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Going back to work after years as an SAHM - feeling anxious

(5 Posts)
ChristinaF Wed 01-Jul-09 13:43:13

I am 38 and have been a SAHM for nearly 10 years now since the birth of DD1 (I also have DD2, 7 and DD3 nearly 2). However during that time I have retrained for a new career and have a job lined up starting in September. The job is in many ways ideal - it is close to home, I think the hours will be reasonable and there are lots of working mums and I think I will enjoy it. However until I am fully qualified in 2 years time I will have to work full time.

I have now started looking at childcare options and realise that if I want to break even I can only afford the very newly qualified nannies (can't do CMs or nursery as need someone who can pick up from school, help with homework etc). I am feeling very despondent, conflicted and anxious.

I have always wanted to have a successful career and never really planned on staying home so long. I wish I could work part time and I'm really going to miss DD3. I think if I don't go back now it will be very hard to break into this field again later on and I don't want to be at home for the rest of my life, on the other hand the costs in terms of money and missing the little one are going to be very high. Any advice would be great.

scarymamma Wed 01-Jul-09 22:12:48

Hi Christina - I was in a very similar situation to yours. We're similar ages and I was a SAHM for 8 years until I started teacher training a few years back. Because on ITT you get just a very basic maintenance grant (luckily I'm a scientist so got paid a small bursary as well) it just covered the cost of employing an Au Pair.
Yes, I found it really hard - my own feelings totally mirrored yours. But it did make me realise that I definately didn't want to work full time until the DC were a lot older. Luckily I've managed to find a 0.4 time teaching post. It means working 2 evenings a week so I have childcare for two evenings. Don't rule out CM's - there are several who collect kids from our school and they treat the kids in their care as if they're their own - i.e get them to do their homework etc...
You can only give it a go and see how you feel after a couple of months. Take heart from the fact that 1000's of other Mums work full time but if you decide it's not right for you then it's not the end of the world. Something else - a new opportunity will turn up. Fingers crossed for you - I hope it all works out OK

ChristinaF Wed 01-Jul-09 23:41:53

Thanks for replying. It's nice to know that other people have been in a similar situation.

mumnosbest Fri 03-Jul-09 14:54:08

I know just how you feel. I'm returning to work as a teacher in September too after 4 years at home. Luckily for me I don't have childcare worries as DH will be at home. I'm not sure why you've ruled out a CM though? I'm currently a CM, do school pickups and homework, as well as loads of other stuff. CMs have a really bad reputation as glorified babysitters or the woman trailing 8 kids to and from school. There are loads of really good, qualified CMs about. In fact one reason I'm returning to teaching is because I feel I'm currently doing the same job but for less pay and without backup.
Maybe it would be worth your while reconsidering a CM. Either way good luck with your new job!

ChristinaF Fri 03-Jul-09 17:27:43

Thanks. Yes the reason I wasn't considering a CM is because I used one one morning a week for DD3 earlier this year (while I was studying) and the CM was very nice (and recommended by a mum at school) but she had so many mindees - after school she literally had about 10 children squeezed into quite a small house. It was ok for one morning a week although she always had the telly on so I guess it put me off. But you are right I'm sure there are many good ones so I will look into it, although I think it is more relaxing for children to be in their own home IYKWIM.

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