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Leave London or stay.

(39 Posts)
SandyBeachandtheDeckchairs Tue 24-Oct-17 18:19:48

Hope you can help, can't decide what to do for the best...

I am a teacher, so work very long hours (leave house at 6.30am, home by 6.15pm), don't earn a huge amount though. DH works for a charity where he can wfh one day a week, but his work is very pressured. DD is 10. At the moment DH does all school drop offs, and I pick her up from ASC once a week. My parents pick her up and drop her off two evenings and one morning a week.
DH is finding doing drop offs 4 mornings a week pretty disruptive to his working day (flexible working is by formal arrangement only0.
So the choices are these:
1) We have enough equity in our flat to afford to buy a house outright near the coast, so I could get a part-time job and do all the drop-offs and pick ups myself. DH would then have to commute, but his time would be his own.
2) We stay where we are and DH gets more and more stressed, until DD is old enough to take herself to and from school on her own. We don't have space for an au pair.
Benefits of 1) I'd love to move out of London and have more space and fresher air. Schools are OK too, but not as 'good' as London ones. Benefits of 2) We have some lovely friends here and I would be very happy for DD to go to our local school.
I really can't work out which would be best! Help me mumsnet oracles.

tallstork Tue 24-Oct-17 18:25:15

Depends on what your priorities are and exactky how long the commute would be?

DP did 1.5 hour commute into London but was more like 2hrs 15 door to door. It was soul destroying, not recommended!

I moved out of London and miss my friends. We should have moved somewhere easier to commute back.

I like that life is less hassle and we have a house with a garden not a flat
What areas are you thinking of?

titchy Tue 24-Oct-17 18:28:35

Depends where on coast - Brighton for instance has the Trainline from hell - a scheduled 1.5 hours will more often than not be 2.5. Don't underestimate the stress of commuting.

If she's 10 surely she'll be taking herself to school in a year? Can you reduce hours?

MonkeyJumping Tue 24-Oct-17 18:29:47

I wouldn't even consider leaving good schools, friends and your family support just so DH can avoid another year of drop offs.
she'll be able to take herself to secondary school surely?

In the meantime can a friend/neighbour split the school run with you? Or could a childminder take her?

SandyBeachandtheDeckchairs Tue 24-Oct-17 18:33:49

Hmm, yes it would only be a year, you're right, sometimes it's hard to see that long-term when you're suffering in the present.
I can't reduce my hours enough for it to be meaningful, but I could possibly see if I can pay a friend to drop her off in the mornings.

Mediumred Tue 24-Oct-17 18:34:22

If she's 10 won't she be going to school pretty soon by herself? At our London primary, and most others, they expect them to start walking there in y6 in preparation for secondary school. But I appreciate you might be a bit far from the school and also her walk, and hence your husband's drop-off, aren't the only factors.

Mediumred Tue 24-Oct-17 18:35:19

Oops, sorry, cross-post!

Ttbb Tue 24-Oct-17 18:36:19

I would leave London even if it didn't make your life better. No place to raise children. If you are worried about schools why don't you just buy a smaller house a send her to a a private school/get a tutor?

SandyBeachandtheDeckchairs Tue 24-Oct-17 18:40:15

My worry is not the getting to school part, its the being on her own at home for an hour in the morning and 3 in the evening sad

YokoReturns Tue 24-Oct-17 18:41:36

We left London before DC - I don’t regret it one bit. I’m a teacher (secondary) and it’s far less stressful out here!

unlimiteddilutingjuice Tue 24-Oct-17 18:45:58

I moved from London to Glasgow and love it. I actually came on this thread to say "Move"
But your post is a little confusing. Its seems like a huge change to make over a relatively minor logistical challenge. There must be other options besides "DH gets more and more stressed" and "We move out of London"
Is there a childminder locally that DH could drop DD with before and after school? Is there an after school club? Could you set up reciprical playdates with DD's firends that would involve her going to a friends house after school sometimes?
Is there other stuff your not telling us?
In general, I do understand the desire to make life less complicated and stressful so I wonder if other aspects of London life are getting you down?

