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-   -   Was your partner reluctant to have you SAH? (http://www.mothering.com/forum/329-stay-home-parents/1355210-your-partner-reluctant-have-you-sah.html)

porcelina 06-07-2012 08:50 AM

I have posted before about being torn between wanting to stay home and feeling I should/have to work. While it would not be easy to make it on just one income, I know a lot of people do it (especially here on MDC!). My DSs are 4.5 and 20 months. I had DS1 while in graduate school, and wanted to quit or take time off, but DH was reluctant, said I would not finish and would regret it. Well, I finished, but not before having DS2. And now, I still think I want to work less than FT, which is not really an option in my career area. Every time I bring up the idea of staying home, DH tells me that he thinks (1) I would not truly be happy because he knows me and thinks my intellectual curiosities will be unfulfilled if I stayed home and (2) he does not want to be the primary earner, have to work extra hours, etc. I dream about what it would be like to have a partner that says, "I will support you in whatever you decide."


Was your partner reluctant? If so, how did you overcome it? Was your partner supportive? If so, in what ways?


rinap 06-07-2012 01:06 PM

I understand your frustration with wanting to be at home full time and wanting your partner to support that.
 

I can't really address #1, but under #2, it sounds like the two of you need to sit down with your finances and see what your staying at home would really mean. If he has to work more hours, then that's less time he gets to parent, and that may be something that's very important to him. And the stress of being the primary earner can be substantial. So it sounds like the two of you need to figure out, in detail, what kind of pressure the situation puts on each of you and how that works with your finances.

 

But see if you can find a solution that works for both of you, as a family. Because all of your working/not working decisions impact time available to children, to each other, to create a home.


cat13 06-07-2012 04:47 PM

I've been in a somewhat similar situation of knowing I have to work and wishing to be a SAHM. Luckily I'm quitting my job next week, but have been working since my maternity leave was over at 8 weeks PP (DS will be 11 months when I stop working).

 

I can't really address your partner's second concern, because I don't know your financial situation. I know a lot of moms here on MDC have told me that if I really wanted to be a SAHM, I just had to go for it and it would work out. I doubt that would have worked for us since I was the sole income earner. Luckily DH got a great job offer, so he gets to go back to work (he has been a SAHD) and I get to stop. But it took him getting a good enough paying job to make it happen for us financially.


Regarding the first reason he gave you, it's not really his position to say that to you. Honestly it seems like a cop-out to support his wishes to have you keep working, maybe because he's worried about it financially. While it's valid to be worried about finances, it doesn't have anything to do with how you'll feel as a SAHM. You say that this is something that you dream about, so I think that you really want it to happen. If you find yourself in need of adult responsibilities and connections, you could always take on a different part time job that's not related to your career, a volunteer job, or go back to work full time. You aren't stuck in that decision, but you'll only know if you try it.

 

As for us, DH is torn between being worried about finances and and wanting DS to be home with us and not in day care. We have been working for months to find a situation that works financially, so we decided that I will try it out for 6 months and we'll see how it works. If we can't afford it, then I'll find another job and we'll go the daycare route. DH was also worried about my career (I have a good job now, what if I can't get a similar good job when I decide to go back to work?), but ultimately I told him that it was my choice to put that on the line because of how much I want to be a SAHM, and I was willing to take that chance.

 

Sorry about all the ramblings. I wish you luck in your decision!
 


iowaorganic 06-08-2012 07:20 AM

I might be the odd duck here- but my DH never wanted me to work.  I think I have worked 6 days since we have been married (7.5 yrs).  We were married on the day I graduated with a degree in engineering- so I really thought that I had to use that degree and I would be bored at home.  There hasn't been a boring day yet though.  Any time I am feeling the need for intellectual stimulation I read or google or write or do whatever.  So I think point 1 is ridiculous.  As for point 2- I am so very blessed because my DH is willing to do what it takes to support our family so I can stay home.  I agree with a lot of the MDC moms in that if it is a priority most times it will work out- but it takes a lot of change sometimes and a different set of financial priorities.  We always say how blessed we are that we never became accustomed to my income- so it never felt like we gave up one.  Honestly though it has to be a joint decision and a priority to both of you to make this successful.  But I can't imagine my DH being supportive if I decided to get a job- I believe he would consider that abandoning out family- so take that for what it is worth.  (However that said- I really don't intend to ever get a job- I think I can stay plenty busy at home for forever :)

