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Panicking I won't be able to afford childcare!

(95 Posts)
thethingsiforgotinfrance Sat 13-Apr-13 19:57:00

I'm just seeking reassurance - or a reality check. I earn £43,000 a year and am panicking I will be really struggling to find my DC through nursery. The costs seem to be around £800 a month. Please tell me you all manage! grin

thethingsiforgotinfrance Sun 14-Apr-13 10:35:42

Oh no not at all! It wasn't anything huge, but it just has made me very aware that one adult in their own home with children who are very small has a lot of power and I know most would always behave professionally and kindly but I wouldn't be able to remove that worry.

The nursery is LOVELY smile

LouLouH Sun 14-Apr-13 10:29:57

Oh that really is a shame sorry to have brought it up. Make sure you research into your chosen nursery thoroughly. A lot of regulations have changed since September to ensure of childrens welfare.

thethingsiforgotinfrance Sun 14-Apr-13 10:25:16

Thanks Rowan; wondered where it had gone!

No, unfortunately Lou I'm not in that position. I feel uneasy about using a childminder due to a past experience (me, not one of my children of course) so it would have to be nursery for my own peace of mind.

LouLouH Sun 14-Apr-13 10:15:13

Sorry I haven't read all replies so this may have been suggested already. Do you know anyone else that will be having theor baby at the same time as tou who lives near you? You could look into a nanny share although I would make sure they are ofsted registered as then they will have paediatric first aid, CRB checked, safeguarding/child protection training and food hygiene training. Also more often than not a childminder will be cheaper than a nursery and if you find the right one they will provide LO with all theyn need.

RowanMumsnet (MNHQ) Sun 14-Apr-13 10:03:27


This isn't really an AIBU so we've moved it to Money Matters.

bigkidsdidit Sun 14-Apr-13 09:32:10

it is astonishing how quickly you adjust. You know how you spend what you earn and if you get a payrise it just disappears because you soend more? It's the same the other way (assuming you have a decent income obviously). We have rent £950 and childcare £600, thought we were struglging but wanted DC2. When I go back to work in January we'll be paying £1300 in childcare shock

we don't go out any more, haven't had a holiday in years, shop at lidl, all that sort of thing. It's bearable when you have a timeframe (only 3 years between maternity leave and school...)

the good thing is, when the children go to school it'll be like winning teh lottery! imagine!

ClutchingMyPearls Sun 14-Apr-13 09:26:51

You will make it work. I had the same income but bigger mortgage and a loan and credit car to pay as a single parent a few yrs back.

My monthly net pay was £2100 and £800 childcare plus the rest left me with just under £400 per month for food, clothing, any unexpected extras and the odd bottle of wine/takeaway with a friend.

I was pretty hard up but I just accepted that I wouldn't have nice stuff or holidays or anything frivolous. You get used to it! You just budget accordingly. Good luck!

thethingsiforgotinfrance Sun 14-Apr-13 08:56:20

Funnily enough I was doing a search on Mumsnet about giving birth alone - probably a bit premature because I haven't even had the treatment yet but never mind! Most of the ladies seemed to be in that position because their husbands had to look after their older children.

I did consider a doula but in all honesty funds are quite tight since obviously when I go off on ML I'll only have my maternity pay and also I think I'd feel a bit awkward having someone in the room with me for the duration - I would prefer I think to be on my own, apart from the midwives of course.

I do have friends who could help out in the immediate aftermath to give me a lift from the hospital home but most have their own jobs, partners and DCS so it could be a tricky one definitely.

BlueberryHill Sun 14-Apr-13 08:41:27

I would never say don't do it, children are great. Good luck, most things can be worked through and a balance found. Do build a network of support, through ante natal groups, playgroups etc - some are awful but mostly I found that people were lovely and provided a couple of 'me too' moments that helped.

Would you have any support around the birth? If not, does anyone else have any advice, a doula on standby in case you do have a CS or a difficult birth?

Good luck it is worth it.

