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The Dangers of NOT Putting Your Kids First

Posted by on Sep. 22, 2013 at 5:38 AM
  • 17 Replies
1 mom liked this

I've been chewing over this subject for a very long time and just need to get a few things off my chest.

I've been struggling with finding a balance between work and family for over a year now. I got so desperate I Googled "How to put your kids first" to try to get some much needed pointers on what i'm doing wrong. The answers I got floored me. The whole front page of google was plastered with "stop putting your kids first" and "putting your kids first- how to tell them you're divorcing" or the most jaw dropping "The dangers of putting your kids first" What The Crap Google?!

Since when have our kids become such a danger as to "ruin a marriage"? And why should we only put them first once our marriage has ended? There's something i'm not understanding here. 

Since the beginning of time the tradition has stood as follows: Fall in love, get married, have children. Marriage is meant to be a foundation to build a family on. Whether you are straight, gay, polygamous etc, marriage serves the same purpose. Families can be all shapes and sizes whether you have 20 kids, adopt 20 kids, or you want your family to consist of 50 cats. A family is a family. Why shouldn't it come first?

At the risk of putting my head on the chopping block I can tell you I fell into the dark side without even realizing it and i'm still not sure how to get out of it. I thought my family came first but I was dead wrong. Here's where I went wrong

My husband and I fell on hard times. I had to start working. I thought it would help us out financially and therefore make life easier. WRONG. I got a day job doing retail for minimum wage (only kind of job i can get) I was putting my kids in daycare because we have zero family or friends that can help. I made $250 a week. Daycare took $200. That left me with $50 for gas and maybe a small pack of diapers? If I didn't buy lunch or use the vending machine EVER. So I quit and started doing construction. It was a little more money at $300 a week... IF we worked that week. It was very off and on and I ended up making less than I did in retail. I quit and decided night shift is what I needed. The kids will be home with hubs and save us a ton in daycare. Plus I can be home with the kids during the day. Little did I know how much I would sacrifice for just a little bit of extra cash. I sacrificed sleeping in a bed except 2 nights a week when i'm off. But my sleep cycle is so screwy i cant sleep anyway. So zero cuddle time with hubs. Instead i have to sleep on the couch with one eye open and both ears on high alert for my two year old. No matter how hard i try to wait until his nap time, i hardly ever make it. Which is dangerous with a free ranger toddler. And let me tell you, trying to take micronaps for that 5 minutes that they are distracted watching Dora and jumping on the couch to the music does NOT cut it. There are not enough hours in the day to get any rest. Here's my schedule

10pm: go to work

7am: leave work
7:30am: get home with 20 minutes to get kids up, dressed, teeth brushed and race to school
8AM: make it to car line just in time to drop off 4 year old. drive home
8:30: make it home and feed toddler
9am: finally get fed up with chasing him back into his seat for the 10 millionth time. Kid is deathly allergic to sitting down EVER
9:30am: finally change out of work clothes, lock the bedrooms and kitchen and turn Dora on and lay down
10am: Dora has ended and so has the rest of the world. Also he's scattered the entire collection of dvds across the house. Pick up the mess and find another cartoon
10:30am: hes bored of tv and wants to climb all over me. Also he's hungry again
This cycle repeats until 12
Noon:feed lunch and put him down for a nap
1pm: finally stops screaming and falls asleep
2:30pm: he wakes up and my alarm goes off. get up get dressed, feed toddler another snack and head to school
3pm: get to car line
3:30: pick up 4 year old. drive home
4pm: get home, both holler for snacks. feed them and send them into the playroom
4:30: gives up napping after fight number 17 i've had to break up
5pm: clean and straighten up house
6pm: make dinner
6:30: feed kids
7pm: homework
7:30:bathtime, teeth brushed, bedtime story
8pm: bedtime
8:30: hubs gets home
 9pm: shower and get ready for work
Repeat all week

I'm stretched so thin that i can't function. My priorities have shifted from my family to work and sleep without me even realizing it. I want nothing more than to sleep in a bed with my hubs and play in the sprinkler with my boys all day like I used to. Instead I find myself almost hiding from them just to have a quiet moment to relax. I've come to realize that I don't enjoy my kids anymore. I don't enjoy my marriage anymore. Whenever my hubs wants to be intimate with me all I can think is how badly i want to punch him in the face and roll over and go to sleep. I've become some horrible monster I don't recognize and I can't stand it. And all Google can tell me is how dangerous it is to put my kids first?! How dare you Google! 

 

"I see blindness not as a disability, but an ability. People with sight judge others by what they see. Black, white, red, yellow. Those words mean nothing to me. I can only see what's on the inside." Patrick Henry Hughes

by on Sep. 22, 2013 at 5:38 AM
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Replies (1-10):
justpeachy71904
by Member on Sep. 22, 2013 at 5:49 AM
I think finding a balance in every marriage is important and critical.

thankfully my husband and I did this pretty quickly. We know how important family is. It has always been crucial to us to have family.time. My marriage and family do come before anything else in my life, other than God.

Yes I work nights and husband works days. But it is a split shift that we make work. I love it. And we see each other a TON. You can make anything work.

I put my family first because they are my heart and my life. But I have to work sun mon and tues from 6pm-6am. Period. And hubs appreciates that.

