I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

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Miss_Blue
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I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by Miss_Blue » Tue Mar 06, 2012 4:42 pm

Hi,

I've posted here before about being unhappy at my centre, a fair few months ago now. I'm still stuck there. I don't have the money to leave and there haven't been any suitable jobs to apply for. And in any case I'm too scared to leave the centre I'm at in case I end up in a worse situation then I'm in now. I am just so unhappy and I feel so, so trapped. My plan is to quit and just work casual around the centres in my area. There are at least 10 (maybe more) centres in my immediate area (15 minutes or less away) and then twice as many or more when you go out 30 or so minutes from my house so I am hoping that if I quit and put in my resume for casual work at the other centres that I will get enough shifts to cover what I am earning now. I only work part time now so I would only need two 8 hour shifts a week...or 1, one week and 3 the next to cover my pay now. I'm just scared that there will be some weeks with no shifts (and I would think there would be some weeks with 3 or more shifts, but it’s so uncertain). This is the plan I have had for a while, but I've been waiting for my partner to get a better paying job. He works full time now, but we only just cover our expenses with his work and my part time hours. So he has been trying to get a better paying job (because he wants too and because he knows how unhappy I am) but so far it hasn't happened and he's been trying so long. So I am getting so tired of waiting and feeling this way and I am too scared to quit yet.

I’m wondering does anyone else work this way. Just as a casual in childcare? Do you manage to get at least one or two shifts every week? I did speak to one girl once a few years ago that was doing this and it worked for her.

I want to do this so badly because where I work now I have lost all confidence in myself. I feel crappy and stupid all the time. I cry, feel so depressed and have panic attacks. So I don't even want to go to another centre permanently. That’s how far they have pushed me. I just can’t do it. I just want to be the casual that comes in and helps, and engages with the children, covers and does what needs doing that day and then leaves.

My centre is a good centre if you are a child or parent...

The other staff are happy (as far as I can tell). But I'm not. They pick at me constantly. Say one thing at one point, I follow that and then the next time it’s the wrong thing. It makes me feel as if I'm stupid, when I'm not. But I am starting to believe that I am. I feel like I am always being undermined and over looked. I can't really explain what’s going on in detail because I don't want to be identified. Maybe it doesn’t sound like anything compared to some other post I have read on here but to someone who is sensitive and easily overwhelmed it is. I can’t do it anymore.


Miss_Blue
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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by Miss_Blue » Wed Mar 07, 2012 6:38 pm

Anyone have any advice or opinions? Please.

peppa
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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by peppa » Wed Mar 07, 2012 9:35 pm

I would definitely find work first, before leaving your current employment.

I haven't worked as a casual in the industry, but you need to remember that you have no permanency if you are casual - your new place of employment can decide to stop giving you shifts at a moment's notice.

Is there someone you can talk to about why you're feeling crappy at your current place? Is there another industry you are interested in - it sounds like your passion for child care may have waned a bit. Or hopefully finding work in another centre will reignite your love!

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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by Miss_Blue » Thu Mar 08, 2012 2:29 pm

Hi, thanks for replying.

I do understand that there is no permanency in casual work...that's kind of why I really want to do it, for at least a little while. Just float around. So I don’t feel stuck anywhere. I would hand my resume in to more than one centre. There's no way I would rely on one centre to give me enough shifts casually. That would never work. It is what I want to do...I'm just sick of waiting for our financial situation to allow me to do it. I don't want to really find another permanent job. And there aren’t many about lately anyway.

I still like childcare work (for the most part) but I just hate where I am and how I feel. That's why I want to just float around in a few centres for a while. Try to build up some of the confidence that I have lost over the years.

There are other industries I'm interested in but I would need to re-train and I'd need more money for that anyway so it's too hard for the moment.

I could maybe talk to the director about how I feel...but I'm scared too. I find people struggle to understand me. I don't want them to think less of me then they already do.

Sigh.

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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by Lorina » Thu Mar 08, 2012 4:49 pm

Hi Miss_Blue,

I'm so sorry to hear that you have been treated this way... I guess this is what happens when this industry is mostly dominated by women. Some take things personally, say hurtful things, without realizing the impact it has and it's hard to take especially if you're on the receiving end... I think that pretty much most of us working in Childcare has felt this way some time or another. I know that I have in the past and I completely understand how miserable you must be feeling...

