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Distraught- need advice

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
Ok guys- I need some personal advice

I started my new job today, and I did really well. I caught on to procedures very quickly, and my coworkers are wonderful. The shift i work is 8:30am-5:30pm which means my kids have to go to daycare for 3 hours after school. I picked them up today and we got home at 6:15.

The poor things were starving and exhausted, and very clingy and teary. As for being teary, I began crying as soon as I saw them when I picked them up. The daycare director must have thought I was nuts.

I can't imagine doing this 5 days a week for the next however many years- I miss them horribly. My head says to stay because we could use the extra money, but my heart says I need to spend this time with the kids while I can. I hate the idea of them growing up seeing their mom a few hours a night and thats it.

My husband makes enough money for us to get by, not for a lot of extras, but my pay would be used for those. I'm absolutely heartbroken to think of doing this day after day

My question to you is, what do i do? Follow my head or my heart?

post #2 of 22
I don't have kids, so my opinion might not count. But I'm married to someone who grew up seeing very little of his parents, and I know for sure he would rather have had the time with them than the "extras." Not to scare you, but it happens. He became very wild, and ended up leaving home at 15.

He might not have felt that way as a kid, but he does as an adult looking back on it. No way you can find a part time job? If not, I say follow your heart. But I'm sure you'll get much better advice from those with kids. It's so difficult to be a parent, I can't imagine having to make those choices. My prayers are with you and your family.
post #3 of 22
Keep in mind that this was the first day. You and your kids are learning a new schedule and once you all adjust everything will be fine.

From now on, bring a few crackers or carrots with you in the evening for a little snack during the drive home and show the children how absolutely delighted you are and how happy you are about the situation. If they see you crying and being upset, they will believe that this is an awful situation. If they see you happy, they will believe all is fine. A little snack, a lot of attention and loving, and a happy face will make the situation turn out just fine.

My mom worked. There were four of us kids...we became a college professor/psychologist, a master's level therapist, a master's level environmental engineer, and a bachelor's level businessman. All of us are psychologically healthy and have great families of our own. So even if mom can't be home all day, the kids can do fine!
post #4 of 22
Lotsocats is right. This will be an adjustment period for all of you. In the meantime, if the feelings don't subside, how about a parttime job that has hours that coincide with school? A couple of moms I know actually even work at the school where their kids go.
post #5 of 22
Hey Mel:

I own a daycare, so I am well in tuned to "daycare parents". I am also a mother as you know. I chose to do home daycare so I could stay home w/ my own children, it was a wonderful option for me, I have the best of both worlds. I am able to have an income, and be home.

If you can get by w/o the job then do it. I deal with parents all the time who cannot afford to not work. So they leave their kids w/ me. I take great care of them ,try to treat them like they were my own, but they would be better w/ their mommys and daddys, I am sure of it. These are precious moments you are going to miss and if you can afford to stay home, then do it.
It bothers me so badly when I have to tell a parent about a 'first' for a child, like a first step, a first crawl, a first word. The parents are always heartbroken that they missed it, and I am always heartbroken to have to say it to them.
Its so important for kids to be w/ their parents, they need the stability and to learn from them. You need to teach them your morals, your values, something a daycare provider cannot do. I know this from first hand experience. I can care for them, change them, feed them, play with them, but I cannot teach them their parents ideals and values. That is impossible.

Bottom line: stay home if you can, or work minimally
post #6 of 22
Thread Starter 
Gosh Daniela, you hit me hard with that post. It kills me to think of missing out on my kids growing up. They only do it once, I have a lifetime to work.

So far from family and friends I've been told I'm jumping the gun and being irrational by thinking I should not be working. I can't explain it, its a feeling deep in the core of me that tells me this is wrong- a gut feeling I guess.

I've worked full time before, night shifts- and my husband was able to be home with them. His shifts now make that impossible to do. As it stands the kids are at school for 9 hours a day, because thats where the daycare is. It just feels so wrong, I'd love to pass it off as an adjustment period- but having worked before, it feels much different
post #7 of 22
Oh Melissa, I hope I didn't upset you w/ my post. I wasn't intending to do that. But I see it from both ends of the spectrum. I am a mom who loves being home, and I see these daycare kids I care for who are missing their mommys.

I stick by my original post and say stay home if you can. If you can't, then make the best of it, and know that their provider is probably giving them the best possible care she can.

You'll make the right choice, just follow your heart.
post #8 of 22
Have you considered only working a few days a week instead of 5? Would give you all a little extra money for the "extras", but would not take so much time away from your children.

I do not have children of my own yet, but I understand your predictament. It's gotta be tough to choose...especially when part of the extra money will probably be used for things for the children.

I would say give it a week or two and see how you feel. Listen to your never steers you wrong!
post #9 of 22
Melissa, if you can at all afford to stay at home with your children, then do it!!!!! I would kill to be able to have that option. Even if money was tight, it would be worth it. I am so torn apart by the fact that I will have to leave my 6 week old baby with a sitter and return to owrk in 2 weeks. I want to stay at home with her so badly!! I don't see any way we can afford for me to not work, though!!!!
post #10 of 22
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for your replies Daniela- you didn't upset me, fear not Your post just really touched on how I was feeling, thats all.

I had a long heart to heart with my husband, and then one with my mother and we've come to some compromises that will make this 10 times better for my kids. First of all, I am going to have to work full time until after Christmas simply because the store I work for is VERY understaffed. After Christmas I should be able to work 4 days a week.

