R.S. asks from Lincoln, CA on September 19, 2009
Am I Making the Right Decision? How Do I Make This Work?
Since I had my first son 2 years ago, I have wanted to get into a position at work that allowed me NOT to pay for someone else to raise my child and to allow me more time with my family. After my second son was born in February, that thought became even more of a hope because child care turned into 1,200 a month. I had been working Monday thru Friday 6am until 3 pm as a supervisor of a very busy hospital CT scan department. I finally got the opportunity to bid on a new job, working every weekend Friday, Saturdays and Sundays from 12noon until 10:30pm. That means obvious changes for our family... ones that I guess I am just really afraid about.
I have always wanted to be that stay at home mom yet afraid after 2 years of spending all day with other kids, my 2 year old is going to go crazy. I realize there are groups and activities we can get hooked into, and so far I have found 2 groups for us to join, but I am nervous about this transition for him. He is definitely one of those kids that thrives on routine and structure and I am afraid of how he will respond. I am nervous about how demanding he is and how little time I feel i have for my 7 month old who is now crawling. I am afraid spending quality time with him, will suffer because his brother will be so demanding of my time, since he wont be around all those other children. I am afraid for my husband who will have the chore, 3 nights a week, of putting the boys down to sleep. Currently a chore that we divide and conquer. I believe we are both very nervous about this change. I believe I am making the right decision for our family yet fearful of how it is going to turn out.
Does anyone have ANY input. Anything to help me figure out if what I am doing is truly best and HOW to make this all work out and not completely stress our marriage and family.
1 mom found this helpful
So What Happened?™
It is the last day of my first 3 day work stretch. My husband sent me a message less than 30 minutes ago telling me that he cant do this. That he is neglecting our 7 mth old and its not fair to him to go to bed without snuggling and a bottle. He feels that he cannot give both boys the attention they need during the entire bedtime routine. I realize he is frustrated and feels he is truly letting my baby boy down but I know that with time, the 3 of them boys are going to work it out. Any ideas I can pass along to him???
Y.M. answers from Redding on September 28, 2009
You will never know until you try. But I will ask, do you really want to work weekends? Weekends are another time when things happen and family outings happen. I would truly give it more thought.
P.W. answers from San Francisco on September 20, 2009
If anyone's going to go crazy it's probably more likely to be you. :)
Some of the things you worry about might happen - no situation is perfect -- however it's highly unlikely that your kid is going to be LESS happy being with you than at daycare. I discovered this with my oldest when I took him out of daycare when he was 3-1/2 and his sister was born. I thought he'd be all bored and miss his friends -- he had good friends at daycare -- but I quickly discovered he really preferred being with me. (Sibling rivalry issues arose after his sister was born, but that's another story.)
I remember the moment and the day it dawned on me that my son didn't miss daycare AT ALL, and he was happier to be with me. That's when I changed my opinion 180 degrees from one of 'moms should work' to 'moms should be at home with their kids, if at all possible'.
Create a new routine for your son, and he will learn to thrive on that. I can't promise you that your son won't be demanding, because my oldest was always really demanding of attention. However your kids are always happier to have more time with you, until they're about 13 or so.
What you're doing is truly best, financially and otherwise. Will problems arise? Absolutely. However that won't mean you made the wrong decision.
And Senya below has a good idea - why not leave your two year old in daycare 2 days a week, at least while you're adjusting? That will make it a little easier on you and allow you to have that special time with your 7 month old.
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A.C. answers from Washington DC on September 19, 2009
as a military wife .. change is the name of the game for our family so I'm pretty familiar with it.
My best advice would be to EXPECT things to be hectic and strange and everyone to be "out of whack" for the first few weeks (maybe even the first few months) but know that it WILL settle into the new routine. Understand that this is a change for EVERYONE and that some adjustment time is going to be needed. And that DURING that adjustment time everyone is going to have some crankiness at one time or another, sometimes all at once.
The hubby will be fine and will have to come up with his own routine for putting the kids to bed that works for him. The kids will push the limits and test and see just how much they can get away with. And hubby is probably going to be exhausted those nights till everyone settles in and gets used to the new routine.
But trust yourself and your hubby to figure it all out. Kids are amazingly resiliant and adjust to change pretty well most of the time. Just keep consistant as much as possible. But also allow some wiggle room so that no one gets overwhelmed.
Good luck and it'll all be fine. You'll find the balance that works for your family.
1 mom found this helpful
D.S. answers from San Francisco on September 20, 2009
R.: I hope that you will find peace in your heart and mind for your concerns.
Since you work a stressful job ( I have a sister in law that is a supervisor over several locations for CT). I know how working those long shifts will be.
Let your husband do it. IT IS CALLED FATHERHOOD> He may not do it just as you would but he will be given the time and the chances he needs to build strong relationships with the children.
