Working mom rant — The Bump
January 2016 Moms

Working mom rant

I'm need to vent.  And this is probably a bit all over the place.  I work full time and have a 45 min commute to and from work.  I also have a husband who works a full time and part time job so that we can afford daycare costs/medical bills/try to buy a house.  I feel like I get no time with my husband or LO.  My husband helps out as much as he can but I feel obligated to take care of all of the house work and take on as much as I can since he gets little sleep.  I literally haven't taken a minute to myself since LO was born.  The final straw to start my break down was my employer telling me that I can no longer take my 30 min lunch since I use the nursing mothers room ((which is fine, I get other people don't have random breaks), but that means no more 20 mins of running on my lunch break. That 20 mins was my saving grace and what cleared my mind.  Over the last few weeks its become clear that I need a break.  So I have been trying to figure out how to decompress and not miss out on time with LO.  I started to look for mommy and me yoga and fitness classes.  My area offers plenty.  My issue is that they are ALL week day mornings.  Apparently unless you're a stay at home mom you can't participate in a healthy activity and spend time with your baby.  I was shocked at how hard this is.  Anyone have any suggestions?  Any activity ideas that maybe I'm not thinking about?   

Re: Working mom rant

  • I've noticed the same thing in my area.  It's really frustrating.  I don't have any advice, I just wanted to say you're not alone, it's really, really hard with both of us working so much.  There are days I get home and DS is ready to go to bed 15 minutes after I walk in the door.
  • Lurking from April 16

    What asshats! I swear I cant stand employers! Was your lunch break unpaid? Were you still getting your work done despite your pumping breaks? Were they bleeding money becauseyou were taking a few extra breaks to pump?? I highly doubt it! I hate how some companies try to dehumanize their employees.  My work is the same way. My boss bitches about people who take FMLA (for maternity,  for medical reasons, totake care of family). A coworker used FMLA to care for her dying mother, and my boss texted her on the day her mother died, to let her know her fmla time was up. but I digress.......

    Are you able to leave 30 minutes earlier now since you cant take your lunch break? If so, can you workout then? I know how you feel, Iwork full time night shift M-F and have a 45 min commute each way as well. My dh works full time too and we see each other in passing only. I care for LO during the day and sleep in the afternoon/evening. I dont have any suggestions for workouts though. Could you use a jogging stroller and jog with LO when you get home?  Or do a baby and me type yoga video at home?  That way you are exercising and spending time with your LO.
  • Girl, I feel you. I get about 1 hour awake with LO once we get home from work/daycare. And, of course, since it's right before bedtime, it's not the happiest time. I waffle between guilt because I'm never with her to guilt because when I am home, I just want to be with her, and can't get any housework accomplished. Last week, I was so exhausted, thanks to teething and sleep regression that I had to take a vacation day just to get some rest. My husband took LO to daycare, but the whole day, I felt guilty that I could be spending time with her. I was better for her, though, when I did rest. Even though I'm not a morning person, I really look forward to the 5 a.m. wakeup time, so I can get a little happy quality time with her.
    And you're right. It feels like EVERYTHING is scheduled during the day, or if it's not, it fills up in about -5 seconds. I did find a great supportive babywearing group locally, and members just post on our FB group when they're doing something. (We're going on a Poke-walk, if anyone wants to join us, We're meeting to play in the fountain, we'll be here till ...) Have you looked into that? Wearing is a great way to get things done while still loving and cuddling on your baby.
    I haven't found the balance, but on weekends--that is OUR time. I'm letting the housework go longer than I would regularly prefer, and letting the grass grow. She'll only be this age once, and housework will be there when she gets older.  
  • Girl, I feel you. I get about 1 hour awake with LO once we get home from work/daycare. And, of course, since it's right before bedtime, it's not the happiest time. I waffle between guilt because I'm never with her to guilt because when I am home, I just want to be with her, and can't get any housework accomplished. 
    ^this! So much guilt. I also said to my husband this morning while ugly crying that I know taking time away from LO for myself will make me a better mom but I have so much trouble making myself do it. I'm going to check out DVDs for mom and baby stuff! I would LOVE a jogging stroller but I'm not sure it's in the budget right now. I keep hoping my sister in law will hand hers down to us :) I also have intensions of checking a consignment store for one. 

    @loveymay My lunch is unpaid time. They told me I need use my lunch, pto or make up the time. I already cut my lunch from an hour to 30 mins to leave earlier and get to daycare on time
  • I have to ask. Does your place of business allow smoke breaks or bathroom breaks?  Could you negotiate those into pumping times?  You should speak with your HR to see what the company policy is about pumping. I'm very sorry you are going through this. 

    I second a jogging stroller!  I bought one last year when I was an running a lot more before I got pregnant. I've used it the last 3 weeks with LO and she loves it. 
  • I completely understand where you are coming from! Although my work is more flexible on when I work/take lunch etc. I still have a billable hours requirement I have to meet each month which usually means that many nights after LO goes to sleep, I am catching up on work instead of having time for myself or with my husband. I also think it's stupid that all mommy and baby activities are during the day during the week. I would love to go to a weekend mommy and me class even. 
    I guess I don't have much advice other than to commiserate but the only thing that's helping me right now is I have a cleaning lady come every other week that way on the weekends I can completely focus on LO and feel less guilty about how the house looks. It doesn't help with the daily dishes or other similar things but it saves me from deep cleaning the kitchen and cleaning toilets on the weekend for hours. I know it's not in everyone's budget but I always say it's the best $150 I spend every month so maybe it's worth looking into, even if it's only once a month. 
  • I also agree about getting a cleaning lady every other week for the deep cleaning, and check in with your company's HR. That sounds ridiculous and unethical that they are taking away your lunch break because you are pumping throughout the day. I'm sorry you're going through this!!
  • I am so sorry.  I'm disgusted by your office. It seems ridiculous they would say no lunch because you have to pump.  Is that even legal?  

