SAHM - going back to work


#1

Looking for advice from stay at home moms who went back to work.

I have been a SAHM for a little under 10 years and am now going back to work. It is very scary to me. It has been a long time since I have been on an interview and my skill set is not current. I was a software engineer with EE degree.

Did you update your skill set by taking courses before going back to school? Did you switch careers? What was the change like for your husband and children? What type of changes did your family make? Did you have to take a major cut in pay to get back in the job market?

My kids are 13, 15, 16 and 18. One will be heading for college in Sept so there will only be three kids at home. The 16 year old has his driver license and can help with some of the driving.

My husband never helped around the house when I use to work so I doubt he will now. But I am hoping that we can share some of the responsibility of taking care of the kids.


#2

Well as you know, I haven't gone back to work but I just wanted to say I think this will be a good change for you. I am willing to bet that you have been bored by being at home since your kids are not little any more. I know I have. I just haven't found anything I really want to do, and with my husband being gone half the time anyway right now, I really can't work full time.

Good luck to you! I hope lots of people will give you advice. :thumbsup:


#3

Wow, what a milestone ahead! I'm not in your situation (yet), my 3 are still very young, but I always thought that once I'm ready I will ease in to the workforce by volunteering at first.

I think volunteering is a great opportunity to polish up on skills, leanr new things and very low- pressure. I'd probably do 3 months of volunteering in my field of choice and then hope to get hired by the same agency/ organization/ company.

I read your post and I wonder what it will be like so far down the road. Can't imagine the sense of accomplishment with 4 grown children. I know your situation at home isn't ideal but being a SAHM for 10 years is still incredible and I pray you will find fulfillment in whatever you do outside the home as well!


#4

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:2, topic:246769"]
Well as you know, I haven't gone back to work but I just wanted to say I think this will be a good change for you. I am willing to bet that you have been bored by being at home since your kids are not little any more. I know I have. I just haven't found anything I really want to do, and with my husband being gone half the time anyway right now, I really can't work full time.

Good luck to you! I hope lots of people will give you advice. :thumbsup:

[/quote]

I have mixed feelings. I think I need more in my life. I have always been extremely busy and now I feel bored and lost. But this may give me the freedom to make bad choices. Right now I can't leave my husband without a job. But then again, if I am busy I won't have time to dwell on all the negative.

If I get the job I am applying for , it is only 15 minutes from my house. The kids will only be alone for one hour.

It is hard to work when your husband is gone so often. My husband may be getting a job in Ireland. That would make this decision more complicated but I think it needs to happen.


#5

[quote="1inICXC, post:3, topic:246769"]
Wow, what a milestone ahead! I'm not in your situation (yet), my 3 are still very young, but I always thought that once I'm ready I will ease in to the workforce by volunteering at first.

I think volunteering is a great opportunity to polish up on skills, leanr new things and very low- pressure. I'd probably do 3 months of volunteering in my field of choice and then hope to get hired by the same agency/ organization/ company.

I read your post and I wonder what it will be like so far down the road. Can't imagine the sense of accomplishment with 4 grown children. I know your situation at home isn't ideal but being a SAHM for 10 years is still incredible and I pray you will find fulfillment in whatever you do outside the home as well!

[/quote]

I wanted to start slowly with volunteer work and getting some training. I would love to do social work. Especially with children or abused women. But for financial reasons, I need to jump back in full time and I am stuck going back to me old field because I need the money :(

The 10 years with the kids have been great. I will always be grateful for it. I have one difficult child with ADHD and Sensory Integration Dysfunction. I don't know how he would have turned out if I wasn't there for him. There were times when he was suicidal because of school that I would take him out of school for lunch and recess so that he could avoid the drama. There were times when I homeschooled and times when he needed therapy. It would have been hard with a job. Not to mention all the sports my kids play.

My only advice is start preparing a couple years before re-entering the work force. It will give you time to volunteer, take training courses and get a resume and some connections together.


#6

[quote="1inICXC, post:3, topic:246769"]
Wow, what a milestone ahead! I'm not in your situation (yet), my 3 are still very young, but I always thought that once I'm ready I will ease in to the workforce by volunteering at first.

I think volunteering is a great opportunity to polish up on skills, leanr new things and very low- pressure. I'd probably do 3 months of volunteering in my field of choice and then hope to get hired by the same agency/ organization/ company.

