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#1 of 25 Old 01-04-2012, 05:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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For those who work full time and have young children, do you enjoy going to work?

 

I work full time and have two children, 4 and 7.  I went back to work when both were 11 months old, both have been in full time daycare centres since then until they started school.  My husband also works full time, however he makes very little and he works M-F afternoon/evening shift so I have no co-parent during the week basically.  He will never leave his job as he wants to keep his pension (another whole topic), I am the primary breadwinner, pay our mortgage, our cars, our trips, pay for everything for the kids (clothing, activities, birthdays, gifts, etc.). He just pays a portion of our expenses, and for his own gas, clothing, etc.

 

I have been in my field for 15 years, and at my current job for nearly 7 years.  I wake up in the morning and dread going to work.  I resent having to work full time, I hate my job and hate going to work.  Part of it I know is the actual work I do and the work environment, I used to LOVE my prior 2 jobs (same type of work but different employers and awesome bosses, plus I could work long hours and I found all the travel fun, not stressful at all).  But that was before I had kids.  I started at this current job when I first went back to work after my first was born, and I hated it from the start.  I wished I could have been home with him, and regret so much not being able to be home with my kids more.  I hate the work, I find it so pointless when I'd rather be with my kids, or just doing things that "need" to get done like tidy the house, get groceries, clean, do errands, etc.

 

I have a good job in many ways - secure, great perks/benefits/time off, it pays extremely well, but it's in Senior Management and is VERY stressful, long hours and lots of travel, all of which stress me out.  It's a "sweat shop" environment and I'm at the ceiling of my professional development there unless I am willing to move to another country, (which I've been asked to on numerous occasions but do not want to do).  It's not rewarding, I wake up every single day with a feeling of dread in the pit of my stomach, I am miserable most days unless I know I have time off coming up.

 

What I can't fully figure out is whether it's really the job I hate, or if it's just working in general.  I have thought about changing jobs, but I would have to give up a lot of perks and pay (my job is unique in my area) and/or add a longer commute, and I'm not convinced that a different job would be any better.  Something has to change, but I don't know what.  The cost of living is extremely high in our town, but I don't want to move too far from the limited support network I have to a lower-cost area.  So I know I have to work, and I have to make decent money somehow, and I've worked my way "up" the ladder so it would feel weird to take a step too far back (and I'm not sure I could afford to).  I'm just not sure if changing jobs will make a difference.

 

Just curious if others like going to work or dread going to work, or resent it?  I used to wake up in the mornings and look forward to going in to work, and I really enjoyed what I did. Until I had kids. But that coincided with starting this job so I'm not sure what the real issues are.  I have lost all interest in my work, I have become miserable and hate going in every day.  And I mean really hate it, like I'm in tears more than once a week, I have panic attacks (that didn't exist over the holidays when I was home), and I've lost all motivation to do my work and spend many hours just staring blankly at my computer screen.  I have felt like this once before when I had a job in University doing telemarketing for a newspaper and I felt like driving in to the the guardrail would be better than having to go in to work, crying all the way to work.  I've had this thought many times on my way to work at this job, but I would never do that obviously.  But the fact that I think it often enough tells me how much I hate it.  I NEVER felt that way before I had kids.

 

What really struck me is that I just finished 10 days off over Christmas and I felt really happy for the first time in a very long time.  I loved spending time with my kids just hanging out, and having time to do the things I needed to around the house etc.  But I woke up very early this morning, my first day back with that feeling of dread and anxiety that I haven't felt in nearly two weeks, and I realize how miserable I am going to work every day, and how much I have LOVED being home with my boys.  But that is not an option unfortunately.

 

I would do so much differently if I could go back in time...

