I just don't think I can pull it off... the working mom thing

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by Bored of Ed, Apr 13, 2013.

  1. Bored of Ed

    Bored of Ed Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2006
    Messages:
    2,230
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 13, 2013

    Ugh I feel so yucky about spilling this here. Maybe I just shouldn't. But y'all are teachers, so who better to agree or disagree and offer support about my job prospects?

    I've never worked full time. I started my part-time work while I was still in college, and between one thing and another I never took the plunge. I've found teaching takes a lot of me, and I have two little girls (toddler and infant) at home and I want to devote myself to them. Working even part-time and taking care of the family is already an extremely difficult juggle for me. I know there are others who do much more, but this is my reality, I don't know how they do it. If anything, I'd want to cut down my hours (without giving them up entirely, because I do like what I do, I just feel spread too thin)

    But financially we are at a crossroads. My husband's business has just never been great - it's something, but not taking off the way we'd hoped. It's not an income. My income has been enough for us, living quite frugally. But now it's just not going to be enough anymore: We're a larger family, we need a larger home (we're living in a 1-bedroom city apartment), our childcare expenses have risen and one kid is so ready for preschool, we were on Family Health Plus until now but it's come to the point where if we raise our income enough to cover our basic living expenses, then we'll disqualify, and end up having to raise much more income to pay out of pocket - or get a job with better benefits.

    My husband wants to go to college (he never did) to train for a better job that can provide for us well, but all I can think of is how he'll be busy with college and no additional income (his business would be able to continue but as I said, it isn't much) for the next 4 years at least.

    The only way out that I can see is for me to look for a full time teaching job. It's what I'd always had in mind in the first place. Except I didn't realize how hard it would be with kids. It would easily cover all our income needs as well as health insurance. But I just don't know if I'm up to all those hours plus the pressure of being a new classroom teacher in an unfamiliar school. My current job is just under 20 hours a week (not including prep time, though), super flexible (I'm practically my own boss), in a friendly school where I already know the people and politics, right near home (oh right, we're going to have to move out of that). Also, it's in the afternoon - I am NOT a morning person, and full time teaching jobs definitely involve mornings. The worst part is that due to certain regulations, if I work for the public school system and then it doesn't work out, I won't be able to go back to my current work for a certain amount of time (2 years, I think).

    This is making me into a nervous wreck. :help:
     
  2.  
  3. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2007
    Messages:
    14,606
    Likes Received:
    2,712

    Apr 14, 2013

    There are definitely lots of factors to consider. What does your husband say about the whole thing?

    Two of my very good friends have recently, within the past couple of years, had children. One of them has a newborn and a two-year-old; the other has one under a year. The mom of two kids wants to say home but her family just can't afford to live on her husband's income. She works full time and carries the insurance. She has talked many times about preferring to stay at home, but for her it jut isn't an option. The other friend has stayed home since her child was born and plans to stay home next year as well. She doesn't know if she'll return to work after that. Her husband has a very prestigious job and they can afford to live on his income.

    If I were in your situation, I would have to choose a full-time job. For me, being able to financially support my family in a comfortable way is important. I need to know that we can afford an unexpected car repair or medical bill. For me, not having a way to pay for unanticipated expenses causes me a lot of stress. It's just better if I have a plan in the form of savings and a regular, steady paycheck. My hoosband works but not in his field (he is underemployed) and doesn't make great money. If I didn't work, or if I worked only part time, we would struggle to break even. That's not a way I want to live--been there, done that. I want to not only break even but also get ahead a little so that we can reach our long-term goals of buying more property, traveling, etc.

    What I would do isn't necessarily what everyone would or should do.
     
  4. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2006
    Messages:
    7,946
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 14, 2013

    Has your husband looked at other jobs that would pay more without required education?
     
