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Part time work for carers?

Noorza

Registered User
Jun 8, 2012
6,542
0
Does working part time help or hinder carers?

If I was a live in carer the question wouldn't be asked but as a carer for mum who is still in her own home I wonder how people feel about this.

I have had a really tough week, I haven't felt like going out at all, the stress and the worry about all the caring issues are awful.

I have a part time job where I can chose my own hours and have been out a lot for the last two days meeting my customers, who are lovely, (I don't serve the one moany one, can't be bothered, my choice). It has boosted me no end.

Today I think that having a part time job is a life line, as a live out carer I have to stress.

It would be impossible for me to work set hours full or part time.

I just wondered what others thought about balancing working and caring?
 

Sue J

Registered User
Dec 9, 2009
8,032
0
I worked fulland then part time when I was a live out carer, the part time job demands were more like full time. All too much in the end and now I'm struggling with my own symptoms.

It depends what the part time work involves and how much pressure there is but you need some outlet definatley. If you can choose your hours sounds the best option.

If you're a sole carer rope in what support you can and share the load of course there isn't always anyone around willing to share that though.

You know what you can cope with and you need your lifeline.
best wishes
Sue
 

Noorza

Registered User
Jun 8, 2012
6,542
0
Sometimes it's harder than others, and I know if I had set hours I would break, there is no way I could do it. Mum's illness doesn't conform to a routine or schedule.

It does seem unfair sometimes that carer's can't fulfil their potential because the caring role just takes over.
 

garnuft

Registered User
Sep 7, 2012
6,586
0
I found myself unable to work.
I kept having to drop days and phone in, I never knew when I went to bed if tomorrow was going to go to plan.
So I took a low paid, hard... incredibly hard, job as a mobile school kitchen assistant.

Every day I had the freedom to say if I could go to work or not but the downside was that every day I was in a new place, treated with disdain and as a slave by the people who worked there everyday.
They used me as a dogsbody to move the muck and filth they never found time to do in their working day.

Not every place did, some were really decent people and I am still in contact with them but the majority were dismissive and suspicious.

It was soul-destroying...I did it for two years, with all of my caring at home too, lots of poo and panic attacks, sleepless nights, hospital admissions etc.
Then Mam developed Dementia....
I could not carry on.

I am sad that when the time comes that I can go back out into the world, it will mean that my world, Mam and boy are no longer in my care.

Hobson's choice.
 

Wiltshiregirl

Registered User
May 17, 2012
4
0
I care for my friend who is in the early-mid stages of Alzheimer's. I have worked from home for years but a few months ago I took a part-time job outside of the home, out of necessity. It's only Mon and Fri but I think it's a positive thing because it gets me out of the house, thinking about and doing something else with different people, which is good for me when generally I spend so much time with and thinking about her.

On the other hand, I find set hours tricky, even these few, because of her needs. I am not sure how flexible work will be if I suddenly start needing time off, especially when it's only 2 days a week anyway. I also know she struggles a bit on those days, although we do now have a support worker coming in for a couple of hours on a Monday, and will hopefully get this going on a Friday too soon. And I also feel guilty when I am not around! Plus, as she gets worse, I'm not sure even these limited hours will be that easy to maintain.

I do need to do other things though, and I do need, and want, to work. I think for sanity's sake it's good for me to get out. Not always easy though.

Read my blog: welcometothefray.blogspot.co.uk
 

kingmidas1962

Registered User
Jun 10, 2012
3,535
0
South Gloucs
In my particular case work saved me (again, as a live out carer)

A month before dad went into care I was in an awful, badly paid job as administrator to a training team in a massive corporate giant of a company with a manager who was a complete control freak. By complete chance I went into a job agency on my day off, was sent for interview the next day and got the job I have now. It's full time and I admitted at the time that I didn't think I could commit to it but they explained that, as a small charity, most of the staff work mainly from home.

Two months after I started mum had her breakdown. I'd never have managed without the wonderful caring team I work with and the flexibility of working at home which means I managed to keep it together enough not to lose this job. Any other job would've seen me sacked I'm sure.

I still don't feel I work anywhere near to the full extent I should/could what with fitting in mum and dads care/visits but I also feel (like Garnuft) that when I can it'll be because neither of them are around any more.

I know that I must be one of the luckiest people in the world, job wise, and I'm thankful every single day that I happened to go into that agency!
 

Noorza

Registered User
Jun 8, 2012
6,542
0
That's brilliant KM. My job is not that well paid because I simply can't put the hours in that I need to BUT I'm taken to evenings out, masquerade balls, fantastic conferences, West End Shows, amongst a myriad of incentives for reaching certain targets. I'm self-employed but working for national cosmetics company. These treats give me something to look forward to, and a sense of achievement, recognition.

Mostly though it makes me meet people and caring can be isolating which is hard for social people.

Set hours though, I just couldn't do it. It has to be flexible for me.
 

tiggs72

Registered User
Jul 15, 2013
142
0
Does working part time help or hinder carers?

If I was a live in carer the question wouldn't be asked but as a carer for mum who is still in her own home I wonder how people feel about this.

I have had a really tough week, I haven't felt like going out at all, the stress and the worry about all the caring issues are awful.

I have a part time job where I can chose my own hours and have been out a lot for the last two days meeting my customers, who are lovely, (I don't serve the one moany one, can't be bothered, my choice). It has boosted me no end.

Today I think that having a part time job is a life line, as a live out carer I have to stress.

