Kids always come before a career. If that means you have to quit to care for your little bundle of joy, it’s the right move. However, being a stay-at-home mum doesn’t have to be a stereotype of women. Yes, it is possible to be a mother and manage a full or part-time job.
No one thinks it’s easy; in fact, it will be one of the hardest things on the planet. But, it is possible as long as you ask the right questions. Can you see where this is heading? Below are the queries mums to be and fully fledged parents must answer before handing in a letter of resignation.
What Is Particularly Scary?
As soon as you find out you’re pregnant, the whole world seems to get closer. Mums love their children but there’s no doubt it’s a scary time for every woman. “What if I’m not a natural parent?” “What if I make mistakes?” “What if my friends and family judge me?” These are all questions which go through the head of a new mother. Of course, the panic causes people like you and many other ladies to burn bridges. In the alarm, there is a lack of self-control which leads to poor decisions. But, by mulling over the potential pitfalls at work, it may lead you to re-evaluate your position. The fact that you have a quality maternity and paternity guide and flexible working hours can be the turning points. At least you know the employer has guidelines in place to help parents maintain a balance between their life and career.
Is The Environment Toxic?
In honesty, it’s worth asking this question whether you’re a mother or a regular employee. Toxic workplaces lead to bullying and stress, two things which are potential killers. For pregnant women, there should be very little tension for the sake of the baby. After all, the body goes through a lot without having to cope with sky-high cortisol levels. Another reason to ask this question is for the sake of your future. Some employers take their duties to pregnant workers seriously and provide all the care they need. Others, however, do the bare minimum. A competitive and overly aggressive company won’t see your child as anything but a hindrance. They will offer maternity pay, but only because it’s a legal requirement. In the end, it may be a blessing in disguise to get out of a poisonous situation.
Can You Afford It?
Taking maternity leave for nine months is one thing but quitting is another thing completely. Not only is it a big career decision yet it also has an impact on the family’s finances. Two people in work bring in considerably more than one person. Considering that babies cost a small fortune, it’s not a choice to take lightly. In fact, every mum and dad should sit down at the kitchen table with a calculator and crunch the numbers. Does your partner earn enough to cover the cost of living? Can he or he also factor in the new expenses which come with having a child? Anyone who answers yes doesn’t have much to worry about from a financial standpoint. The mums that respond no may have to stick with the role for the next nine months.
Is It Possible To Cut Expenses Or Make Money?
Making money may be out of the question if you are receiving maternity pay. Employers don’t like their employees moonlighting, especially when they are supposed to be rearing kids. Also, the men and women at the tax office may want a piece of the action. Cutting costs is possible, however, if you know where to start slashing. The house is a significant expense which may cost too much money when you have kids. Downsizing is out of the question as space is essential for a growing family. Paying over the odds for energy is one place where considerable cuts are possible. Babies come with all kinds of devices, but switching off the electric will save money. Groceries are important but there is no reason to buy name brands. And, taking up knitting and sewing can prevent spending money on clothes and repairs.
Do You Want To?
Lots of factors are involved in the process, from money to the welfare of the child. Of course, your new son or daughter is the most important thing in the world. Still, your thoughts and feelings shouldn’t get dismissed out of hand. Remember that it is you who is making a massive sacrifice from a career point of view. Women may not like to admit it, but the idea of staying at home with the kids doesn’t always appeal. As children grow up, lots of mums want to get back into employment. Indeed, some are ready after the maternity leave finishes. So, don’t assume it’s the right thing to do for you and the family. If you want to go back to the office after a year, you should revive your career. Being a mother isn’t a sign to quit as plenty of mothers work and take care of kids.
Can You Do More To Make It Manageable?
For the mums who plan on getting back on the horse, there is a hitch. Unfortunately, your circumstances may dictate that you have to quit. The money isn’t an issue but securing quality and accessible childcare is. There is only so much a grandparent can do because their days of rearing children are over. Before leaving though, ask this question to you and the management. Have you tried everything in your power or have you given up? Women that want to make it manageable try all kinds of tricks, from changing their working hours to switching positions. Maybe the bosses will let you come in at 9:30am rather than 8:30am. Or, maybe they’ll let you change from full-time to part-time and keep the cash flowing. Even if they don’t, it’s better to ask and be safe rather than sorry.
Are There Better Options?
The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence according to the saying. What the old adage doesn’t mention is that it’s quite difficult to tell unless you take the plunge. For new mothers, the prospect of having a child and changing employers is enough to encourage a mini heart attack. But, there are signs which could help you to read between the lines. You already know about flexitime and maternity and paternity guidelines, so be sure to check them out beforehand. Also, consider the working environment and potential for growth. It seems like a stereotype, yet businesses run by women are more sympathetic to the situation. Most are mothers and understand what it takes to have kids and a career. Regarding growth, look into the chances of a promotion. As a rule, a company who promotes women regularly is ahead of the curve.
Can I Get A New Job?
In a perfect world, your lifestyle choices wouldn’t impact your chances of obtaining a job. In reality, employers scrutinise the lifestyles of the applicants to check if they match with the company. Without trivialising sexism, it’s one reason women aren’t as high up in the corporate world than men. Why hire a woman when she’s going to spend nine months getting paid for not being in the office? As shocking as it is, mothers have to consider their employability after giving birth. Are you a turn off because you have kids? Is the industry sexist and ageist? If the answers are yes, then staying put may be the best option for now. Also, think about the skills deficit. After being unemployed for a year, you are bound to be behind the eight ball. Employers don’t like this because it means they have to spend time and money on retraining. From their point of view, it’s easier to hire a man who won’t have the same problem. They’ll never admit it, but that’s how lots of firms think.
Do You Have Family Support?
Getting pregnant is about as personal a decision as it gets for women. However, it will affect other people’s lives and not just your own. One person is the father or mother of the baby who has to work and take the pressure off your shoulders. Then, there are the grandparents who will inevitably fill a gap when the chips are down. And, some brothers and sisters take their uncle and aunty duties seriously when grandma and grandpa aren’t available. Of course, mum does most of the heavy lifting, but other people have significant roles to pay. Therefore, it’s essential to consider the support of your family and friends. They may not have the time, money or energy to have your back. In which case, quitting isn’t a savvy move because you will have to be doubly responsible.
Quitting is an option when you find out you are pregnant. Still, don’t take the decision lightly because it may be the wrong move.