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  1. #1
    tmarie is offline Platinum level (1000+ posts)
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    Default Can I make this FT job work?

    Have any of you been in the position that you were looking at going back to work FT, after either having time off or working PT?

    I have been working out of a home office ever since dd#1 was born 5 years ago. Mostly pt. I am a people person and hate working in such a solitary situation, but appreciate the flexibility as a mom. I work in a commission driven field, so my income has been fluctuating....its been a struggle and stresses us out financially. I now might have an opportunity to go FT, but it would turn our household upside down. Is the financial security worth it?

    My choices:
    1) FT position. Intense jobs that would require 40-50hr weeks, including occasional work on evenings or weekends. But the salary, professional growth opportunity, and social contact would be great for me. Basically, were it not for my kids I would take these jobs in a heartbeat.
    2) Continue to work from a home office, earn a good hourly rate for 10-20 hrs of work/week, and then potentially commissions on top of that. In the immediate future we wouldn't see the financial windfall the other positions would bring, but we could cover our expenses. Also, it would provide me with the flexibility to work 9-3 every day, thus ensuring I could be home when my soon to be kindergartener gets off the bus. (Our after school programs here aren't that impressive, so I'm worried about how she'll do with such a long day in the public school if I'm working FT)

    Anyone willing to tell me what they would do? I don't know when I've been so conflicted....

    TIA!
    tmarie

  2. #2
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    Default

    I can't tell you what to do in your situation, but I'll tell you what *I* recently did. I worked FT for the first 10 years of our marriage, through the births of both kids. When we had DS we used a home daycare, then a center. When DD was born we had a nanny for a year and now we use a private school that has a daycare center near our home.

    6 months ago I was offered a job that allows me to work from home 4 days a week for about the same salary that I was then making. We debated it for a while, knowing there would be fewer raises down the road than I would have gotten from my then current employer. In the end, the flexibility won out and I took the job. My kids are still in daycare because I am frequently on job sites and visiting clients, but we have a TON more flexibility in our schedule now. The laundry gets started while I'm on conference calls. Dinner goes in the crockpot in the morning or in the oven before I pick up the kids. We have Fridays off now to play.

    I know a lot of people say that they plan to go back to work FT when their kids are in school, but frankly as DS is starting kindergarten, I am finding it even more important to have a flexible schedule. He actually needs me MORE now than he did when he was younger.

    Honestly, my old job was better for me socially and emotionally on a lot of levels, because I find working at home to be very isolating. It's definitely been better for my kids, though. I understand the desire to be more financially stable, and we were lucky it wasn't too big of a trade-off for us to have me change jobs. Sometimes I feel guilty knowing that I *could* work the extra day (and my boss would pay me for it willingly) but every time I spend the extra day with my kids I remember how worth it the sacrifice is for us.
    Daniele
    mama to
    dd1 watching over her brothers and sister from Heaven
    ds1 13 years old
    dd2 10 years old
    ds2 6 years old
    Placenta Increta/c-hyst survivor

  3. #3
    niccig is offline Clean Sweep forum moderator
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    Default

    I would take option 2. I'm currently doing a 3 day a week from home project for my old employer, and I haven't worked in 5 years. I think this is a good balance for me and our family right now. I will eventually go back into a FT, career path, but not now. Once the project is over, I'm going to try to pick up other part-time work. I can see myself doing 3 full days a week if I can't work from home. I think I work better if I get out of the house - still struggling with distractions.

    You have to ask yourself what it is that YOU will need as well as what your family will need. List the pros and cons for each and then listen to your gut.

    My gut has been saying that I want to work, BUT I'm not ready for the full-time back on career path. I think I will be ready later.
    Last edited by niccig; 04-27-2010 at 05:29 PM.

