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Working from home

(17 Posts)
Steeplearningcurve Thu 21-Jul-11 22:44:31

I'm starting back at work in a month when dd will be 15wo. I have reduced my hours to 30 a week which I hope to do over two office days and the rest from home. Does anyone have any experience of working at home with a young baby? Would like some reassurance that it is possible!

StealthPolarBear Thu 21-Jul-11 22:46:20

Are you not planning childcare?
Not possible IMO unless you have a very flexible job that can be fitted round nap time and evenings, and even then it will be difficult. Why aren't you getting childcare? Do your emplyers know this - what do they think?

Steeplearningcurve Thu 21-Jul-11 22:51:35

My mum is going to look after dd on the two office days which will make up 19hrs - luckily I only live a short walk from work. I was hoping the rest would fit around naps/evenings. She settles well from 7 till 10 most nights so suspect that will be my main opportunity. Fortunately they are relaxed about when the work is done as long as hours add up IYSWIM.

StealthPolarBear Thu 21-Jul-11 22:54:31

Ah right, that;s a bit more realistic. Do you have a DH/DP?

Steeplearningcurve Thu 21-Jul-11 22:58:21

No. That's partly why I'm keen to start back at work so soon, working towards a pay rise and want to able to provide for her better.

StealthPolarBear Thu 21-Jul-11 23:01:49

OK smile Over the summer you could even pay some older children to be "helpers" and they could entertain her for a few hours while you work? Worth a try - they get to play with a baby and paid, you get to work while still supervising and paying a small fee, she gets some new playmates.

Grumpla Thu 21-Jul-11 23:03:19

I'd say that is possible but difficult, and you will probably have to be prepared to do the majority of those hours at night when she is asleep.

IME work does not happen during the day with small people around.

Steeplearningcurve Thu 21-Jul-11 23:07:12

I like that idea. She Is very settled in terms of feeding etc but likes to be entertained! Thanks for the suggestion smile

midnightexpress Thu 21-Jul-11 23:11:18

Hmm, I'd think it will be a struggle to do it without childcare help of some sort. I'm self-employed and work from home, but while the DC were young I've only worked when they were at nursery very part-time because working with them around would be impossible. I do know one person who does it (her youngest child is about 15 months now and she's been working again for about a year I think) - I think she does end up having a lot of very late nights getting stuff finished. Do you have very fixed deadlines or more flexibility? That will make a difference, I think.

Dawser Fri 22-Jul-11 12:12:35

Message deleted by Mumsnet.

venusandmars Mon 25-Jul-11 12:43:35

Well, it could be possible, but it could also be very hard work. Can you can do your work at anytime of the day or night, or are there limited times when you can do it because you may have to speak to people?

You should expect that over the next couple of years your dd's patterns and needs will change considerably, and you will need a very flexible work shedule to allow for this. From what you say, in addition to 2 very long days at work you have another 11 hours to fit in. To do this you will have to manage almost 3 hours on each of another 4 days, leaving you one day 'off' per week.

I do not think it is reasonable to expect a child who is awake to amuse themselves for longer than the very briefest times (especially once they start to become mobile) so I would assume that you can only get work done when your dd is asleep. It sounds as though you have a fortunate sleeping pattern at the moment but if this gets disrupted by teething, being unsettled etc, then can you (on occasion) work much later into the night, and do you have the stamina to do this?

Steeplearningcurve Mon 25-Jul-11 14:38:12

I am a bit concerned about what happens when her sleep patterns change. In lucky that I cope well on little sleep- bit of an insomniac when I'm stressed and prior to being pregnant I had months when I coped on a couple of hours a night and still worked full time. I do understand what you mean about changing needs though. I am very lucky that my mum doesn't work and wants to help, she actually offered to babysit five days a week originally but I don't want to impose on her if I can manage another way. If things do get more difficult she would be able to give me more help.

I guess if it is a disaster I will jut have to reduce my hours more and accept we will be living in a small flat until she starts school. Much as I want to build on my career for both of us I realise that the early years go quickly and if I have to cut back on work for now, so be it.

motherinferior Mon 25-Jul-11 14:41:43

I'm really sorry, but I don't think this is a very good idea if you don't have childcare. I can only now work from home when my kids are around (like today) having two, aged eight and 10...and you also need to think of your own energy level. I don't think working at night is a good solution, especially at a point in your life when you are quite drained with a small child. You need some slack time!

ladykay Mon 25-Jul-11 17:05:21

Well that sounds kind of ideal to me - I did this because I had to. 2 - 3 days in the workshop then up to 10 hours at home (sometimes more near a deadline). Naptimes and evenings with the midnight hours being pushed at deadline time. I had to be very efficient and force myself to start working straight after DS1's bedtime but as I say I had to, and I had no childcare (I couldn't have afforded it) and no family help either so if you have this almost unlimited offer of free help then you can see how you go and use your Mum when you need. I had a rule about never working (except housework) when he was awake and so it was only my time that was compromised. I may well be taking up this working pattern again in a couple of months. Good luck!

Bechine Mon 01-Aug-11 18:53:05

Message deleted by Mumsnet.

LovetheHarp Mon 01-Aug-11 19:49:32

I work from home and my employer is also very flexible, but I still use childcare, although I guess a lot more reduced in hours than if I was working in the office.

My youngest daughter (22 months) goes to nursery from 8:15/8:30 til 2:30 three days a week (I work 3 days a week). This means I get 6 hours work, often I don't even take a break for lunch and then do a bit in the evening. Sometimes I work in such a focused way in those 6 hours (no coffee/lunch/chat breaks!) I managed to get most of the work done, but sometimes I don't and I have to work nights - and that is hard.

So I would say that your plan is very very unrealistic, I'm afraid. Maybe an aupair or mother's help would be a good idea, as you will be "around?".

Or even a short day at nursery, even if it is just mornings and then a nap.
Hope this helped a bit.

Steeplearningcurve Mon 01-Aug-11 20:29:07


Just wanted to thank everyone for the advice, it's good to hear what solutions other people have found. I started back today, my boss has agreed that we can see how things go and review my hours if necessary and my mum is on stand by for extra babysitting!

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