Best shift to work with teens at home

Nurses General Nursing


Hi all,

I have a dilemma. I am a new nurse trying to decide what shift to work with an 11 year old and a 15 year old at home. For 7a-7p I would have to leave the house at 6:15a. The boys wake up at 7a to be at the bus stop at 7:45. I don't trust them to get up and out on their own. One option is to find someone to be at my house from 6-8a and come back from 4-8p when they get home, which would be hard because of the day being broken up like that.

If I take the 7p-7a I would have to pay someone to be there for 14 hours. I would be home when they get in from school but not when they leave.

Any advice would be appreciated.


669 Posts

Teens aside, I have the same problem. I have an 8 year-old and a 9 month-old. I want to know what to do, too! Some areas of nursing do 8 hour shifts. That might be the answer for least until your kids are a little older. It might not be the area you were hoping for to begin with, but its nursing and your getting experience.


20,964 Posts

Specializes in Specializes in L/D, newborn, GYN, LTC, Dialysis.

I work perdiem, around my dh schedule, so one of is home with our kids at all times. It works for me!


63 Posts


If I take the 7p-7a I would have to pay someone to be there for 14 hours.

This is a delimna. Day shifts would seem to be a safer choice, although difficult and inconvenient. Childcare costs incurred by working night shifts would be more expensive, and teenaged parties and weird goings on are more likely to occur as a result of the parent's absence at night, despite 'supervision'.

heart queen

206 Posts

It sound like you're a single parent from you mention of having to pay for a sitter if working the night shift.

I'm married, so my situation won't work if this is the case. I can tell you that a good friend of mine was a single parent. I watched, or my husband (when I worked) watched her daughter at night when she worked, but we lived in the same school district and her daughter rode the bus, returned to us and she either picked her up if off that night or we did it again. In return, she watched my kids when she could on a fri. or sat. so hub and I could go out.

Is there a church you're affiliated with? If not you can call several local churches , in your school district and ask to speak with a CCD person to direct you to babysitters, the catholic churches have this. Generally good, well behaved teens, with parent permission can spend the night and hopefully get the kids on and off the bus. If bus times conflict, the local YMCA helpes too for a fee. Now you have to pay the teens too, but they generally work for agreeable amounts, since they're sleeping most the time and your kids are older. Plus the teens love the autonomy and generally do a great job.

now working days, not my specialty here. Let's see what other folks can offer.


115 Posts

Mom was an RN and worked nights. As a teen I loved it. I was kind of wild and mom wasn't home to realize how late I was out. I got lucky and didn't make any big mistakes. For teens work days be with them in the PM so you can talk at the end of the day. Plus you'll Know where they are at night.


464 Posts

I think it is time fro your 15 year old to take some responsibility. Iwould choose the day shift and have a temporary arrangement to have someone get them into a schedule of getting off to school, then when ready, get your older child to take over. Incentive, if you can, is that the money you pay to someone else to do that job goes to the teen when they take over.

After school is the time I would invest in care. Perhaps the school has after school programs for your younger child, and then the teen takes over until you get home. Those after school hours are the prime ones for getting into trouble, so adult supervision may be necessary then. The care trade a previous poster had sounds reasonable, too.

Good luck.


80 Posts

I am a single parent and had no one to help me out with child care issues. I worked a office job 8-4:30 (or hours similar to that) until my son was old enough to watch himself. I'm now working in a hospital.

allnurses Guide

Spidey's mom, ADN, BSN, RN

11,302 Posts

I agree with expecting your children to be able to get themselves out of bed and on a bus in the morning. If they don't there are consequences and I'll bet it wouldn't take long for them to be responsible.

That said, I'd also be worried about those hours in the afternoon when they are alone. Statistically that is the period when kids get into the most trouble. Being unsupervised in the afternoon is worse than in the morning.

I work a 3 a.m. to 3 p.m. specifically so I can be home when they are home. My husband leaves about the same time in his logging truck. My 15 year old daughter gets up before we leave to get into bed with her toddler brother (my husband and I co-sleep with our toddler). She gets him up in the morning and feeds him breakfast and has him ready for my in-laws to pick up before she gets on the bus for school.

Fortunately I work 2 days a week and some of those are weekends so my husband is with the kids while I'm at work.



18 Posts

If you have the option,you might consider doing a weekend plan.I have done weekends only for about 10 years.My two sons still at home are 14 and 8.My mom lives nearby,and drops in on them.I have given the 14 year-old a cell phone on the "friends and family" plan so he can get ahold of me(and I can get ahold of him).when my older son was at home,it was the same.They go to their dad's every other weekend,so it really isn't a big deal.I am off for their school things,and all summer.I haven't had to do the daycare thing for 10 years.I make the same money as I would if I worked during the week,and have the option of picking up more days when I need to.I get full benefits,too.It is really a great thing(hard on your social life if you are a single mom,but you can adapt).

hoolahan, ASN, RN

1 Article; 1,721 Posts

Specializes in Home Health.

I would suggest an alternative route in nursing. Like Home health. Typically hours are 8am to 4:30 pm, but you would find there is far more flexibility. For example, if you choose an agency that only covers one county, you will travel less, and get home and be able to do your paperwork at home when your kids are home from school. many people HATE doing the paperwork at home, but I was in your shoes, and the kids were old enough to give me the quiet time to do it, yet, I was still present. If I opted to do an afterschool activity with them, I would do the paperwork after dinner.

Paperwork is a horro in home care, but if you understand the WHY of the forms, you will learn to do it right the first time, and be less stressed. It is a learning curve. You would also have to find an agency that is willing to take GN's, since you are on your own, but help is a phone call away.

I was also able to do things like go to a school function during the day and schedule my visits around it.

I found, too late as in I wish I had discovered it earlier, that Home Care, while not without its frustrations, is incredibly flexible for working parents.

Good Luck!

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