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Don't need to return to work but want to

(24 Posts)
Jewel77 Wed 09-Feb-11 22:53:25

I know I am being a spoiled brat but I really want to return to work after a year of maternity leave. I have twins and although we had a very dramatic start I have enjoyed being their stay at home mum but I've totally given myself away in the meantime. I have rarely been by myself for 8 months.

My partner is very clear that as we can afford for me to give up my career I should do it as it is in the girls best interest. I do appreciate that the girls would be best off with me but I am really hesitant to give up a career at a company that I really enjoy and getting paid well. My employer is allowing me to go back part time and they even promoted me since I've been on leave. This isn't a job I want to give up lightly. Especially as we are having no more children and they will start school before we know it.

My question is have any of you chose to go back to work (wihout the support of your partner) even when you didn't "have" to. How has it been going?

I am sure if I "had" to go back to work I wouldn't be feeling so strongly, I just feel like a spoiled child.

OP’s posts: |
pushmepullyou Wed 09-Feb-11 23:04:11

I went back to work primarily because I needed to for myself.

I am a much better mum to my DD than I would have been had I stayed at home as I found myself becoming quite depressed with the lack of mental stimulation and adult company.

Plus I have worked really hard to get to where I am now and don't want to throw it away for the sake of a couple of years at home.

I personally think if you are lucky enough to have a job you love and a flexible employer then you would be foolish to give it up if that is not what you want to do.

IF you would not be happy being a full time SAHM then it is not necessarily going to be best for your daughters either. How many days are you thinking of going back? Can you look in to some childcare options and see if you can find a solution that you are happy with for those days? I do a mixture of nursery and grandparents and my DD is very happy in both situations.

givingmeaheadache Thu 10-Feb-11 05:25:08

Yes, I agree with the above.. if you get the right childcare, then it can work out really well. My little boy gets a lot from his nursery environment and from grandparental care, and the break leaves me with more energy to look after him on the days I am not at work. So staying at home is not necessarily in any-one's best interests - your's or theirs!
You are right to be thinking a few years ahead too.

The key is getting the best childcare you can - be it family, nursery, nanny, childminder. There are many options and it is a personal choice - I would start looking into it if you haven't already...

onimolap Thu 10-Feb-11 06:39:11

If you want to go back, then you should go back.

Why does your DP think it is in the family's best interests for you not to? It is important that you reach agreement on the major things, and this is a biggie. If you know the specific things that concern him about your return, then you know what you need to work on.

Some things that it may be useful to point out to him are:additional security of two incomes over one should anything happen to him / his job, the consequences of your not returning (loss of career, not just this job; difficulty of finding alternative), how much easier it is to find good childcare small children than once they're primary age, that working part-time still gives you oodles of time with them, it's a perfectly normal thing to do.

If he can't see the biggest reason - that it is what you want to do, and something for which you have made sensible arrangements - then you have a much wider problem.

Violethill Thu 10-Feb-11 06:40:28

How can your partner possibly say that the 'best' thing is for you to be at home all the time? There is no clear evidence either way, though it certainly seems to be the case that children of working parents have more successful outcomes in terms of education. Also, its common sense that if a sahp is getting bored and frustrated, they will be a less effective parent than if they are stimulated and fulfilled. Its about quality not quantity. As a teacher I've come across loads of mothers who don't work, and have sometimes never worked for years, and they aren't necessarily better parents for it!
Judging by how you feel, returning to work IS the right thing for your family- enjoy

Decorhate Thu 10-Feb-11 07:21:59

If you love your job I agree you should go back. Know lots of people who effectively spent all their earnings on childcare when their dcs were little because they wanted to keep their job going part-time.

I am about to go back fulltime after several years if being a sahm & my new job pays less than half what I used to earn. I was in a different position to you in that I couldn't keep my old job going for various reasons. From a financial pov I wish I could have.

I did go back to work for a while after my first dc. Dh was very keen for me to give up. Few years down the line he was feeling the burden of being sole breadwinner & nagging me to get a job again!

CharlotteBronteSaurus Thu 10-Feb-11 07:53:09

what push me said
i am a rubbish full-time SAHM (have tried it once when dd1 was 18-24mo)
working part-timre allows me to spend most of the week with the dds, but still have some time doing something different
i also agree that if you want to go back when they start school, it may be worth keeping your hand in in some way, as the 5 years passes very quickly indeed. and in this econi=omic climate it's easier to keep a job than get a new one.

