Or just papas who are home for some reason? After 4 yrs of being at home, 2 of which I've had a child, I have just found myself in this situation and I need a support group!
Oh I was just in this category! :) My husband was able to SAH with my son and right up until kindergarten;which was wonderful! He worked from home,then he got an office and I recently have a part time job. We went on many preschool field trips together which I am so happy we did and now we go on the the kindergarten ones for my son together since both our work is flexible. I hope you find someone! :)
Yes, me too!
I am a SAHM for now. DH works from home most days, but commutes 1 or 2 days per week. There are some challenges to this situation for sure, especially with defining when he's working and when he's available to me and the kids. Still, mostly I love that he's around so much, and I think it's great for the kids.
We've been living this way for about 2.5 years now, and have had to come up with some guidelines to keep things running smoothly (or close enough). Such as: DH now announces when he's taking a break from work, instead of popping in and out of the office. Also, he knows now that interrupting my activities with the kids derails my day, even when we're just playing, so no more jumping in to just say hello for a second when we're in the middle of something. We moved to a new house about 1.5 years ago, and it has made such a huge difference to have a room with a door that locks for his office! That way, DS1 knows when DH is at work and doesn't interrupt him very often.
What kinds of issues are you thinking about?
DH is in programming and is self-employed. He's home most days, with only a few times when he goes to geek meetups (3-4 times a month.) I have a toddler (19mo) and a 3 month old. I'm not sure how he can work with all the noise sometimes! He's great at bailing me out when both boys are demanding my attention at the same time. :D
I'm also in NH.
I am a freelance writer and work from home 2-3x a week for a few hours, and DH is a basically full time wahd. We moved here so his commute would be roughly 10 minutes into Manhattan on a good day during non-peak hours, but he is still sort of a hermit who works from his office upstairs. It's nice to have the extra hands when I need them, but it's really nice when it's me and the kids. It can be hard when he has a call, or needs us to keep it down. DD is 3 and I have a 6 month old...we manage though
Glad to know you all are here! I wrote initially anticipating more problems than we've actually had. In reality, it's been pretty great! But, there are issues sometimes for sure. Like noralu mentioned, him just popping out of the office, interfering with our routine, whenever, does get kind of annoying. And just when he's around more often, he can sit there and make commentary on everything I'm doing...mostly in the morning, on the rare occasion we get up a little early and get out of the house right away, like this morning. I have my way of doing that routine, and getting us out the door within a half hour of waking...it's just to go to Stroller Strides, so DD can stay in her jammies, and there's just not much prep...but there he will be commenting, "you should set your alarm for earlier, etc, etc..." Ugh!!! And yeah, if he 'pops out' and makes some sort of demand, or 'suggestion' as to some chore he wishes I would do...ugh again!! Right now DD is only 2.5, so we're really flexible...but we plan to homeschool so I could see it getting even more annoying...but, one day at a time, right? I love my independence and privacy...all those things you *don't* get when you are working a 'real job.' I don't want my home turning into something that feels like that.
Just so I'm not all complaint, it is really great to be able to get out of the house more often without DD and without looking for a sitter of some sort!! And how he is 'home' around 5 pm (altho sometimes backfires when he 'needs' dinner right away!). There are plenty of fun outdoor chores for him to do around here, so when he needs a bigger break he can go out and chop wood or something. It's great!
Question for your mommas:
My DH has been requesting that I stop with play dates because they interrupt his work. My first *sort of angry* response was that we moved here so he could go to work so why ISN'T he (and choosing to work from home..) but I wonder if I'm being unfair? He has his own private office upstairs with the door closed (and locked if need be) and so I don't understand what the problem is, since the kids generally aren't SCREAMING when they are here (and it's like once a week if that)
Well, every family has to figure out what's best for them...right? But, my opinion is that as a SAHM you get to have play dates and friends over! His office is all the way upstairs too??? He should not be complaining about noise! Just my opinion. :) What is he going to do when you start 'homeschooling' them???? Oh my!
That said, I do have to say I feel a bit more awkward about hosting play dates and such now that he is at home...I certainly couldn't talk freely about any challenges with him! We do leave the house a bit more often these days... but soon the farming season will be upon us...then we'll be outside most of the time...that will be nice!
