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Feeling guilty about taking classes while home with the kids, advice please.

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Old 04-05-2014, 07:22 PM   #1
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Unhappy Feeling guilty about taking classes while home with the kids, advice please.

I really need some honest opinions on a situation. For those of you that don't already know, I am an RN. I've had my AAS for almost 8 years. I got pregnant with my oldest son 6 months after graduating. I figured I'd would go back for my BSN right away.

Well 3 kids, and one hubby in masters program later (I work full time while he was gone in school) and I'm still finishing my BSN.

I have been taking classes online over the past 8 years and I have only 5 classes left. A general ed and 4 nursing courses. Only thing is over the years I've been a nurse there has been a shift and they are phasing out AAS nurses. Thankfully with my experience, I can get a job, but more and more positions are requiring BSNs. I've been job searching and more and more I am not able to do a position because of this.

So here's the thing. I cannot afford to take one class at a time. I need to take out student loans so I have to have 6 credits. About a year before my last baby was born, I took 2 classes at once, and with the kids and life, it was a huge struggle. And I basically neglected my kids to do school work. I let everything go around the house, it felt like I was always writing papers, posting to the boards (required) or reading and studying.

This past semester I took one class (and now I owe the school $ still because I am paying on a plan) and the one class was hard enough. Its the time it takes, I'm with 3 kids and its basically impossible to have a block of uninterrupted time to work. Or I'm plopping my older kids in front of a movie, giving them what ever they want to sit quiet (snacks video games) to get my work done.

I'm not taking a class now. But with summer coming, I want to be taking them to the park, zoo etc, going out, not having them cooped up in front of the tv so I can do homework. Even taking my laptop with me doesn't work because I still have the baby, so umm, for those of you with babies you know what I'm taking about.


The issue is with the loans, I have to take 2 classes at once. I tried to do one at a time paying for it out of pocket and we just cannot continue to do this. I was going to go back to work and pay for one class at a time. But that's still a demand on my time.

I told hubby I feel guilty how little I talk to the kids when I'm talking a class. I told him, there were days I've spend all day writing a paper (that would have only taken a few hours had I done it with out kids) but all day my face was buried in the computer or books, and the day would end and I would think "I barely saw my kids! I met their needs, but never enjoyed their time"

So I'm afraid to take 2 classes. I'm afraid of how it will make me absent from the day. But I really need to finish this BSN to get a better job. Saving up for one class at a time, is a problem because I only have until June 2016 to complete my degree because of changes to the curriculum. I already have to wait t o pay the college $1100 before I can register for more classes even with a student loan. If I save for one class at a time, I wont be able to complete it in time.

I really feel stuck. I honestly don't know what to do. Part of me feels the kids are only young once and the **** with my BSN but of course that's not the responsible thing to do. And if I'm not in school I'm going back to work, but now I'm back to job searching without a BSN. Yeah I can work at the bedside, but I kind of wanted to get away from that right now.
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Old 04-05-2014, 08:48 PM   #2
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I'm going to school right now. I take a combination of in person and online classes (which I HATE, I can pass them no problem but I feel like I learn next to nothing). I don't have a baby and my youngest is 4 so our situations are different. I have 4 kids (13, 11, 9 & 4) and my husband works full time.

I take 12 hours a semester, homeschool my 9 year old and manage my house okay. I KNOW how you feel about juggling things and this is my very best advice (and I hope it doesn't come off wrong because you know how the written word is...). Don't try to do it & take care of anyone. Get up at the crack of dawn. Burn the midnight oil. YES, give them a bowl of popcorn and rent a movie, go in your room and and go bust your butt on an assignment for 90 minutes if that is what it takes. Enlist your husband to help. He can take the kids to the park for a couple hours while you go to the library and work on your schoolwork.

It really does take *all freaking day* to write a paper when I'm also trying to take care of everyone but if I can get quality time alone, in the quiet (I have totally left the house and did my homework in the car using my cellphone for internet) it goes so much smoother. But I get really burnt out trying to do it all at once.

This is my other advice: Do this *FOR YOU*. Yes, your kids are only little once. You are allowed to have dreams and goals, too. My husband is my biggest fan and when I am frustrated and want to give up (BELIEVE me, there are days I want to give up, too), he always says "You are allowed to make your dreams a reality. Don't let anything make you give up." and I'm saying it to you. You are allowed to make your dreams a reality. Don't let anything make you give up. You are so close!
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Old 04-05-2014, 09:06 PM   #3
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Could you treat your studies like a part time job? Every evening after supper you take off to the library and do your school work... I didn't see what your husbands schedule is like...

