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Old 01-08-2016, 09:51 AM
 
Location: Maryland
912 posts, read 596,352 times
Reputation: 1078

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Note: I wasn't sure where to put this, since it deals with children and moving. Since the main question is what would be best for my son, I put it here. After your helpful and unbiased comments on my Live Closer to Grandpop? thread and your great points on my Bethesda Preschool thread, I'm turning to you for more unbiased opinions (since my friends and family clearly have stakes in the decision) and points maybe I didn't yet think of. This is a long one, so thank you in advance for even taking the time to read. All opinions, even ones you think I wouldn't want to hear, are appreciated. Just keep them kind, because C-D tends to get ugly if threads go on too long. Thank you.
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A quick back story. The baby and I moved from CA to MD to be near family. We are currently in Baltimore, but I always said that if I ever moved back to MD, I'd live in Annapolis or Bethesda. Annapolis isn't realistic for a single mom due to the distance to jobs (I want to reduce commute time to optimize time with my son), so Bethesda it is (where I could live and work both in Bethesda).

It's further from family in Baltimore but still driving distance, so I'm okay with that (especially considering I already moved 3,000 miles for them). I know we will return to living in a warm climate again, but who knows if that will be in the next 5 years or the next 15. So, for the time being I'm going to plan as if we are staying here in MD.

With that said, now that I know I'm moving from Baltimore back to Bethesda/Potomac/Rockville (I lived there many moons ago and aside from the absurd traffic, I liked it), the question becomes *when* to make the move in the best interest of my son.

There are so many thoughts going through my head, so hopefully getting them down in type will help make the answer more clear.

Housing
Baltimore
I went from being a long-time homeowner to renter when we moved back to MD. I was hesitant to rent but wasn't ready to buy again, so rent it is for now. To my amazement, I found a rental in Baltimore we're in now that I *love*. The home is laid out perfectly for us. The landlord is responsive. The nextdoor neighbors are (relatively) pleasant, but more importantly are quiet and non-smokers (no smoke drifting into my windows -- very important when you have a baby and asthma). I'm surprised that I am actually very happy here. The trouble is, I need to decide pretty soon whether I'm renewing my lease or giving notice of relocation.

Bethesda
I keep touring homes and not finding anything I'd want to rent. Most are just too large (4-5 bedrooms and too much yard to care for when it's just me with a baby). There are a few smaller Cape Cod homes I'd like, but they aren't as common and go quickly.

Daycare
Baltimore
We *love*, love, love, LOVE our daycare. I did a ton of research and am confident it's one of the best pre-schools not only in Baltimore, but the state. That is important to me since my son has a speech delay. I feel confident he's getting the extra help he needs there to catch up with his peers before he begins kindergarten so he can thrive in elementary school.

Bethesda
I'm just not finding the same level of preschools so far, aside from a different location of our same preschool, but it's not in a location which would be convenient for us to access. You may recall the preschool thread (linked above). Then, to make matters worse, the schools cost $600 more there. I can't see sending him to a lower quality school and for more money. I still have more schools to tour, but so far not impressed.

Financials
Baltimore
Right now I'm living on savings in order to stay home with my son until he's old enough for full-time preschool (right now he's almost 2 so he only goes three mornings to help with speech, get us both used to the idea of him going full-time one day, and so I can get to my own doc appts when my help is also at work).

If I stay here, my COL is so low that I can afford to stay home with him, then eventually work part-time some time this year and send him to school part-time (maybe 3 full days). Then send him to preschool full time at 3/4yo and work full-time then. I really want every minute with him possible since they grow up so fast and I believe it gives them a strong foundation. It was our parenting plan when we were married, and I don't intend to change it just because we divorced and I'm now an only parent.

Bethesda
When we move to Bethesda, I will need to work full-time to afford the area because my savings would run out pretty quickly there. Rent is double, childcare is an additional $600-700 more per month, gas, groceries, everything costs much more. Also, child support will be affected. Salaries are higher in the DC area than Baltimore, which is how child support is calculated. However, child support doesn't take into consideration that the COL in Bethesda is disproportionately higher, so we'd be getting less support and higher COL. (His father also fudges his financials so we're already not getting as much support as we should, but such is life).

Dating
Baltimore
Never say never, but not much has interested me up here. On the flip side, you never know where Mr. Right will be and he might not be in the DC area and then we'd be moving again.

