A friend has recently decided that she wants kids, which is fair enough... She's married and in a stable relationship, but both of them work full time jobs.. Her husband is reluctant because neither of them can afford to give up their jobs, but someone would have to stay with the kid(s). He's tried to present lots of different scenarios to her, but in the end he turned to me for help.. He wants me to lay it all out for her, but I'm at a loss for where to start..
Any input would be welcome. People in a similar situation could help a lot.. Thanks
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Do you think it's unfair to have a kid when you're working full time? watch
- Thread Starter
- 01-01-2013 18:14
- 02-01-2013 17:45
Sometimes both parents working full time is what has to happen, and what suits them.
I'm an au pair (cheap labour, look into it) & I help to look after two kids whose parents both work full time. This allows them to have a very nice lifestyle, both children are in private school and they pay a nanny (who I help with) to take them to school and look after them after school until they get home (8pm). They both work very hard and are lovely people, and they undeniably love their children to pieces.
Here are a few things that I think should be taken into account if it's what you want to do. Me and the family and my friend who also looks after the children have discussed it many times! They ask me what I would do in the future as i'm younger & the only one out of us without a husband and children.
You need to take into account what sort of lifestyle you want to lead. Do you want to be able to go on the trips, have the car, the house the animals etc all the material items that you'd benefit from with the higher income. Plan out a rough guide of how things could be if they both carried on with their current jobs to that if one didn't.
Do you enjoy working? The parents who I know that both work love their jobs & they work extremely hard. When they have time off to spend with the kids, they do say how much they're looking forward to going back to work. Not because they don't love looking after their children as they really do, they just really enjoy their careers - looking after children and having a job are both demanding, but in different ways. Ultimately they know that their careers & working is for them, and being a stay at home mum/dad 24/7 is not. It doesn't make them better/worse parents at all.
Would you be happy missing time with your child? The hours do add up and you can't always get time off work, so it's inevitable that you'll end up missing things. You might feel like an absent mother/father but at the end of the day what you're doing is trying to do what you think is best for your children - for example the family work hard so they can provide for their kids, send them to the private school and take them on trips etc.
Another thing is it's important to remember that things can change - one of them might lose their job, or get a promotion, or change profession etc. It really depends on the careers they have - if they did decide one would have to give up full time work the other could do something part time, even become a childminder / set up a business that way. When staying at home they could get qualified to do something else and then once the child is old enough to go to daycare etc they can go back to work. The possibilities are really endless.
- 02-01-2013 17:58
My mother is a single parent and worked full time throughout my childhood. We just had au pairs. Perhaps it was different though because she teaches, and so I was at school when she was at work anyway.
- 02-01-2013 22:58
Both my parents work full time, never did me or my siblings any harm.
- 02-01-2013 23:12
What? No... You have to earn a living after all to support the child.
- 04-01-2013 23:07
My parents have both worked full time since my younger sister was 3 and I was 5 and we never felt as though we were missing out with them. We went to school/nursery and spent a lot of time at my grandparents, aunts, great aunts (closeknit family, mama's got a lot of siblings), but it was never an unhappy enviroment. The only thing I would say is that, with my mum being a nurse at the time, she often worked christmas day which was a shame. I realise now as an adult that my parents had to work for us to be financially stable, and for us to have nice things like swimming lessons and instrument tuition. And I think if a parent can juggle work with family well, they should do just that.
- 04-01-2013 23:10
Not at all. Not everyone has the privilege of even being able to make that decision, and to be honest I do think it can make some kids more independent than if one parent is always at home, which can only be a good thing in later life.
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- 06-01-2013 23:23
Both my parents worked full time since before I was born. I went to childminders when I was really young, and then to school. Obviously childminders aren't cheap, but I would say it's far more expensive for one parent not to work. I had a great upbringing - it was never a problem.
That said, my parents were teachers so the holidays and evenings were a lot easier as they were off too. However, if your friends schedule their holidays right, and pay for some extra childcare or enlist friends' / their own parents' help, I'm sure it still works out cheaper for them both to work. When they get to be teenagers it's no longer a problem. It would be a commitment though. It depends massively on what their jobs are.
I think the bigger issue here is the husband possibly not wanting kids at all - if he wanted a family he would find a way of having one. If he compromised and said maybe in a few years when they were more financially stable, it would be reasonable, but if not then they need to have a serious talk about the future.
- 06-01-2013 23:33
After having been raised by a full-time single parent (unavoidable in our case, however - she had planned to stay at home) and known children who have been raised by various nannies and au pairs and the like, I feel that it's not that fair, really. Children want their parents, no matter how lovely Nanny Anne-Marie is, and their relationship (and sometimes behaviour) can take quite a hit from it if they're not around enough. Kids notice a hell of a lot more than people think and can easily feel a bit neglected or put aside, which they can end up feeling resentful about.
I remember only ever wanting my mother around and being fed up of having someone else pick me up tbh, and in my case it wasn't like she could even help it.