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I have a 6 month old daughter and I have committed to nursing her as long as she wants up to 24 months. I just went back to work about 1 month ago to a brand new job. I took it because there was a great deal of stress with my old boss and it was not a good environment. That, and I got a big raise and my husband is laid off and watching our daughter. The problem? My commute is 1.5 hours to the new job. Currently I get up at 5:30 am to feed the baby, pass her off to him, pump, and rush out the door. Come home by 6:15, feed the baby and let him put her to bed while I get ready for bed around 9:30. Since my husband is not working, it makes sense to move, however we are trying to figure out how close we should be. We live in the San Francisco Bay area and my job is in the city. Hence, moving will cost an extra $500-700 more per month to be within 20-30 mins of my job (and further removed from our existing support network). If we live a little further out, my commute would be about an hour, maybe less and we could pay similar rent and still keep our same Dr's, church, etc. We can spare the extra $500-700/month, but really prefer to put that money towards saving for a house (and replenishing those moving costs--about $5000 to move with the deposit for the new place, 1st months rent, movers, etc.). We do have some friends in the city or willing to commute up to support us, but not too many as of right now. What do you guys think? What would you do? Pay the extra and leave the support network to be really close to the baby or save more and be closer to friends and support, but still sacrifice some time? The 1.5 hour commute is totally killing me now and is very hard on all of us, but I'd really like to know what other people think, too.”

3 replies so far...

  • I'm not sure of your situation, but I know that for me, the main thing I need my "support network" (really just my parents) for is when my kids are sick and can't go to daycare. Just a date night once in a while, other than that. If your husband is a stay-at-home dad, you don't have to worry about the days your daughter is sick. And you could surely find a friend to babysit for a date night once in a while. So the question is really do you want to see more of your daughter or live closer to friends? I'd definitely choose the option that allows me more time with my child. Friends come and go in different phases of life, but your daughter is always there. However, I am not aware of your family's specific "support" needs--I can only answer based on what I know my family's needs tend to be.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Allison on 15th September 2010

  • To add to Stacey - what is your support network to you? Just friends to chat with? You can meet up with them on a regular basis still. On the other hand, my support network are those who can pick up my child, watch her on emergency basis, etc. One reason I haven't moved out of the city despite the extra cost and the fact that it means I rent when I could afford to buy is I can't survive without a network like that and developing a new one seems extremely daunting.
    Think what happens if the situation reverses again; how would you feel if, say, you were home with child #2 and in your current far away place or closer in but starting all over making new friends, etc? That can help you decide too.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Mich on 7th September 2010

  • You have to decide which is more important, a bigger place and support or a smaller place with a shorter commute. My husband and I had a 1 hour commute each way for the first 3 years of my daughters life. When I took a job that would make it closer to 1.5 we decided to move down to the city. Our commute is easier and we have more family time. We pay more for housing, but pay a lot less in gas and car upkeep. We still commute to our church, but going once a week on a Sunday is easier than 5 days during rush hours. I love the change, but I do miss our neighborhood and friends sometimes (although I barely had time to see them).

    Either way can work well, but there are pros and cons to each. Only you can really decide what is best for your family. Good luck with your decision.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Stacey S on 7th September 2010