My employer wants me to work away for a few days

(239 Posts)
Missfloweryname Mon 07-Oct-13 09:12:35

Hi, I am going back to work part time after having my DS. Once a year there is an event which involves working away for a few days. It's not mandatory but it's expected. Two of the 3 day event are my working days so I am expected to go. I would be a 2-3 hour drive away and I don't feel comfortable driving on the motorway so I would probably have to use public transport if I went. But basically I don't want to go!! Working 9-5 3 days a week is one thing but to be hours away from home and stay away over night is too much I think! My priorities are different now and I would hate to be that far away from my DS who would only be 11 months old at the time!! Going back to work is bad enough but we need the money. Am I being un reasonable not wanting to go? Or is it unreasonable them expecting me to go now I'm a mum? I would be grateful for your thoughts on this :-)

flipchart Mon 07-Oct-13 11:53:49

Bloody hell!!

After all these years of running round after my boys, making them meals they liked, taking them to places they love going to, having great times together, chatting about nothing and everything, having 'in' jokes as a family, having our own traditions, having a kiss goodbye and hello everyday even having a pint with DS1 after going to a sports game with him I thought I was quite loving.

Apparently not because I went away when he was little!(and still do!) Poor mite ( well he is not a poor mite, he is 6ft 4 and lovely!!)

MistressIggi Mon 07-Oct-13 11:57:30

I can see why you might want to miss the first one, when he is under a year, but not after that. You could take your full maternity and then not have to go this time if it bothers you that much.

froken Mon 07-Oct-13 11:57:32

I never said that a baby who's mother left for a couple of days would be damaged. I just don't think it would bea nice experience for tge baby or tge mother.

I think it is ridiculous that employers expect employees to work away when it is mot in their contract but I did do it before I had a baby. Now I wouldn't do it, if it was that important tge employer should have written it into the contract.

AnyFucker Mon 07-Oct-13 12:00:41

OP had already accepted she is BU, so any bunfight is a bit of a waste of time

So what will you do froken?

Expect your co workers to pick up the slack because you have a child?
I have a colleague like that. She will not be at all flexible, cries if she cannot get every single holiday off, refuses to travel out of the office for meetings "in case I get delayed"
And that's not overnight travel. That's a 10am meeting an hour away.

So we all pick up the slack. Funnily enough, we are all working parents as well.

motherinferior Mon 07-Oct-13 12:10:39

I would be livid if an employer suggested I couldn't do something on account of having a child. It's bad enough dealing with the career devastation children inflict without making it institutional.

But then I found work more fun than babies anyway.

Viviennemary Mon 07-Oct-13 12:12:11

The OP is not being unreasonable not to want to go. But I agree with Tantrums. That colleague sounds very hard work indeed. I think it is better there is at least one other person whether it be partner friend or relative your DC can be left with in case of emergency or other. I disagree with froken totally. There is only one person in the whole world my child will stay with and that's me. What an ego trip that must be.

But then I found work more fun than babies anyway

Thank god I am not the only one grin

motherinferior Mon 07-Oct-13 12:13:56

I thought I'd get burned alive, Tantrums grin

handcream Mon 07-Oct-13 12:15:07

OP - honestly you are spoiling it for all of us working mothers who dont bring their lifestyle choices to work (and having children is a lifestyle choice IMHO).

I did some interviewing for some part time roles 18 months ago and mentioned that a number of the women coming to the interview had a great sense of 'entiltement' to being mothers. One told me in great detail why she couldnt attend the one day that was set aside for interviews. It really isnt of interest to a complete stranger why you cannot make Tuesday because your Mum plays tennis that day!

I was flamed....

Please - if you really dont want to leave your child for any length of time there are plenty of part time roles where you wont need you to do that. Thinking of supermarket work. Of course it doesnt pay enough I suspect.

Morloth Mon 07-Oct-13 12:19:24

I work with lots of Mums and am one myself.

We have frequent site visits and all laugh about how keen the Mums are when it comes time to put hands up for who is going.

My children have never been wary of me or DH if we have been away.

I wiuld be deeply concerned if they had that reaction, it sounds very unusual.

Chippednailvarnish Mon 07-Oct-13 12:23:09

I've recently been made redundant, I'm looking for a part time role. I have always traveled internationally, never taken any sick leave, or leave for childcare emergencies.

It really grates on me the entitled attitudes of some women, especially when it impacts on the rest of us!

