Monday, March 03, 2014

Working Mum Vs. SHAM

I work. I think all of you know that by now. I am a mum of 3, expecting number 4, and I work. Part time, the equivalent of 2.5 days a week (although in reality it's 3 days one week, 2 days the next). Despite being at home with the kids half the time I consider myself a "working mum". Does that make me sound judgmental?? It's not supposed to.







Different mothers do different things for all different reasons, and it's nothing to do with me what other mums do. I don't judge, or at least I try very hard not to.

Why do I work?

I'll be the first to admit that money is a factor. I work to live, I certainly don't live to work! I enjoy my job though and like the people I work with. Plus there is the added bonus of it providing that little bit of "grown up time" that I miss when I'm on maternity leave.

There, I admitted it. I work because I want the company of other grown ups. My children "aren't enough" company for me. Want to judge me on that? Or do you secretly (or even publicly) agree with me? Frankly, no matter how much I love my kids I need a break from them from time to time, and they do from me.

Why it's part time

So I've just admitted that I work for the money and for a time off from my kids. But I only work part time. And that because when I AM away from my little horrors I miss them like crazy! I haven't brought my kids into the world for some one else to raise them. I don't want to put my baby into daycare, or my toddler into a full time nursery, and the fact that Hubby and I both work part time, and that my job is flexible, means that we don't have to. Instead we look after the kids between ourselves save for one day a week when my mum has them because we both work that day.

There's nothing wrong with using day care and nurseries. Tom has his 16hr allowance now that he is 3, and once Georgie turns 2 we will sign him up for day care once a week. Not because we NEED to for work or any other reson, but because we believe it's good for them to have social integration with other kids, without us watching over them all the time. I did wonders for Tom.

Why our work/life balance works for us

We are very very lucky that we can afford to both work part time. Most people don't have that luxury. I am also very very lucky that I have married a man who is both capable and willing to do half the child care and house work. I honestly believe that because our kids have had either mummy, or daddy, or both of us, looking after them the vast majority of the time, they have the confidence to be independent.

Every family is different and everyone's needs are different. Some people choose to stay at home with their kids full time, some don't. Some choose to work full time and pay for child care, some do it because they have to. I don't think there is any right or wrong way to which fits everyone. But I do believe that most parents will do the best they can for their family and their situation.



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