Am I being selfish taking a whole year off work?(3 Posts)
I am currently on ML with DC2 and planning to take a whole year off. With DC1 I went back to work when she was 7 months old and was fine about it - she settled well at nursery (she goes 3 days a week) and has always been happy there. We can luckily (just) afford for me to take the full year, and also I can't imagine how I'm going to manage when I do go back to work (4 days per week) with dropping and collecting 2 from nursery and fitting in everything else that has to be done. My DH does what he can but works 4 very long days so that he can look after DCs one day, so the days he works he leaves the house at 6.30 and isn't home until after 6. The reason I feel a bit selfish is that after the time spent doing housework, dropping and collecting DD from nursery, feeding and changing DS, cooking meals for us and preparing food for DS there is very little time left in the day for actually playing with him. I do try to involve him in what I'm doing - talking to him and moving him around as I go round the house, but I wonder if he'd get more attention at nursery. I really don't want to have to go back to work at all (and no matter how we do the sums being a SAHM just isn't an option) and I wonder if I'm taking the full year for the right reasons. Any thoughs or experiences appreciated.
First of all, I really wouldn't worry about the amount of time you spend playing with your child. If he's with you while you're doing jobs around the place and you're talking to him, and he's not stuck in one place all day, he'll probably be fine. And then when he gets bigger, normal household jobs have lots of potential for stimulating little ones, e.g. sorting clothes by colour, feeling textures of different foods, etc.
I know there's plenty of good quality nurseries around that do a fantastic job of looking after children, but as his mother you really mustn't get into thinking that someone could be doing a better job than you.
Birdy I am just coming to the end of my year with DD3 (back to work on Wed <sob>). I have not spent a huge amount of time playing with her but she comes everywhere with me, I talk to her all the time and she 'helps' me do things - just like you with DS. I don't know how old your DS is, but I've noticed that DD3 is more likely to do her own thing these days while I work (like playing with her sisters' toys in their room). Yes, she will get different sorts of stimuli when she goes to my CM, but that doesn't mean she is suffering while she is with me!
Taking a year off because you love your son and want to be with him is a 'right reason' in my book, and your DD is getting to spend a bit more time with you too, I imagine. So relax and enjoy your little ones before they get old enough not to want to be seen with you
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