WWYD? Give up comfy income for more time with Daddy? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 22 Old 05-15-2011, 08:04 AM - Thread Starter
 
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So my DP has been working at the same job since last summer. It started out ok, but as of September he has been working out of town every week, leaves on Monday, returns late Thursday. He has a three day weekend, usually, but he works nights so he sleeps later than us and stays up later than us (by us I mean me and the kids). It really sucks to have him gone every week, but the money he makes is good. We are able to save, put more towards the mortgage, not have to watch every penny, etc. He doesn't really like the the job, it is boring, basically mind numbing work.

Last summer, before he got this job, he was working for another company and he really liked that work. However they could only offer him part-time which is not enough for us. It looks like that same company will be hiring again and they are guaranteeing a minimum of 30 hours a week. This would not be enough to survive on, but if it was closer to 40 hours, it would be doable. Granted we wouldn't be able to save really anything. We would have barely enough to get by, with no extras. Also, they had said in the past that if he found some side work, he could do it under their license in order to make it work for him financially. This job would be flexible hours, he would be home every night and he likes the guys that he would be working with. We would basically be scrimping though. My youngest is 2.5 and I was planning on getting a job when he is in K. So that's still 3 years away.

So WWYD? Give up financial security for more time at home? We do have $$ in savings and he would sell his motorcycle if need be (maybe $11,000). He hates working away and really misses us.

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#2 of 22 Old 05-15-2011, 08:07 AM
 
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Yup. I would do it in a heartbeat smile.gif

To us, family is way too important. I'm not saying everyone quit their jobs and live in a van down by the river, but if I had to choose between those two situations, I would choose less money and more family time and so would DH.

GL though, its not an easy choice.
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#3 of 22 Old 05-15-2011, 10:53 AM
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No, I wouldn't. 


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#4 of 22 Old 05-15-2011, 11:04 AM
 
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I would do it in a heartbeat


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#5 of 22 Old 05-15-2011, 11:17 AM
 
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I would do it!  Having my hubby gone for four days straight a week would be a worst-case job scenario for me.  Can you come up with some creative ways to make money?  Babysit for another kid during the day?  Get a Saturday or Sunday shift at a coffee shop (your or your hubby)?  I would definitely take this new job, but I would also be sure to do everything possible to bring in a bit more money. 

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#6 of 22 Old 05-15-2011, 11:56 AM
 
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No way.  We were in a similar low-income situation, with dh being around a lot, and the financial stress was terrible.  We couldn't really enjoy the family time bcs we were stressed about watching every penny and we were constantly in danger of not being able to pay bills. He's working away from home during the week right now, but it is SUCH a relief to have a steady paycheck.  In addition, he's been able to keep his old job on a part time basis, and we are finally able to breathe. When he's home on the weekends we enjoy the time and make the most of it.  It's a great short term solution.  We'll probably move to be closer to his job eventually. 

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#7 of 22 Old 05-15-2011, 12:44 PM
 
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No way, you just said if he takes the old job back you wont have enough income to pay the basic bills.  That means one or both of you will need to get a 2nd job, leaving even less time together.  I'd keep the current job and keep looking for something else that pays the bills and has a schedule he likes.


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#8 of 22 Old 05-15-2011, 12:58 PM
 
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No. I wouldn't. It sounds too risky. Maybe it would be possible to try and work out a better weekend schedule so you can spend more time together. My DH used to work nights and I know how hard that can be. 

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#9 of 22 Old 05-15-2011, 01:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hmmm...interesting. I do remember the stress when he was laid off last year and unemployment was not enough to cover the bills. It is definitely a tough choice. This summer, he would not be working nights so that would help. I don't know. Plus, this current job may not last forever, the money is from the economic stimulus so very likely in a year, he wouldn't have that job anymore anyway. Or at least wouldn't be making the current money. When they are not working on government buildings, he makes the same as what he would make at the other company, although it would be 40 hours a week. So part of me feels like we should take this money while we can because it will not always be there. Who knows, maybe it would only last through the summer anyway? The thing is that construction is so slow and I don't know if or when it will ever return to the way it was. I just know that DP is miserable working like this and is realizing that he is missing out on a lot. We have also just been remodeling our kitchen every weekend, so I think it has been seeming like he doesn't see us. Now that we're done with that, weekends will go back to normal so maybe that will help. I was encouraging him to at least talk to the other company and see what they have to offer. Couldn't hurt!