SandyBeachandtheDeckchairs Tue 24-Oct-17 18:55:09

Well unlimited since you ask! I have wanted to move out of London for ages, because the older I get the more stressful I find it. Also we live in a tiny flat with little hope of being able to afford somewhere much bigger. Moving out of London would bring us space, financial security, fresh air etc. However, as I said we have lovely friends here and good schools, so it would be a hard choice to make. There is an ASC where DD goes one day and we have a reciprocal arrangement that takes care of an other day, but these arrangements just cover after school, no-one seems to want to a grumpy child dumped on them at 7am! My job is also incredibly full on, so I would love the opportunity to work part-time. DH commuting is the fly in the ointment because it will be a long day for him. Argh! I don't know what to do for the best!

BowlingShoes Tue 24-Oct-17 19:01:28

Would you definitely find part time work? Have you seen positions advertised? I am a teacher and it is difficult to find a part-time position unless negotiated from your current role.

unlimiteddilutingjuice Tue 24-Oct-17 19:04:26

In that case, I say go for it!
It's difficult to explain just how much easier life is outside the capital. But everything I go back to visit I think "Fuck, this is really stressful. I can't believe I used to live like this all the time"

LillyLollyLandy Tue 24-Oct-17 19:06:01

I don’t agree that London is “no place for kids”. I moved to London from Glasgow and have 3 kids. They have so many fabulous experiences and resources at their fingertips.

I do agree however that if living in a particular location doesn’t work for your family, then you should consider your options. I have friends who have moved out of London and have loved it. I have friends who moved out and hated it. I also have friends who have always lived in “less stressful” areas who are bored senseless. You need to think carefully about what’s right for your family.

Don’t underestimate the stress of a commute into London. As PP have said, it can be a logistical nightmare. What about looking in Kent or Hertfordshire?

AlcoholicsUnanimous Tue 24-Oct-17 19:07:28

The job market outside of London is very different. A part time job that accommodates school drop offs/ pick ups is the holy grail, so may no be that easy to come by. Schools in London are better than in the rest of England. It also provides children with lots of opportunities, children outside of London can't go to all of the amazing free museums, the theatre, beautiful parks etc so easily. Above all that though, I wouldn't leave boa good support network for anything.

cestlavielife Tue 24-Oct-17 19:11:16

Why is dropping off so difficult?
It s no more than many parents do.
How is that more tricky than a 1.5 hr commute?
And you lose friends and family support.
Where does dh want to live ?

PotteringAlong Tue 24-Oct-17 19:12:34

I'm a part time teacher and I cannot see anyway of teaching part time in a way that means you can do all the pick up and drop offs.

snowgirl1 Tue 24-Oct-17 19:15:56

Isn't there a breakfast club your DH could drop your DD at a bit earlier, so the drop off isn't as disruptive to his working day?

donquixotedelamancha Tue 24-Oct-17 19:15:59

My 4 bedroom house, in a naice area, with a huge garden and a football pitch (just a small one) cost £250,000. That wouldn't buy a shed in central London.

Move 'oop north. Your teacher's salary will be very similar. Lots of work in the charities sector. Your cost of living will plummet as your standard of living rises.

teaandtoast Tue 24-Oct-17 19:18:37

I don't understand why morning drop offs are so bad? He's only doing 4 and presumably works from home one of those days. So only 3 where he's going on to work?

On the day he works from home does he not get in a couple of hours work before the school drop off?

SandyBeachandtheDeckchairs Tue 24-Oct-17 19:18:43

alcoholic Re part-time work, I don't know if there are many part-time jobs around in the new area, but I thought I could work as a TA maybe until DD started senior school , or try supply? If we were mortgage free, my working wouldn't be such a deal breaker. I do take your point though, thank you.

titchy Tue 24-Oct-17 19:25:10

Given the imminent deadline for secondary applications would you even get a place in a decent secondary if you moved? (I'm assuming she's year 6 of course.)

SandyBeachandtheDeckchairs Tue 24-Oct-17 19:28:06

She's an old Year 5 Titchy but even so, you're right, not much time to get moved and settled before having to apply next year.

You're all spoiling my dream you know! <sulks>

I guess staying is more sensible, but I so wanted to escape!

LillyLollyLandy Tue 24-Oct-17 19:35:26

OP if you really really wanted to do this you wouldn’t be so easily talked out of it smile

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