Single parent, very long days at work, any advice on surviving it?(6 Posts)
I'm going back to finish a professional qualification in September which is a placement with an employer. They've been very clear that I'm not allowed to have childcare problems (ulp!, I'm making backup plans for everything, at least I've got warning, but I don't have any family in the area), they've also said that I'm not allowed to knock off early or start late - but the commute is 1h30 each way. This really is the only place that will take me and I can't afford to make a bad impression - and I obviously don't have any rights as they're not an employer.
DS is 5 and has special needs ad I'm supposed to take him to lots of appointments and go to lots of meetings about statementing etc but I've no idea how I'll achieve that through the Autumn term at the moment. DS will probably hate being away from me for 11h a day. I'm somewhat disorganised at the best of times. But we've only got to survive until Christmas. The plan is to only look for p/t local work after that.
Any tips on getting through it?
If it's only until Christmas get a nanny. The cost will be horrid but maybe you can cope for just a few months? Otherwise, I don't see how you can manage. What childcare are you using at the moment? What are your plans for half-term? An aupair might work but it depends very much on what your son's needs are. Even a nanny is going to struggle with attending meetings on your behalf though and it may not even be accepted by the childcare professionals.
Nanny's can be ofsted registered and therefore tax credits claimed for them if that eases the burden, it's the only way you can not have childcare issues I would say.
I'll have to look into whether I can get the money back through tax credits - I had assumed that I couldn't as it's not strictly 'work' - but I'm self-employed and it's certainly part of that. Hmm. I'll look into it, as a nanny would be perfect for DS. No childcare at the moment as he won't cope in a group setting very well so I'm fitting work into school hours.
Oh I'm so sympathetic to this. I work 5 day a week and commute is also 2-3 hours a day traffic dependent. it's waful. I am actually really sad about the fact that I only see my 10 month old daughter for a few yorus a day wehn she is tired and grumpy and we have about 30 minutes a day to play (not including eating (I dont cook during the week, just warm stuff I've made at weekends and frozen), breastfeeding, bath, nail cutting etc). We too have no back up childcare if CM or LO is sick. Partner has no parents/relatives except an aunt in her late 60s who is 90 minutes drive away and my parents are 2 hours drive away - and one of them works full time anyway, so basically one of us will have to take unpaid leave in this situation. I have no A/L left this year as I have had to book the final week I had saved for when the CM is away and until I know whather I've got the 4 day week I requested or not I can't take the remaining leave that I will have if they say no, as I won't have any leave left if they say yes and I do get the 4 day week. Quite frankly it's crap working full time and commuting several hours a day anyway but add a baby or young child to that and it's not sustainable for long. You might just manage till Xmas, but if you can't get part time work and have to go full time it will be very difficult. I realise that I haven't really got any advice for you though - just much, much sympathy!
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