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Question for Mums

How did you make the decision to go back to work or not? Did you go back because for financial reasons or because you missed your job? For those of you who stayed home, I ask a similar question: did you do so because it's what you wanted to do, or was it because daycare costs are ridiculously high?

Sorry if that's a really personal question; we're just starting to think about it now, and I have no idea where to begin! 

Re: Question for Mums

  • A bit of both of the reasons you mentioned. Financial reasons are certainly a big part of it (daycare costs are ridiculously high here, but it's not just the paycheck - you also have to take into account things like retirement contributions, etc.), but I also miss the adult interaction. And it will be nice to get regular meal and bathroom breaks again lol.
  • I go back tomorrow, so this is hitting home at the moment.  For me, it's a small part the financial stuff, but mostly I wanted to go back because (most of the time!) I really like my job.  i like the fulfillment I get from it, and the adult interaction.  I agree with Lisa that in a small way, I'm looking forward to being able to eat lunch uninterrupted!

    Also, I still want to keep a part of me that is.....ME.  Especially when Henry is in school himself.  I think it would be so hard to be out of the workforce that long, then try to jump back in.  Also, I want my son to see that women are strong, and can do anything.  I want him to respect women, and I think that seeing me in the role may give him a good perspective.

    Lilypie Second Birthday tickers
  • Since MH is self employed, I'm the insurance provider for our family so I had to go back to work.  If he had insurance for us, I probably would have taken a year off.  Luckily, a part time position opened up when I was on leave and I was able to go back just part time, which for me is only 2 nights a week.  But working night shift (7p-7a) leaves me quite exhausted and I really wish I didn't have to work!  I just try to remind myself that I really do have it good. 

    We are also lucky that we don't need child care because he stays home with her when I'm at work.

  • How you feel about being a SAHM (before you even have the baby)? For me, I wasn't against the idea but part of me always felt like I'd be giving up a lot if I became a SAHM after I invested so much in my career and paid 1/2 of my undergrad tuition and 100% of my hefty private-school graduate tuition out of my own pocket.

    But then the baby came and it changed. I wanted to be a SAHM. Every time I looked at LO, I couldn't bear the thought of leaving him and going back to the office. But then a few times, when I'm running errands by myself, I think to myself while driving, "Hey, this is not so bad, I can do this..."

    But regardless, I was definitely not ready to go back after only 12 weeks. You're in Canada, so I think you guys get 1 yr off? (Lucky!) So in that case, I think it would've been less of an issue for me b/c 1 yr is good IMO. So I ended up quitting my job and started another job, where I could work from home and work fairly flexible hours (though it's mostly full-time). It was the only way I was willing to work. Yes, money was a factor, but I thought we could make it work (though it would be REALLY tight) even if I didn't work.

    There's a small part of me that still wants to be marketable if I ended up wanting to go back into the industry after X years of having this/future kid(s). If I ended up being a SAHM until all my kids are old enough to be in school, I would be outdated by the time I wanted to go back to work again and getting a job after not working for >1-2yrs will be really tough, esp in my field. I do enjoy my work a lot but I can also do related stuff for fun at home if I had ended up a SAHM.

    Daycare, for MH and I, was out of the question. Costs are too high and for that price, we'd much rather take the income hit and watch the kids ourselves, but that's just us.

    Sept 2008 Wedding | May 2010 & Mar 2012 Babies
  • We haven't decided yet.  We agreed long ago and started planning for me to be able to stay at home should I choose to at some point in the future.  My plan is to take my 4.5 months leave, extend with some vacation if i want to, but then go back to work full-time for at least 6 months to really give it a chance and see how it goes.  I'm also starting to look into whether part-time is really an option - a very small number of women do it at my company, but I'm not sure I could pull it off in my role. 

    Then we'll decide based on how much I enjoy the work/intellectual stimulation v. staying home with baby, how much we really want the additional income, and all the other factors that come into play.  Unless you need to decide one way or the other for financial reasons, I believe it's really hard to know what you'll want to do until after the baby arrives.  I know several women who thought they'd hate to SAH, and then found they loved it, and vice versa.  I also know at least one dad who decided to SAH after the baby, b/c he was so unhappy when he went back to work.  So we're going to wait and see. 

    One of my other friends who is also a teacher is going back next month for the rest of the school year, then deciding whether she'll return next fall.  If/when they have a second though, she'll stop working, as her salary doesn't cover daycare for 2 here.

    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • It was a pretty easy decision for us - MH has been out of work for a couple of years, and he is taking night classes to change careers, so my going back to work was a no-brainer - we have to eat! :)
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