I have recently been asked by work to up my days from 4 to 5 days a week. I agreed to do it temporarily, mostly because I need the extra money and with the kids now 13 and 16 feel like I have no excuse now to not work full time. But having done it for a few months found it was exhausting. My work involves a lot of travel throughout the day and I think this is what is taking it out of me, it also means finish times can be unpredictable depending on where I am. But generally it means me being out of the house from 8.00 until 6.00 but can be later.
The children are in my sole care and I have little family support so everything still falls on me to sort out, and loosing that 1 extra day a week seems to have a massive impact. I just don’t think I can maintain it. Trouble is, now that I have said yes, they keep asking me and I’m finding it hard to say no. I work for a smallish company, and they take things very personally. They have even put it to me by saying, ‘now that the kids are older’… which makes me feel a bit like I’m using the kids as an excuse.
Do any other single mums struggle working full time? The extra money makes a massive difference but I can feel it pulling my mood down, and although the kids are older I feel they still need me around. It’s just so hard trying to do everything on your own!
Yeah, the travel is a killer! I only get paid for travel within my contracted hours (9-5) and don’t get paid overtime even though I work past 5 regularly! Which kind of makes me less willing to keep doing them favours especially when it’s impacting negatively on me and the kids.
I don’t get any tax credits now, so the extra money is always a bonus.
I think, like you say I probably need to negotiate something a bit more manageable. What I don’t want is my contracted 4 days to change, I think it would be best to be able choose as and when I’m willing to do it. I’m wondering though, if I have been working extra days outside of my contracted hours, should I be accruing extra holiday?