  5. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2007
    Messages:
    2,007
    Likes Received:
    12

    Apr 14, 2013

    When my daughter in law was deployed, my son had the choice to quit work or quit school. Well, I could not let that happen so I gave the landlord my notice and rented a U-haul trailer and moved 2400 miles to babysit my granddaughter, told Terri I'd be back in 18 months........ Do you have a relative who could do it for a couple of years?
     
  6. Bored of Ed

    Bored of Ed Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2006
    Messages:
    2,230
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 14, 2013

    He could get lower paying jobs with his current skills and lack of higher education (he happens to be a very well-read, knowledgeable person. Just without a degree or certification in any field). Together with my part-time work, that would cover our current expenses, but it would be less satisfying, have little/no room for growth, and keep me in my current position of feeling too torn between work and family (though perhaps not as much as full time work for me!)

    I already have a relative babysitting for us part time, which is half the reason we've been able to live on a part-time salary until now. She already happens to live close by. IrishDave, you're unbelievable!

    Husband is now thinking maybe part time job for him, too, to split the time with school, but I don't see that really solving most of the problems because the field he wants to train in will require at least a couple of years of full time schooling, so the job would only hold up for the first maybe 2 years, and part time it wouldn't bring in enough to save for the lean years. Also part time is less likely to come with benefits, and paying out of pocket for things like health insurance for a family of 4 will pretty much take care of his part salary all by itself. Does Obamacare cover part-time employees? So far it hasn't made anything more affordable as far as I can tell...

    I am so stressed out but I just hate to push him to give up on such a nice dream of a profession that would be well suited to him and pay much better. (forgot to mention that the job he does qualify for at this time, full or part time, would probably be significantly less satisfying for him personally. More like busywork.)
     
  7. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2009
    Messages:
    3,428
    Likes Received:
    600

    Apr 14, 2013

    I he has owned his own business, what about applying to be a manager at a restaurant or retail location? Those jobs pay well, and often have flexible hours. The Taco Bell around the corner was advertising needing an assistant manager, starting at $30,000 a year, which isn't great, but is certainly better than nothing. Then he could go to school part time, and also be able to pay to go to school... Although, if he was going to school full time it's possible he could take out student loans enough to cover living expenses. They'd just need to be payed back... Many businesses offer healthcare to their part time employees.

    I know if I were in your situation, I would have to work full time and do whatever it takes to make sure my children have everything they need, including insurance, and come from a financially secure home. Then again, I also would not be willing to have another adult living in the home who didn't see himself as a partner, contributing equally financially. My mom always worked two or three jobs while my dad was "in school" or worked here and there, and having seen what it did to her, I could not do that. That said, you are not talking about working multiple jobs, just working one full-time job, like is expected of adults. This may sound harsh, but suck it up and get a job if your family needs money.
     
  8. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    Messages:
    10,924
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 14, 2013

    I hear you! It's so hard to give up this time with your children especially when they are young. You really do only get this time once in their lives.

    If I were you, I would try to think outside the box a little bit. I know that there are flexible hour jobs out there, work from home jobs, online jobs, etc. See what else you could come up with.
     
  9. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2001
    Messages:
    24,958
    Likes Received:
    2,114

    Apr 14, 2013

    :hugs: bored...sometimes you do what you have to....seems that maybe husband could pick up a few part time hours (maybe on weekends?) AND you might go for full time as well...no healthcare is scary...especially with two little ones. As much as you want time with your kids, providing a better life for your family is what's important now. These are hard times, hard decisions. I wish you well.:love:
     
  10. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2006
    Messages:
    7,946
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 14, 2013

    bored: Financially secure is one thing (and important), but money doesn't make a family. I say this with a lot of experience in not having money. Haha. :)

    If you want to be home for your children, either to the extent you are now or even more so, I would work very hard to somehow make that happen. It is my PERSONAL belief that having a parent at home is ideal and I understand you desiring that for your family.