LadyintheRadiator Thu 10-Feb-11 08:08:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Thistledew Thu 10-Feb-11 08:14:04

If your DP is not happy about the children being cared for outside the home, is there anything to stop him working part time so he can care for them when you are at work? Or is it only his own right to have a career that he sees as more important than staying at home with the children? Don't let him bully you into choices that are not right for you. The children will be fine cared for by someone who chides to do that as their profession, but if your DP does not see that as the best choice for you as a family, then he needs to step up and do his share.

racmac Thu 10-Feb-11 08:29:37

I am in this situation - my ds's are now slightly older - little one is nearly 4 and i have been a SAHM for 4 years.
I have decided to return to work and dh is not happy - but i have said tough I need to do this for myself - i cant imagine in another few years when they are at senior school and leave the house at 8 in the morning and dont return till late and are off with their friends - where is my life?

I have basically told dh what is happening and there is not a lot he can say - he understands im bored and frustrated at home - that does not make a happy mummy.
He has resigned himself to the situation and i start work Monday
I spent a long time studying to be able to do what I do and I loved my job - Im now having panic that i cant remember anything and I will be crap but thats beside the point

jamaisjedors Thu 10-Feb-11 09:35:09

Is he worried about your children or does he not want to have to pick up the slack with them while you are working?

Because working full-time and not having to worry about your DC because your OH is looking after them is fairly comfortable I'm sure.

Guildenstern Thu 10-Feb-11 09:46:15

I agree totally that if your DH feels it's important for your children to have a parent at home, then he should take steps to become that parent.

He should NOT be trying to guilt you into it.

You are not a spoiled child. You want what your husband already has - an interesting job and good career prospects in addition to your children. What could be fairer?

eastegg Thu 10-Feb-11 10:13:17

Looks like everyone's saying the same thing but I'm going to chime in anyway. I think you should definitely go back to work, jewel. It great that your employer sounds like they value you and that you're on a salary that's enough to justify paying for childcare. These things are precious, especially in the current jobs climate, and you should make the most of a career you've worked hard for.

i didn't 'have' to go back but there was never any question that I would because I'd put so much effort into a very vocational job. My problem now is that work has gone very quiet (no salary, self-employed and I only earn when I work) so I'm struggling to earn enough to even cover childcare for one child and we've got another on the way! So I could be in the position of being forced not to work, which I don't like the idea of at all. But at least I've kept my hand in in the meantime and could maybe move into something else. Anyway, I should start my own thread about that... The point is you're not in that position and should make the most of it.

Also, what do we mean when we talk about 'needing' to work? You might not feel the need now but what if circs change in these uncertain times? Surely your DH's salary and job security cannot be assumed for all time. If it can then I want to know what he does! Or what if (just an example) you decide you want to send the kids to private school? You never know. Has DH thought about this sort of thing?

Vintagepommery Thu 10-Feb-11 10:19:32

I did - although I did have the support of my partner (in principal if not always in practice)

Was made redundant a couple of years after that so have been a SAHM as well and would second what Decorhate says about getting back into work after a few years off - the jobs you get offered are likely to be considerably less well paid. And part-time work is thin on the ground as well.

I think in your position - job you like, part-time you'd be mad to give it up.

Is his job really that stable that he has no worries about redundancy?

Jewel77 Thu 10-Feb-11 12:01:32

Thanks for all your helpful words ladies. It is good to hear I am not being unreasonable. I wish he would understand that I am thinking long term. Something he has never been able to do. I'm sure he wouldn't be happy with me staying at home while the girls are in school!

I am starting to think we are having a serious relationship issue about this whole thing. Maybe my views on women being equal does not equal his views on the world. It is sad that it has taken 7 years to realise that we may not be compatible after all.

My partner does part own a business, so they would need to make a lot of people redundant before he would start to be concerned about his small ownership of the business. He has said that he might be willing to try to do part-time, but he doesn't really want to do it. I think he is more offering it to make a point that he is willing to "sacrifice for the good of the family" where he feels I'm unwilling to. He says that he is disappointed in me as I am not making the girls the number 1 priority.

I feel like me being happy will in turn make the time I spend with the girls that much better. Right now the relentless nature of looking after twins every day is starting to make me feel depressed. I love them, but I wouldn't say I am being a stellar mother. I just get by everyday and I wouldn't say I am encouraging a great amount of development. This is one of the points that my partner brings up a lot. That leaving them with a nanny might hurt their development. I think this is ridiculous, assuming I find someone good.

