issues I have and decisions I need to make

Old 03-27-2011, 05:52 AM
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issues I have and decisions I need to make

Becoming more detached from AH is making me realize my own issues and what I need to work on.

After writing this I realized it is quite long, basically I am asking for other folks experience with how they make big decisions - aside from the "big one" whether or not to stay with A.

A major issue I have is how I make decisions. It seems I tend to make decisions, big or small, in an isolated way. Not sure what the problem is but having trouble with a decision I need to make about balancing my work and my familly.

When I was in what I call "my life became totally unmanageable", I just went out and got myself back into the workforce after being SAHM for many years. The job I took is full-time and involves a moderate amount of travel, local and overnight sometimes. The job is flexible enough for me to work around the kids schedules for the the most part.

At the time I took the job AH was living with us and although I didn't really discuss even applying for this job and taking it, I was still in a cloud of thinking I had a partner in marriage and raising a family.

Here I am over a year later, forced AH out of house trying to balance my life and just realizing I am a single parent which means I cannot depend on AH for anything but the bare minimum and even that is gone since he got DUI.

The last time I had an overnight trip, AH stayed at the house and in fact there were some issues with him driving the kids around. At that time I resolved it by putting in place friends that my kids could call on if they didn't feel comfortable driving with dad.

Last week I had to leave really early in the morning and I had a friend come over after my older girls got themselves to school (which is fine) to be with my 9 yr old and get him on the bus.

Next week I have an overnight trip and since AH got the DUI, I have totally stepped away and told him he needs to be in recovery before I will interact with him. That being said I do not want to call on him and give him the opportunity to physically be here overnight while I am on business trip as he will just use that as justification that he can still be "part" of the family and not address his alcoholism. Whatever, I just don't want to be involved with him right now and even though not making steps toward divorce don't want to depend on him for anything.

There is no one else I can get to stay here overnight and I don't want to leave my 17 yr old with that responsibility. I think the real decision I need to make is about my job and maybe discussing with my boss about making some changes to my job.

I am just afraid of the outcome. This is a great job considering it got me back into the workforce after so many years. It's a very defined job in some ways because it is grant funded but not defined in other ways as I am trying to figure out how I will make the program and a position for me sustainable after the funds run out.

When I took the job I was convinced the travel would not be a problem but now I feel I was not being totally realistic about the situation then and it's just gotten worse now.

When I think about discussing with my boss I feel he is not very supportive as I have heard him make derogatory comments about other women needing time again for having another baby. He is in his later years and close to retirement so that might have some issues how he deals with stuff. The setting is higher ed and even though good benefits, not as clearly defined in terms of employee support. It's also very male-oriented and isolating, even though there are some women faculty and administrators any real decisions are made by men.

I feel overwhelmed about what I need to do and am just trying to focus on the travel I have to do next week and thinking I should just work with some friends to see if I can just do it or tell my boss I can't go this time. It seems like that might be ok for this trip but if I do that I think I have to be upfront and say that I don't think I can continue doing the overnight travel part of the job. I feel so isolated in this environment and with all the office politics don't feel there is anyone I can trust to discuss this with.

I think my problem is the not knowing. I have always been able to make major changes in my life when I was totally in control and knew what I was getting into (or at least thought I knew). Whenever I have something I need to face that doesn't totally depend on me and involves relying on others input I just can't seem to move forward or work out with others what to do.

Any input with similar situations is appreciated as I continue to put 1 foot in front of the other. When I turn to my HP I am hearing that there is a reason I got this job and I need to make the best of it but at the same time I need to understand that I cannot depend on AH to be there for my kids. We were doing ok with AH just working but there's no way his income supports two households.
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Old 03-27-2011, 06:16 AM
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The first solution that comes to my mind is to put your 17 year old in charge unless you have doubts about their ability to manage it properly. Perhaps provide a reward of some sort if it's handled well. Provide a few emergency phone numbers, especially nearby neighbors. I feel like a 17 year old should be able to handle this.

Another solution might be to find a "sitter" -- perhaps a referral from friends or your church -- a grandmotherly type or a college student? Eagle Scout with a list of references as long as your arm?

A list of pros and cons helps me to make tough decisions.
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Old 03-27-2011, 07:01 AM
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Here's another idea, if you don't feel you can leave your 9 y/o with the 17 y/o: What about making arrangements with the parents of a classmate to sleep over at the other's house that night? You could offer to reciprocate for a weekend when they need a getaway or something.

I think I'd be hesitant to talk about changing the conditions of my job with the way the economy is right now.

I do agree with tjp, too, though--unless your 17 y/o is irresponsible, it seems like something s/he should be able to handle for one night. And yes, a reward of some kind would be appropriate.
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