    I don't know where you live and specifics about your husband, but there are plenty of decent to good full time jobs around here. Yes, most of them are in a factory, hospital, or school, but there are positions to be taken. Are there factories in your area and would your husband consider those? They're some of the best-paying jobs here! Hospitals are also hiring regularly for various non-medical positions and are nice places to work. If he could get a "good" job which provides benefits, could he then take online classes as well? People do it all the time...and honestly, the annoyance of doing both at the same time drives some people to graduate faster.

    It's all doable on paper, but I realize it would be difficult to have it all work out. Realistically, it might really come down to whose dream "wins"...and that's a tough one.
     
  11. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2007
    Messages:
    6,873
    Likes Received:
    229

    Apr 14, 2013

    That is a tough one and something the two of you will have to decide. I have always been the opposite. I cannot do the stay at home thing. Aside from the fact that financially I can't do it, it would also drive me crazy. I literally thrive on teaching fulltime. In your situation it is complicated because you don't want to give up precious time from uour kids but the finances are demanding something change. In you shoes I would likely just go for teaching fulltime, or have DH take up a part time job. What happens to his business in that case? Is he planning on keeping the business, going to school and working part time?
     
  12. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2007
    Messages:
    6,873
    Likes Received:
    229

    Apr 14, 2013

    By the way, if both of you are working won't your daycare costs increase? In that case are you really better off financially?
     
  13. geoteacher

    geoteacher Devotee

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2011
    Messages:
    1,026
    Likes Received:
    237

    Apr 14, 2013

    Of course, I don't know all about your situation, but would you ever consider a move to a more affordable area? Could your husband look into some type of work that he could do while attending college. Frankly, as someone who did stay home for a number of years, it does seem that doing so would be a bit of a stretch for your family right now.
     
  14. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,653
    Likes Received:
    233

    Apr 14, 2013

    My thought is that their current area must be pretty affordable already if they could make it on a part time teachers salary and another smaller salary.

    To the OP - I wouldn't want to give an opinion on your situation, but I think with kids health care might even be THE major concern. In my area, part time jobs don't come with health benefits. But maybe that is a regional thing..?
     
  15. bison

    bison Habitué

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2012
    Messages:
    874
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 14, 2013

    If you are working full time, can your husband assume most of the childcare needs while going to school? I have many classmates who are single parents as well as full time students, so it is doable. Or he can take night/online classes, so he can watch the kids during the day and go to class when you get home from work. Many colleges also often have low cost daycare for their students while they're in class. I understand you not wanting to work full time, but I think that having a family is a give and take. Sometimes you have to put your own needs aside for the family, and then hopefully your husband will do the same later on, allowing you to stay home while he is the breadwinner. I wouldn't go without insurance and a reliable income with two kids.
     
  16. stargirl

    stargirl Companion

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2008
    Messages:
    173
    Likes Received:
    54

    Apr 14, 2013

    With any of your scenarios, the reality is that you will be squeezed for the next few years, whether with family time/financially. But it sounds like unless your husband does go to college you'll be stuck in that same situation long term. While it wouldn't be easy, I'd say your best option is for him to go to school so at least your tough times have a time frame with an end in sight.
    You did say that in your husband's desired field, there'd be a couple of years where he'd be in school full time and unable to work. Maybe he can get some type of job, at least part time, for the years where he doesn't need to be full time, then when he does you could pick up for him and go to work full time.
     
  17. Bored of Ed

    Bored of Ed Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2006
    Messages:
    2,230
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 14, 2013

    So, part of the reason why his business is flopping is because he's just not much of a businessperson. So managerial work is just not the right avenue. Thankfully, he is in a service type of business where he would be able to continue with his too-few clients even while pursuing...whatever's next.

    We had a heart-to-heart last night about how stressed I am over this and what we're thinking now is that he'll apply for the job that he was thinking of before he got his heart set on college, and see if there are any part-time options with that company so he can do evening college at the same time while still having a bit of life in between. That would enable us to "make it" continuing to live frugally, without totally giving up on his long-term career. We'd have to re-evaluate when he gets up to the full-time part of college, but by then our kids will be a little older and I think I would be better able to work full time. Babies are just so draining, mine still doesn't sleep through the night, and these early years are so formative... When they are both old enough for school then I can feel a little better about taking a job during roughly those same hours.