As it stands I get Sundays, as well as every Saturday night off, as well as one weekday to spend with the kids. My hubby is off every Sat too, so he'll be home with them while I work that day shift. My mom agreed to get them from school twice a week, and they'll have Dinner at her place at a normal time. So, really, that only leaves two days where they'll have to stay more than an hour at the daycare.

I guess it seemed so scary and overwhelming before because I had missed them so much and was very mentally drained after a long first day.

So, I'm going to give it a shot for a while, and if it still doesn't seem to be working with the family help, I'll quit. I talked it over with the kids and they were happy with the plan, since they get to see both Daddy and the grandparents more.

Thank you all SO much for the support when I needed it. Its so wonderful to know there are caring people out there who I can sound off to and get advice from. I love you guys
post #11 of 22
I know this may sound corny, but do you have a family picture that your kids can take with them to day care? How about your new job ....... do they let you have personal items?
post #12 of 22
Melissa - it sounds like you have worked out a great comprise. I really hope it works for you!
post #13 of 22
Glad to hear you were able to find a resolution!

miss you on IM!
post #14 of 22
That sounds like a pretty good compromise! I hope it all works out for you!!
post #15 of 22
Thread Starter 
Tigger- I'm not sure about being able to have personal items at work since I'm not at my own desk, just a checkout that I switch around with other people during the day. I love the idea of sending a pic of the family with the kids though- thanks!

Colby- Miss you too I'm going to try to get AIM back on my system soon and see how it goes.

Susan- Hope to be chatting with you on IM soon, if I can get up the energy to sit at the desk long enough- this satnding on my feet all day is killing me!

Well, My second day was much better than my first My mom had the kids today, so they got to eat at a normal time and I wasn't feeling so pressured.

The manager told me today that after Oct 5, when the new schedual is made up I'll be working 3, maybe four days a week. That made me feel a lot better- my mom and husband will be able to be with the kids most of the time that I'm not so it won't be bad at all.

I was picturing a worst case scenario where the kids would be in daycare 5 days a week and be miserable, but since my family is able to help me so much more than I thought, its not going to be so horrible.

I've decided that I really enjoy the job itself, and I think its worth sticking with. Its so much better than serving up peoples pizza Not that I'm knocking it- a jobs a job, but I've had enough of the food industry for a while

Thanks again for all the advice and support
post #16 of 22
Melissa, I'm glad everything is working out in your favor and good luck with the new job!

Debby, I can really sympathize with you. I had to go back to work when my son was only 6 weeks old too and I just hated it, but I didn't have a choice.
post #17 of 22

I went back to work full time after both my boys were 10 months old. Yes, it was a difficult decision to make but in my case, the job I have now opened up when I went in as temp. help and I knew it wouldn't be there for me 4 years down the road. So I took it.

Every time I think I am missing out on something, I make sure I also think of everything I am not missing out on. I put a positive perspective into it. First: The time I am with the boys, I make sure it's quality time. That in itself is very important. We have daily talks about how our days went and I give them 100% of my attention. Dishes can wait and heck....if supper is late, oh well. Second: I make sure that the time I spend with them, is quality time for ME. I ask for hugs, I ask for kisses, I ask for stories, I just make sure: I ask.

Yes, deep down, I would love to be at home. I think you just have to make the best of the time you are together. That, they will remember forever. And the fact that you were working all day, who noticed? It's the game of Twister that you played before bedtime that they'll laugh about 10 years from now!

I think some parents work all day, rush to get the children home, fuss about supper and then hurry to get the kids to bed. If I was that child, I would be sad too because, where has all the fun with mommy gone?

Good luck!

It's not an easy choice, you just have to make it become the best choice for you.

Debby, I don't think I could have made it going back to work so soon. My heart goes out to you and all mothers who do.

Daniela, I understand where you are coming from.
post #18 of 22
Melissa, I am so glad to hear your second day was much better! I'm glad you like the job!!

I am trying to look at it this way...we mothers that have to work and leave our kids in daycare may be missing alot of first moments with them, and alot of time with them, but we will also have the money to buy them those little "extra" things that we couldn't if we weren't working. Not that money makes up for time lost, but since I have no other option, I at least can try to look at the positives, as Ghyslaine said, and think of all the things she won't do without because of no money. (although I'd still rather be home with her)
post #19 of 22
I'm glad you were able to work out a solution Melissa! Sounds as if it worked out perfectly for all of you!

Debby, don't fret about going back to work. Like you said, you don't have a choice so make the best of it. I'm sure Amber will do fine in daycare, she will be so occupied w/ the other children she won't even realize you are gone!

I have daycare kids who cry when mom comes to get them cause they want to stay and play longer. That makes me smile, to know that they like coming here, and enjoy the daycare environment. Every child is different, but most do fine in a daycare setting.

Kudos to all of you for being such wonderful mommies!!!
post #20 of 22
Daniela....if you lived closer, there would be noone else but you watching my child!!!!
post #21 of 22
Oh Debby, that is a mighty nice compliment that you just gave me. What an honor that you would trust me and we've never even met!! Thank you so much, you almost made me cry!
post #22 of 22
I meant it....we may never have actually met, but I can still tell that you are someone who is wonderful with children and reliable and dependable, and I would most definitely trust you with Amber!!
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