 

ETA- ok here is the other thing- I guess I kind of work- I do the books for our farm and help with the cows and doing the running around for parts or seed or whatnot.  


bunchofmonkeys 06-13-2012 05:37 PM

My DH knew from the start I wanted to be a SAHM but didn't fully understand why. He grew up where the women went back to work full time and the Grandmother would watch the kids. I didn't want this, I wanted one of the parents to be the primary caregiver and preferably me. We didn't live close enough to any Grandparents and the cost of daycare was too high verses how much income I could bring in full time, it was hardly worth me working at all.  After our daughter was born I went back to work part time and he watched her while I was at work. I think he quickly discovered that watching children was a bit more work then he had first thought. 

After our son was born I went back to work part time again (but early - when he was 6 months old) and my husband once again watched both kids! He soon got the taste of reality that watching kids IS a full time job! He really apprecaited what I did in a day and so when we talked about me staying home full time he agreed that it would be for the best. Money is super tight but it's worth having me stay home.


Mummoth 06-15-2012 09:31 AM

When DH and I met, I was a single mom on welfare. The kids had been through a lot and I wasn't willing to make yet another major change for them to cope with by going out to work... they needed me, and that was that. DH says he could see how devoted I am to the kids and what a good mom I am. I've had after school care kids (not since the baby) and he'd prefer I not even do that. He thinks taking care of the kids is enough. He loves that I make supper for him, he seems to think I'm going over and above by taking care of the house, and I don't even do it well. His mom was home with him and his brothers. What you grew up with seems to be what you expect, I guess.


JohnnysGirl 06-17-2012 02:10 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mummoth View Post
  What you grew up with seems to be what you expect, I guess.

yeahthat.gif

 

My ex husband and my husband-to-be both had mothers who stayed home, so both just felt more comfortable with the framework that I would also be a SAHM.

I've never had a job since getting a degree from a prestigious university, never been interested in a 9-to-5 job, always very happy to homemake and mother my kids.  I have had quite a hole in my life the last four years as since my divorce, my boys were with their dad a lot and during those days, I was all alone.  And lost.  I had to focus on finding a way to sustain myself and I applied for hundreds of jobs and grasped at tons of ways to fill my time, but I was always just so relieved when the boys were back with me because I was doing what I want to do again.   Looking forward to being a full-time SAHM again with my fiance & future kids that are hopefully very soon on the way (TTC in a couple of months).  He's more than happy to fully support us and my sons and future babies we make, and prefers it that way.


Ramzubo 06-18-2012 01:18 PM

DH was very anti-sahm originally. Like pp said he grew up with a working mom and sil works so he didn't see a lot of value in sah. Before we got married he knew that I would at least have the option to sah. As for your two points....

1) Being a sahm doesn't somehow shut your brain down. Just because I don't use my Master's for a job doesn't mean I don't follow the field. I still read articles and attend events pertaining to those interests. 

2) everything rinap said. Also neither DH nor I would be OK with him working more hours at work. This is an acceptable trade off for some, but it wouldn't work for us. We have worked out a budget to make it work without needing him to work additional hours.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by rinap View Post

 under #2, it sounds like the two of you need to sit down with your finances and see what your staying at home would really mean. If he has to work more hours, then that's less time he gets to parent, and that may be something that's very important to him. And the stress of being the primary earner can be substantial. So it sounds like the two of you need to figure out, in detail, what kind of pressure the situation puts on each of you and how that works with your finances.

 

So now DH is hugely supportive of me being a sahm. What changed? When the economy crashed my freelance work dried up so DH got to experience the benefits that came with having someone stay at home. He likes the domestic homemaker benefits (dinner, house cleaned) and he likes the benefits of me taking care of ds (not having to take off if ds has an appointment or is sick, not feeling guilty that ds doesn't get to go to the park, museum, etc...not having to worry about how ds is doing in childcare or having to pay for childcare, and always knowing that someone is raising our son the way we want).  We're not big spenders so the pay that I would bring in to upgrade our house, car, vacations, etc... wouldn't be worth it for us. When DH realized that then he became supportive.


