Second shift and childcare- advice? - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 7 Old 11-30-2009, 01:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
mama2landon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Michigan
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Does anybody here work 2nd shift, and if so, what do you do for childcare? My mom is currently watching my son for the 4 days/nights that I work, but that is only because I live with her. I want to move, but then I don't know what I would do for my son.

We've tried for 2 years to gently coax him into a good sleep schedule, but the reality is that he's a night owl who rarely goes to sleep before midnight. We've finally just given up, and since my mom doesn't work anymore, she's okay with going to sleep late for now. But I can't find any daycare people who would be willing to stay up with him that late, and I don't blame them. He is high energy and high needs, and doesn't lay still or even keep quiet at all, and always demanding of adult attention. In fact, he was "kicked out" of the only daycare he's ever been in when he was only 6 months old because of those same reasons.

Anyway, I need to move, because I honestly feel like I can't handle the stress of the long commute anymore. I have literally been in tears this summer, just thinking about doing the drive yet another winter. I was nearly in a couple bad accidents last winter. I drive home late at night, mostly rural roads and on the weekends when there aren't a lot of road commission trucks out keeping the roads clear of snow or ice. I'm also running into other problems living in my parents house, and I've decided that we just *have* to get out of there.

But if I move and can't find childcare, then what? I was told that if I quit my job without good reason then I would not qualify for any kind of financial assistance from the state, but I wonder if that's true if you genuinely can't find childcare? Do I have any other options, something obvious I'm overlooking?

Bookworm read.gif , computer geek geek.gif , and single mom wild.gif to DS blahblah.gifbouncy.gif (11/06)
mama2landon is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 of 7 Old 11-30-2009, 01:25 AM
 
_betsy_'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 4,615
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I see you're a single mom, and honestly, in that case, I wouldn't be able to work 2nd shift without a LOT of family help.

As it is now, I work 4-11:30 p.m. and DH is home with our girls. There's two days a week when our work schedules overlap, and the girls go to the IL's house for a few hours.

Are you looking for another position with different hours? Could you live half way between work and your parents house?
_betsy_ is offline  
#3 of 7 Old 11-30-2009, 01:43 AM
 
MacKinnon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: The Great Lakes State
Posts: 3,820
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Have you had any luck finding home based care providers that would do night shifts? What time are you working? I see that you are in Michigan, depending on where you are in the state there is an agency called 4-C's, or Child Care Network, sometimes a couple other names, that coordinates child care in the county. They would be a good start, maybe try posting in finding your tribes for an MDC mama that could use some extra cash? Or a local Mom's group? I live in Michigan, and I work in this field, feel free to PM me if you would like a specific county referral to your 4-C's. Money is SOOOO tight for so many people around here right now, you might have luck finding someone who is willing to take him for your shift. I would think you would have the best luck with a mom, who is looking to help bring in some extra cash, not necessarily a licensed provider.

One note-- You might have to be willing to help him learn to go to sleep earlier, or find someone who could work on a gentle sleep transition. My DS and DD were AWFUL nappers. I was terrified of how they would handle the transition to child care. And honestly, they did have trouble learning to fall asleep on their own, on a cot. However, we had wonderful care givers who sat with them, rocked them, rubbed their backs, etc. I was honest with them that it would be an issue, but that I understood they would have to nap with the rest of the class. In the end it only took about a month, part-time, for them to figure it out and now it's fine.

sleepytime.gifC.- WOHM, CPST Instructor, and all around busy Mama to  blowkiss.gifA.- 02/04, bouncy.gif I. 01/07,babyf.gifE. 09/10 and

stork-suprise.gif expecting the surprise of our lives Fall 2012!
 

MacKinnon is offline  
#4 of 7 Old 11-30-2009, 10:38 AM
 
LilMomma83's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 2,630
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I would try a home daycare situation
LilMomma83 is offline  
#5 of 7 Old 12-01-2009, 02:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
mama2landon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Michigan
Posts: 206
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by _betsy_ View Post
I see you're a single mom, and honestly, in that case, I wouldn't be able to work 2nd shift without a LOT of family help.

As it is now, I work 4-11:30 p.m. and DH is home with our girls. There's two days a week when our work schedules overlap, and the girls go to the IL's house for a few hours.

Are you looking for another position with different hours? Could you live half way between work and your parents house?
There are no other positions available at my job, and finding another job in Michigan- especially in my area- is unrealistic. We are looking at about 20 percent or more unemployment where I am. In my field there are only 2 employers in the area, and probably fewer than 30 in the whole state. All of them would require nights and/or weekends for my type of job.

The city that I'm trying to move to is roughly halfway between my parents and my job, but my mom isn't able to drive at night, so she is only able to do 2 nights of daycare (staying over two nights and going back on the 3rd day). I wouldn't ask her to do more than that.

My first thought was to have her do Thurs/Fri night, and then take DS with me to work on Sat/Sun which are my much slower and unsupervised days. I've already had the boss okay him coming to work with me on weekends, but the last couple times I've had him have not been fun at all. Like I said, he doesn't really have any interest in playing with toys, and when he gets loud and hyper, I have a hard time getting my job done. I've had to lean a lot on my one co-worker for support on those days, and I know she loves kids and seems to enjoy occupying his attention for ten or twenty minutes while I blast through some work, I still feel guilty about it.



Quote:
Originally Posted by ilovemyavery View Post
Have you had any luck finding home based care providers that would do night shifts? What time are you working? I see that you are in Michigan, depending on where you are in the state there is an agency called 4-C's, or Child Care Network, sometimes a couple other names, that coordinates child care in the county. They would be a good start, maybe try posting in finding your tribes for an MDC mama that could use some extra cash? Or a local Mom's group? I live in Michigan, and I work in this field, feel free to PM me if you would like a specific county referral to your 4-C's. Money is SOOOO tight for so many people around here right now, you might have luck finding someone who is willing to take him for your shift. I would think you would have the best luck with a mom, who is looking to help bring in some extra cash, not necessarily a licensed provider.