Bethesda
Even just doing a quick Match.com search shows 5x more eligiile bachelors within 20 miles of Bethesda vs Baltimore (search results in the 500s vs 100s). I know not everyone is doing online dating, but it was the closest to an 'apples vs apples' I could get.

Jobs
Baltimore
I have a lot of job contacts and a good work reputation built in Baltimore. Most have been pestering me to come work with them since I moved back to MD. I appreciate the interest but the jobs either aren't the right timing (not ready to go back) or aren't the ideal position I'd want.

Bethesda
As mentioned in my older thread, as an example, on Indeed.com there are 7 jobs within 15 miles of Timonium (Baltimore, where I would have moved if we were staying in Baltimore) vs 355 jobs within 15 miles of Bethesda (not that it must be Bethesda, we are open to Potomac and Rockville too, so long as we had a good school and a short job commute).

Family/Friend Help
Baltimore
I have family and friends here for help.

Bethesda
I also have family and friends here, less than in Baltimore, but I'd say it's almost a wash.


So, the question becomes...

Option A
Move to Bethesda/Rockville/Potomac in April when my lease is up. His school season ends in May as does his swim and speech therapy, so it would be a clean break before we have any strong ties in Baltimore *but* he'd have to immediately go into full-time daycare at 2yo and I'd have to return to full-time work.

Option B
Stay in Baltimore longer than expected (which could hinder my dating and job options) until he is done preschool, take part-time work and have him in part-time school until he needs full-time preschool at 3 or 4yo. Then when he's done at the preschool we love, transition to Bethesda into full-time kindergarten and into full-time work. He's almost 2yo now, so the next clean break, if we pass up this one, would be when he's done pre-school. In addition to timing the move with his school and my lease end date, I'd also then need to time ending my Baltimore job for the move, which I don't have to worry about if I go now. It will take a lot more juggling.

Which do you think would be better for my son in the long run? If you read all that, you are trooper. Thank you for your input.

Last edited by UserName14289; 01-08-2016 at 10:09 AM.. Reason: Added more info.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:10 AM
 
3,186 posts, read 2,924,560 times
Reputation: 3564
You are in a place right now that has everything you both need right now. Stay where you are. You can start all the threads you want but you are best where you are right now. You have a house you love, a daycare you love for your son and family and friend help. You could also work if you wanted to as well. The only thing you don't have is the dating part and really that isn't needed right now. Take care of you and your son and get yourselves settled and taken care of then worry about the dating aspect down the road.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:15 AM
 
Location: Maryland
912 posts, read 596,352 times
Reputation: 1078
In the beginning (the first thread), I was questioning even moving. Now that I know I'm moving, the question is when (this thread). I appreciate your input. You make good points. Thank you. Just reading it helps me get all the thoughts in my head to settle down. And reading it back makes things seem so much more clear. It's like, when you have to explain it to someone else, it forces you to organize it in a way that makes sense and then it becomes clear to yourself.

I suppose the confusion comes in that, yes, we have everything we need now: we love our home, our school, our swim instructor, our speech teacher, etc. But we don't have everything we're going to need soon: a job or a husband, and both of them are much more plentiful elsewhere. So go now or go later, considering I'll be looking for both this coming year? And going now vs later impacts how much time I can have home with my son so I'm thinking through which would have the best impact for him.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:17 AM
 
Location: Howard County, Maryland
4,991 posts, read 3,173,054 times
Reputation: 14935
Yep, I read the whole thing. Gold star for me!

I think you're overthinking the potential disruption from switching preschools. If you find one in the Bethesda area that you like as much as the one in Baltimore, it wouldn't be too traumatic to just move at that time. So I don't think you should pressure yourself into moving at the end of April versus waiting until your son is 4.

You have said that you want to spend as much time with your son as possible. It sounds like you are able to do that as long as you are living in Baltimore. Whenever you move to Bethesda, you will have to work full time and thus have your son in preschool full time. Might as well stay in Baltimore longer, even until it's time for your son to start kindergarten.

Incidentally, when you say Baltimore, do you mean the city itself or one of its suburbs? This would make a considerable difference in public schools, in case one of the handful of jobs available in Timonium should happen to fall into your lap and you decide to remain in the area.

As for dating . . . please, just don't. Your son doesn't need to deal with "mommy's new boyfriend" when he's still presumably adjusting from losing his father. And you don't need the distraction when you're dealing with issues surrounding employment and schooling and residence location. Get yourself settled first before you worry about bringing a new complication into your life. Just my $0.02.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:19 AM
 
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
39,398 posts, read 38,028,182 times
Reputation: 74332
Quote:
Originally Posted by UserName14289 View Post

I found a rental in Baltimore we're in now that I *love*.