    I work from home so my situation is much easier but I also have an hours requirement so I work 9-5, do chores/cook dinner, put baby to bed and then work another 3 hours.  I haven't been to the gym since baby was born and for the past 30 years working out has been such an important part of my life.  So I feel your pain.

    I am hoping to make it to a year BF but because pumping hasn't worked for me, I always have to be near baby which is very restricting.  The days I feel like I'm at my breaking point I think about giving up breastfeeding.  I'm not sure if that crosses your mind as well..... It's a tough situation... I just keep saying to myself only 4 more months.  Also when baby starts STTN I'm hoping I will have the energy to get to the gym in the morning.

    Hang in there!
    KFrob
  • I sympathize. I also commute 45 minutes. I ge a couple hours with her when I get home. Its just packed with getting a shower and trying to get dinner together and her off to bed. Its hard. My life is just a constant rush. I was promoted at work, so now I'm cooking in a much faster paced enviroment. My co workers are great about pumping but it takes away from what i need to get done. Its 110degrees in that kitchen and i am so sick of working in kitchens. I'm struggling to lose the baby weight too. I haven't had a day off in 8 days. When i finally do get a day off i think I'm going to try and wear her and go hike some of the easy trails in the area
  • Also, look into the legality of them taking your lunch break. I'm not convinced that's legal. But I'm not a lawyer
    Cricket99fragglemom
  • SuperherosMomSuperherosMom
    100 Love Its 100 Comments First Anniversary Name Dropper
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    edited August 2016
    I feel you on having no time for yourself or SOS and feel guilty sometimes for daycare. As a mother of 3 with a demanding career working lots of overtime half of the year and my husband works full time +OT also - it is hard. My commute isn't too bad and I am able to pump in my office when I need to. Also I can work my OT when I can, so I stay super late 2-3 days a week  (15-16 hour days most times) and come in on Saturday mid-afternoon for a 8-10+hour day, that way I see the kiddos most of the time they are awake on Saturday, but I'm so exhausted I am working hard at my patience  and grumpiness when I'm around them. I don't have a housekeeper so I'm stuck with housework on top of it all. No family in town for help or a break. I just push through as I know this time goes so fast when they are young... let the laundry go unfolded and junk mail pile up on the counter ... you're doing a great job ladies!
  • Thanks ladies!! As much as it sucks I did look up the rules on US department of labor website and they are following the law. I'm a nonexempt employee and they're not required to compensate me for breaks to pump, which is why they're saying I need to make up the time (in this case from my unpaid lunch)
  • Can you do hands free pumping and work during your pump sessions so that it doesn't count as a break?
  • Can you do hands free pumping and work during your pump sessions so that it doesn't count as a break?
    This! And as I'm a slightly spiteful person with very little patience for assholes, I would put on a pumping bra at my desk and go to work. They can't say anything if you're still working....
    mrsgetz4000l4rk
  • Cricket99 said:
    Can you do hands free pumping and work during your pump sessions so that it doesn't count as a break?
    This! And as I'm a slightly spiteful person with very little patience for assholes, I would put on a pumping bra at my desk and go to work. They can't say anything if you're still working....
    Me and my coworker joked that I should do this!!! I work in a cubical forest so it wouldn't offer any privacy, and I have a desk top computer so I can't work remotely from the mothers room. However, maybe I should bring in my personal laptop and log in remotely that way! 
    SuperherosMomfishee333
  • Can you hang a little fabric curtain and use a nursing cover up? Turn on some white noise in the back ground to cover the humming from the pump... lol
    ^^^ Amazing 
  • Sheesh, ladies! I'm sorry for these crazy schedules. I too work full time, M-F (teacher), but I'm off by 2 pm every day. LO's bedtime is 9 pm (I pushed her bedtime back so that I could selfishly have more time with her), so I get a good chunk of the day with her. Yet, I still complain to my husband about working with a baby. It seems inhumane, when all I want to do is play with her all day! But after reading about a lot of your experiences, I know that I should be grateful for the schedule that I do have. 
    To the OP, does LO take an afternoon/evening nap when you get home from work? That's when I get my workouts in. If I try to wait until she is asleep for the night, I'm too tired. So...I workout during her one hour late afternoon nap. It has done wonders for my psyche (and for helping me lose all of the baby weight). I don't know if that's an option, but it's what I do to maintain my sanity!
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  • KFrob said:
    Thanks ladies!! As much as it sucks I did look up the rules on US department of labor website and they are following the law. I'm a nonexempt employee and they're not required to compensate me for breaks to pump, which is why they're saying I need to make up the time (in this case from my unpaid lunch)
    See, I interpret this as meaning they don't have to compensate you to pump, but that you still get an unpaid lunch break. I personally would rather unpaid pumping breaks plus unpaid lunch, over this weird system where you get to pump on paid time but don't get a full 30 mins to look after yourself. The 30 minute law in my area is to make sure employees have the time to take care of themselves (eat, pee, refresh your mind) and is mandatory regardless of other breaks taken/given. I would be going back to my boss to renegotiate.
  • word of this has spread to my coworkers on my team (we're about 12 people) and several of the women who pumped several years ago were flabbergasted and said that's not how it was for them.  They are even offering me time from their hour long lunch, even one women who is older and never had children offered her time! It was nice to feel so supported.
    ChrissyD1203brightonborncharliesmommy6
  • I already replied, but your situation still pisses me off. I really hope your boss/company gives you both a lunch break and pumping breaks. You deserve to pump. You deserve to have a lunch break. Ugh.
    KFrobloveymay
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