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AIBU?

To be so fed up of working full time and having so little disposable income?

177 replies

Coattailsfails · 10/10/2022 08:14

I know I’m not the only one in this position.

Single full time working mum to two primary aged children. I never stop. I’m exhausted all the time. Annual salary before deductions is just under £27k.
Ive now got £20 left for the next 8 days. We had a couple of unexpected expenses and it’s impossible for me to build up much of a buffer.
We have enough food, although may need milk and bread.
Ive probably got enough petrol if we are careful and walk as much as possible but I have to drive for my job. I can claim some back but it’s only monthly so I have the initial outlay and then have to wait for it to come back (as is the norm, I know but I could really do with it a bit earlier this month, it’ll be about £80).
We aren’t extravagant. But there’s just no let up to it, is there? I can’t think it’ll be better next month because it probably won’t! And dc1 needs school shoes 😩

OP posts:
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Am I being unreasonable?

479 votes. Final results.

POLL
You are being unreasonable
6%
You are NOT being unreasonable
94%
Dwrcegin · 10/10/2022 13:49

Alltheseasonsaregood · 10/10/2022 12:59

Do you have a spare bedroom.? When things wer tight for us we rented a room out , ans put dc in one room. I hated it but ir did rhe job .
Short term students from abroad via local colledge.
The rent is clearly disproproportunate o income
.. it seems so high.

I think subletting in a rental can break your tenancy agreement.

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MotherOfRatios · 10/10/2022 13:50

People saying just move aren't thinking that through.

what if she needs to move jobs? The cost of moving is expensive. What if OP is a poc/black then it's even harder.

it's not a helpful suggestion whatsoever

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LikeAStar1994 · 10/10/2022 13:53

ArseInTheCoOpWindow · 10/10/2022 08:29

Even though money is tight at least you are covering your bills and in your shoes I'd buy something cheap just to give yourself a lift , little treats , bunch of flowers , takeaway coffee , bar of chocolate etc etc

Shes got 20 quid left. A coffee is about £2.70 and flowers minimum 4quid

How are buying these going to help exactly?

Where do you live where a coffee is £2.70?

I dread to think.

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CovertImage · 10/10/2022 13:58

27k not a bad salary (unless in London) and you are receiving some maintenance on top. What were your big expenses that brought you down so much?

Where does this lunacy come from that everywhere outside London is cheap? Oxford ain't

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dottiedodah · 10/10/2022 13:58

Firstly well done for working hard and trying to do the right thing.Sadly with both a loser Govt/ExDP you are not getting any support! I would see if you are entitled to any benefits like rent top up for example .My friend is a SP and gets UC some of which pays her rent.I dont think it is possible on a Mortgaged property though. Can you look at a 0% CC .You could use it for petrol and unexpected emergencies .Pay it off each month though .Do DC qualify for Free School Lunches ? Again worth looking at .

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applecartsonthehill · 10/10/2022 14:01

Where do you live where a coffee is £2.70?

I dread to think.

Shock

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Watzzap · 10/10/2022 14:15

hattie43 · 10/10/2022 08:24

I think many people are in this situation and will need to dig in for a couple of years .
Even though money is tight at least you are covering your bills and in your shoes I'd buy something cheap just to give yourself a lift , little treats , bunch of flowers , takeaway coffee , bar of chocolate etc etc .
Try and get discount tickets for cinema etc to take the kids .
There are no easy answers tbh but just know you're doing a great job and your kids will thankyou when they're older .

The OP has £20 to last for 8 days, and you think she should buy herself some flowers or a takeaway coffee! As others have said how the actual f@@k is that going to help? Think this has to be the stupidest suggestion I have ever read on Mumsnet….yes you are struggling to survive, but just by flowers or coffee “to give yourself a lift”!!!

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TightDiamondShoes · 10/10/2022 14:17

Less or more idiotic than the poster who said “you should put all the leftover cash in a high-interest account”?

honestly, some people have NO idea.

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Therealjudgejudy · 10/10/2022 14:19

I feel for you op. Seems it is the high rent and awful child maintenance payments.

Have you applied for any benefit top ups?

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BritAirwaysgirl · 10/10/2022 14:27

I am a full-time working mum of 3 children and always brought my children's school shoes second-hand online, as other children can grow out of their shoes with a growth spurt. I often sold them online too afterwards. Good luck 😀

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Stayingstrongish · 10/10/2022 14:28

missmamiecuddleduck · 10/10/2022 11:24

PPs have given great suggestions on saving and making sure you get all the credits you're entitled to.

Would it be possible to train part time for a higher paying career? There is a shortage of technology workers. it pays well plus the chance of being able to WFH.