I constantly get that he was raised by a SAHM, therefore it is best. I wasn't and I think I have turned out just fine.

Don't get me wrong I love the girls so much, and I am sure it isn't going to be easy with the lack of sleep, long commute, etc. But I really feel like this in the long run I will be better off.

Thanks again. Looks like a lot more discussion is needed. If anyone knows a good nanny in Bucks- please let me know !

OP’s posts: |
melrose Thu 10-Feb-11 12:12:01

Go back to work, and see how it goes. That way you are still leaving your options open. If you go back now and decide 6 months down the line it is not working, you can resign and be a SAHM. You cannot change your mind so easily if you don't go back.

I would also talk to your DH seriously about reducing his hours. When we had DS1 my DH and I both worked 4 days and it worked so well. Dh was not sure, but we now have 2 DS and a 3rd on the way and he has such a good relationship
with the boys because he has always had time at home on his own with them on his day off. It also means that we really can share the childcare 50/50 and he doesn't just get to do the fun bits at the weekend! He would agree it is teh best thing we ever did and has no effect on his career. in fact I went back to work FT a year ago so he now works less than me (although I will be trying to change that after no.3!)

I ahev the greatest respect for all SAHM but I could not ahve done it!

Sleeplesssister Thu 10-Feb-11 19:40:30

Are you me?

Came online intending to post about exactly the same issue - currently on mat leave from a good job, don't have to return to work for financial reasons, DH wants me to be a SAHM, but I love my job, have just been promoted, and worked a long time to get where I am in my career. My advice would be to give going back to work a go - if you don't at least try then won't you always be wondering whether you could have "had it all". Having said that, I know that it is easier said than done if your DH is against it and it can be a really emotive issue - my DH is dead set against me returning, and it is going to cause major resentment if I do go back (I was told by him the other day that my wanting to go back to work was selfish...), but my current thinking is that won't you start to resent him if you go with what he wants and stay at home? And won't that cause more problems in the long term? Tricky tricky tricky.

Jewel77 Thu 10-Feb-11 22:21:31

Sleeplesssister- I agree about the resentment bit. I think I am just going to give it a go and if it doesn't work out like melrose said- I can give it up then. I think either way there are going to be problems, so at least I am trying to do what is best for me-- and ultimately the girls.

If I don't go back and then I need to find a job in a few years time, I am going to harbour some serious resentment. I have good job security where I am at and I get paid well. I have worked very hard to get to where I am at in my firm and I don't want to let it go to waste.

My partner is now saying that he will give into me and let me do what I want to do. I know this isn't the end of it. He said he isn't happy. I figure that once I get childcare sorted that we are both happy with and we eventually trust someone- things will change (fingers crossed).

As long as I can find a good nanny, hopefully this will all work out for the best in the end.

Good luck

OP’s posts: |
Jewel77 Thu 10-Feb-11 22:22:57

I meant to say- I am getting the "selfish" comment a lot right now too!

If you need to vent- send me a message!

OP’s posts: |
Violethill Thu 10-Feb-11 22:47:16

He may well change his mind when he sees that the children are fine and that you are more fulfilled.

cakeywakey Thu 10-Feb-11 22:55:43

Going back to work part-time gave me back my identity after DD1, being at home isn't the best thing for everyone. And having children doesn't mean sacrificing yourself and your identity on the altar of motherhood. You're still you.

If you have a choice - which you are lucky to have - you have to do what is best for you and your children. I'm a much better Mummy and happier wife when I'm working. Hope it all works out smile

Thistledew Fri 11-Feb-11 06:55:51

Have your DP's explained why it is that they are not being selfish in going out to work? After all, by working full time themselves they are not only depriving their children of care from them but also depriving you of the right to chose to go to work.

There is nothing selfish about choosing to go out to work. I would not stand for my DP speaking to me like that.

jamaisjedors Fri 11-Feb-11 11:33:38

Jesus, I am really shock by the "selfish" comment.

That alone would make me go back full-time quick smart (but I am a contrary so and so)!

I totally agree with THistledew.

wildspinning Fri 11-Feb-11 21:01:15

I too am pretty shocked by the "selfish" comments. I doubt your DP we would last long at the childcare coalface if he had to do it every day. Why is the drudge (and a lot of it is drudge) solely your responsibility?

Also, you say "once I get childcare sorted" and "as long as I can find a good nanny". Surely it should be "*we*"? Choosing childcare for your babies should be a joint decision. Your DP needs childcare in order to work too!

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