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Full-time work anxiety

Community Member


I've been a single mum now for nearly 5 months and have also just rejoined the workforce after 8 years.

I've returned to the industry I was working in before going on maternity leave. I started this job in the fourth Melbourne lockdown and haven't seen my workplace as yet. I've been working full-time at home. I am experiencing high anxiety about having to go into the office 5 days a week and starting early. It's a full on customer service role.

I have a parenting arrangement with my ex partner and he will do pick and drop off for 2 days and I'll do 3. I don't have any family or friends who can help but I can use the OSHC Program at school.

I've told my employer that I need to leave early on my 3 days to ensure I get to OSHC on time before they close. I feel unheard.

I have asked for flexible working arrangements early on if it was at all possible. Typically they make people wait until 6 months of probation is served, which I understand, but I don't think I can manage it for that long. I asked to shave off a small amount of time at either end of the day but still be there 5 days a week.

I'm so worried if they say no, which I know could be possible if the request doesn't suit business needs, because I can't just resign. I need the money for rent and food and my child is over the age for me to receive any help from Centrelink.

I'm already so tired as it is without the commute time ahead of me.

I've looked online at similar roles and none of them offer part-time. I feel so stuck!!!

I appreciate any advice.


1 Reply 1

Community Member

G'day SingleMum123,

Welcome to bb forums, I hope to provide some small advice, but I've never been a single mum!

I'm a childless male with a long term wife, though I have done plenty of customer services work over the decades.

Fortunately all that aint so relevant to my way forward I'm gonna suggest... which is,

Take a fine tooth comb to your employment contract, or whatever written stuff the business has given you. And find in that contract what you need to express your families need. If you can't find it, and after talking with someone at work you still can't meet your families needs, then I advise quitting. Family comes first in my opinion.

If the contract says you have to put something in writing or in advance to have a request for different hours, then do it.

If the contract says talk with the boss and negotiate, do that.

If you find yourself after writing your needs and speaking about your needs to the business, and remain unable to meet your families needs. Then make it a complaint to the appropriate person at the business or the businesses owner or _____. Human resources. Work place counsellor. Work place occ health safety. Anybody you can think of who might be able to from within the business help you keep the job, but have those slight changes to your hours.

good luck, hope that helps.