Anyone worked full-time, went to school part time, and get pregnant in grad school?

  1. 1
    Hello,
    I am an RN, BSN that started a job a few months ago as an RN case manager. (I've had a year of hospital experience too, but an 8-5 M-F job was too hard to pass up!) My current job requires no nights, weekends, or holidays and it came with a substantial raise compared to hospital work. I have the flexibility in this job to work part time or full time, but if I quit or take more than a month off, I lose the job.

    I am currently in a 5-year part time FNP, DNP program. This requires 6-9 credits a semester. I have completed the first year's courses: ldrship/mgmnt, EBP, foundations of nursing, and quality and safety.

    Next year I will be taking mental disorders, healthcare policy, physiology/pathophys, health assessment, and pharmacotherapeutics before getting into the practicums and primary care courses

    So far my graduate school program has been way easier than my undergrad program - I've been getting A's at the U of Iowa and spending 5 hours a week... this is ridiculous! I am HOPING it gets harder and more valuable! I have been working full-time, going to school part-time, and am wondering if anyone has had a child while working and going to school? If I had a baby right now with this workload, I know I could do it. What I am concerned about is having a new baby while taking pathophys, pharmacotherapeutics, and health assessment. If I planned it out where I got pregnant this August, I would have a baby in May and for the first 9 months of the babies' life I would be doing completely online coursework, working full time, and having a baby. (but my classes would be pharmacotherapeutics, health assess, and pathophys). It isn't until my last two years of grad school that we put in 1,000 hours of practicum.

    I also have a very supportive husband (who wants a baby badly!) who works full-time as a cop and makes enough to pay bills (not enough to have spending money as well, though - I hate being broke which is why I want to work!) Though my husband does want a baby, he is leaving it up to me as I am the one who will have to be dealing with grad school simultaneously.

    So, here are my options, which do you recommend?
    Option A: Go to school part time, work full time, and not get pregnant
    Option B: Go to school part time, work full time, and have a baby
    Option C: Go to school part time, work part time, and have a baby
    Option D: Go to school part time, quit my job, and have a baby

    If you answer, could you tell me which option you would choose and if you have had personal experience? Thanks!
    ColoradoBirthRN likes this.

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  2. 0
    I'd go with B or C. if you want to have a baby you should. Its alot of work being in school and having small babies but it is doable. If you don't like feeling broke (who does lol) you will may have to work too because kids are EXPENSIVE!! My oldest was 1 when I started back to finish my BSN. I also worked weekend nights so I was there during the days. Good luck!
  3. 0
    I say "C"!!! Good luck!! Sounds like you have it all planned out!
  4. 0
    I say B. Hang onto that job as long as you can! If anything has to give, let it be school that you can pick back up relatively easily when things settle down. Good jobs like that are hard to come by, and if you and hubby are both ready and want to be parents, I say go for that too!
  5. 0
    I would say option C would probably be doable. I would at least try to stay working part time or casual if you can. I started a full time NP program in January which still working full time and I just had my son at the end of February. I am going back to work part time or casual since I start clinical time in May.
  6. 0
    Is it possible to go to school full time (and be done quicker), work part time, and have a baby after graduation? The other options are doable, but this way you'd be able to give your new baby plenty of attention during those irreplaceable first months. Just my opinion. Good luck with whatever path you choose.
  7. 0
    Keep baby out of it till school is over, if possible. Diapers, formula and studying are crazy!! Plus giving baby time will be hard when clinicals come. I work a M- F job and Im having to convert to a 3- 12hours job due to time constraints of clinicals, THis allows me to still work full time. I have a co worker with a new baby (5 months) and she is worried the baby will not know her as mom cause she works full time and she feels teh day care gets more of his awake time. You and I know this baby will know her as Mom but you might be the same way when baby spends a lot of time with Dad or daycare and little time with you. Grad school and babies are doable but it is much easier and less stress without diapers, day care and formula. Get the NP and then work part time to be a full time parent to the baby.
  8. 0
    i vote for D. definitely not B!