 

 

 

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#2 of 25 Old 01-04-2012, 06:42 PM
 
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Oh mama...hugs!! I go back on the 10th, and I LOVE my job. I love the work I do and the people I work with, I absolutly could not fathom going back to do something that didn't make me feel that way, I'm very lucky. I'm excited to go. I could  never be a SAHM, I don't have the ability to be that energetic/present all the time. When I see my babe after a few hours (be it yoga class, work, whatever) I am much more effective and able to be really ON. My sister and DH will watch baby on days I work and whoever's got him will bring him to me during lunch so I can nurse him, which breaks up our seperation into 2 manageable 4 hours chunks. Bummed to be leaving him, but I know it's good for me. I'm sorry you feel so trapped. I hope 2012 brings you tons of new options and ideas,

 

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#3 of 25 Old 01-05-2012, 10:57 AM
 
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I'm in a totally different situation than you are OP, but I do love love love my job, and my ds is in daycare literally a 1minute walk from my office. I just started my job in October though, when my DS was 2.5yo. When ds was born I was in law school, and in an incredibly stressful situation - so this is a million times better.

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#4 of 25 Old 01-05-2012, 11:10 AM
 
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I also love my job. I have great co-workers and meaningful work in a field that I am passionate about. And I have a great childcare situation, so I know DD is just fine without me. I return home every night feeling good & ready to connect with DD. I also really enjoy my time off, don't get me wrong! But I don't dread work...on the contrary, I find it energizing. For me, it's a great balance I wouldn't have it any other way.

 

OP, it sucks to be in a job that you hate. You might be happier as a SAHM, but I'd say you'd definitely be happier in a better job. Are you sure you're stuck where you are? Is there something you can do in 2012 to get back to the things that made you love your work before you had kids?


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#5 of 25 Old 01-05-2012, 06:11 PM
 
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Okay, I have to chime in, since you are only getting people who love their jobs. My guess is that you hate the long hours and stress with the current job, because you highly value your family life. I work 30 hours a week in a low stress job, and even I feel like I am stretched to the max when it comes to organizing/keeping house (as it, a lot doesn't get done, dinner isn't always planned in advance, etc., plus I miss my kids a ton (ages 1 and 4)) and keeping on top of work (as in, everyone else is working many more hours per week, nights, and weekends, and I just don't really keep up, but there are no ramifications). If I were in a senior management position with lots of responsibilities, I would absolutely HATE it!! I would also be resentful and wanting to leave.

 

I get that you are the primary earner, and I think that adds a whole other level which is hard to deal with. But, imagine working a low stress job 20 hours a week. Sure, the pay would be lower, you might have to live on less, but do you think you might be happier? Now, think about whether it is possible to negotiate such a job through someone you know, either your current employer, or someone else you know. Think about your key strengths and how you could market them to people. Any way that might work?

 

It sounds like you need a change. Prioritize what's most important to you and make it happen.

 

(this said by someone who needs to get off her butt and do the same thing!!)


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#6 of 25 Old 01-05-2012, 07:29 PM
 
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I'm not the primary breadwinner but I work full-time and I dread going to work a lot of the time. I too had two weeks off and I felt the same way as OP about going back to work. My job is very close to where we live, has good benefits and is very flexible (in terms of having to miss days or leaving for appointments) so those things I am grateful for, but the actual job and working itself I have come to dislike more and more after I had my DS and had to go back to work after 3 months. For me it is a combination of working itself (because I get to spend so little time as a family during the week) and some of it is my work situation/co-workers but I stay because of the benefits described above and because my DH's job is more demanding and one of us has to be available for daycare drop-off/pick-up, illnesses and appointments. I am pregnant with #2 and I have thought about what I would do. Ideally I would like find a job in the same field that is part-time so I can spend more time with DS and baby #2 but we probably won't be able to do that financially for a few more years until DS is in school.