It would be impossible for me to work set hours full or part time.

I just wondered what others thought about balancing working and caring?

Hi Noorza

I think it's a lifeline to sanity in some respects - I work full time and finincially have no other choice at the moment. But my employer is pretty good so I work from home on a Monday and do longer hrs so I can have Friday afternoons off!

Whilst I love the social side I think-the sheer responsibility of being a carer (whether it's me doing the caring or not) can make it extremely hard work especially when u also have a family .

Part time sounds ideal to me something I'm sure at some point in the future I,ll have to consider.

X
 

angecmc

Registered User
Dec 25, 2012
2,108
0
hertfordshire
Hi Noorza, I used to work as an Admin Assistant for the Council,but had to eventually leave as Dad was finding it harder and harder to cope with Mum, I then like Garnuft took a part time job as a kitchen Assistant, which I agree was extremely hard work and very low paid, in 2009, I had to give it up as I had to have an emergency hysterectomy, I could not go back to it afterwards as the work was too heavy and also by this time Mum was really getting impossible and I was round their house more than my own, so since then I have not worked, I miss it and find I am envious of my Sister who has a part time job and I know this would give me an escape from the stress, even though Mum is now in permanent care, I am still on call for dad who is quite frail and has health problems. I think now I would find it hard to get back into work, fortunately we manage on my lovely hardworking husbands money. The only thing I might consider doing is a bit of exam invigilating, which would mean I could more or less choose when I work. As I said though at the moment with Dad it would be impossible.

Ange
 

Noorza

Registered User
Jun 8, 2012
6,542
0
I suspected for many of us work can also be an escape into the "normal" and "real" worlds, not that our lives aren't normal or real but the getting away from it for ordinary things is also helpful.

Like you Angec and everyone else keeping that balance is often a struggle and can't always be achieved. It does help me to switch off though which is badly needed at times.
 

artyfarty

Registered User
Oct 30, 2009
267
0
London
Hi Noorza - I have a part time admin job -wed/thu/fri which is fixed hours. The rest of the time I am self employed. My company have been quite understanding about my mum but as the recession has taken hold they've become a bit more mean about flexible hours etc. as they've just announced a 20% cut in staff I now feel as if I'm balanced on a knife edge. I think I'm ok for now but who knows what might happen in the future.

Working there though has sometimes felt like a haven - but at the same time I spend a lot of time calling home and worrying about my mum - it's a doubled edged sword. I love the normality of going to work but the consequences of not being at home are sometimes difficult to cope with.

As for my self-employment - that always takes a back seat to my mums needs. It's really frustrating. I am a glass artist and I've started getting commissions and shows which is great but I have to fit time in the studio around everything else. My work is definitely suffering because of it but I can't see any way round it at the moment. My siblings seem to think its a hobby and I can drop it at any point in favour of my mum. If I have a commission though I have to point out that I've entered into a contract to deliver the artwork. I'm not playing, it is actual paid work - just not of the kind they can seem to get their heads round!
 

Noorza

Registered User
Jun 8, 2012
6,542
0
I wonder Arty, if it is a case of "can't" or "won't" sometimes when others can't see the pressures in every part of our lives.

I'd love to see a picture of your glass work if you don't mind of course. Don't feel obliged it's just because I'm nosey. :) I also can't draw a straight line with a ruler, so admire people who have a flair for art.
 

ceroc46

Registered User
Jan 28, 2012
118
0
I'm a live in carer and I work part-time.

I work an evening and alternate Saturday /Sunday. It's not a very exciting or demanding job, but it gets me out and talking to people. My colleagues are nice, although not most of our customers!

These hours are about all I can manage with mum, and that's because hubby is at home at the weekend; although some days I'd love to just pull the duvet over my head, but hey oh, onwards and upwards
 

Spamar

Registered User
Oct 5, 2013
7,727
0
Suffolk
I'm a live- in carer for my husband. I worked part time self employed and in the early stages it was fine. Later I gave up one side of the work and was able to take him with me for the rest. Nowadays that is not an option for either of us - he can't be left for more than an hour (with fingers crossed) and I can't walk or stand for very long. That is the sacrifice one makes. I do resent it, but lack of ability on my part (even if a lot of my problems are stress) makes it a bit better.
 

Noorza

Registered User
Jun 8, 2012
6,542
0
I'm a live in carer and I work part-time.

I work an evening and alternate Saturday /Sunday. It's not a very exciting or demanding job, but it gets me out and talking to people. My colleagues are nice, although not most of our customers!

These hours are about all I can manage with mum, and that's because hubby is at home at the weekend; although some days I'd love to just pull the duvet over my head, but hey oh, onwards and upwards

I so understand the need to have a Duvet day, it's my job and my son that mean I don't get them which is a really good thing.
 

Noorza

Registered User
Jun 8, 2012
6,542
0
I'm a live- in carer for my husband. I worked part time self employed and in the early stages it was fine. Later I gave up one side of the work and was able to take him with me for the rest. Nowadays that is not an option for either of us - he can't be left for more than an hour (with fingers crossed) and I can't walk or stand for very long. That is the sacrifice one makes. I do resent it, but lack of ability on my part (even if a lot of my problems are stress) makes it a bit better.

I have cared for mum for 20 years in one way or another, but when the dementia hit it is far far harder to care for an angry confused woman who lashes out because she just doesn't understand. Only now with dementia setting in do I resent caring because of the anger and abuse that goes with it at this stage for us anyway.