  4. #4
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    I agree with the others and FWIW, I currently work FT about 45 hours/week with 1 day at home and 4 days/week in the office. However, my schedule is very predictable and it sounds like the new job would NOT be. You just can't underestimate the flexibility of a stable/predictable work schedule. Salary, professional growth opportunity, and social contact are all indisputably nice benefits, but I truly think that the intensity of a 40-50 hour/week job with much more volatility will wreak havoc on your life, especially given what you're currently accustomed to dealing with.

    Good luck!

  5. #5
    happymomma is offline Platinum level (1000+ posts)
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    I would go with option 2. I recently went back to work and went with option 2 job. I work 3 days a week from 6am - 2pm. It is great but tiring. The nice thing is that I can pick up the kids and am home when the kids are home. I love being with them. The job isn't all that great and not that challenging but I have the flexibility of being at home when they get home.

  6. #6
    wellyes's Avatar
    wellyes is offline Blue Diamond level (20,000+ posts)
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    The only thing that would make me consider #1 is if SKIPPING it would be professionally disastrous for you. If it is your current employer and they are asking you to take on a lot more hours / responsibility and you turn that down --- that can be tricky.

    Otherwise, #2 in a heartbeat. Time is infinitely more valuable than money. It sounds like a superb schedule, many many people would be very envious of that schedule.
    DD - 8
    DS - 5

  7. #7
    cvanbrunt's Avatar
    cvanbrunt is offline Sapphire level (2000+ posts)
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    Millions of mothers work full time outside of the home for any number of reasons. You just make it work. I've always worked so I have no experience with going back to work. I do wonder how realistic it is to sit out for such an extended period of time and expect to be able to go back. More power to you, if you can.
    Carrie

    DD#1 September 2005
    DD#2 October 2007

    The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it.
    -Neil deGrasse Tyson

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by cvanbrunt View Post
    Millions of mothers work full time outside of the home for any number of reasons. You just make it work. I've always worked so I have no experience with going back to work. I do wonder how realistic it is to sit out for such an extended period of time and expect to be able to go back. More power to you, if you can.
    I agree that you find ways to make any situation work. Maybe I'm reading it wrong, but it doesn't seem like the OP is sitting out of her career by working from home. I know I'm definitely not. My current job is much more connected to my industry than my former job. The only reason I'm working from home is this is a new territory for them and they don't want to have too much overhead while they expand.
    Daniele
    mama to
    dd1 watching over her brothers and sister from Heaven
    ds1 13 years old
    dd2 10 years old
    ds2 6 years old
    Placenta Increta/c-hyst survivor

  9. #9
    niccig is offline Clean Sweep forum moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by cvanbrunt View Post
    Millions of mothers work full time outside of the home for any number of reasons. You just make it work. I've always worked so I have no experience with going back to work. I do wonder how realistic it is to sit out for such an extended period of time and expect to be able to go back. More power to you, if you can.
    You don't go back to the same level or position. You retrain or change into a different position. It's the consequence of sitting out. I know many families where one spouse has scaled back or gotten out of work all together as it was the best answer to their family's situation, and when we go back, it won't be at the same level pre-kids. I know that I won't have the same career arc as if I stayed in my career and I'm OK with that. My friend has a different family situation and LOVES her work, so she kept working.

  10. #10
    JustMe is offline Diamond level (5000+ posts)
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    This is definitely a personal decision and entails different choices for different people. I would also choose #2, at least until your dd's first year of Kindergarten. I worked full tijme and my dd went to full time childcare/preschool, but when she hit Kindergarten/afterschool it was really hard on her. Additionally, dd was in a good afterschool program at her former preschool and was very comfortable there. Still, it was just too much for her. Happily I was able to go down to 30 hrs/week and she is only in afterschool care 2 days/week. Additionally, I am able to volunteer at her school almost weekly. Anyway, my whole point being that I think it would be great to at least wait long enough to see how your dd does in Kindergarten...of course, I'm not sure if you have any other kids following her...
    lucky single mommy to almost 16 yr old dd and almost 13 yr old ds through 2 very different adoption routes

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