You really need to talk to your director about this. I know you mentioned that you're scared to but you need to do it otherwise this is never going to stop... You're only working part time and look at what you have to deal with! I urge you to speak to your director. They need to know what is going on and believe me workplace bullying is definitely not something you should have to face... Especially when it's causing you this much suffering... Talk to your director...

As far as working as a casual... You get more money and you don't have to worry about paperwork etc..I have worked casual before through an agency and I did get a couple of shifts a week. Since you are applying at various centers hopefully you should get more work... Whatever it takes you shouldn't be working at your current centre when you are being treated this way..

Working in Childcare is supposed to bring joy and happiness while working with children but now it seems like everyone is trying to make each other miserable for their own gratification... Is this how it's really going to be? I would hate to think that it's come to this!

Just get yourself out of this situation so you can be happy again!!

Cheers :geek:,
L.A

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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by Miss_Blue » Thu Mar 08, 2012 6:33 pm

Hi L.A. Thank you!

Yep putting a group of woman together does get a bit much in the workplace. It does get quite gossipy and mean. Talking behind the backs of others etc. I really try not to join in because I hate it. It's so high school. I just feel like I can't make a move or someone is on my case about something and they're things that in the grand scheme of life or even the centre 'life' don't matter. I wonder if it's because the other staff (two in particular) feel it makes them or at least makes them feel more superior to me if they pick at and criticise almost all my decisions, and call me out on the littlest (really not that important) mistakes. It’s not like they don’t all make little mistakes every now and then. We all do, but it seems to me like I’m the only one made to feel stupid and bad for forgetting something small etc. I do want to give examples but I worry that I’ll be recognised if I do.

I will talk to the director…when I get the nerve. I’m just worried. It’s a very clicky workplace and I don’t fit in. I’m such an outsider (I wonder if that's due to not wanting to join in on the gossip etc). I just don’t think I will be believed.

That’s another good point about being a casual. I won’t have to worry about paper work. All I’ll have to worry about is being with the children and helping out cleaning etc. Which will be great. I really want to do it at least for a little while. I think it might give me a break and help me gain some confidence back because every day I go to work I feel my confidence being chipped away at, because I can’t make a move without being told it’s wrong.

Who knows after a while I may go back to a permanent job when I feel better…but It’s just the actual leaving. I’ll be ecstatic not having to go in there again. But the money thing is scary. I have seen ads for temp agencies wanting childcare casuals. I have thought about going through them too. It’s just, taking the jump is scary. It would be better if we had something to fall back on.
But I am at breaking point now. I need out.

It’s a hard decision.

Thanks for replying.

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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by MADIHA » Thu Mar 15, 2012 5:18 pm

Hi Miss. Blue,

Sorry to hear your story, but this is a part of our work and life journey where we become stronger and stronger!!! Our hardships are never wasted, instead we learn and become better.
At this stage, i would advise you to go as casual, take it easy. When you are working as casual, you get a fair chance to work in different centres. Do that! be flexible about them. This will expose you to their centre culture. And once you think you are ready to go perm you may put a request to the centre that you have enjoyed working at as a casual. proven that you give your best there!!
As far as salary concern, you will be paid at salary at award rate which will reflect your qualification and work experience.

Childcare, is a very rewarding field, if you have a passion for working with children. Don let anyone bring your spirits down!! :angel:
Regards,
GPC

Miss_Blue
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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by Miss_Blue » Thu Mar 15, 2012 6:27 pm

Hi, thanks for replying!
Yes I think I will go casual...I just have to get a few big bills out of the way and then hopefully I can be out of there. Still makes me nervous, but I want to do it so so so much.

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catchmeifucan
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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by catchmeifucan » Tue Apr 10, 2012 5:02 pm

Hi Miss_Blue,

just reading through your topic..its a lot you have to put up with at your centre. Have you left yet? Are you working casual?

If you are not happy, you should start looking for another centre. L.A is right...you need to talk to your director. There is nothing wrong in addressing how you feel and how you are treated. In the mean time, start searching and see whats available around you. Working as a casual does has its pros and cons. What you earn currently by working 2 days as a part time, you could probably earn that in 1 day as a casual. But another thing to also consider is that getting a casual work is not always reliable. Usually casual is called in when there is an availablity to fill in for some one else so its very unpredictable. Sometimes you may get the shifts and sometimes you wont. Also when you deal with agencies for casual, you could even be called in for a 3.5 hour or 4 hour shift. So its not always an 8 hour shift. These are just things to consider. But either ways, you are better off looking for other centres rather than stuck on the same misserable situation the whole time. Dont worry about what will happen if the other centre doesnt work out. Think about it..you wont know if you dont try!