Missfloweryname Mon 07-Oct-13 12:23:40

I am looking for another job as I have said before. No I do not expect to get all the best holidays off!! I have booked nothing off! I am having the standard days off at Xmas same as everyone else! And if I got a job in a supermarket I would either get the same or possibly more money. I don't understand why some of you are making nasty comments.

KenAdams Mon 07-Oct-13 12:25:44

Can your DO take a couple of days off and come and stay with you at the hotel?

I did this when DH had to work away as he didn't want to leave us for a week and it was a really nice break for us too. While he was working we got to know a new place, took her to the local Sure Start, soft play etc and we went out for dinner in the evenings.

sherbetpips Mon 07-Oct-13 12:28:11

YABU - once a year is really not an issue. and please be careful speaking to your employer about this as your childcare issues and worries are not their concern. You have a role to fulfill, ensuring you can fulfill it is your job.

CharlotteBronteSaurus Mon 07-Oct-13 12:31:06

YABU
being asked to go away for 3-4 days is one of my little fantasies.
nice clean travelodge, some else to cook breakfast, sole charge of the remote control, going to bed safe in the knowledge that I won't be woken up three times by each child because they're too hot/cold/whatever
in fact, I am envy

froken Mon 07-Oct-13 12:38:06

I am not sure ds remembered dp after our trip sad he was only 7 months old, I think he was taken aback by dp wanting to hug him and hold him when he first saw him. After we had been away ds also was shy around family members that he saw lots and was previously very happy with. He is fine now, for a couple of days he wanted me to feed/bath/dress him but he got used to his dad again.

I don't understand why people feel tge need to be rude about other people's opinions. I personally wouldn't leave a baby for 2 nights but some people would. Thats fine we are all different, it is good for the op to see that there is a range of opinions.

sherbetpips Mon 07-Oct-13 12:38:26

Just noticed you asked why people were being nasty.
Ask yourself this would you have complained pre-baby about being away. Would you have thought it unreasonable at that time.
If the answer is no you need to ask yourself why you find it unreasonable now. Again as I stated in my last comment your baby and childcare are nothing to do with your employer. They cannot and should not have to take into consideration your arrangements when planning there business.
Often mums who return to work (as you can see from many of the comments) come back expecting that there new situation should be accomodated by there employer but that is not the case, their business and your job role is the same as it was before and they have the same expecatations of you. If that no longer works for you now that you are a parent, then possibly a change of role within the company would work better rather than having to leave?
Worth talking to HR about if you are serious about resigning.

flipchart Mon 07-Oct-13 12:43:41

OP had already accepted she is BU, so any bunfight is a bit of a waste of time
That maybe so but the bunfight has been redirected at others who seem to imply mothers who do go away aren't as loving and perhaps not meeting the needs of their child.

YABU. Not only are you giving working mothers a bad name, but you are being unfair to colleagues who are having to pick up your slack. As a childless person, I got heartily fed up of having to cover for various parental "emergencies". Childless people also like taking time off at Christmas, and think it's fair that everyone should take turns at doing the overnights and occasional early starts/weekends.

SilverApples Mon 07-Oct-13 12:47:54

froken, has it occurred to you that your son's responses might be alleviated if he was more used to being left with other adults who love him and could care for him? So that he wasn't so disconcerted when things changed for a brief period of time?

OcadoSubstitutedMyHummus Mon 07-Oct-13 12:48:38

If I'd had to have gone away at 11 months I wouldn't have been keen as I was still BF. But given junior didn't sleep through the night until 16 months it would also have been a blessed opportunity to get some rest.

noblegiraffe Mon 07-Oct-13 12:53:45

My 8 month old is occasionally a bit clingy to me, reaching out for me when DH has her etc. But he is very hands on and hasn't been away from her at all.

I suspect that Froken is projecting her feelings about her DC being away from their father onto perfectly normal baby behaviour.

ukatlast Mon 07-Oct-13 12:58:27

Haven't read the other answers yet - got fed up of all the hard-faced bitch careerist ones. YANBU.
If this course is not a contractual obligation then they can't make you attend. For the record neither of the multinational companies I and my DH have worked for would expect attendance on such a course for a working Mother with such a young child.
In a year's time you may feel differently of course but it should be your decision not theirs. Sorry about all the unsympathetic replies you have received.

ukalast so who has to go on all these events then?
Who has to take over from you because you happen to have had a child?
It impacts on everyone.

I have 3 older children. So would I have to go?
Even though it is a logistical nightmare when the DCs are older?

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