    Not sure how this is going to play out. I appreciate all the supportive, validating responses. I know I will have to make some tough decisions, but "suck it up" wasn't really the most helpful advice :p

    Regarding my concerns (OK, terrifying fears) about working full time, can people who have been there and done that please help by describing how you made your schedule/lifestyle work with that? I just can't visualize having enough hours in a day to take care of my home and kids while being at work all day, plus having to prepare (do they really give you enough prep time in school? Currently my job doesn't include preps, I do it in middle of the night) when I currently already feel very squeezed even working only half time. If husband goes to this intensive college program while I work full time, he won't be helping with the house and kids much.
     
  18. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2007
    Messages:
    2,007
    Likes Received:
    12

    Apr 14, 2013

    Well, isn't that true Teacher=not having (much) money
    Too bad the size of our hearts can't help in deciding our pay
     
  19. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    Messages:
    10,924
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 14, 2013

    It's hard to work full-time and really have time for family. A few things that I have done...I make a large breakfast casserole or french toast on the weekends for the kids to eat for breakfast.

    I plan out and set all the meals together for the week. I will even cook some meals on the weekend to just need to heat up during the week. It really helps to plan out over the weekend.

    I've made it part of our nightly routine to do a little cleaning up with the kids. My daughter actually has fun with this. Each night before we go to bed, we clean up all her toys together. Usually I unload the dishes while she is cleaning up toys.

    Most cleaning gets done on the weekends around here. Usually during nap time (we are lucky that our littles still nap together).

    I can never get all my planning and extras done during the school plan time. I do make a dent in it, but I can't finish everything. I usually use the hour between when my kids go to bed and when I do to do some planning/grading as needed.
     
  20. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2007
    Messages:
    5,621
    Likes Received:
    6

    Apr 14, 2013

    If you go to work full time, as somebody else has mentioned, your expenses will go up. Full time daycare is a huge expense, but there's more to consider. Calculate the cost of:

    -Additional wear and tear on your vehicle. Working full time means that you will likely be going to and/or coming back from work during heavier traffic. Frequent stops and starts and idling on the roadways is harder on your car than a straight drive. You will also have to make an additional trip to they child care provider. Also, fuel costs will go up for the same reason.

    -Additional professional wardrobe requirements. If the full time job you get requires more days or a dressier wardrobe, you will have to purchase the required clothing. If you're going in the same number of days and/or are already wearing the dressier clothing, the additional hours in said clothing and shoes will cause additional wear and tear, meaning you will have to replace them more frequently.

    -Time off work and travel expenses to doctors appointments. Right now you have the flexibility to schedule those things during your off time. You can leave from home and go back home. If you're working full time you'll have to leave, driver to the babysitter/daycare, pick up the children, drive to the doctor, drive back to the child care facility, drive back to work, etc. Additionally, being exposed to more children for more hours per day will likely increase the number of times the children get sick, at least for the first several months.

    -Working full time will leave you with less time to prepare meals. You might find yourself needing to purchase more convenience items which are more costly.

    The additional expenses of working add up fast. You might find that by working full time your family actually loses money.
     
  21. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2007
    Messages:
    6,873
    Likes Received:
    229

    Apr 14, 2013

    I am glad to hear you guys sat down and talk. It sounds like thatbwas much needed. I did work full time when DD was little but I was also going to school and many times got home after 10. I obviously still work full time but DD is 11 now so we pretty much have the same schedule. Mopar gave some wonderful suggestions. Having a routine and schedule will save you. Can your husband help some nights with dinner? I make a dinner menu every week so i know exactly what I am making each night. We shop and get everything we need for the week. We have a house keeper so we just have to pock up after ourselves but I love Mopar's suggestion about having everyone help. My DD helps with dishes. If I needd help peeling vegetables she will help me with that. I think this is going to have to be a team effort between you and your DH if it is to be successful. You will not be able to do it all. i would maybe talk to him and see how you two could meet halfway and share in the responsibilities.
     