Thanks for your replies. Part of me is so idealistic, but the other part is very realistic so I am having an internal clash at the moment! Plus, I am burned out on being a single parent during the week, so that is coloring this as well. I'm tired of being alone. And yes, I do get out and see friends, but it's not the same as having your partner come home every night and share in the childcare/household duties.

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#10 of 22 Old 05-15-2011, 02:04 PM
 
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I probably would not give up the current job unless you knew the income from selling the bike would make up the difference.  If anything goes wrong, and your savings are gone, not being able to pay the bills will be very stressful.  I hate having dh away so I get where you are coming from.  My dh has two businesses which both take him out of town, sometimes 5 days a week for months, sometimes only a weekend here and there.
 

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would not be working nights so that would help. I don't know. Plus, this current job may not last forever, the money is from the economic stimulus so very likely in a year, he wouldn't have that job anymore anyway. Or at least wouldn't be making the current money. When they are not working on government buildings, he makes the same as what he would make at the other company, although it would be 40 hours a week. So part of me feels like we should take this money while we can because it will not always be there. Who knows, maybe it would only last through the summer anyway? The thing is that construction is so slow and I don't know if or when it will ever return to the way it was. I just know that DP is miserable working like this and is realizing that he is missing out on a lot. We have also just been remodeling our kitchen every weekend, so I think it has been seeming like he doesn't see us. Now that we're done with that, weekends will go back to normal so maybe that will help. I was encouraging him to at least talk to the other company and see what they have to offer. Couldn't hurt!

When the current job ends, is it likely he will find something good, or would the new job be more long term security?  It doesn't hurt to at least talk to the other company, maybe something can work out!
 

 


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#11 of 22 Old 05-15-2011, 04:08 PM
 
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Originally Posted by cristina47454 View Post

No way.  We were in a similar low-income situation, with dh being around a lot, and the financial stress was terrible.  We couldn't really enjoy the family time bcs we were stressed about watching every penny and we were constantly in danger of not being able to pay bills. He's working away from home during the week right now, but it is SUCH a relief to have a steady paycheck.  In addition, he's been able to keep his old job on a part time basis, and we are finally able to breathe. When he's home on the weekends we enjoy the time and make the most of it.  It's a great short term solution.  We'll probably move to be closer to his job eventually. 



This.  Right now, DH works away All. The. Time. I've seen him once since last summer (so have the kids) but this is financially the right choice for us.  We are moving closer to where he is now, but are taking time to get all our ducks in a row to make that happen.  Even once we are there he works mostly overnights, and his schedule won't line up with the family schedule.  However, that is sometimes what has to happen to make it work financially and having been in a low income position previously, it is SO much better being secure.   Yes, it stinks to miss out on family time, but if the alternative is to have more time together but spend it all stressing about money, it isn't worth it. 

 

Don't put yourself in a position where you plan to eat your savings to get by. 

 

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#12 of 22 Old 05-16-2011, 05:41 AM
 
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No.  Especially since you already have one parent that is stay-at-home.  There are millions of moms who would love to be in your shoes.

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#13 of 22 Old 05-16-2011, 05:53 AM
 
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There are situations where I would consider one parent cutting hours or switching jobs to have more time with the kids, but I would not do it in your position, given that you are a SAHM, and the pay would put you in an uncomfortable financial position.

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#14 of 22 Old 05-16-2011, 06:14 AM
 
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I would be very cautious in giving up a full time position when that is the only income in the household. Are you in the US? If so, is your health insurance through his work? Would the new company provide that for him even though he will be part time? This is a huge concern in my family and the biggest reason why my dh can't/won't leave his job that he's less than thrilled with.

 

It sounds like your dh will need the side work to make things feasible for you financially. I know it would still be less time away than it is now but wouldn't he still be away a lot if he has to do both? It doesn't sound probable that you will be gaining all of family time you hope to.

 

I know how hard it is to never see each other. Although he doesn't travel much, my dh and I have three jobs between the two of us and work opposite shifts to avoid childcare costs. We're together as a family one evening a week and that's it, no weekends, sometimes not even holidays. It really sucks sometimes, well all the time really, but being in debt and fighting over money was worse ... way way worse. 

 

With all that said, I think you need to look at the details in your own family situation like insurance, budget, stress levels, etc. I have no idea how much your savings is. Are you willing to deplete it for current expenses until you can build it up again later when you start working?

 

Good luck with whatever decision you make. 

 

 

 


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#15 of 22 Old 05-16-2011, 06:24 AM
 
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I don't handle having DH out of town very well.  I didn't mind it too much when we dated and had separate households, but with kid the age you have currently it would drive me crazy. Until his current job he has always had a job with some travel.  I do feel like we are taking a paycut to make up for the no travel thing (DH could make better money and be expected to travel more in just about any other job in his field).

