Post # 1
I’m only 22 (almost 23) so I am still quite a few years from becoming a mom, but I have already started my career and have been giving the whole SAHM/working mom decision consideration. My mom stayed home with me and I have very fond memories of it. I also see my coworkers who are working mom rockstars, but they seem stretched so very thin. I would love to stay home with our babies, but I also don’t anticipate being a full-time SAHM indefinitely. Ideally, I would be able to stay home until the youngest is preschool aged so they can all go to school during the day and then have a babysitter for a couple hours until I get home from work.
However, in my industry, having a 5+ year gap on my resume would basically end my career. I would need to stay in my field somehow in order to re-enter the workplace when my kids go to school. Thankfully, there are a lot of telecommuting options in my industry. I could pretty easily find a job where I could work from home a few days a week or all the time. The benefit of this is that I can continue to be relevant in my field and earn income while being present in the home with my baby and also be able to breastfeed.
So, having said all of this, those of you with babies – do you think you could handle working from home and caring for your baby? Would it be feasible to work when the baby is sleeping or would you end up too sleep-deprived? Do you feel like you could let your baby play by themselves for periods of time and work, or would you be too distracted? Do you think you’d need a babysitter/mother’s helper, or could you swing it on your own?
Post # 3
I considered this- I LOVED my job in Austin, Texas, but we were forced to move to Florida for FI’s job. I was pregnant at the time, and would be giving birth about 2 months after the move, and at first, I thought I’d volunteer to telecommute and work from home because I loved my job in Austin so much. Ultimately I decided not to, and I’m so glad, because taking care of a baby IS A FULL TIME JOB. I know now that I’d never have been able to focus on my work AND on taking care of a baby while staying at home. The caliber of my work would definitely have suffered; it would have been tough to meet deadlines, and taking care of my child might have come second had I been working on a big project with a strict deadline. Although it seemed ideal when I was pregnant, I don’t see how it would have been possible to do both jobs well. If you were to do it, I would definitely suggest getting a babysitter or a nanny to come in and help out while you were focused on work. There’s just no way to give both the baby and the work the attention they deserve all alone.
Post # 4
My husband works from home and takes care of the baby. Maybe I can get him to post (doubt it but I’ll try). Working from home and taking care of the baby is working well for him right now. I don’t know if that will continue to be true when she’s more mobile, but right now he’s able to work very efficiently during naps.
He’s a programmer so his work requires lots of attention to detail. We know 2 other guys in similar positions that have also been successful at working from home while taking care of their young daughters. Go daddy power!
Post # 5
My sister has a newborn, a toddler and a 6 year old and admitted to me that when she ‘works from home’ she doesnt’ actually get any work done. She’s only with the newborn all day, but he requires constant attention. She often has to cancel meetings she’s only calling into because he’s having a screaming fit or needs to be fed and she’s the only one there to do it. You can’t tell your baby to be quiet and wait until the meeting is over.
Every baby is different though, my niece was the most quiet baby I’ve ever seen. She actually slept throughout most of the day and night and barely ever cried. I feel like if you have an ‘easy baby’ it might be doable, but once they start crawling that might change things. Also it probably depends on the job. If you just have work to do solo with deadlines and don’t have to call into meetings, it might be OK. Because you can always do the work once your husband gets home if need be.
Post # 6
very interesting thread!! i would LOVE to be a SAHM and work from home… we’ll see tho 🙂
Post # 7
@ohheavenlyday: I definitely see your situation! I know it would be easier/better to be a full-time SAHM rather than essentially work two jobs at once! But its not just about liking my job – I want to be able to go back to work eventually, and if I quit completely for a period of time, the likelihood of me doing that is seriously low.
@Mrs. DG: I really hope you get him to post! And yay for SAHDs 🙂 Even though that looks like “sad”, haha.
@moderndaisy: That’s why I think if I did this, I’d need a occasional babysitter/helper at the very least. Someone who is willing to work a flexible schedule, where she can come in and help out when I have a particularly busy day or have a meeting. I have no idea where I would find someone with this flexible of a schedule, though! Maybe a retired woman who wants to be a surrogate grandma and make a little extra money?
Edited to add: I could also see having a babysitter twice a week for say, four hours, and scheduling all my meetings/important stuff during that time. That would still be a lot more affordable than full-time childcare, and I would still get to be home.
Post # 8
@daniellemybelle: During my summers off from college, I used to be a full time nanny for a woman who stayed at home and had 3 small children. She didn’t work and was actually home most of the time I was there, she just needed a helping hand so she could meet with her trainer, take a shower, etc. I didnt’ have a lot of experience and she paid me like $8/hr. I was there pretty much M-F 9-5. Maybe you could find someone like that who is in college looking for extra $ or another SAHM whose kids are grown.
Post # 9
I’d love to be able to work form home while being a SAHM. Definitely interested to hear the opinions in this thread!
Post # 10
I work from home now and I’ve thought about this. I don’t think I could work full time and take care of kids… because obviously taking care of the kids would take time during the day. I do think if I dropped my hours down to half time I could do it.
There are two approaches I’d say. Work half time but actually be trying to work 5 days/week (and figure I’m going to be distracted about half the time with the kids). Or (my preference) just take 2 days totally off to be with the kids and the other 3 days work from my home office and hire a babysitter.
Post # 11
At my current job, I believe I could work from home for the most part. 80% of my job is on the computer, and 20% is in person. I could easily schedule appointments around, I think.
I’m sure that could all charge drastically when we actually decide to have kids though. LOL.
Post # 12
Personally, for me, I highly doubt it would work. There would be way too many distractions. I’m very easily distracted. And being at home regardless of having a different work area, time set aside for work or whatnot…I WILL get distracted.
TV, internet browsing, laundry, cleaning, you name it.
So for me it’s not feasible.
Post # 13
At one place where I worked, they requested proof of childcare if a new mother wanted to work from home. They don’t want to pay you to take care of your baby and do half a job.
Post # 14
@EmeraldR: I really wish my company would do this because I’ve been slammed with higher managers work lately who ‘work from home’ but don’t actually do anything! It’s not fair, I’m not getting paid any more for the extra work and they aren’t getting anything deducted for their paychecks and don’t even have to take a vacation or sick day!
Post # 15
i’m not a mom yet, but i think it depends on the nature of your job. my husband works from home, but his job is still very much a 9-5 kind of job that has a fairly set schedule, and he’s often in meetings, conference calls, and other phone calls. i’m in grad school now, but my old job was much more focused on the content of the work–ie, it didn’t manage when you worked as long as you worked at least 40 hours each week. it was pretty easy to work from home, and lots of parents worked at home a couple days per week. my ideal plan would be for us to have kids while i’m writing my disertation because i’ll be more likely to be able to set a schedule that fits with a baby, and i’ll only really be accountable to myself for getting things done
Post # 16
I already work part time from home and will continue to do so after we have a kid. There’s this wonderful thing called a mute button on phones that even helps when the puppy is barking during conference calls.
I will admit though, having someone, like a college student, come over a few hours a week even i fI was home would be lovely.