  22. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,653
    Likes Received:
    233

    Apr 14, 2013

    I don't mean to sound like a broken record, but will you be able to have health insurance if you're both working part time? I think part time jobs in my local school districts do have health insurance, but the employee has to pay half of it (if they work half time) or something like that. I know a little about health care costs (just for myself and my husband, without kids) on independent plans, and I know it can be absolutely crazy. :(

    I don't have kids yet, so I can't really give advice on the practical day to day aspects, but I have many coworker friends who do work full time with kids. I live in a high cost of living, two full income type of area. Very few can make it on just one income around here (unless that one income is a doctor, lawyer, or CEO's salary, haha.)
     
  23. Bored of Ed

    Bored of Ed Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2006
    Messages:
    2,230
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 14, 2013

    We would have to pay out of pocket for ourselves and would probably qualify for reduced rates, which are still insanely high. Our kids would still be eligible for Child Health Plus because (at least this is what I was told) once you're born on it you are automatically able to stay on until 21 if you don't have anything better.

    We did talk about this before, but only going around in circles, never reaching any conclusion because there is no easy answer to this one. Everyone is going to have to flex somewhere, but I am just so terrified of not being able to cope with full time working life since I'm already often overwhelmed with my current hours. I just keep saying "but maybe I should just do it, maybe it will be ok" and then I fall apart in the other direction. I know a lot of people do it and manage just fine but maybe they're just made out of stronger stuff than me, maybe I'm just not as talented and capable because frankly I can't seem to cope that great even with fewer hours and little job stress. I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong.

    Although full time work does come with more expenses, the idea is to do enough of it to turn a profit. The expenses don't add up as fast as the benefits do, as far as I can tell. I already have to get dressed and go almost every day. I will already have to send my big kid to school, which would cover almost if not all working hours, so that's an expense I'll have regardless of whether I make more income to cover it. I think after actually doing the math, working more would put us clearly in a better place financially. I just don't know if the sacrifice in stress and family time is worth it.

    Argh.
     
  24. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2006
    Messages:
    7,946
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 14, 2013

    To your point about others being able to do it but you worry you can't...

    I'll be perfectly honest in saying I need a lot of down time. I just do. I need quiet time. Time just sitting in a chair outside when it's nice. Reading. Watching tv. It's just my personality. Some people thrive on activity and jammed scheduled—really, some do!—and others are just better able to cope with the stress it all brings...but I know myself enough to know I would be unhappy always going, going, going.
     
  25. Bored of Ed

    Bored of Ed Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2006
    Messages:
    2,230
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 14, 2013

    What rattles me is that I used to be the type who needed a high level of activity, but having kids on its own provides so many different things to do that it's now too much for me. Before, I did my same part-time job I have now, at the same time as a full college courseload (every semester I took as many credits as I could - undergrad was 18 with occasional "exemptions" to take 19, graduate was 12 but included a heavy load of practical work), total cooking from scratch and using no household disposables (I still try but I've mellowed quite a bit), some volunteer work, a light social life, plus I had much more of a commute than I do now - both for work and school (we moved closer to work). I felt so powerful and energized. Now I spend the same amount of energy making sure everyone has a balanced age-appropriate diet, something clean to wear, someplace safe to play, pediatrician visits on schedule, and all the other minutiae of family life, that I wind up sapped before I can even think about anything else. Hobbies? Huh? Does an occasional visit to atoz or my mommy-forum count? The mental energy I used to devote to creative lesson plans is now being all but consumed by my own at-home discipline and scheduling and such. My personal integrity pushes me to do my best for my students anyway, but I have to confess I am not as invested as I was in the past. Gone are the days of spending the entire night making the manipulatives extra graphically appealing without the aid of color printing. No more all-day Michael's sprees for decorations and fun stuff. Don't get me wrong, I still do a lot for my students and I think my lessons are more hands-on and fun than many other teachers, but it's not my life anymore and I'm sure something would have to give even more if I had to do a whole day's worth of teaching every day.
     