We *love*, love, love, LOVE our daycare.

If I stay here, my COL is so low that I can afford to stay home with him, then eventually work part-time some time this year and send him to school part-time (maybe 3 full days).


I have a lot of job contacts and a good work reputation built in Baltimore.


I have family and friends here for help.
There is no question here.

You need to stay where you are. LOOK at what you wrote!! ^^^

You are a mom, and that has to be your first priority. In life, there are phases, and right now you are in a phase in which you need to do what is best for your child instead of for the hope of a fantasy man that may or may not show up.

Focus on him and on being the best version of yourself. You two are building a bond that will last your whole lives. Whatever happens in your personal life will happen when it is supposed to and NOT because you forced it by making a lot of changes that will add stress to your and your son's lives.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:20 AM
 
Location: IL
2,992 posts, read 4,271,453 times
Reputation: 3071
You son is young, I would stay where you are. Maybe move for 1st grade. You seem happy where you are, you wouldn't stay there long term?
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:27 AM
 
Location: Denver CO
19,136 posts, read 10,181,308 times
Reputation: 28034
Well, aside from being surprised that Bethesda seemingly has more jobs, etc. when I would have thought Baltimore was the bigger city with more amenities, it seems like Baltimore is providing the life you want right now and that you can financially achieve. Seems like a no brainer to me to stay there.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:34 AM
 
Location: Maryland
912 posts, read 596,352 times
Reputation: 1078
Quote:
Originally Posted by bus man View Post
Yep, I read the whole thing. Gold star for me!

I think you're overthinking the potential disruption from switching preschools. If you find one in the Bethesda area that you like as much as the one in Baltimore, it wouldn't be too traumatic to just move at that time. So I don't think you should pressure yourself into moving at the end of April versus waiting until your son is 4.

You have said that you want to spend as much time with your son as possible. It sounds like you are able to do that as long as you are living in Baltimore. Whenever you move to Bethesda, you will have to work full time and thus have your son in preschool full time. Might as well stay in Baltimore longer, even until it's time for your son to start kindergarten.

Incidentally, when you say Baltimore, do you mean the city itself or one of its suburbs? This would make a considerable difference in public schools, in case one of the handful of jobs available in Timonium should happen to fall into your lap and you decide to remain in the area.

As for dating . . . please, just don't. Your son doesn't need to deal with "mommy's new boyfriend" when he's still presumably adjusting from losing his father. And you don't need the distraction when you're dealing with issues surrounding employment and schooling and residence location. Get yourself settled first before you worry about bringing a new complication into your life. Just my $0.02.
lol Gold star, indeed! I can't say I would have read all that. lol

Yes, I refer to Balto. Co. and Balto. City as Baltimore. We are in the county.

That is true about the handful of Timonium jobs. Wouldn't that be a blessing? Sadly, most of my job connections are in the city, but I was just offered a job in Hunt Valley. I passed, but maybe something better will come up at a better time.

I don't think my son has any loss over his father. We split when he was 4mo and his father rarely spent any time with him, even when we were in the same house. He was at the office a lot or the home gym working out. I would like to date at night after I put him to bed, and have no plans of introducing a man to him for a very long time. I'm in my late 30s and would love for my son to have a sibling (and father, since his is pretty much nonexistent), if it's in the cards.

I appreciate your $0.02. Thank you.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:36 AM
 
Location: Maryland
912 posts, read 596,352 times
Reputation: 1078
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wmsn4Life View Post
There is no question here.

You need to stay where you are. LOOK at what you wrote!! ^^^

You are a mom, and that has to be your first priority. In life, there are phases, and right now you are in a phase in which you need to do what is best for your child instead of for the hope of a fantasy man that may or may not show up.

Focus on him and on being the best version of yourself. You two are building a bond that will last your whole lives. Whatever happens in your personal life will happen when it is supposed to and NOT because you forced it by making a lot of changes that will add stress to your and your son's lives.
Good point. Moving would add stress, for sure.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:39 AM
 
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
39,398 posts, read 38,028,182 times
Reputation: 74332
Quote:
Originally Posted by UserName14289 View Post
Good point. Moving would add stress, for sure.
I know it's difficult. I want to be sure you recognize that the situation you're in is already 100% better than that of most single parents.

As my mom says, no need to meet trouble halfway.
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