OhHullitsOnlyMeYoni Sun 14-Apr-13 00:16:12

It always happens when you least need it to!
You will be fine. PM me if you ever want to chat about it, but you sound like you will cope fine.
Gingerbread is a good site for books and stuff too. Good luck. DD waking up so off to get her...

thethingsiforgotinfrance Sun 14-Apr-13 00:14:10

Ah but I do heart mumsnet!

In my nightmares I have triplets, a c-section, at least one (usually all 3) have a disability - oh and the washing machine breaks!

OhHullitsOnlyMeYoni Sun 14-Apr-13 00:10:49

I should have said 'rough bits' rather than 'only rough bits' - lack of sleep and no lie in for nearly 2yrs is a bit annoying too especially when your friends boast about lie in's or nights out with their partners/parents looking after DC

OhHullitsOnlyMeYoni Sun 14-Apr-13 00:08:51

OP you sound like me in many ways. Agree with you and Velvet it is much simpler to go it alone in many ways. Only rough bits are when you are ill with a small child - I had a tough time after an emergancy c-sect, followed by mastitis on top of what they thought was de quirvines (probably because tendons stretched in pg and I was doing so much heavy work). It was a tough first 6 months, but I knew I had done the right thing. DD is everything to me, and I think you will feel the same. I think Bisjo is just trying to make sure you have covered all of the negatives as well. As you probably know MN is not great at rose tinted glasses wink

thethingsiforgotinfrance Sat 13-Apr-13 23:58:08

bisjo but again, I know that from the start, I am going into this with my eyes very wide open.

I really have done my research, over a year of it, in terms of the best method of getting pregnant and finding a clinic and selecting a route. I have had to deal with snooty receptionists, with being told what I should do with my body, with being on one occasion, lied to about cost - none of that has been easy

I have saved, and saved, and saved some more. I have taken on promotions at work (partly for me, admittedly, but also to generate enough income to allow me to comfortably support myself and a DC.) I have in those promotions taken on difficult and challenging roles. I have had to deal with awkward, non-compliant and rude colleagues and some extremely delicate situations, alone.

On a more personal level, I have moved house, alone, many times, bought and sold property, again alone, four times to date. I have dealt with the car breaking down in the middle of nowhere, with no signal on my mobile phone (bloody Welsh mountains! grin) alone. I have travelled alone. I have organised funerals (sadly) alone. I have been in hospital and dealt with serious illness including one painful operation, alone.

Why? Because I have a schizoid personality type and enjoyed it? Hardly! Because there was no other choice! I didn't enjoy it but then I didn't dislike it either, in the same way that one doesn't enjoy breathing, you just DO it! grin

I'm not sure if I should be reading between the lines for some sort of "don't do it, you will hate it" or whether you're just sharing your experiences but I think a lot of new mothers, those in a relationship and those who are not, find it hard. It WILL be hard but as I say, that just doesn't strike me as a reason not to do it when the alternative is not to have a child at all.

difficultpickle Sat 13-Apr-13 23:48:45

Decisions in abstract are fun. I have a job where I have to make decisions all day every day, some involving large amounts of responsibility.

None of the work decisions can compare to those I have had to make since ds was born, nowhere near. Not having anyone to share the responsibility of the hardest decisions you will ever make in your life is tough.

There are times when I would have loved to be able to share that burden with someone who had the same responsibility as me but there isn't anyone else and much as my family and friends love me they cannot do that for me. Having freedom to choose is not always a freedom.

thethingsiforgotinfrance Sat 13-Apr-13 23:41:48

Thanks Velvet that does mean a lot smile I do have a flat (ha! one room, a shower and a kitchen you couldn't swing a cat in!) I own outright but I generate a small income from rent in that. The plan is for that to go in a savings account for the DC as well as finding fertility treatment in future for a brother or sister for DC1. Seems so strange to be thinking about DC2 but I would like more than one child ultimately. But, it will have to wait until DC1 is in school full time! grin

VelvetSpoon Sat 13-Apr-13 23:41:09

I agree TOTALLY re the decisions thing.

I was on my own with DS1 completely, his father has never met him.