  26. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2007
    Messages:
    2,188
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 14, 2013

    I feel your pain and was lucky enough to stay home for 8 years, and then go back part time when my youngest was in kinder.

    The truth of the matter is, it is hard but loads of people do it, and many do it well. You can do it too, but it will take a positive attitude, hard work and organization. It also works a whole lot better if your spouse cooperates and takes a larger burden of the housework.

    Setting up a system that works for you will be vital.

    It helped me to really go through my house thoroughly and throw out, give away and organize! I did better when I followed a structure of doing laundry every day and finishing up on Fridays so didn't have to do it on the weekend. I tried to do some chores every evening (before I sat down) so I didn't get overwhelmed. Sunday afternoon I prepared several meals in advance and I used my crockpot a lot. As they got bigger, I had a chore chart for the kids to help out.

    Good luck with whatever happens.
     
  27. bison

    bison Habitué

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2012
    Messages:
    874
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 14, 2013

    Maybe I just skimmed over this in your responses, but I'm not sure why your husband can't take on a lot of those responsibilities if you're working full time and he's in school full time. If your at-home duties are cut in half, working full time should be much more manageable.
     
  28. Bored of Ed

    Bored of Ed Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2006
    Messages:
    2,230
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 14, 2013

    He's already very helpful. Certain things like spending quality time with each other and the kids can't be taken over. And other things he's just not as good at (he can feed himself but I hate his food, e.g.)
     
  29. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2007
    Messages:
    6,873
    Likes Received:
    229

    Apr 14, 2013

    Try not too be so hard on yourself. The fact that you care so much shows you must be doing a great job. I have only 1 child, now 11, but I remember how much harder it was when she was young. When I get home from work I nap for about 2 hours. I am absoltely exhausted and can't even think once the school day is over. I think we all experience the difficulty of raising kids and working. You are not alone in that. I wish you the best.
     
  30. webmistress

    webmistress Devotee

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,084
    Likes Received:
    64

    Apr 15, 2013

    I agree with you. Just because everyone else is doing it, doesn't mean you have to feel guilty for possibly not being able to do it. I know and finally accept that I just can't work outside the home. Well even before becoming a mom, my major depression issues are triggered by work.

    And many people struggle with working and parenting. Many people are tired and burnt out, and feeling guilty about less family time. We're a pretty overworked country. Companies and jobs are demanding more from employees, there is less job security, more job stress and micromanaging...and less quality family time.

    If you feel that you were be overwhelemd and unhappy with extra work hours, then don't do it; there are other ways to bring in extra income (freelancing, tutoring, direct sales, and other work at home jobs etc; if you have a talent, turn that into a business).....without sacraficing family time. It's hard either way but you're not alone.
    Other ways to bring in income take a little time to build up but in the long run it can be worth it.

    I started my own online business, and it takes some time to get going. I am at the point of working with an experienced coach who I'm positive will help my business take off. I work around my baby's schedule and don't have to worry about sacrifcing my health for a job that couldn't care less about me. I have a long way to go, but it's a marathon.
    Think outside the box and I'm sure you and your husband will come up with something.
     
  31. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

    Joined:
    May 13, 2004
    Messages:
    5,874
    Likes Received:
    158

    Apr 15, 2013

    Better late than never regarding making changes & improving oneself! I've always been the old fashioned kinda gal who prefers the man to make more than me & can support me, but times get difficult as life evolves. Since you're in this marriage with girls getting older & needing more things, the key is that you & your husband are working TOGETHER, keeping up each of your ends of the bargain to make it work. As long are you're BOTH striving for more (& not you solely doing all the work forever), then go for it!