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#7 of 25 Old 01-07-2012, 10:02 AM
 
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I don't hate my job, but it's no picnic either.  mostly I just sit around and read stuff on MDC all night (and occaisional weekend morning) like now. :P

 

The part I hate is leaving DS.  I put him to sleep before I leave for work, and it breaks my heart to know he's going to wake up in a few hours to eat and I wont be there.  Luckily DS is very comfortable with my mother who looks after him at night, and only wakes up once to eat and then again around 6.  He stays up until 8am when I get home and some days I just know he's waiting for me.  I pick him up and he just passes out in my arms most mornings.  This more than anything makes me hate leaving, and makes me blame my stupid job for making me do stupid work 40 stupid miles from my home and my baby.  I think if I didn't leave though, I'd probably have given DS up for adoption by now

(kidding.)  Seriously though, I need the time away.  Not too much, but I need some personal hours too.  I know if I were a SAHM I would never give myself "me time" because I really do love being with DS, and I don't want to need it, but I do.

 

 


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#8 of 25 Old 01-09-2012, 10:31 AM
 
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I like my job.  I like my schedule.  I HATE being away from my kids.  I sometimes resent that I'm the primary earner which means I'm STUCK!  If I lose my job... I'll be expected to find another one that is equal... or atleast thats how I feel.

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#9 of 25 Old 01-09-2012, 10:46 AM
 
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Your story really resonated with me because I was in the same position when DD1 was born, all the same feelings about my job, including being the breadwinner. That job turned south pretty quickly & I had the same dread, anxiety, etc. I was making myself sick. The thing that really helped me is discovering the book "Your Money or Your Life." A key concept in that book is that money = life energy. That was revolutionary to me. When you start measuring your activities and expenditures as "life energy" rather than "dollars" it really has a profound effect on what you choose to do. We realized that I could not stay in that job, so we moved back to my hometown and I went freelance (I still have the same business today - it changes over time, but overall I still enjoy it). DH became a teacher so that he could have summers with the kids. Since I work for myself, I can plan my time as I wish (provided enough $ is coming in). It's not easy, but this shift in thinking really changed things for us. Maybe an "out of the box" suggestion like this will help you in your situation. Best of luck to you - I hope you find a solution soon!!


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#10 of 25 Old 01-09-2012, 11:01 AM
 
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I have good days and bad days.  But, this was also the case pre-child.  My work comes with high rewards but there is also an underlying tedium.  But, this was also the case pre-child.  What gets me down sometimes is not my actual work, but the constant routine and perhaps feeling a little stuck and feeling like I'm not really making a difference.  I tend to be somewhat of a dreamer:  I like sitting around dreaming of all the cool things that I could be doing but for this very predictable life that I've carved out for myself.  I recently read Patti Smith's "Just Kids" and pined for her life of total artistic freedom.  Sometimes I would just like to "be" and create, with no financial responsibility. 

 

That being said, I'm still one lucky individual, and I am extremely grateful for my opportunities, the people who have supported me along the way and for my present financial comfort.  I'm very grateful that I can do something that is fairly intellectually challenging.   Every now and then when I'm having a bad day, I have to ask myself:  "Does this really suck or am I just tired?"  Most of the time, I'm tired and need a mental, emotional or physical break.  I have to tell myself:  "CatsCradle, Patti had her bad days too."

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#11 of 25 Old 01-09-2012, 11:21 AM
 
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monkeybum, I can sympathize with how you are feeling.  I felt similar (although not quite to the same extent) about my job before DS was born.  I hated the stress, I hated the hours, I hated the politics, and I hated the expectation that my family and my life should always come second and that this meant either not making plans or cancelling them last minute all of the time.  I hated feeling stuck in the job as the primary breadwinner and I resented my DH for having a job he loved and would never leave while I had to struggle through my days so we could pay our mortgage.

 

After DS was born, I was fortunate to take my full year of Mat Leave.  Initially I was going to go back early (because my being off was a huge struggle financially) but decided I didn't want to miss out on the time with DS.  It worked out that in the extra time I was off I was able to find a new, better job.  Not better from a financial perspective, but from a life perspective.  I no longer have the stress and I don't have to work evenings and weekends all of the time.  The work isn't as interesting all the time (some times it is very tedious) but the payoff is knowing that I get to go home at 5:30 and forget about my day, not check my blackberry constantly for emails when I'm off, not stress about "billable hours", and I get 2 Fridays off per month.  So, do I love my job? No. But I don't dislike it either.   I'm still the primary breadwinner so I will make working work.  Sometimes I wish I could stay home with DS, but realistically I enjoy my time away and the fact that it allows me to engage a different part of my brain on a daily basis.