    babies, especially in the beginning, are very all-encompasing. it's a 24 hour per day gig! tbh, when my kids were born i wasn't working or in school, AND i have a very supportive/responsible-around-the-house husband, and i have family who are relatively nearby, and it still felt like a lot to handle. you're probably thinking i'm a big baby (she had all that and STILL felt like it was a lot to deal with?), but (and obviously this depends somewhat on the baby) it really can be exhausting, take a lot of your emotional and mental energy, etc.

    the other thing to keep in mind is that even when someone else is taking care of your kid (while you're at work or school [or dare i say doing something for yourself ]), there are still going to be things that still fall onto your shoulders. with a baby the first thing that comes to my mind is pumping (i'm sure there are others, like if you are keeping track of which solids the baby's had etc), but for me (now w older kids and working 2 12hr shifts/week, for a while was doing 3x/week) it ends up being school paperwork, the kid's homework, library books, permission slips etc etc etc which is waiting for me when i get home and/or on my days off, or the texts and phone calls about my kids when i'm at work (obviously you don't have to think about kids' homework for a long time but i'm just using my own experience to illustrate my point)

    not to mention with working and school you probably won't feel like you have enough time w the baby (or to SLEEP

    i've been wondering lately if nurses have a tendency to take on more than most people would. i'm about to start school full time, and had originally been planning on not working at all, though now i might do two shifts per month so that i can keep my per diem status and work during school breaks. i talked to my boss about it and found out that she works monday through thursday, takes a full-time load working on her master's by being in lectures all day on fridays, and on the weekend she spends time with her son. which means the only time she does school work is in the evenings, which to me doesn't seem like a lot of time plus it means that she has approximately zero time to herself (or to get anything done).

    i think the person who suggested full-time school now and baby after graduation has a good point, but i tend to worry about women who have kids right after graduating because then if they have a gap between graduation and job search they could end up in a bind. i know someone who had a baby after finishing her residency, and then another baby, and now i think she's figuring she won't end up practicing as an MD but will do something related within the medical field.

    it's great that you're giving your plan so much thought and that you have a husband who can pay the bills and is supportive and excited for a baby! good luck with everything (and someday post an update with what you decided!)
  9. 1
    my BFF did B then C and she did fine. on top of that she moved in the middle of work, school, and 8 months pregnant. she is now working on her DNP and has baby #2, she said that doing it while the baby is a newborn is much easier, she works on school while the baby naps. you can do it.
    ColoradoBirthRN likes this.
  10. 0
    I have 2 children (9 & 2) and I'm starting my pre-req's for nursing. I already have a BA in another field (did that when the 9 yo was 2-7). Kids are a lot of work, but really other than lack of sleep the first few weeks/months/(17 months for my second child b4 he slept thru the night every night)ouch, right? Lol) kids, especially newborns sleep a lot. They demand more actually attention the older they get. And remember if you don't have money for extras now with just your husbands salary...you won't have enough for cable with a baby. Diapers, clothes, toys, baby food, formula (if you don't breast feed) insurance for the baby...it adds up!! And quick! Plus, you'll need childcare. That being said, kids grow up fast. And working full time, going to school, a house, a husband, a marriage, a life AND a baby=too much, and something wouldn't get the attention it or they require or deserve! Because of this I would go option C. If financially it works for you. It's realistically the best option for success in my opinion. Although if your husband makes enough to pay the bills, I'd sacrifice spending and save as much of your salary while working full time as possible, in case you decide to quit all together after the baby (which many women do decide). Although I'm not in grad school, I do know it can be done. I have a friend who is a RN (went into the RN program while her youngest of 3 was a few months old) she is in a grad program, works weekends, has 3 kids (whom she home schools) has a husband, works out, Does. It. All!! Anything can be done if you want it badly enough! But just remember this, you can get a dream job at anytime, save money or buy nice things later, school will always be there. But you can't always have children later, and waiting 5 years til your done with school is a long time. And unlike the other things, the option might not always be there!


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