    And regarding you stating that even part-time work is a lot with kids, I don't blame you! I don't even have kids & there's been times when I've thought to myself, "I'm not meant to work period!" ;)

    These days I'm at the point where I'll go ahead & finish up working on this LAST degree of mine, but if I can find 2 or 3 great work at home jobs where I can still live comfortably, then I'm ALL for it! I'm starting to hate working for someone else.
     
  32. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Messages:
    9,154
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 15, 2013

    Have you thought of having a full time job as a paraprofessional? You would still work in a school but could go home at the end of the day and not have to take work home.

    What about as a substitute? This wouldn't guarantee you a secured stable income but depending on your area, it might be more steady than you imagine. If you can work part-time on certain days and not on others, that would be ideal for adding substitute teaching to the alternate days. Again, you could go home at the end of the day without all the planning.

    Tutoring is another option.

    What about working at an after school center? Without ever having worked at one, I'm going to assume many of those also don't require outside planning. Someone could come along and prove me wrong.

    Did you know that some after school places pay people to teach extra classes? If you have a special skill, you could network around and offer to teach that one type of class. Community centers also like to hire these types of teachers. For example, I have taught sign language classes at an after school clinic for an hour, twice a week. I volunteered but I do know this clinic offers to pay instructors by passing the optional costs to parents.

    Another option would be to do seasonal work. Hire on full time for summer camps. Save up the money and spread it out throughout the year to supplement your existing budget. Then substitute teach during the school year or do part-time teaching during the school year. Then you wouldn't have a full time job the entire year but could supplement some.
     
  33. Bored of Ed

    Bored of Ed Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2006
    Messages:
    2,230
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 15, 2013

    Paraprofessional pays about the same as I currently make, for double the hours. Nope. Besides I don't think my personality could handle the way some paras are treated.

    Subbing is an interesting idea to retain some part-time-ness, but the instability of never knowing where you'll be sounds like quite a challenge. Perhaps something to consider, though. At the very least, it might be useful as something extra if it's at all possible to get jobs just here and there when I'm not already working, though I suspect principals probably look for more steady subs.

    From what I found in previous job searches, after school and summer programs pay so little that I would be earning in the negative numbers after transportation and childcare. Actual summer school, which pays better, is staffed by year-round teachers who want the extra.
     
  34. dizzykates

    dizzykates Habitué

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2005
    Messages:
    815
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 16, 2013

    I would love nothing more than to be a SAHM or to work 20-25 hours a week, but I will chime in with how I do it as a full-timer.

    I meal plan because like you stated we also like cooking from scratch. I make all of our meals. The closest thing we have to convenience food is frozen vegetables (have you seen the selection of fresh veggies in MN in January??? ;)) and frozen potstickers. I make a big batch of muffins on Sunday, we make extra french toast of waffles on Saturday and I boil a half dozen eggs. Lunches are always leftovers. I do large batch cooking and freeze dinner options to pull out in future weeks.

    I run errands right after work on my way to get DD or DH because we pick DH up at the bus stop so instead of going back out to do them later. Last night we all walked up to the bank to deposit a check so that the dog got a walk and we got an errand done.

    Laundry gets started as soon as I get home and we fold it while we watch a show in the evening. Sometimes I start it at night, toss it in the dryer before work and DD 'helps' me fold it in the afternoon.

    We also cloth diaper so I have to stay on top of that, but DH helps with everything so it's not too big a deal. We do a quick pick up every night and a major cleaning every few weeks.

    Good luck.
     
  35. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Messages:
    9,154
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 16, 2013

    After a few short years, as a para, I made 2/3 of the same salary as I did as a teacher. Yes, the pay is less but at the end of the day, I don't have to be responsible for planning, etc. The subject of how paras are treated varies from school to school and even teacher to teacher. It may not be something you are interested in but when I compare the number of hours teachers work vs. paras and look at the pay, the paras' pay isn't too shabby. Of course, the bills prefer the increase, even if it means I work longer hours.