MrsBone 06-19-2012 05:57 PM

DH was supportive, although we never talked about it to begin with. I didn't learn he was supportive until after I lost my job(that I LOVED, or else I probably would have never stayed at home) when DS was 16 months old. We then got pregnant with number 2 and I just continued to stay at home after we talked about finances and realized we didn't really need my income, although it was nice to have( I didn't make that much, really) I have my good days and bad. Sometimes I wish I had a job outside of the home, because my identity is completely tied up into parenting while DH really has two identities. Work and parenting (along with being a spouse, but that tends to be put on the back burner sometimes). I can't say that he was supportive really, just not opposed. His mom stayed at home when they were young, but started back working when they were all of school age. I plan on homeschooling, and again, while he's not unsupportive, he's not like jumping up and down saying "yay!"


proudMoMmy2634 06-28-2012 11:46 PM

My DH was also supportive. Before I needed to quit in a job for my pregancy's health. Then I got to stay at home,...I must admit,..It was making me bore(I miss working to earn my own), But I want to take care of my baby. I cant leave her to a caregiver. Luckily, I had found a source of income(part/full time job online) that was after a month of internet browsing, and surpasing tons of spam online. I was telling it to my DH and he was agreeing with me,..only until I was able to get hold of my earning through my online work was the only time that I had known that he thought I was only fooling around,..grrr LOL so now he belive me,..LOL. It was good that I can help him out on some expenses at the same time I feel happy as a person. But I always reserved my time for my baby and my DH.!  I understand what you all feel, Just look for something that you can spend your time meaningfully..On my part whatever happens staying at home with my baby will always be my priority. Goodluck to us.


LLQ1011 07-13-2012 11:50 PM

Mine was all about it! I know now because its the only legal way to have a slave now days....
 


porcelina 07-24-2012 09:54 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by LLQ1011 View Post

Mine was all about it! I know now because its the only legal way to have a slave now days....
 

 



Okay, seriously?? That sounds awful. Really, really awful. I hope you are kidding.

 

Thanks everyone for your thoughts. I did end up talking to DH about it, and he has since demonstrated more support of the idea. I mean, he is still reluctant, but not recalcitrant. I'm not sure I will go through with it, and the more time goes on, the less likely it seems it will be in our near future, but it could happen.


MarieP 07-24-2012 10:06 AM

My DH and I weren't prepared for how much I wanted to stay at home after having my first daughter.  It got worse after I had my second.  Now that I've lost my job, I think he still wants me to find a job so we are more financially secure.  We had a talk the other day and I told him that I basically would be working in order to get a paycheck.  I was worried, too about feeling that I would get bored mentally, but I feel that being at home will let me learn about the things that I want to learn about.  I'm glad to hear that your DH is starting to come around.  I am trying to find some things that I can do from home to make money to help ease the financial strain that will be put on him.


porcelina 07-24-2012 10:14 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarieP View Post

My DH and I weren't prepared for how much I wanted to stay at home after having my first daughter.  It got worse after I had my second.  Now that I've lost my job, I think he still wants me to find a job so we are more financially secure.  We had a talk the other day and I told him that I basically would be working in order to get a paycheck.  I was worried, too about feeling that I would get bored mentally, but I feel that being at home will let me learn about the things that I want to learn about.  I'm glad to hear that your DH is starting to come around.  I am trying to find some things that I can do from home to make money to help ease the financial strain that will be put on him.



This is so me -- I never in a million years thought I would want to stay home, and now it is a huge desire for me!! For now I am making it work with a somewhat part-time schedule (making up hours nights and weekends when necessary), and I am lucky to have a flexible job. :) I'm sure if I had a typical 8-5 job with a commute I would have quit by now.


MichelleZB 07-24-2012 07:57 PM

Porcelina, remember that while it's important that your husband supports you, you should support him, too! It's possible he might want to be able to work a little less hard at his job so he can be home sometimes to be with the kids, too! Maybe working part time is one of those things you might have to do to support him in his wish to be a Sometimes At Home Dad (SAHD).



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