@missmamiecuddleduck I've been looking into retraining in tech (I work in tech slightly but want to become more tech. I found a great free course sponsored by the industry, four evenings a week for a few weeks, 6.30-9pm. Brilliant except I'd have to do that on top of working full-time, and 6.30-9 is right when I need to get the kids to bed. No family help locally and can't afford to pay anyone to babysit.

It's hard for single parents to find the time to retrain - even when money barriers are removed.

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ArseInTheCoOpWindow · 10/10/2022 14:35

um I’m not actually sure how much it is… I don’t drink it. I was a guestimate! Was l wrong?

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Ohsugarhoneyicetea · 10/10/2022 14:45

Could you go 50/50 with your ex and then he can properly pay for half of their expenses, every child cost get split (as it should be).

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LindseyHoyleSpeaks · 10/10/2022 14:46

Yet another wanker of a man leaving a woman in the lurch and the state to pick up the slack! Deadbeat dads should be criminalized.

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AuntSalli · 10/10/2022 14:58

Stayingstrongish · 10/10/2022 14:28

@missmamiecuddleduck I've been looking into retraining in tech (I work in tech slightly but want to become more tech. I found a great free course sponsored by the industry, four evenings a week for a few weeks, 6.30-9pm. Brilliant except I'd have to do that on top of working full-time, and 6.30-9 is right when I need to get the kids to bed. No family help locally and can't afford to pay anyone to babysit.

It's hard for single parents to find the time to retrain - even when money barriers are removed.

@Stayingstrongish book holiday to do the course, take the kids to grandparents/dads for the duration. Make it happen.

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CecilyP · 10/10/2022 15:09

Where does this lunacy come from that everywhere outside London is cheap? Oxford ain't

Pick Oxford, just about the most expensive place outside London to live! Of course nobody thinks everywhere outside London is cheap. But most places are cheaper. Where DS lives in the East Midlands 1.5 hours from London by rail is cheap.

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goldfinchonthelawn · 10/10/2022 15:12

NoSquirrels · 10/10/2022 08:43

It’s crap. But if you’re not in debt you’re winning.

If I were you, I’d keep any reimbursable expenses totally separate to your budget. So I’d get a credit card for petrol spends only - that way you just pay it off every month but you’re always a month ‘ahead’ because of the interest free billing period, so you can put the money available to pay last month’s bill aside when you are paid. It also stops the worry about not having enough money to fill up the car.

Good idea.

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goldfinchonthelawn · 10/10/2022 15:17

I read posts like this and some of the posts from people sympathising and I am outraged that men get away with tossing £30 a month to their children. Meanwhile the struggling single mothers may be entitled to benefits. I bet the men who walked aren't counting every penny. It's an acceptable wickedness in our society that men can walk away from their families so easily.

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Feelinglow27 · 10/10/2022 15:51

I would speak to your employer about the petrol costs. Someone said upthread that company wouldn't be able to do anything. I work for a large organisation and they definitely would have something to help you but you have to ask.

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VioletInsolence · 10/10/2022 15:58

surlycurly · 10/10/2022 09:49

Another single parent here, who also gets nothing from my ex, and can I just tell you how proud I am of you. It would be the easiest thing in the world for you to give in, chuck your job and make yourself the government's problem but you're not. You're working hard and setting a great example. You're also managing on virtually nothing. I've have to get a second job to keep afloat but at least I know I've done it all myself. Good on you. Wish I could buy you a coffee or some flowers!!

Please don’t congratulate people for not claiming benefits. The OP is in this mess partly because of the government so claiming benefits would not make her the government’s problem.

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Stayingstrongish · 10/10/2022 16:10

AuntSalli · 10/10/2022 14:58

@Stayingstrongish book holiday to do the course, take the kids to grandparents/dads for the duration. Make it happen.

@AuntSalli I see what you’re saying, I need to find ways to make it happen… but as a single parent all my holiday already goes on covering school holidays. If I use it for other things, I have to pay extra for holiday clubs, which isn’t money I have spare.

My parents live hundreds of miles away and in any case aren’t in good enough health to look after two very active and young kids under six. Their dad already has them half the weeks, but not on nights that work for the course. For work reasons he can’t change those.

Think once you have kids things like retraining just becomes logistically much harder.

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AuntSalli · 10/10/2022 16:13

@Stayingstrongish The kids won’t be little forever and you’ll get more flexibility as they get older, just keep an eye on the course details and then as soon as you can do it jump on it. The skills shortage isn’t going anywhere

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CornishTiger · 10/10/2022 16:16

@Coattailsfails I strongly suspect you are entitled to Universal credit. Have you checked.

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monicagellerbing · 10/10/2022 16:27

You're entitled to universal credit why aren't you claiming it

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mogsrus · 10/10/2022 17:01

What is wrong with putting something away in an interest bearing account

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