 

Also, my childcare situation helps immensely.  We have a nanny who also does light houswork.  This means that when I come home to a tidy home after work I can just focus all my attention on DS until he goes to bed.  If I had to stress about daycare and housework every day, I'd like working way less.  Maybe you can make some changes that would allow you to get a housekeeper in once a week so that you can have more time with your kids and for yourself when you are home?  That being said, I really think you need to make a more significant change to your work situation because it's going to just keep grinding you down.  hug2.gif


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#12 of 25 Old 01-09-2012, 11:31 AM
 
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I am neutral on my job generally. I can't think of anything I'd rather be doing professionally. I am well treated. But mostly it just feels like the place I go that keeps me away from my kids. I feel like most of my life happens without me.

 

But no, I don't want to work and I'd love to home with my kids (4,2). I don't understand how I've done everything "right" and still can't have what I want (more time with my kids). DH was a SAHD for two years and then went to grad school but still hasn't found a job. We have a great nanny but I am the primary beadwinner and have all the benefits.

 

 I cried every day for an entire year with my first and I pump a really long time (18m, 2y) to feel connected.

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#13 of 25 Old 01-11-2012, 08:48 PM
 
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Overall, I truly loved my old job (I was a newspaper reporter and managing editor). I went back to grad school last year, and this summer I got a job as a researcher on campus. It pays my graduate tuition, plus health insurance for me and DS, plus a really solid hourly wage. I don't like the research assistant job as much as I loved being a reporter -- journalism was more who I was, and this is more a service I'm providing. However, there are many days when I really enjoy myself and learn a ton. Like today -- I spent the entire day geeking out on computer coding and data analysis and had a blast. My other "job" is being a graduate student, and I truly love that. Especially after 8 years working full time -- I appreciate the flexible schedule a lot more than I would have when I was younger.

Honestly, I don't think I'd be happy as a stay at home mom. I think in the future I would love to have a flexible or even part time schedule, but I really crave the mental and social stimulation of a profession.

Your situation sounds pretty awful. If my job or working status made me that miserable, I think I would really have to start looking for a change somewhere. This may not be a useful suggestion, but is your DH truly incapable of being more of a breadwinner, or is he basically coasting? Have you looked at your budget and figured out what a job change would mean for your lifestyle? Is there any way you could split your position between two people or drop down to 30 or 35 hours per week? Could you work from home one day per week? It sounds like your job is making you depressed, (or is it possible that you don't like your job because you're depressed for other reasons?) and depression makes it hard to make changes. But talking about it and thinking about it is the first step. We only live one life and we don't get points for being miserable. Good luck.


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#14 of 25 Old 01-12-2012, 08:57 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CatsCradle View Post

I have good days and bad days.  But, this was also the case pre-child.  My work comes with high rewards but there is also an underlying tedium.  But, this was also the case pre-child.  What gets me down sometimes is not my actual work, but the constant routine and perhaps feeling a little stuck and feeling like I'm not really making a difference.  I tend to be somewhat of a dreamer:  I like sitting around dreaming of all the cool things that I could be doing but for this very predictable life that I've carved out for myself.  I recently read Patti Smith's "Just Kids" and pined for her life of total artistic freedom.  Sometimes I would just like to "be" and create, with no financial responsibility. 

