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Bad timing?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by LaMonita, Jan 17, 2018.

  1. LaMonita

    LaMonita New commenter

    I wonder if anyone can give me some advice? I'm a head of dept and am trying for a baby. The situation in my department and the school as a whole is a quite unstable in terms of turnover and if I were to go off early next academic year, I would be leaving everyone very much in the lurch; however, I also don't want to put off starting a family. I am worried about the impact on my (very needy) team and how I will be viewed by leadership if I go off at an awkward time. Anyone been in this situation? Or on the receiving end? Thoughts?
  2. hs9981

    hs9981 Established commenter

    If you really want to have a baby, and have thought long and hard about it, just do it!

    Rarely is there a 'perfect time' to have a baby, situations and circumstance can change in an instant..... I'd say no 1, worst case situation, could you survive on your partners salary for 1-2 years? Do you have family close by to help you if you returned straight to work?
    LaMonita, Stiltskin, Pomza and 6 others like this.
  3. SundaeTrifle

    SundaeTrifle Occasional commenter

    Have your baby and enjoy him/her at the right time for you.
  4. Flere-Imsaho

    Flere-Imsaho Star commenter

    There will never be a perfect time. Don't put it off.

    Start trying to train your team up to be less needy or keep an ear out for a good temporary replacement.
    agathamorse, LaMonita, Pomza and 7 others like this.
  5. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    i agree there's no 'perfect tme' to have a babby or leave a department. Sometimes the mere stress of teaching leaves one in a more difficult poisition to conceives, so you 'miss' that 'perfect time' for the school. So just stop worrying.
    agathamorse, LaMonita, Pomza and 3 others like this.
  6. mothorchid

    mothorchid Star commenter

    In the end, many years from now, which is going to matter more? The child? or the fact that your department and school were a bit happier?
    Good luck!
    agathamorse, LaMonita, Pomza and 8 others like this.
  7. emerald52

    emerald52 Star commenter

    Agree. Time to step back and let the staff step up. Frame it as career development. Enjoy your time planning for your family.
    agathamorse, LaMonita, Pomza and 4 others like this.
  8. Norsemaid

    Norsemaid Lead commenter

    In a nutshell, your school and work will be there and carry on in the years ahead , however your chance to have children won't !
    And as other poster have quite rightly pointed out stress will delay your chances of conceiving.
    Ask yourself this , when looking back over your life which would you regret more , leaving the dept and school or missing the opportunity to have a family ?
    As an aside - I think it's a shame that schools are now run in such a way that it consumes every aspect of life .
  9. Anonymouse4

    Anonymouse4 Occasional commenter

    :confused: Trying to conceive doesn't work with planning most of the time. I got pregnant right away (which given my age and circumstances was amazing!) but I'm just a lucky one. It turned out my husband thought it would take at least a few months so it took him a few weeks for it to sink in :D

    Here's the thing... what if you put it off for another 6 months until your department is in a more stable place, then start trying: how would you feel if you're still not pregnant after 6 months?

    As Head of Department, don't fall into the trap of feeling that you're the one keeping everything going. You would be amazed how less experienced staff, NQTs and supply staff will rise to the challenge when someone leaves a super hero vacume in a school!

    Also, be prepared for getting pregnant straight away. Even if that is the case, you'll have the rest of this academic year to get things in place so that your department can tick along in your absence.

    Big decision though! But exciting! :)
  10. meggyd

    meggyd Lead commenter

    Babies arrive when they want to not necessarily when you plan them. Just go ahead. Don't stress!
    Pomza, gingerhobo48, LaMonita and 4 others like this.
  11. LadyPsyche

    LadyPsyche New commenter

    Go for it - it might take a couple of years to get pregnant - or a couple of days! Who knows? I had a similar dilemma a couple of years ago as a new HOD. It had taken years to get pregnant first time round, so I assumed the same would happen again. Whoops! It was instant. The school made it work. They have to. It was a win win as far as I was concerned. Still there now!
    Pomza, phlogiston, LaMonita and 3 others like this.
  12. lindenlea

    lindenlea Star commenter

    What are you standing around here for? :):). I agree with everyone else.
  13. Billie73

    Billie73 Occasional commenter

    Try for a baby. It’s only a job! People who think anything other than ‘isn’t it lovely that she’s having a baby’ aren’t worth your time anyway.
    agathamorse, Pomza, LaMonita and 2 others like this.
  14. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Please don't even consider this as an issue or a dilemma.
    You want to start a family, so do what you need to do to get one. That's it.
    School will cope.
    LaMonita and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  15. muso2

    muso2 Occasional commenter Community helper

    But do, as a couple of others have suggested, start to put things in place so that you know they can manage if you're not there. For your own peace of mind, particularly if you've been worrying about it.
    Don't make yourself the only person who knows how to do exam entries, GCSE paperwork, etc. This is a good time of year to start including other colleagues in those kinds of things, which is good for their career development too.
    And of course, start trying for a baby whenever seems good for you!
  16. Abitofeverything

    Abitofeverything Occasional commenter

    It took me 3 years to get pregnant! Don't put if off. There is never a perfect time work-wise. Good luck!
  17. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    As it did me. In fact I was told to quit teaching, if I wanted to get pregnant.
  18. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Remembering some of the kids I've taught over the years...there really is no greater contraception! :D
    Shedman, LaMonita and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  19. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    I heard of a head who commented on the coincidence of so many of his staff expecting babies in May. I hope someone thought to tell him to count back 9 months and reflect on whether work-life balance needed reviewing!
  20. LaMonita

    LaMonita New commenter

    Thank you everyone for your kind words. I think I will take the advice and put my future family first :) A good idea to start training colleagues now too!
    agathamorse and Lara mfl 05 like this.

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