Do the little things to make life easier. Get a crockpot to cook. On nights you work, it may sound like lazy parenting get movies. Put your toddler on your schedule. Do what you need to do.

I love my life and wouldn't have it any other way. I say keep plucking. Look for a more stable scheduled night shift.
justpeachy71904
by Member on Sep. 22, 2013 at 5:51 AM
Might I add it is cheaper to find someone in home to baby sit?
Dajennible
by on Sep. 22, 2013 at 6:00 AM

Not from my experience. I've gone that route myself and it ended up with the babysitter wanting more than I made. I really don't make that much money so I can't afford to pay anyone


Quoting justpeachy71904:

Might I add it is cheaper to find someone in home to baby sit?



"I see blindness not as a disability, but an ability. People with sight judge others by what they see. Black, white, red, yellow. Those words mean nothing to me. I can only see what's on the inside." Patrick Henry Hughes

Dajennible
by on Sep. 22, 2013 at 6:02 AM

I don't have a split shift. I work full time 40 hours. I work sunday, monday, tuesday, wednesday, thursday nights. I have friday nights and saturday nights off. 

justpeachy71904
by Member on Sep. 22, 2013 at 6:05 AM
You can't find anyone locally for around $125?

What city are you in. Metro Atlanta must be cheap.

Have you looked into govt work? I work for the county and work 12 hour shifts. It actually works nice. My week is done in three days.


Quoting Dajennible:

Not from my experience. I've gone that route myself and it ended up with the babysitter wanting more than I made. I really don't make that much money so I can't afford to pay anyone



Quoting justpeachy71904:

Might I add it is cheaper to find someone in home to baby sit?




Dajennible
by on Sep. 22, 2013 at 6:08 AM


I'm in louisiana. what kind of job do you have?

Quoting justpeachy71904:

You can't find anyone locally for around $125?

What city are you in. Metro Atlanta must be cheap.

Have you looked into govt work? I work for the county and work 12 hour shifts. It actually works nice. My week is done in three days.


Quoting Dajennible:

Not from my experience. I've gone that route myself and it ended up with the babysitter wanting more than I made. I really don't make that much money so I can't afford to pay anyone



Quoting justpeachy71904:

Might I add it is cheaper to find someone in home to baby sit?






"I see blindness not as a disability, but an ability. People with sight judge others by what they see. Black, white, red, yellow. Those words mean nothing to me. I can only see what's on the inside." Patrick Henry Hughes

justpeachy71904
by Member on Sep. 22, 2013 at 6:10 AM
I work for the jail. I currently do certified clerical work. But they have a lot of positions similar to mine that arent certified.

Even test to be a deputy. You'd be shocked at the opportunities your county has to offer!


Quoting Dajennible:


I'm in louisiana. what kind of job do you have?


Quoting justpeachy71904:

You can't find anyone locally for around $125?



What city are you in. Metro Atlanta must be cheap.



Have you looked into govt work? I work for the county and work 12 hour shifts. It actually works nice. My week is done in three days.




Quoting Dajennible:

Not from my experience. I've gone that route myself and it ended up with the babysitter wanting more than I made. I really don't make that much money so I can't afford to pay anyone




Quoting justpeachy71904:

Might I add it is cheaper to find someone in home to baby sit?








jhslove
by Bronze Member on Sep. 22, 2013 at 6:14 AM

I can see that you're very frustrated, but I'm not seeing the connection between your situation and the "don't put your kids first" advice.......? It seems as though you're dealing with some completely different issues.

If I understand correctly, it looks like this job is netting you an extra $400/month, before gas or any expenses related to your job. Is it really worth it? It doesn't sound like it, but more importantly, it sounds unsustainable. I don't see how you're possibly going to be able to keep it up without snapping.


Dajennible
by on Sep. 22, 2013 at 6:19 AM


My point was I thought I was putting my kids first. But I wasn't. Instead i ended up putting work first and becoming consumed by it. and when you become consumed by other stressers like that, your kids and your marriage suffer. Or at least mine is

Quoting jhslove:

I can see that you're very frustrated, but I'm not seeing the connection between your situation and the "don't put your kids first" advice.......? It seems as though you're dealing with some completely different issues.

If I understand correctly, it looks like this job is netting you an extra $400/month, before gas or any expenses related to your job. Is it really worth it? It doesn't sound like it, but more importantly, it sounds unsustainable. I don't see how you're possibly going to be able to keep it up without snapping.




"I see blindness not as a disability, but an ability. People with sight judge others by what they see. Black, white, red, yellow. Those words mean nothing to me. I can only see what's on the inside." Patrick Henry Hughes

momdoes
by Platinum Member on Sep. 22, 2013 at 8:04 AM

This is why I worked 2nd shift and my S/O worked either first or third, but first worked better for us.

7 am: We all wake up.

8-9 am: Hubby at work and I got kid ready for school, made lunches all that good stuff.

9 to about 1 or 2: Clean, run errands, throw something in crockpot for dinner, perhaps sleep some more.

3pm: I am at work

4 pm: kid stays at school for about an hour till dh got off work

5pm: they were both at home

6 to8pm: dh helped with homework, bathing and dinner and bedtime

9 to 11: Usually both were down for the count

1130: I am home to eat dinner, do dishes and go to bed myself, hopefully dh would be awake on some nights so we got some "alone" time other than on the weekends!

Try a schedule like that one.

 

 

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