I wish you all the best! :thumbup:

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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by Miss_Blue » Tue Apr 10, 2012 7:00 pm

Hey :)
Well...I'm still stuck at the same centre. Just have bills piling on top of me at the moment. So it is too risky to leave. I really hope in the next few months I can. If not then I’m hoping to be gone by the end of the year. I get that being a casual can be unreliable, that's why I have put it off so long (even though I want to do it SO MUCH), I'm waiting for my partner to get another job that will help cover us if I don't get much work some weeks. (And he actually wants to move up where he works or get a better paying job it's not just because of me that he is doing it). I feel unhappy and crappy. I'm trying to just go in, do my best and come home. Not think about it or them or the rest of the garbage the rest of the time.
The thing is I just want a job I go to, earn my money and come home, not one that's eating up my free time, my sanity and my happiness. I am a person who works to live...not lives to work. Work is not my whole life. And I think I am the only one at my centre that’s like that, their all anal and mean. Every single day they are at me about something. It doesn't matter what decision I make it's wrong. I feel like I can’t make a move. I'm a nervous wreck all the time. I have been looking for a new job (even though I'd rather just be casual, just so I can get out of there) but there is like nothing anywhere that would suit me. I hate feeling so trapped. I'm hoping by like July I can leave...if not then the end of the year. I just can't take it anymore.

I really wish I could let things roll off my back more. Any tips for that? It's so hard.
Thanks for responding to my post :)

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fchaudari76
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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by fchaudari76 » Sun Apr 15, 2012 6:30 pm

May I ask what kind of things you are faced with that make you so uncomfortable and in what way are you picked on?
Sometimes it is hard, but the Director is a Director for a reason, if you go to her with a concern it is her duty to hear you out and try and resolve the issue.
In my opinion if you are worried that she wont take you seriously, make sure she does.... type a formal letter outlining your concerns, giving examples of ways you have been picked on etc etc and sign it. Make a copy and give her one and keep the original yourself.
Give it to her after you have discussed them with her face to face. So make an appointment to see her ... so that she has time and doesnt up and go off to do something midway through your conversation. Go in and say this is very hard for you but you had to speak to her as it is reaching a point where u want to leave the centre. Go over everything and at the end just hand her the letter saying "I have put it in writing as well"

In my experience its always best to put things in writing date and sign them & keep an original copy that way they cannot say they didnt know about it etc etc and trust me there are people out there who will claim things like that to avoid dealing with things.

Also I would say in your letter do not name names, that is unprofessional, however if it is certain staff who are the problem then maybe put it in a way that she will know exactly who u will mean.

Honestly (sorry if this is harsh) but no one can change your situation but yourself. If you continue to be scared and refuse to try and remedy the situation then you should not complain ...sorry I am not saying that in a mean way but you need to be proactive and do something.
In my opinion its pretty clear
1. Either just take your chances and leave ... find work elsewhere, perm or casual, whatever
2. Speak to the Director and try and sort the problems out so while u r there things are better for you and for others who may be in your situation in the future.

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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by Polkadots » Wed Apr 18, 2012 9:52 am

Hi how are you?
I was just wondering why you think that you are being 'told off' all the time? Perhaps there is a downfall in communications? Has it always been this way? Are there conversations that you have not been a part of?
I am really interested in this as I feel that certain members of our team needed reminding all the time, and I don't understand where we are failing. I am honest with my team and try and make sure they are aware of changes in the room. But sometimes they need reminding, and not just once or twice but daily...
I understand that everyone operates in a different way and I appreciate that we bring different qualities into the room, but when staff come into the work place, I expect them to be contributing and not needed to be reminded or be told what to do.
Are there cultural difference or differences in values and beliefs that make your situation unresolvable?
Perhaps you could be open about how you feel and ask questions later when you feel calm? I have been 'told off' by staff and director when I truly believed that I have done what they have asked me to do, but rather than holding on to the feeling, I would normally clarify it with them. For example, staff member told me this is how things are normally done, then when I do it, they tell me off...I would ask them later about the situation and clarify why they believed it wasn't right and what should I be doing next time so that they are aware of what they have told me, so nxt time if they tried to change it, I can bring the conversation up. I have found observation to be a good tool, and do what others are doing... unless you feel it isn't right, then bring it up? Don't take things personally because in most cases its the situation that brings on the conflict not who you are.

