Post # 46
bzbride2277: My belief is that where there is a will, there is a way. Depending on how much your significant other makes, sit down and really run the numbers. What can you reduce? Could you sell a car? Drop the cable? Spend less on groceries (plan meals better)? Not eat out as much?
You’d be suprised what you can come up with. FI makes about 30,000 right now, and we will MAKE it work when the the comes because it is that important to us. There is a lot of aid available and insurance options that can make it possible.
Also, if you don’t want to have a kid for another few years, SAVE SAVE SAVE. Think of how much extra you will need to supplement your significant other’s salary for those 4 or so years you will be at home, and save that amount now. A little sacrifice now will give you what you want later!
Post # 47
smarie314: I think there is something to that but even if we were able to save enough for me to stay at home for a couple of year the other side of this is trying to get back into the workforce after being gone for a couple of year, especially when you have a pretty senior position.
Very few companies out there are willing to take a woman back, and especially into a senior posisiton when she has had no work experience for the last couple of years, a lot of it is pure bias thinking the person will be rusty (although that would likely be true at first) but the other thing is in many fields like mine where we deal heavily with IT, marketing and technology in 2 years things do change incredibly fast (think of what happened to myspace, instagram, itunes, etc in that period of time), so that is something else that I think is a pretty big barrier to being a Stay-At-Home Mom ….I am not sure how long it would take to “recover” from this kind of abscense.
Post # 48
Being a Stay-At-Home Mom is great, but as other posters mentioned, it’s not always a choice the other way either. We had twins, which would have cost £85/child/day in local daycare fees (£150/day total with their sibling ‘discount’). That means I’d have needed to be making an annual minimum take-home salary of £40k (about $65k USD) just to break even. Including other work-related expenses like commuting costs, it would have been more like $70k US to break even. And that’s conservative.
I promise, we’re not poor, disadvantaged, uneducated (graduate level, both of us) or on benefits; neither are we rolling in cash. Darling Husband thankfully makes enough to support us decently. It’s just that my salary can’t cover the extortionate childcare costs here in London. Few actually can (the average income is something like £25k/year); most people have at least a 3 or 4 year age gap between children to spread out the costs, and it’s highly unusual to have more than 2 children. Even then, many women struggle and save up for the ‘lean years’ before school starts to have the privilege of keeping their jobs.
It’s hard either way I suppose when you feel that the choice is taken out of your hands!
Post # 49
I enjoy and feel super lucky to be a Stay-At-Home Mom. It was not something I ever envisioned for myself previously, but my husband & I agreed on it when discussing marriage originally. I have to admit that’s it’s WAY more difficult than I anticipated, but I know it’s temporary. This time is truely irreplacable and precious. Before I know it, it will be gone forever. So I try to put it in perspective.
If this is an option for your situation, I think the key is trying to fulfill yourself on all levels as well as your child. You shouldn’t feel like you’re ‘in a bubble’ (excluding those first few weeks with a newborn) if you actively get out in the world and engage on a daily basis.
I got some judgement for becoming a Stay-At-Home Mom when I quit working (all women with children), but I honestly believe alot of it was jealousy and I get it.
atlbride2013: Agreed 100% on the help needed. The only family member I have who lives close is not reliable at all, and all my friends work thier normal day jobs. My husband works long hours and most weekends. I’m currently looking into having someone come for just a few hours every week so I can simply get the grocery shopping done. Shopping with my 2 year is NOT an option anymore. And the reality is that this is some of the only alone time I actually get. People just don’t realize these things unless they’ve lived it.
Post # 50
ms_margarita: Agreed. It’s amazing how little you can live on. It’s all in how much you’re willing to sacrifice & what extra work you’re willing to do to make it happen. For some, it’s not worth it and I think that’s perfectly fine. Quality of life is important as well.
Post # 51
Darling Husband and I could probably swing it, but my student loan debt is still huge so it wouldn’t be comfortable. I also think that for me personally, it’s more important to be home when the child is older. An older coworker once told me to take advantage of daycare and babysitting when your kids are young, but be home once they get older and are technically old enough to be alone after school… THAT is when they need you most. That just stuck with me.