I think it is good to check with the WAHP on the timing of playdates so you don't have kids thundering around during an important sales conference call or presentation. Or maybe during a hard deadline when a lot of concentration is needed.
But to say no playdates is completely unfair. The WAHP then serves as an invasion on the home. The home is to live in, not to tiptoe quietly around. If the working parent needs such a degree of quiet, that parent should go get an office. Working while people are living in the home is a reality of working from home. The needs of children (and the other parent) can't constantly be subjugated by the working parent's rules.
So working together to schedule is a good idea. Can playdates happen between 12-2pm, so they mostly overlap during the lunch break? Are mornings better? Afternoons? And, I don't think the WAHP gets to completely dictate this either - if they say 4-5pm, that's probably not too cool for playdates. But if it's agreed that 12-2pm is playdate time, then the WAHP can plan on not counting on silence during that period and use that time to do tasks that don't require a lot of concentration, lunch, etc.
My dad also works from home but my parents are empty-nesters. My dad decided to put his office right out in an alcove off the living room. No doors, it's completely open to the living room, it's just this little room that sticks off it a bit. There is a tiny bedroom in the house that is perfect for an office, with a closing door and on the quiet side of the house, but nooooo, he had to be out in the living room. And gets pissy when my mom (retired) does just about anything - watches tv, listens to music, talks on the phone. Hello, she lives there! I think it would be fine if my dad said "I have a call at 3pm, can we have the TV off then?" but other than that, he should be moving HIMSELF to the quieter location (the extra bedroom).
Working at home doesn't permit you to interrupt everyone else's lives. (By the way, I'm the work at home parent).
We've done this part of the time. I'm a part-time teacher and DH works from home. So in the summer, I'm home with dd all day while dh works. During the school year, DH is working in the morning while I'm with dd and then I go to work and dh is with dd when she isn't at preschool. (This year she's there 3 days a week, but last year was 2 and the year before was 2 half days.) It's been tricky finding a good balance. We have it pretty well figured out now, but it was hard to get used to sometimes. My biggest struggle, especially when dd was 2-3, was that sometimes she was just going to be loud, and dh just had to deal with it. There were times when dd would be having a meltdown about something and my options were to do whatever she was freaking out about just to keep her quiet, or work through it with her (which would usually involve more crying when it was all said and done) so I wasn't just giving in--and then dh had to endure even more disturbances. I finally had to put my foot down and say I was not going to give in to her whims just to keep her quiet--that wasn't fair to her to be inconsistent solely for dh's benefit.
It's also sometimes hard to know exactly when he has his "work hat" on. Some days he just doesn't have as much on his plate, so he'll be more involved with dd and me. But then he'll notice an important email and slip into work mode without letting anyone know. So we'll still be talking to him, climbing on him (well, dd will be!), or whatever, and he's getting frustrated that we're interrupting the work we didn't know he was doing. So we learned pretty quickly that being very clear about which role we were all in at any given moment was really important.
Now that we have a pretty good balance we'll throw it all out the window and dd will start K in the fall and I'll go back to teaching almost full time! But we've been working on this arrangement for almost 5 years, so it's nice to hear from others who are doing it too.
We've been doing this off and on for a while, on for the last year and a half. It can be challenging, especially in a very small home where there is no "office". I don't host playdates at my house because of that, but also because my house is just too freaking small!
The plus side is him being able to attend functions with me and the kids sometimes, like watching them doing their swimming lessons or son's martial arts stripe testing. It's nice that I can pop out and run an errand alone instead of having to drag the kids along with me. It's nice that we can take mid-week vacations and stuff sometimes (our kids are homeshooled).
Down side is the mess: when he is working out of the home my house stays much cleaner. I still can't get used to cleaning something (like the kitchen), heading out with the kids only to come home to a mess in the kitchen. It's also hard to know exactly when he's actively working and when he's taking a "surf the Net" break and I do feel resentful sometimes if it seems like he should be able to help me out but doesn't. OTOH, he is the primary breadwinner and this allows me to do the job I love the most (SAHM), so I'm very grateful.
Overall we much prefer it when we're both at home. :-)