I read your post and I wonder what it will be like so far down the road. Can't imagine the sense of accomplishment with 4 grown children. I know your situation at home isn't ideal but being a SAHM for 10 years is still incredible and I pray you will find fulfillment in whatever you do outside the home as well!

[/quote]

Keep up with your field of interest if you have one, or keep finding interests of your own and take the time to explore them. I didn't pay enough attention to this and 20 years later, I have no marketable skills (used to be a secretary/admin. assistant which largely doesn't exist any more) and no clue as to what I want to do. At 54 I am not going back to school, so not sure what God wants me to do now. The best job I ever had was Mommy but I'm being downsized out of that job description! ;)


#7

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:6, topic:246769"]
Keep up with your field of interest if you have one, or keep finding interests of your own and take the time to explore them. I didn't pay enough attention to this and 20 years later, I have no marketable skills (used to be a secretary/admin. assistant which largely doesn't exist any more) and no clue as to what I want to do. At 54 I am not going back to school, so not sure what God wants me to do now. The best job I ever had was Mommy but I'm being downsized out of that job description! ;)

[/quote]

If finances are not a problem then you can focus on God and volunteer work. I know that you are big on the pro-life movement. Maybe there is ways to get more involved.

When I was thinking about volunteer work, I was looking into a prison ministry or pro-life work. I spent a lot of time in silence during adoration. I started protesting in front of planned parenthood and helping a single mom with her two year old boy. It felt right. I love the little ones and he needed to feel special.

The doors for the prison ministry were just not opening up so I knew it was not meant to be. I even emailed a Deacon that doesn't know me and his response was about falling in love with an inmate and how they have hours and hours to figure out ways to control and manipulate woman. Which was the same response I was receiving from people that knew me. That I am too easily manipulated.

I think that we all need to fill that void when the kids grow up and move out. With the holy spirit's guidance you will find your path :)


#8

I went back to work when my kids were in school full time. It's been a mixed bag. I was extremely nervous (I was home about nine years), and ended up taking a step back career wise because of being out of the job market for so long.

You'll get used to the new routines sooner than you think, but it is scary the first few days. You'll be fine, and the kids will do great too, I'm sure.

In a perfect world, I'd be able financially to work part time, so we wouldn't be so pressured to do the housework and errands on our days off. If you have great organizational skills, this may not be a problem, but I seem to have lost mine in the past few years!

If you can afford it, think about getting a gardener or a mother's helper to come in and do some chores. The extra hours gained could be well worth the financial expense if it works in to your budget.


#9

[quote="familyof4, post:8, topic:246769"]
I went back to work when my kids were in school full time. It's been a mixed bag. I was extremely nervous (I was home about nine years), and ended up taking a step back career wise because of being out of the job market for so long.

You'll get used to the new routines sooner than you think, but it is scary the first few days. You'll be fine, and the kids will do great too, I'm sure.

In a perfect world, I'd be able financially to work part time, so we wouldn't be so pressured to do the housework and errands on our days off. If you have great organizational skills, this may not be a problem, but I seem to have lost mine in the past few years!

If you can afford it, think about getting a gardener or a mother's helper to come in and do some chores. The extra hours gained could be well worth the financial expense if it works in to your budget.

[/quote]

Thanks for the feedback.

The first job I am applying for will be a major cut in pay but I figure it gets my foot in the door.

I am hoping to get some help from the kids. They are certainly old enough. They know how to cook so I was thinking if they could each have a night when they are responsible for cooking dinner.

I am pretty organized so I think I can make it work without too much chaos.

I wish I could go back part time too but most part-time jobs don't have healthcare :( We are paying $1826 for medical right now. It is crazy.

I would like to eventually have someone come a couple times a month and clean the house. I need to get caught on bills first. I had to get rid of my cleaning lady about a year ago. I realize now that I do a better job so I will definitely find someone new. I am lucky that my husband does take care of the yard.


#10

[quote="cviolette, post:4, topic:246769"]
I have mixed feelings. I think I need more in my life. I have always been extremely busy and now I feel bored and lost. But this may give me the freedom to make bad choices. Right now I can't leave my husband without a job. But then again, if I am busy I won't have time to dwell on all the negative.

