-Sep-20 00:20:19

ThighthighOfthigh

OK looks like the ex is basically crap and you will be a lot happier not relying on him. Look for a school based job, you won't need any child care at all then and no juggling. You'll get some UC top up - play around with the figures on Turn2Us.

Don't be ashamed, you're doing you're best and you've got years and years to work more when your child is older.

And speak to your manager and see what he/she says. If you need to cut back or change your hours fine but it'll be difficult to get back on the horse if you stop working altogether.

There wont be the option to stop working altogether on UC. Once your child is in school you are expected to look for work earning at least 25 x nmw per week.

Schoolsout2 Tue 08-Sep-20 06:40:01

I’m not on UC. I’m on the old system. My DS dad is my only form of child Care so if I phoned UC and tell them that I have had to give my job up due to no longer having childcare I start at 7pm till 07.30am what would they do?

I would look for work and if they help you that is totally fine. But I cannot go on like this any longer. My day shift starts at 7am till 19.30! I cannot commit to it.

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Schoolsout2 Tue 08-Sep-20 06:45:19

I’m unable to get a COVID-19 test for my child he’s off school which means I will have to phone in sick too! (Postal kits are unavailable lack of stock).

I called his dad and we had a huge bust up over it. He is WFM and cannot be arsed to take his child to an actual centre to get tested even though our child could potentially have Covid.... (I work on a hot ward).

So yes I feel to tell him to F**k right off to be frank and call UC!!

He had the audacity to ask me why don’t I take a taxi and do it myself. That is below the line and I cannot cope any longer.

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ScabbyHorse Tue 08-Sep-20 07:04:39

That is shocking that he won't take his son to have a test. He's not on your side here. I am a single parent and I know that if you voluntarily give up work it is hard to claim certain benefits. So I would look for something similar but that doesn't involve night shifts. I know it is scary in this situation to think about changing jobs but you can't rely on him. He is unreliable. Like a previous poster I would tell him you are going to change things as you are finding this unsustainable.
I work at a school for this very reason, so I can be there for my son. It is crap that I can't rely on his father but it's just reality.
I hen also heard from friends that they are getting more on UC than they were on WTC and CTC. Benefit calculator on turn2us.org.

It's not good to be suffering from stress it will take its toll on your health. I hope you find something better thanks

Schoolsout2 Tue 08-Sep-20 07:24:36

@ScabbyHorse

I would obviously have to change the story when informing UC I would just say he’s moved away and I have no way of contact for him. It’s partly true if my manager won’t accommodate my working hours what can I do? What do other mums do with school aged kids?

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JustFrustrated Tue 08-Sep-20 09:48:16

We find jobs that are day time hours only
We out source childcare.
Same as families with both parents who both work.

I understand you're stressed. But you're refusing to take any option that isn't quit your job. That's not helpful.
You have to compromise somewhere. Better to compromise and gain reliability and not rely on a prick than compromise to fit with the prick.

Rollypollyrosie Tue 08-Sep-20 10:54:49

Hi OP, Citizens Advice have a dedicated Help to Claim Universal Credit team. They can advise you on all aspects of UC, complete benefit checks and what if calculations and help you understand your options. You can contact them on 0800 144 8 444. www.citizensadvice.org.uk/about-us/contact-us/contact-us/help-to-claim/

ThighthighOfthigh Tue 08-Sep-20 11:01:38

How about going off sick with stress whilst looking for a new job? Start thinking of yourself as having no childcare and look for a job based on that.

You'll get a worse hourly rate but it will be better than relying on the ex and you can go back to your old role in a few years.

You'll be worse off financially but your child is young enough to not mind second hand stuff.

You need a different job but don't panic, it's a very long working life and 5 years is just a small portion of it.

First ask your manager and stop getting into it with your ex, he's just a shit and you're the only person you can rely on.

Schoolsout2 Tue 08-Sep-20 12:22:15

JustFrustrated

We find jobs that are day time hours only
We out source childcare.
Same as families with both parents who both work.

I understand you're stressed. But you're refusing to take any option that isn't quit your job. That's not helpful.
You have to compromise somewhere. Better to compromise and gain reliability and not rely on a prick than compromise to fit with the prick.

I haven’t refused. I said I would speak to my boss to see if I can be transferred to another role. I’m willing to do a day time role. In my post I have said I pay out for school holidays play scheme cost. We are in a pandemic is working for a school realistic? They look as though they will shut down at this rate.

I would look for another job along side UC it’s not my life goal to go on UC but YOU wouldn’t be too thrilled either having to give up 9 years of your career either. It’s easier said than done other wise I would of found a job years ago.

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Schoolsout2 Tue 08-Sep-20 12:23:35

Rollypollyrosie

Hi OP, Citizens Advice have a dedicated Help to Claim Universal Credit team. They can advise you on all aspects of UC, complete benefit checks and what if calculations and help you understand your options. You can contact them on 0800 144 8 444. www.citizensadvice.org.uk/about-us/contact-us/contact-us/help-to-claim/

Thanks I’ll give them a call.

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Schoolsout2 Tue 08-Sep-20 12:24:31

@ThighthighOfthigh I’m waiting for a call from my GP later today. I’ll see how it goes.

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