I have 5 children, and they are the most adaptable people I know. As children- we were in the military and often moved on short notice. We had a set way of doing what had to be done and they were fine about the new adventure they were about to take. You, will find simular things with your family. I have several grandchildren that are in day care and their mothers pay top quility for this service-- but as grateful as they are they still wish to be home. One granddaughter, spends 3 days a week playing with little cousins, or playgroups that her mother and father, have joined and one day a week I make the request that I play with her while her mother works from home. I have one grandchild, that loves to spend time with daddy, out in the garage and they build stuff- one never knows what they willl come up with next. That child by 4 could read a tape measure and handle a light weight hammer! So make this an adventure and see all that you can teach your child that no one else can. Love them, and create memories that will last a lifetime- picnics on a blanket in the back yard or front room, I have found is as fun as going to the park, if you do it right. This is a reat chance for your future at work. With so many people being laid off its great that you were chosen. Let me encourage you both that you have made some great success outside of the home. But no success outside the home makes up for failure in the home. That said-- by each parent doing thier part the children will get the best of both you. Nana Glenda
J.K. answers from Sacramento on September 19, 2009
Sometimes you just have to make it work and do what you have to do. I don't mean that in an insensitive way... Childcare is very expensive, especially for 2 children, and if you have to make some adjustments to be able to be home with your kids more do it!!! Your whole family will benefit from it.
My son was born 2 and a half months early, and he and my daughter are 21 months apart, (about the same age gap as your little ones). Since he was so early, we were warned that having him in a situation such as daycare, would not be good for his health. Luckily both my husband's and my employers were very good about letting us arrange our schedules so that we could keep him out of daycare for the first year. However, with both of us working full time it also meant a crazy family schedule. My husband and I were like ships in the night. After that year, we had the kids in a part-time daycare situation, but our schedules were still crazy and my husband and I didn't have much time together. I was with the kids in the morning-early afternoon, then I worked until late. This meant that FIVE days a week he picked them up from daycare after work and did the whole evening routine with them. He's amazing.
Be happy that you will get to be with your kids all day all week and then have family time with them and your husband. What a gift and what a wonderful opportunity!! Of course you will have an adjustment to make and so will they, but it will all be ok. The kids will take a little time to adjust, but because it sounds like you have structure and a routine that will make it so much easier.
Make sure that you and your husband communicate and are on the same page about the routine. He will have his own way of working with the kids and as long as it's not deviating too much from what they are used to they will be fine. Don't be critical about how he does things as long as it works... for instance if it takes him 15 minutes longer to get them down for nap, no big deal. If it is a big deal be sure to explain why so it can be corrected, and don't let little annoyances fester.
Remember that this is a very short span of time in the grand scheme of things. Your little ones will be in preschool and kindergarten before you know it and you will be so glad that you had the chance to be with them during this time.
Good luck and enjoy!!!!
M.E. answers from San Francisco on September 21, 2009
Maybe since your 2 yr. old loves daycare so much you could have him go 1 or 2 days a week and that would allow you to spend some time with the younger one, it sounds like Fridays would work too, since you have to work and most likely your husband does too, It would also give you a chance to get some things done around the house. I think its great you want to be home with them, I get 3 days off and would love more time with my 2yr old as well, but just remember you need to set aside some time for you alone and you and your husband. Sounds like you might be totally maxed out with this schedule.
Best of Luck,
W.M. answers from Sacramento on September 20, 2009
the hard part will be being away from your kids and husband for those hours, knowing they are home. It will be a transition for all to make, the kids and you both. I work in grocery retail and it makes it hard to have a family life as they don't give us a set schedule. At least you will have that. But here is a quetion, what if you have a family event on a weekend, will they allow you to take the day off if necessary?
B.R. answers from Bakersfield on September 20, 2009
Hi. We used to do this except I worked swing shift and my husband worked day shift, so we only saw eachother on weekends. But we did not have to pay for childcare and the children were raised by us. I don't know where you live but here in Bakersfield there are several part-time pre-schools that are very reasonable, you would still be raising your child but also giving him the interaction with other children. They cost around $150/month for 2 half days a week. Plus there are playgrougs you can join that meet at a park or other fun place. Good luck!
K.T. answers from Sacramento on September 20, 2009
Good for you!! I too, am in the same boat, finally made a decision that will allow me more time with my kids. You're already on the right track to consider playgroups and those types of things for social interaction for your 2-year old. But also consider that many Preschool programs have a part-time option, even just 2 mornings per week, which could give you ALL the sanity you need. Your 2-year old gets to see his friends and have the social interaction, and your 7-month old gets some one on one mommy time. The cost for a program like that is fairly reasonable. If your center doesn't offer that, check out the local park and rec department, they usually have these types of programs.
Congratulations on making a tough choice, and more than anything, follow your instinct, Mama's do know their kids best! :O)