One note-- You might have to be willing to help him learn to go to sleep earlier, or find someone who could work on a gentle sleep transition. My DS and DD were AWFUL nappers. I was terrified of how they would handle the transition to child care. And honestly, they did have trouble learning to fall asleep on their own, on a cot. However, we had wonderful care givers who sat with them, rocked them, rubbed their backs, etc. I was honest with them that it would be an issue, but that I understood they would have to nap with the rest of the class. In the end it only took about a month, part-time, for them to figure it out and now it's fine.
I work from roughly 3pm to midnight, adding in commute time, I'm gone from about 2pm to 1am. When we first moved in with my parents, my mom was picking him up from an in-home daycare after she got home from work, then watching him until I got home. Then she would get up at 7am to get ready for her 9-to-5 job. We tried desperately to get him on a "normal" sleep schedule so that she could get enough sleep herself. Nothing worked. He kicked, bit, hit, pulled his hair and our hair, scratched himself and us and screamed so loud and long that we were positive the neighbors would call CPS on us.

Truthfully, I'm afraid for him to be on a different schedule anyway. He is regularly sleeping until 10am or later. I'm able to get my homework done while he's sleeping, then go to bed about 3am and get a good six or seven hours sleep. We wake up and have time to play and read before I have to leave for work. On my work days, he's usually asleep when I get in, and sleeps solidly all night, whereas before he was constantly waking up and trying to fight going back to sleep. The difference between me as a mommy then and me now is night and day, the constant sleep deprivation made me a terrible person. I do not ever want to go back to being that mommy- not abusive, you understand, but bad enough to make me ashamed. Definitely not GD, and not the mommy I'd wanted to be.

In any case, I will PM you about the 4-C's thing, which I had not heard of before. I've only found a few people who do 2nd shift care, and none that I've been comfortable with who will do 2nd shift on weekends. I'm still toying with the idea of just sucking it up and taking DS in with me on weekends, and hoping that he will adjust to it enough that I can get my work done.

Bookworm read.gif , computer geek geek.gif , and single mom wild.gif to DS blahblah.gifbouncy.gif (11/06)
mama2landon is offline  
#6 of 7 Old 11-28-2011, 07:34 AM
 
moyler316's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 2
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

You mentioned your kiddo's poor sleeping habits and his extreme need for adult attention. It sounds to me like he misses his mommy. Maybe he's trying to stay awake until you get home. I feel for you because I know you would rather be home with him if you could. I don't know what might work for your child to make him feel more at ease when you're at work, but you might try a special photo album with pics of you &/or you & him together. It would be just for him & he could look at it when ever he wants to feel close to you at night. You might also try making a recording of you reading a couple of his favorite storybooks. If he's old enough to understand you maybe you could talk it over with your child to see what he thinks would make him feel more connected to you while you're away at night. Reassure him that you WILL be home when wakes up in the morning & he will see you very soon. If you take a break at the same time every night try calling him so he can hear your voice & remind him that you will be home in the morning. I realize none of these things are the same as actually being there, but maybe they will help make the best of a difficult situation until the job outlook becomes a little brighter. I was raised by a single mom who worked second shift when I was very young and it was hard on me. I missed her a lot. I can only imagine how much she missed me too. I'm sure it wasn't easy at all for her to leave me every night, even though she didn't have a choice at the time. Just like I'm sure it isn't easy for you. Just hang in there & make the best you can out of it.  :)  I agree that an in-home caregiver might be your best bet to find a sitter. Try www.care.com it's a site that helps you find in-home sitters in your area. Good luck!

moyler316 is offline  
#7 of 7 Old 11-28-2011, 08:18 AM
 
crunchy_mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 6,460
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
What about finding a college student to care for him in your home? They are used to late nights at least... however it would have to be someone with a light class load since they wouldn't realistically be able to get homework done while they're there, or a rotating schedule of caregivers (which IMO is less than ideal, but still an option...) so no one is working more than ~2 nights a week. Or maybe you could find another mom who works the opposite shift and swap childcare, so you would watch her child during the day & she'd watch yours at night?

The sleep thing is tricky, I have a night owl too and the world is just not set up to deal with kids who go to bed late... I'm not sure people with 'normal' sleepers can understand how much the late sleep schedule is just hard-wired into some kids!! But it sounds like something just has to give somewhere... either you have to get him to sleep on a more typical schedule, or you need to stay with your parents a bit longer until you can figure out how to arrange childcare, or you have to find a job in another field with more normal hours... redface.gif

I work from home with a high-needs kid and it is crazy tough sometimes... I've been doing it since he was born and he has never gotten used to it (he's almost 3), so I'm not sure bringing your kid to work every weekend is the best solution, depending on what kind of work you're doing. I mean, DS has sort of adjusted I guess, he understands that I'm working, but he still needs me (even with DH home) and I end up spending lots of time with him in my lap listening to music or talking or cuddling or whatever, so it's hard to give work my total focus even though I'm able to keep him somewhat calm & quiet when I need to. My attention is always divided and I can't imagine doing the same thing outside the home where I couldn't control the environment so he'd have space to play and all his toys and no dangerous or messy items in reach and music playing at whatever volume he needs and snacks nearby etc. I would just never be able to focus... I'd do it occasionally if I had to but I don't think I'd willingly put either of us in that situation on a regular basis if it were at all avoidable. Is working from home a couple days a week an option for you?

Co-sleeping is really wonderful when your child actually SLEEPS!! familybed1.gif
crunchy_mommy is offline  
Reply

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off