 

Personally, I would look for a job (or otherwise develop my own income stream) which would allow DH to work less.  But in my case I know I do better with some WOH responsibilties in my life and I also have job skills/credentials that provide me with some good part-time job opportunities.  Obviously, it has to work OP's situation. Directionally, I think sometimes two less time intensive jobs even if it requires some paid childcare provide better work-family balance than having one person work and be gone all the time. 

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#16 of 22 Old 05-16-2011, 06:31 AM
 
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I would give up money to have DH home but I would not give up 'financial security' -- meaning reliable, consistent wages (and benefits etc.) It's one thing to live on less (but still be able to count on that income), but another to not know whether you'll be able to make ends meet each month. I would want a guarantee of 35 hours/week (or however many hours he'd need for you to pay for essentials) before I'd consider it. It also sounds like, since your DP would need to be looking for & doing side jobs, he might not actually end up being home much more than he is now.

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#17 of 22 Old 05-16-2011, 08:18 AM
 
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Haven't read the responses.

 

I stopped working so I could be home with the kids. We are struggling financially, but we feel it's the right thing to do. I think your kids would rather throw a ball around with dad than have a new (fill in the blank.)


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#18 of 22 Old 05-16-2011, 08:32 AM
 
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I would do it if they can give him the 40 hours and if that means that you won't have to dip into your savings.  I'd also sell the motorcycle regardless, but that is just me.  If they can't give him enough hours that you'd have to dip into savings, I would keep saving and hope that something better comes up soon.  Hugs, OP.  I know how hard it is to have your DH gone all week. 

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#19 of 22 Old 05-17-2011, 12:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, turns out they already filled the position. Which is sort of a relief, but my DP was sad about it. Oh well, musta not been right for us. However, now I am in thinking mode and will be on the lookout for other jobs. Thanks for your advice everyone!

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#20 of 22 Old 05-17-2011, 02:01 PM
 
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Well, turns out they already filled the position. Which is sort of a relief, but my DP was sad about it. Oh well, musta not been right for us. However, now I am in thinking mode and will be on the lookout for other jobs. Thanks for your advice everyone!


Pity about that job, but as you said, it got you thinking. Maybe a job with fewer hours for your DH, and a part time job for you when is at home with the kids. More one on one time for DH with the kids, and a bit of time away from the kids for Mom could be a win-win situation all around!
 

 

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#21 of 22 Old 05-17-2011, 02:15 PM
 
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Hmmm...interesting. I do remember the stress when he was laid off last year and unemployment was not enough to cover the bills. It is definitely a tough choice. This summer, he would not be working nights so that would help. I don't know. Plus, this current job may not last forever, the money is from the economic stimulus so very likely in a year, he wouldn't have that job anymore anyway. Or at least wouldn't be making the current money. When they are not working on government buildings, he makes the same as what he would make at the other company, although it would be 40 hours a week. So part of me feels like we should take this money while we can because it will not always be there. Who knows, maybe it would only last through the summer anyway? The thing is that construction is so slow and I don't know if or when it will ever return to the way it was. I just know that DP is miserable working like this and is realizing that he is missing out on a lot. We have also just been remodeling our kitchen every weekend, so I think it has been seeming like he doesn't see us. Now that we're done with that, weekends will go back to normal so maybe that will help. I was encouraging him to at least talk to the other company and see what they have to offer. Couldn't hurt!

Thanks for your replies. Part of me is so idealistic, but the other part is very realistic so I am having an internal clash at the moment! Plus, I am burned out on being a single parent during the week, so that is coloring this as well. I'm tired of being alone. And yes, I do get out and see friends, but it's not the same as having your partner come home every night and share in the childcare/household duties.



I saw the job was now gone anyway. But it looks like from what you described above it would be worth holding off on a change for now, unless another great position comes up somewhere. Is there anyway he can stop putting in the extra hours over the weekend? That way you could feel like he is really home while he's home. I agree with a pp about the added stress and your relationship. Dh and I see plenty of eachother but our finances suck and therefore half the time we're too stressed to enjoy ourselves together or end up talking about finances which then makes us stressed.

 

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#22 of 22 Old 05-19-2011, 08:07 PM
 
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Wold you be willing to work 10-20 hours a week to make up the lag?  This would cover his less than full time status and not take too much time out of your week.  I may not add family time but would give baby more time with daddy.  Also if you think creatively about a job it might actually add time.   I work at a grocery store, I can shop on my break, keep up with sales and get small discount. 


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