Saturday, 3 January 2015

Why I Can't Be A Stay At Home Mum

The date is set. I return to full time work as a Secondary English teacher
on Monday 9th Feb.
With that comes long days, nights and weekends full of planning, marking, meetings, parents evenings, resource making and examination admin. Add on top of that, a new Head Teacher, who has implemented a whole heap of changes, and an Ofsted visit looming any time now.


 To say I am dreading it would be an understatement.

In all honesty, when I see so many other mums out there blogging about their lives as SAHMs I am filled with envy - you're so lucky to be able to afford life at home with your babies and toddlers. Spare a thought for those of us who HAVE to go back to work or face life bankrupt and below the breadline. 

You may well be sat there (and I know people are) thinking 'Well it's a lifestyle choice - you don't have to work'. But you'd be wrong. 

We were very unfortunate that my husband was made redundant - twice - in the run up to Jake's arrival, which meant we used all of our savings (and credit card balance) to make it through. Now we're paying for it *literally*.

Now? Luke works for an agency, and we get shafted again there because he does not get paternity pay (have to have been employed with that agency for 26 weeks prior to birth to qualify) and neither does he get full holiday pay (even when he has to take time off work for bank holidays etc.). 

When I start back full time, Jake will turn 5 months the very next day. I will miss so much of his day - I will then have a few precious hours before he's in bed. Nights when I have parents evenings, I won't see him at all. 

I can't explain how much I am dreading it. 

If anyone out there is in the same boat, and has any tips for ways to cope - especially teachers - please share. 
X

16 comments:

  1. Well I'm not a teacher but I feel your pain with the whole issue of returning to work. I go back on March 9th and I'm filled with dread just thinking about it. I wish it was a 'lifestyle' choice and not a necessity to work. We have a mortgage & bills to pay we also can't afford for me to give up work. I do envy people who can afford to stay at home, I wish I could stay home and bring my little boy up. Instead he will spend more time with his grandparents (they will be watching him when I go back to work) than he does with his parents and that breaks my heart. No advice to give as I haven't returned to work yet so still figuring it all out myself, but here for a chat if you ever need to! :)

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    1. Thank you so much Blogging Mamma! I feel like I am the only person who has to go back to work. I feel like everyone thinks I am a crap mum because of it. I have to go back - for all the reasons I said and you said. My little boy will be passed between me, Luke's shifts, Nanny and nursery. At least I know when he IS with Luke or my mum it's family xx

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    2. I do take comfort that my LO will be with family but even then I feel sad that he'll spend all day with my mum and then by the time I pick him up and bring him home it will be bed time. It really sucks! Seems like there's no help out there for mums to be able to stay home and look after their children, it's all about keeping working women in work. I'm sure people don't think you're crap for it though. You're making a decision that hurts you so that you can provide a roof over Jakes head and keep him fed & clothed. It sucks, it hurts but its definite proof you put Jake and your familys well being over what you want xxx

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    3. I know what you mean - finally get them back home and it'll be bed time. At least for me, I will have the weekends and school holidays - that's something (although weekends at least 1 day will need to be taken up with prep for the following week). Thanks tho - we're both doing what we have to and at least we have each other to chat to! Xx

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    4. Exactly, we do what we have to. Will be keeping an eye on this post to see if we get any advice on how to handle being working Mums! :) We're in the same boat so anytime just drop me a tweet or an email xx Loved the post by the way! Don't think I said that earlier ha! Blaming the baby brain! xx

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    5. Haha! Bless you. Let's hope some tips appear! X

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  2. I completely understand Bex, I know I am one of the lucky ones now, but I was in your situation when I had Libby. In fact, I had to go back to work full time when she was just 3 months old, leaving the house at 6.30 am and getting back at 6 pm. I was lucky enough to be offered a job that I could do from home within a couple of weeks of going back. There are employers out there that can be flexible, it is always worth looking out for the opportunities. My friend is a teacher and when she had her kids, she went into teaching children with severe physical disabilities. She finds it very rewarding and also less work outside of the classroom, because much of the work is not academic. I know it's not for everyone, but I just thought I'd let you know because she has really made it work for her. Best of luck when you go back.xx

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    1. Thanks so much Nat, sounds like something to look into for September x

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  3. When I first went back to work when Matthew was 5 month old I was dreading it too. The first 2 months or so were all getting used to the routine etc but to be honest life is great as a working mum. Honestly I tip my hat to all those SAHM out there. I couldn't do it. Stuck in the house 24/7 everyday. I love to work. :)
    Now my job working on the helpdesk might be a bit easier than you working as a teacher. You will get used to it thought and have a routine in no time.
    Plus Matthew needs his social life and he just loves creche. I am sure Jake will get used to it too.
    You are actually going back to work when I am due my second baby.

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    1. Hi Janine - thank you for your comment. It's nice to hear from a working mum who has positive things to say; I really am dreading it but hope that, like you've said, I will get used to it. Good luck with second baby! Congrats xx

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  4. Aw Bex reading this made me shed a tear. I went bk to work in July but my baby was already 10 months by then and only do 3 days a week. You will look forward so so much to spending every minute at the weekend and school holidays with him. I think mummy's who work value the time they do spend with their baby so so much more. Good luck, let us know how it goes. Xx

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    1. Thanks so much for your kind words. I know I will value my Jake time so much more, but honestly I am not ready to leave him. At least I know that most of the time he'll be with his Daddy or Nanny, rather than strangers xx

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  5. I work for myself but my Jake (10 months) starts two days at a childminder's tomorrow. I've tried to juggle working around him but it's impossible and I'm just pulled all ways. I know it's not the same as being a teacher! This is my fourth and I did the same with all of them. My firstborn was just 4 months old and I worked four days for an employer. I love my time to be me but that doesn't mean I don't miss him and have guilt. I can only advise, this is going to happen so you should try your best to embrace it or it will tear you apart. Buy some new work clothes, plan your week really well and just cuddle and kiss your little boy whenever you can. You will all be OK (but allow yourself a cry on the first day) x

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    1. Thanks for your comment - I think I do have to embrace the situation and hope I make it work xx

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  6. I am a teacher and I will have to return to work in June/July. I am dreading it for exactly the same reasons as you. Wish I had some advice :( xx

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  7. Hi - sorry to hear you're in a similar position. At least when you return it won't be long before summer. I'm dreading getting back on the 'teaching treadmill' to be honest, as if had no time before baby so now I'll just have less! And more guilt! X

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