 

That being said, I'm still one lucky individual, and I am extremely grateful for my opportunities, the people who have supported me along the way and for my present financial comfort.  I'm very grateful that I can do something that is fairly intellectually challenging.   Every now and then when I'm having a bad day, I have to ask myself:  "Does this really suck or am I just tired?"  Most of the time, I'm tired and need a mental, emotional or physical break.  I have to tell myself:  "CatsCradle, Patti had her bad days too."

this is pretty much exactly me, too.  i like hypothetically what i do, though i am not sure i am in the right place at this point.  i don't dread it but i wish i could have more time to do what i want to do.  i have never been a great worker, though-- i like to play hookey, skip work, dwadle, doodle, and dream every chance i get.  i prefer school to working as well, and yearn to get a PhD that wouldn't help me earn any more money.  but i have invested too much and too much depends on me going to work to really feel more negatively about it. 


 

 


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#15 of 25 Old 01-12-2012, 09:11 AM
 
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I'll chime in as a mama who hates her job, and has done so for the past 2 years since I started working here. Also, the job description has changed recently and it feels as though I have two jobs, not one. I went through the same sort of anxiety last month, and when I had to return to work on the 3rd, I was extremely depressed. In addition, I am a full-time single mama, so I can't leave my job because all the expenses related to raising DD fall to me.

 

The only thing that has helped me was making a list of pros and cons, and seeing exactly where I stood. That's when I realized that my situation isn't that bad...but that I did need to make a change. I started online graduate courses so I could eventually change fields, and just recently, I started looking for work elsewhere. If I have to be away from DD every week day, then it had better be doing something that I enjoy and that doesn't cause me insomnia/anxiety/depression. I can't be a good mom if I'm this way. Heck, even my 3 year old DD came to sit in my lap one night after I came home from work, and nonchalantly asking me "Mama, why are you so sad?". Ow. Yep, she calls it like she sees it.

 

So, just getting the wheels in motion to make a change makes me feel better. Perhaps you can do the same?

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#16 of 25 Old 01-12-2012, 02:05 PM
 
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I enjoy my work. I meet many interesting people and have generally pleasant staff but if I could I would be in the OR all the time. It is very rewarding to know that what I do makes a difference in the quality of life of my patients, but in terms of pure enjoyment, nothing compares to the microsurgery. Planning the case in my mind, sitting at the operating microscope, utilizing the instruments, anticipating challenges and handling them as they arise to ensure the best outcome for my patients...it never gets old! 

 

I hate that third parties and the government is trying to destroy my profession. I hate being on call. I feel like it is an invasion of my family time. Fortunately I don't take call often, but I wish it was zero.

 

I love that my DH is a SAHD. He is an excellent parent. I don't feel worry or stress about my boys while I am at work because I know they are in good hands. No one loves our boys more than we do. I am thankful that DH can stay home because I would go crazy if I was home full time. I need the type of mental stimulation that my job provides. The best part of my day is walking through the door of our home as a happy woman, winding down the day with the family I love.

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#17 of 25 Old 01-12-2012, 03:36 PM
 
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I love my job.  A lot.  I work 30 hours a week on a flexible schedule and my place of employment is super family friendly (in fact, my ds1 rides the bus here after school and hangs out for an hour until dh gets off work).  For me, if I was home all day, I'd be surfing the internet while the boys watched tv, broken up with the ocassional play date or day at the park.  There isn't a lot to do here for young kids outside of that.  So it is better for them to be at school all day, playing and doing art, than vegging with me all day.  And better for me too, because I get to talk to big people.


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#18 of 25 Old 01-12-2012, 04:01 PM
 
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I really like my job, and always pictured myself as a working mama, but now that I've gone back to work after DS was born... I really want to be a SAHM. It makes it really hard to come in to work everyday. Fortunately, DH is finishing grad school next month. I keep hoping he finds a good enough job so I don't have to work full time.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by monkeybum View Post


What really struck me is that I just finished 10 days off over Christmas and I felt really happy for the first time in a very long time.  I loved spending time with my kids just hanging out, and having time to do the things I needed to around the house etc.  But I woke up very early this morning, my first day back with that feeling of dread and anxiety that I haven't felt in nearly two weeks, and I realize how miserable I am going to work every day, and how much I have LOVED being home with my boys.  But that is not an option unfortunately.


