Sometimes a thought just hits you out of the blue like lightning and you wonder how you never could have thought of it before. Call it a revelation.
Maybe I should stay home with a baby. Me, Andrew G.R.
My wife’s not even pregnant, but I’m a born planner and over-analyzer. It’s something we plan for down the road. Now, it always seems natural just to have mommy stay at home – but when I started to think about it – it hit me that I might actually be the better candidate for a healthy diet of diaper changing and Days of Our Lives. Here are the questions you need to ask yourself (and your spouse!)
Who makes more money?
I lose this one. My wife if the bread-winner. And unless you turn this blog into a revenue-generating machine, it will stay like that. Why should we give up X thousands a year?
Who has better benefits?
Put another one in my wife’s checklist. As a city employee her benefits far exceed mine. Not only are they cheaper but there are better doctors and a wider array of services.
Who would have an easier time re-entering the workforce down the road?
This one might be a draw. I take that back, it favors her. She can be out pf work for up to five years (without pay) and still be guaranteed a similar job upon her return. Me, I’d be living on the job boards and keeping my fingers – and everything else – crossed. Also, how does it look on a resume? 2008 – 2010, Stay-at-Home Dad. A corporate asset or major red flag?
Are you socially comfortable with it?
It’s "acceptable" for a man to stay home, heck, it’s 2007. But let’s face it – stereotypes might be busted open – but there’s still a stigma attached. I’m not saying if it’s good, bad or otherwise – you just have to make sure you’re ready for whatever it is.
Will you enjoy it?
On paper, things can look great. Reality is a whole other story. I went through a stage of trying to sell myself on teaching. A short day, summers off and only answering to a single boss. It wasn’t until I pictured myself doing the actually instruction that I realized – WHOA – this is NOT for me. Clear your head and figure out if the change in routine, changing diapers thing and lullaby singing is really appealing.
Mingle on playdates?
At some point, you’ll be wheelin’ that kid around to the park. Are you ready for the Mommy scene? I would imagine that these groups only talk about their kids’ routines and other childish idiosyncrasies. If you’re gonna play ball, you get all nine innings!
What are other things to consider? I’m interested in all aspects – but particularly the career driven stuff. Whether you’ve actually done it or just wrestled with these questions, please leave a comment below.
Also, if you haven’t, please take a look at our Career Questionnaire and tell the world about your job!