I was with DS2's dad for several years.

Whilst yes on one level it was nice having another pair of hands etc, it was much easier doing it all alone. I didn't have help, but nor did I have criticism, or to discuss what I was doing and why, to try and agree decisions or negotiate over them. It's much harder when you have to consider another person's opinion, especially if that person is completely unreasonable

VelvetSpoon Sat 13-Apr-13 23:37:42

Thethings you have a great attitude to it all. I think it's all as complicated as you want to make it. As you say, you can't plan for every contingency.

I always had a couple of back up plans, so when I was pregnant with DS1, I saved lots, so I could cover 6 months off work easily, 12 months at a push (I was leaving the job I had at the time, so no mat pay etc, and no job to go back to, but I figured if I started looking soon enough, I'd find something inside 12 months).

Plan was if after about 9 months I hadn't found anything I would do evening/weekend work or deliver leaflets or whatever, and ultimately I knew I could always sell my house and get a flat or whatever if I really needed never came to that but it reassured me knowing that there were alternatives if my initial plans didn't work out.

thethingsiforgotinfrance Sat 13-Apr-13 23:35:06

I agree, with the first part at any rate. I think your second point though is one that highlights the difference between making an active choice to go it alone, from conception onwards, and those who find themselves in a situation not of their making, even those who split with their DCs father while in the early stages of pregnancy.

In all honesty, I'd rather make decisions myself (and without wanting to sound conceited, I'm an intelligent person and the decisions I make are usually sound ones) than have to consult with somebody else who may not share my opinions or agree that something is or is not the right thing to do. Yes, it's easier to share things and so on IF the person you are in a relationship with is a kind, rational and sensible person but all too often they are not as just a quick skim of the relationship board here shows.

difficultpickle Sat 13-Apr-13 23:28:35

The other thing to plan is that you really won't be able to plan everything. Things will happen and you will just have to work out how to deal with them and sometimes you will be faced with almost impossible decisions to make. The hardest thing about being a single parent is having to make every decision about everything yourself.

thethingsiforgotinfrance Sat 13-Apr-13 23:23:09

Have done so bisjo which, along with saving for fertility treatment was no mean feat, believe me. I've planned and accounted for what I can plan for and account for.

Sorry to hear your DS was unwell flowers

difficultpickle Sat 13-Apr-13 23:17:48

I'd also planned to go back to work when ds was 6 months old but couldn't as he was too ill and I had to get a bank loan to fund my ML (I couldn't live on £0 income). As you are planning ahead I would plan to cover a year's ML even if you choose not to take it all.

difficultpickle Sat 13-Apr-13 23:15:38

I signed up for NCT classes but never got to them as ds arrived 7 weeks early (another possibility to add into the mix). I ended up meeting up with what should have been my group and some of them became my best friends and were my lifeline during what turned out to be the toughest time of my life (not child-related). I went to various mums and babies groups too but found it hard to fit in with the other mums and their wonderfully supportive husbands.

thethingsiforgotinfrance Sat 13-Apr-13 23:13:39

Velvet I agree with that. I am a member of another forum and a number of ladies who have partners/spouses working shifts are complaining about how lonely they feel in the evening - bizarrely they are describing my 'normal' life! grin

I'm so glad your DS is better.

I don't doubt many challenges and obstacles will be set in my way but that's just life: you find a way over or around them. After all, we could all find hundreds of reasons not to have children but they mean nothing compared to the bleak thought of life never having had them.

VelvetSpoon Sat 13-Apr-13 23:10:19

You will manage. There is something about knowing from the outset you will be doing it alone that makes it easier somehow, I know that was the case for me.

When I had DS1 I had no emergency childcare. I don't have any family, all my friends worked FT and none had DC. I couldn't get to any antenatal classes etc so never got to meet any other mums to be beforehand (although tbh it was such a 2 parent family area I would have felt uncomfortable going!). Within 2 weeks of going back to work, DS got seriously ill and admitted to hospital, and I had to take a week off work. Not the best start, but I figured after that it could only get better (and it did!)

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