If I get the job I am applying for , it is only 15 minutes from my house. The kids will only be alone for one hour.

It is hard to work when your husband is gone so often. My husband may be getting a job in Ireland. That would make this decision more complicated but I think it needs to happen.

[/quote]

I worked part-time my whole life up until I had to quit because of my physical problems. I am not on any L&I or disability and when we had two older boys still at home we were able to make it financially on one income and we still do. We just have to live frugally which has not been a bad thing at all.

I too loved every minute with my boys so I would not have ever wanted to work full time and miss more of their lives. Even at 13, 15 and 16 you still might miss a lot of their games, driving them around, (which is when we had our best conversations) helping with homework and so on because of working full time and coming home late, being too tired. It just goes so fast and then they are gone.

You said that you need to get a job so that you can leave your husband. So you do not want to stay married to him? Even if your children are older this will still have a huge impact on them and your dh. Why not just volunteer for your church or work part-time?

You could start a bible study group or teach catechism, go to the nursing homes or join any of the volunteer groups at church.

I have been on the Liturgy commission, St. Vincent De Paul, babysitting for the bible study moms and arranging the flowers for the church ( Altar Society), I hold a meeting once a month and sometimes we just go out to lunch for our meeting. We also keep God's house beautiful! I just love being in our church all alone with Him. It gives me such peace! When someone does come in to pray or go to Adoration they will often stop to talk or help out and so we get to know more people in the parish. My favorite volunteer work though is bringing the Eucharist to the sick at the nursing home. I get to pray with many people there and they are so grateful. I also volunteer for one hour of Adoration a day now which really is helping me spiritually.


#11

[quote="onmyknees, post:10, topic:246769"]
I worked part-time my whole life up until I had to quit because of my physical problems. I am not on any L&I or disability and when we had two older boys still at home we were able to make it financially on one income and we still do. We just have to live frugally which has not been a bad thing at all.

I too loved every minute with my boys so I would not have ever wanted to work full time and miss more of their lives. Even at 13, 15 and 16 you still might miss a lot of their games, driving them around, (which is when we had our best conversations) helping with homework and so on because of working full time and coming home late, being too tired. It just goes so fast and then they are gone.

You said that you need to get a job so that you can leave your husband. So you do not want to stay married to him? Even if your children are older this will still have a huge impact on them and your dh. Why not just volunteer for your church or work part-time?

You could start a bible study group or teach catechism, go to the nursing homes or join any of the volunteer groups at church.

I have been on the Liturgy commission, St. Vincent De Paul, babysitting for the bible study moms and arranging the flowers for the church ( Altar Society), I hold a meeting once a month and sometimes we just go out to lunch for our meeting. We also keep God's house beautiful! I just love being in our church all alone with Him. It gives me such peace! When someone does come in to pray or go to Adoration they will often stop to talk or help out and so we get to know more people in the parish. My favorite volunteer work though is bringing the Eucharist to the sick at the nursing home. I get to pray with many people there and they are so grateful. I also volunteer for one hour of Adoration a day now which really is helping me spiritually.

[/quote]

I have ups and downs with the divorce. I know it is selfish and should work on the marriage. I was in a negative place last week and had had enough. Also, I was not at peace with the decision so I know it was the wrong one. I spent all my life making selfish choices and my life is a mess so I am trying to follow God's plan now. I just fight it once in awhile. Plus, I had several friends that keep telling me to divorce him which made it more tempting.

It would be much better if I waited a few more years to go back to work but I am at the end of my rope. My husband is in a fight with the board at his work and they are both playing hardball. The lawyers are handling it now. Meanwhile, there has been no pay since mid October. He isn't looking for another job. He is the founder of the company and is not ready to let go. He is just working on the rental properties and working on starting a new company. Meanwhile, I am draining our retirement accounts to pay the bills. Someone has to work. But I am starting to think that he was just pacifying me when saying he would help me get a job. He took all my information and did nothing. Of course, he does everything in his own ---- time.

The thing I really hate is that I will miss some of my daughter's basketball games. She is the starting center and she is really fun to watch. I should be able to make all the home football games. And I don't mind missing track and ski meets. I also have the best conversation with my kids during car rides. I will miss some of their lives but I need to set us up financially.

My therapist did say, no matter what age divorce hurts the kids.


#12

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