I honestly don't think I am 'managing' by team very well, but by the same token, I also believe that we are all grown ups and should know our place in the workforce and should have the initiative to handle situations and solve problems rather than waiting to be dictated upon.

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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by Dragonstorm » Fri Apr 20, 2012 12:02 am

Hi there Miss blue

I hope by now you have changed your colour to bright blue......

as all the girls have spoken before me about the gossip factor listen to me. Yes i am a male and i am about to start (Monday) as a fulltime teachers assist in a kindy not far from home. yay for me. I am very aware of the possible gossip that may happen around me and I just dont get. maybe its the male thing. hopefully i will be ok. i have plenty of life experience so i am prepared to have my say if the need arises. I think your major issue may just be confidence as you have said. A change is a good as a holiday. if you havent yet moved on do so now. you may find the next corner, next job, suits to a tee. its not worth struggling every day if your not enjoying it.
to me this job is about love and guidance for the children. if these women are mean to you, how are they to the children. i think you would be better off away from the negative environment. its not doing you any good.

sending you happy vibes.....dont be scared be brave.

Dragonstorm
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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by Countrychildcare » Sun Apr 22, 2012 1:06 pm

Miss blue you are describing my feelings exactly at the moment. It is hard when you feel like this, at times i feel sooooo run down from 3 days work a week, I get my pay and it is less than $400 cleared per week and I think 'my god there are easier ways to make this low money'. I feel really torn, I studied for years to do this job, love kids and love the partnership you get with some families in the centre, but when every time the director speaks to you it is to tell you off, it really gets you down! I remind myself all the time why I keep doing it, the little people that you bond with and watch grow and learn.

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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by Barbie » Mon Apr 23, 2012 2:56 pm

Say one thing at one point, I follow that and then the next time it’s the wrong thing. It makes me feel as if I'm stupid, when I'm not.

Wow you have just summed up perfectly exactly what ive found it to be like in Chidlcare. I worked as a casual in it years ago so i had been at probably 10-15 centres and have just finished a 5month placement where i found this too. WHY on earth do they do this. So far i can only assume they dont know themselves or they are setting up other workers to fail so that they can look bad in front of the director and make that person look better? Either way its ridiculous to be playing these games when energy could be put into something related to the children!

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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by stepsc » Wed Apr 25, 2012 2:20 pm

Hi Miss_Blue

Life is too short to be that unsettled by work. There are some fabulous workplaces out there maybe by taking on some casual work you will find a workplace that really suits you!!! Change is always dificult but is sounds like that is exactly what you need.

Good Luck

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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by jamlyn » Sat May 05, 2012 9:47 am

I work as a casual relief for goodstart there are times when I wish I was permanent but as a casual I can choose when I want to work now that I am qualified I find I get more work try looking around for childcare agencies these agencies employ you what state are in? because randstad :P are national wide and they employ casuals

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Re: I don't know what to do. Could I survive just as a casual?

Post by shmollie_hollie » Mon May 07, 2012 10:45 pm

Hi miss blue

you are not alone with the way you have been feeling lately at work! I recently left a job that I was unhappy in for the whole year I was there, i was bullied, made to feel like i was terrible at my job, belittled and more! leaving was the HARDEST thing to do! I was scared, nervous and like you i didnt want to end up somewhere even worse than i was at! I ended up getting so depressed and miserable that i accepted the first job i even went for and was offered even though deep down i knew i didnt feel very sure about the new centre, regardless i resigned and started work at a centre i wasnt sure about.... and i hated it! It was a million times worse and i just had no idea what i was doing! after my first day i went home and called an ex colleague from my last centre crying, i regreted leaving so much! lucky for me my ex colleague was doing relief work at a centre and a position had just opened up so i quit on my 2nd day and accepted the other new job, so i have now been there for 8 weeks and i love it, couldnt be happier. anyway the morale of my story is be sure about your new job before jumping into it, maybe do a trial day and see how you feel about the people there and how it is run, my advice is start handing out your resume now, maybe you will do relief at a centre and really love it and get a permanent job that way? good luck with everything! I have come to realise that everything has a way of working itself out.
hope your okay, xx

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