    I liked both jobs for various reasons. I had a good teacher team though.
     
  36. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2009
    Messages:
    3,428
    Likes Received:
    600

    Apr 16, 2013

    You seem to shoot down every idea that people suggest. It seems as if you will either have to find a way to live on your current income level, or suck it up and find a full-time job. Healthcare for your children should be a priority, and remaining underemployed intentionally in order to qualify for governmental programs borders on an abuse of the system. I have other thoughts, but I'm not sure I can find a polite way to put them.
     
  37. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2002
    Messages:
    5,042
    Likes Received:
    420

    Apr 16, 2013


    I was thinking the same thing.

    I have no other option than to work. I am the main source of income. I carry the insurance. My mom used to be a stay-at-home mom back when that was pretty much the norm in the 70's and 80's but life made other plans and she had to get out and get a job.

    Priorities.

    I'm a working mom and I'm making it. You can, too.
     
  38. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2004
    Messages:
    7,775
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 16, 2013

    If you took a full time teaching job, wouldn't you have your entire summers off to be with you kids?
    I'm all for a mom staying home if they can afford it, but it sounds like most of us have to work to provide.
    However, if you think you "can't" do full time, you're probably right.
    As for you husband, a college degree doesn't necessarily guarantee a better paying job. There are jobs that pay well(without a college degree.) Finding the right attitude might be the key for your family.
    Why can't he find a job that pays decent and provides healthcare for the family? That's what I think we would do if we were in your situation. That way you would have more time with your kids and time to make better choices when shopping and preparing the meals, etc.
     
  39. bison

    bison Habitué

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2012
    Messages:
    874
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 16, 2013

    Look, I get it. I grew up with a SAHM and I definitely think one parent being with the kids is the ideal situation. It just isn't realistic for most people anymore. I agree with the above posts that you seem to justifying every helpful response and suggestion away. I'm a little confused because you said, "Now I spend the same amount of energy making sure everyone has a balanced age-appropriate diet, something clean to wear, someplace safe to play, pediatrician visits on schedule, and all the other minutiae of family life"

    When I suggested your husband take on more of these duties, you said that "He's already very helpful. Certain things like spending quality time with each other and the kids can't be taken over. And other things he's just not as good at (he can feed himself but I hate his food, e.g.)"

    Things like not enjoying his food seem pretty minor when you compare them to not having healthcare for your kids. Cooking improves with practice, and the same goes for other duties. You'll be able to spend quality time with your family, especially if your husband takes over more of your duties if you're working full time. He should be able to take care of things like laundry, safety, and doctor's appointments when the need arises for you to be the breadwinner. You will have to adjust your family dynamic, and it may not be easy, but you don't seem to have much of a choice.
     
  40. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2007
    Messages:
    6,873
    Likes Received:
    229

    Apr 16, 2013

    I didn't see it as shooting down suggestions, just clarifying what she has already tried and explaining her situation. Regarding the use of government programs, I took that as an explanation of how her expenses would greatly increase and therefore she might not be better of financially. To me it doesn't sound like abuse at all. I know someone who truly did abuse the system (she would not work, or when she did she would find ways to get fired, but used her kids for a welfare check instead).
     
  41. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Messages:
    5,040
    Likes Received:
    1,501

    Apr 16, 2013

    I hope you find a way to work it out. I have no suggestions unforunately. My husband and I have decided to find the money before we have kids rather than after and then juggle the bills. Hopefully we can afford it some day but I don't want to be one of those parents who can't afford a 10 cent notebook for my kid (I'm not saying you are at that point with your kids and paying for things for them, just my own worries).
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. waterfall
Total: 177 (members: 2, guests: 158, robots: 17)
test