How many hours a day, uninterrupted, do you thing you would need?

Don't give up! My friend is a nurse and has been taking classes, it seems, constantly.
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Old 04-06-2014, 12:42 AM   #4
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I have no advice as I haven't been in your situation. I am just sending you hugs and wishing you all the very best. I truly admire you for everything you are trying to accomplish and do accomplish.
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Old 04-06-2014, 06:49 AM   #5
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Thank you all for your support. I think treating it like a part time job is a great idea. I kind of feel silly for not having thought of that. I'm going to talk to hubby when he gets up about that. His schedule is all over the place shift work. But he does gets 1-3 days off a week, sometimes weekends...I could "schedule" myself to go to the library for large blocks of time. I would be doing that (being gone for hours) if I worked. I have to admit, without a job to go to its easy to skip out on scheduled study time, because I'd rather be home with my family. But its is a better idea than just trying to get work done haphazardly throughout the day. When I'm in school, it has become expected that I will do school work while hubby is at work so I can be "free" when he is home. But that means having full care of kids and house and doing school work. Which really isn't good.
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Old 04-06-2014, 01:29 PM   #6
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How about hiring a Mother's Helper? Is there a trusted teenage girl around you in the neighborhood that could take the kids outside to play while you work in the house?

I did this years ago, when I worked an overnight shift at a hotel. I was home, so if the girl needed me for anything, she could just wake me up and I was already there if something came up that she couldn't handle.

It's a win win situation for you- the kids get outside and time to play, while Mom gets her papers done in peace. I would hire someone a couple of weeks before you start the classes, so that the kids get used to her, and her them. Do things together with this girl and the kids, like going to the park or wherever you deem safe for her to take them outdoors. She could also play with them indoors, provided you have an indoor playroom area for them to play, but that would be only on rainy days or if one of the kids were sick, because it would be hard to concentrate while the kids are having fun, often screaming in the meantime.

I'm not sure, but could you afford a day summer camp for the older kids? that might be another option, although you still have the little darling to consider.

Good luck, I hope things work out for you. It's so hard for a mother to try and balance out work, school, and raising kids- seems unfair sometimes, but we plod on!
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Old 04-07-2014, 09:36 PM   #7
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Glamour Girl,

I think it's awesome that you want to go back to school, good for you! I'm sure it will be challenging for you but worth it in the long run. Take care of yourself and do what's best for you.

Take care.

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Old 04-08-2014, 06:55 AM   #8
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This is good for everyone - it is good for YOU and you are working to improve yourself for your family. Trust me, I think your kids will understand. They have to go to school during the year and now it is your turn. Maybe make it a game and have them be your "patients" =)
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Old 04-08-2014, 01:35 PM   #9
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Thank you all! I have decided to go back and get the last few classes done. I will be scheduling school days like I would have if I work going to work. I want to get my BSn done already as I want to be set up to pursue my masters when all the kids are in school.
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2010- 220 lbs to 145 lbs after baby #2 Boy
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Pregnancy Goal: Maintain current weight between 175-180lbs
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Old 04-09-2014, 09:22 PM   #10
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Get it done and don't feel guilty. Just spend as much time with them as you can, they won't hold it against you later..

I think every parent feels guilty about something.
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Old 04-30-2014, 06:07 PM   #11
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Also check to see if your school has any day care options. I know my school offers "day" care from like 5pm to 10pm for parents taking evening classes
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Old 04-30-2014, 08:18 PM   #12
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My situation is actually incredibly similar to yours. I find that it is really difficult to pay myself by "selfishly" taking time for my studies. But, my goals are important, too!

DH's schedule has recently changed, so we have made some arrangements for me to have precious, productive, uninterrupted study time. Next Fall I am enlisting the help of a Mothers helper on a regular schedule.

We're worth it!
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Old 05-01-2014, 10:54 AM   #13
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I can't give advice on how to work around this time-wise, but I just wanted to say that doing something that you are passionate about is so important, will make you so much happier, which is great for you and your family. I can definitely tell that you are great at planning on how to work with the loans and the time as best as possible, so if it is possible, then I think that its a good thing to do/please don't feel guilty/will make things overall happier when mom is moving forward with something that makes her happy! =)
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Old 05-01-2014, 06:00 PM   #14
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As another ADN in an online BSN (fortunately without kids yet)... you know you gotta or you're going to be hosed. It sucks that they're pushing so hard for this as I don't feel it adds to your value as a nurse... it's all a game... if they really feel BSN is optimal they should phase out ADN being able to sit for the NCLEX.

Hang in there!! What program are you doing? If there's any way I can help, feel free to PM me...
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