Post # 52
You shouldn’t feel guilty for wanting what you want. Being a Stay-At-Home Mom doesn’t mean you’re not an independent person or that you’re not contributing your share to the family. I’m a feminist and I would absolutely adore to be a Stay-At-Home Mom, at least while my kids are little. At some point though, I know I would like to go back to work, as I really love my job. My job is such that right now it pays very little and has little security (I’m an adjunct professor at a community college), so it’s not hard for me to walk away, at least for a little while. However, I think other posters are right to note the downsides of staying at home: isolation and the big blank space on your resume. If you take the time to be a Stay-At-Home Mom, it’s worth it to use the time as an opportunity to improve your job prospects for the future (assuming you intend to return), by working on certifications or an advanced degree. Many programs are available fully or partially online, which would make them more convenient. Then when you intend to return to the market, you may have a few years blank, but you have the degree/certificate to bolster your resume.
In any case, you should do what works best for you and your family, and not worry too much about what others may think about it 🙂
Post # 53
Don’t feel guilty. We all think the grass is greener, and sometimes it is.
I am not jealous of Stay-At-Home Mom because I find that to be incredibly difficult. My Mother-In-Law was a Stay-At-Home Mom and later a Stay-At-Home Wife her whole life. They both chose that and her husband worked hard to provide for a family of four. She is a ridiculously good mom, amazing human being, and exhausted. Everyone takes her for granted but yet ask her to do ALL OF THEIR TASKS because they think “Oh, she has time”. No. It’s wrong.
Seeing her go through that – and I can’t imagine what she went through when her kids and her nephews were young – makes me appreciate going to work. Yes it’s tough, but I think the alternative is tougher for me personally. I know this isn’t the case for all SAHM/W but this is what I’ve seen first hand.
Some days we forget to count our blessings. Both sides have pros and cons, and both sides are brave choices. There is no wrong In My Humble Opinion.
You make do with what you have, change what you can, and accept the rest.
Post # 54
bzbride2277: I’ve done a lot of google research (very official, I know) on the working vs SAH mom thing. I’ve read articles written from both perspectives. However, the best thing I ever read was, “No matter what decision you choose, you will second guess it at some point.” I’m not sure there is a truer statement about the debate. At some point, working moms will wonder if they should have stayed home and SAHMs will wonder if they should have kept working. There is no perfect decision.
That being said, I have always wanted to be a Stay-At-Home Mom and soon I will be. My husband and I have been preparing our finances for YEARS in order to make it happen. It impacted how much we spent on our house, what we put into savings, our cars, etc. Basically, we started off our marriage doing our best to live on one income while making two in order to prepare ourselves for it. The only debt we have is our mortgage, and it can be paid on one salary. So while I feel really fortunate that I’ll get to be a Stay-At-Home Mom when I have my baby, I also know it is possible due to all of our intentional planning for the past few years. If we hadn’t been living that way, then I wouldn’t have this Stay-At-Home Mom opportunity.
Post # 55
I am right there with you – I also earn more than my husband and cannot afford to take more time off than the standard maternity leave. Luckily, I am a professor and I don’t need to teach until my daughter is 9 months old, but… I do wish I could stay home for 4 more months to make sure she is old enough to be relatively independent in day care…
Post # 56
I would love to be a stay at home as wel but we need the extra income. I work part time on evenings , I stay at home during the day to provide for our daughter so we can save the extra expense of day care. I do how ever look forward to the time off when I can get in. I’m currently on sick leave due to tfmr and will be happy to return to work .
Post # 57
Nothing wrong with how you feel. I am a sahm but certainly feel a tiny bit envious of other sahms who seem to have more of a luxurious lifestyle than I do. Not in a bad way though. It’s just normal to feel a little jealous of people who tend to have a little more. I love my life though and am thankful I even get to be a sahm.