 

 

I felt the same way after my Xmas break!
 

 


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#19 of 25 Old 01-13-2012, 10:25 AM
 
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Quote:
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I felt the same way after my Xmas break!
 

 



I felt the opposite. I was glad to be going back to work where my days aren't punctuated by my ds throwing a huge fit, or chasing him around to get him dressed. I admire SAHM's - I couldn't do it.

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#20 of 25 Old 01-14-2012, 02:46 PM
 
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While i like my job, I feel that 40 hours a week plus commuting is too much.  I felt like I could get a better grasp on running the household when I was temporarily working 32 hrs a week.  I am so tired from waking up at 5:30.  The evening seems hectic and rushed when I walk through the door at 5:15-5:30.   to get an extra hour in the evening would be great.


Ryan 08-28-08  & Julianna 5-3-11
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#21 of 25 Old 01-18-2012, 07:00 AM
 
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While i like my job, I feel that 40 hours a week plus commuting is too much.  I felt like I could get a better grasp on running the household when I was temporarily working 32 hrs a week.  I am so tired from waking up at 5:30.  The evening seems hectic and rushed when I walk through the door at 5:15-5:30.   to get an extra hour in the evening would be great.



I work 32 hrs and even that seems like too much... there just aren't enough hours in the day.


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#22 of 25 Old 01-20-2012, 06:58 AM
 
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I think saying I mostly love my job is fair. I used to nearly always love my job. The big thing for me is we do a lot of travel and that went from being sometimes a nice break or at worst an annoying disruption to infringing on my family time to the point where I have had to cut back my travel severely which also doesn't feel fair to everyone else who is picking up the slack and even when I do travel, every little delay is a huge stressor as getting home at a reasonable time is so important to me. The only other thing is that we are a small company, so when the $#$# hits the fan, there is an expectation to work long hours to get things done, but I am very resistant to that now, but since I manage my own projects I can at least control everything I have to get done and try to leave time each day to deal with emergencies. I do enjoy my job a lot though. I have considered looking for a new job that doesn't have any travel, but I haven't started seriously looking yet as there are a lot of great things about my job, it's very flexible hours-wise, great benefits, good pay, great work environment and coworkers, great boss, etc.

To the OP, I do think a different job would help since it sounds like you never liked this job, but you may still want to not have a job at all sure, but since it sounds like right now you really have to have a job, I think it would be worthwhile to look for something you enjoy more. I'm one who definitely wants to work, I think more part-time hours would be perfect for me, but there just aren't many (if any) jobs like that available in my field.

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#23 of 25 Old 01-24-2012, 10:44 AM
 
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I hate my job.  Well, actually, I am totally indifferent and not into it at all.  I moved jobs shortly before my DD2 (18mths) was born and that just made it worse.  Not very feminist of me but I don't care anymore.  I want to be home with my kids.  After a long time of talking it out, I am quitting in a couple of months to stay home.  Fingers crossed that it is as great as I hope.

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#24 of 25 Old 01-24-2012, 12:20 PM
 
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I hate my job.  Well, actually, I am totally indifferent and not into it at all.  I moved jobs shortly before my DD2 (18mths) was born and that just made it worse.  Not very feminist of me but I don't care anymore.  I want to be home with my kids.  After a long time of talking it out, I am quitting in a couple of months to stay home.  Fingers crossed that it is as great as I hope.


Just a side note:  I don't think present-day feminism is about paid employment, I think it is about empowerment and availability of choice.  I feel pretty disempowered when I'm unhappy.

 

Good for you for deciding what is best for you and your family at this time.  A happy mom is an empowered mom!

 


 

 


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#25 of 25 Old 01-25-2012, 10:35 AM
 
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I was pnce in a job where I hated gping to wprk/ I quit that job after I got a different ine/ That was 8 years ago, I love my job now


D. proud Mom of H. E. M. and T. always remembering Norah (11/07 at 40 wks) and (10/06) see profile
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