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My blog expresses my views and thoughts and in no way intends to offend however that does not guarantee it wont.

I write in a stream of consciousness and sometimes the odd typo or bad grammar may appear - please excuse these.

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Saturday, April 25, 2009

Tough Times Ahead

25 years ago this August I was forced back into the workforce as we as a family were in danger of losing our home. Interest rates were in the high teens and living on one salary, no matter how careful we were, just wasn't covering all the bills. I had always been happy to be a stay at home Mum, in fact I loved that as a job, but I had to put that to one side and put the family first. I have never regretted the decision - although the plan was to work for 2 years and then stop, and I am still working. Partly because as the kids got older the bills increased, and then because we enjoyed having some extra money in the bank and also because I love my job. I was hoping to retire at 55 - next year in fact, but the recent events with Super mean I probably will stay for at least another 5 years - but luckily now only working 8 days a fortnight. We weathered the storm, stayed strong as a family and came through the other side all the better for it.

I can see similar times ahead now for not only members of my own family but other young families. Even with my glass half full take on life, things are going to get tough and stay tough for a while - hopefully no more than 5 years but who knows.

What I worry about for those now facing this challenge is that there are less jobs and the marketplace is more competitive. I was lucky - I got a job because I knew someone who had got me some temp work and who then wanted to job-share and put my name forward. I was accepted on a 3 month trial basis, and then having proven I could do what was needed was made permanent. So I never had to compete at interview or put myself through the countless job applications that seems to be the norm now.

We help were we can, because we were helped in our times of need. I wish I could save my family from having to make the tough decisions, but the reality is they have to be made and all I can do is be as supportive as possible.

My only advice is to stay strong and rely on each other through the tough times. Do you best not to lash out at each other and try not to be hurt by offhand comments if your significant other is lashing out in frustration. Find forgiveness in your heart as it is through love that we can find the way forward. If someone offers a helping hand, try not to see it as a condescending gesture but take it for what it is - a gift from someone who cares enough to ease the burden.

1 comment:

  1. You are so right in all you say. My husband and I had the burden lightened for us at one stage in our life and then, came our turn to be in a position to help others when they needed it. Although we are now old age pensioners I like to occasionally be in a position to help others still, even if only in a very small way now.
    I remember when we were earning a gross salary of $50/week and were paying $20/week in rent with two children still to care for. That is when I too was forced to return to the workforce (in 1967) but would have preferred to stay at home and be a wife and mother. I was also fortunate in being selected for two positions I really enjoyed very much. I had to be interviewed but, of course, there was no contest really!! (big head, that's me!!!). :)
    I am not sure what the future will hold for my grandchildren and their children but my folks weathered the storm during the Great Depression, losing their home to fire and being forced from their farm owing to my mum's illness. When I was 6 they came to Perth with a case full of clothing and five pounds, had to rent rooms first and then houses but finally built their own home.
    Keeping all this in mind I somehow feel that future generations will also make it through the hard times ahead.
    I can only send them my love and my hope that there will be light at the end of it all.
    Let's hope our country will not be too deeply in debt, thus placing a huge burden on the young people of today..those who will be (hopefully) in tomorrow's workforce.



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