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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is your situation going to stay this way indefinitely? Or does your DH have plans to return to a WOH role at some point in the future?<br><br>
Background: My DH has been a SAHD to our DD. We were both home full time with her for the first year (neither of us had paid employment outside the home). Then, when his job search was proving fruitless, I decided to look for a job. I landed a decent position and have been able to work ~80% ever since. Our DD is 5 1/2 years old now.<br><br>
During this time, we decided to pursue one of our life-long dreams, that of building our own house. So, my DH has been more realistically a WAHD for about 3 of the last 5 years. It started with planning and permitting the house, and then the actual building process. We are about 1 year away from being done with the house construction. Yea!! After that, there is another 1 or 2 years of work to be done building a detached garage (with an apartment above) and general sitework, fencing, that kind of stuff. My best estimate is that DH will continue to be a SAHD/WAHD for another 3 years. That will make it 7 years for him.<br><br>
For some reason, facing this actual number, is very hard for me. I don't know why. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: Maybe because me being the WOHP, the primary breadwinner and keeper of the health insurance, was not how I thought things would work out. Maybe because I want another child, DH doesn't, and I feel like my WOH status makes it harder for us to imagine having another child. DH didn't have primary care responsibility of our DD when she was an infant. I don't think he would really look forward to it if we had another child. (He says he *hates* the smell of spit-up, and confessed to being so glad when our DD outgrew that stage, around 6 months.)<br><br>
Some of it is me wondering if he will be able to get back into the workforce with such a long break. He has done some independent consulting in the last couple years, IT stuff, but it has been for my company. So, even that source of income feels like it is linked to MY source of income.<br><br>
I just don't know how to make this feeling of angst go away. And I know there is absolutely nothing I can do to change the situation right now. (even if I wanted to, which I'm not sure I do) Financially, logistically and emotionally, we have to get the house done. We couldn't hire a contractor to finish it. DH has to do it himself.<br><br>
Sigh. Anyone have any perspective for me?<br><br>
~Diane
 

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My DH is a SAHD and we're not planning on changing that in the forseeable future. I think your problems with DH not wanting another child have nothing to do with who works and it sounds like even if you stayed home he wouldn't be interested in more children. Just how it sounds. If he really wanted one it wouldn't matter who worked, you'd find a way.<br><br>
Anyway, we're just taking it as it comes, if DH never gets back in the workforce, that's okay with me.
 

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Dh has been home 6 years now. He is now going to be going back to school this coming year to do a training program. Part of me is excited because we will have more options once he is able to work as well (well, he could always work, but once he has defined 'trade' to ply), and part of me really dreads it because it's great having him at home and he does such a good job. We never thought it would last this long, but we've got pretty used to it!<br><br>
I hear you on the sole breadwinner responsibility, and also on it making it difficult to have another child, if you want one. On the other hand, I have felt better about the hours I work because I know dh is at home holding the fort.
 

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My dh has been the SAHP since the day our first child was born, 5 years ago. I do not see it changing anytime soon, and if it never changes, I am fine with that. He has a Ph.D. but it is in a field that has no employment opportunities in our town and we do not wish to leave our community. Also, he is an excellent at home manager of the household and children.<br><br>
I do worry whether he will wish to work outside of the home some day and I worry whether he would be able to get a job. But I figure, why borrow trouble? For now, he's happy, I'm happy, and our children are happy and that's all that matters.<br><br>
I do get stressed and worried about bearing the sole responsibility for financial support, insurance, and retirement for the entire family. If I let myself think about it for very long, I could probably cause myself an anxiety attack. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngtongue.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Stick Out Tongue"> I just try to keep plugging along, one day at a time. I love my job so that helps a LOT. Also, we're done having kids so it's a bit different for us.
 

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DH is a SAHD, and we aren't planning any changes. He is technically a "WAHD" because he also has his own web-based business, but a lot of that he does while I'm at home.<br><br>
I would love, absolutely love to be the SAHP. When I was younger I always said I planned to work, but the fact is, I'd rather have DH be the breadwinner while I raised the kids. But it's just not practical, because someone has to have a stable income and good benefits, and my salary is the one that's enough to support us. He loves his business, too, and I think it's rare enough for a person to actually love what they do, I can't see making him do something else. He does a fine job, really. I remind myself often that we're very luck that DD can be at home at all.
 

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I work fulltime and dh stays home part time.<br><br>
He will be home full time next year and we hope to start homeschooling as well.<br><br>
I struggle with the whole "breadwinner" role. I am a hard worker and bring my job home too much and it becomes emotionally draining sometimes.<br><br>
When I come home everyone wants mama (while at work, everyone wants to ask me a question, ask a favor, help with this, do that report....) so it is pretty much the same except the ones at home are much cuter<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> Needless to say, this is hard and not necessarily what I want forever.<br><br>
I am the one who makes the best income and has good benefits, so unless that changes or we win the lottery, this is how it will stay. One of us needs to be home with the children and right now that is my husband.<br><br>
So we have different situations, but I can really empathize with the angst.
 

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Diane- I know exactly how you feel. We have faced this issue too.<br><br>
When my DD was born I was finishing up grad school and then looking for a job. My first job was actually an internship, so DH was working FT and I was working around his schedule, but he was the primary caregiver during the day. When DD was 18 months old I landed my first “real” job and we moved for it and DH was not employed. At first he looked for work, we were thinking he might find something PT or evenings, but there was just nothing there for him. The cost of living was low and so we didn’t really need the income.<br><br>
When we discussed having a second child, he was very nervous about being the primary caregiver for an infant. Yet, DS came along and things were fine. He managed very well, and in my opinion was even better at taking care of an infant than me. Truthfully, of all the people in the family, I had the hardest time. My maternity leave was just under 8 weeks and it was way too short. With my DD I was ready to WOH when I started to work, but with DS I was not ready. I felt very pressured at work, and suddenly felt very pressured as the sole breadwinner of the family. I just needed more time, but felt like I couldn’t take it because my family would have no income. I also had some serious PPD after my son was born- so that added to both the intense sense of need as well as the feeling of being overwhelmed and the feeling of being desparate.<br><br>
I would love to add another child to our family (through adoption or birth) but I just couldn’t go through that again. My son is three now and I am still dealing with some of the mental/emotional issues that came up during his infancy. We finally bought a house last year, and to take some of the pressure off of me feeling that I was solely responsible for this giant house payment, DH started working PT again. Financially it has been good, because I was really feeling the pressure of that responsibility. Of course, even if DH was working FT we could not afford for me to take a few months off for another child because our house payment is based on my salary, which would be about three times his (if we both were FT)- so I sort of feel like we have to let go of that dream for now and possibly forever. If we sold our house we could probably rent for half the cost, and that might make it financially feasible for me to take some time off, but we were really miserable renting and we really like our little house. It sort of seems like we have chosen this house over expanding the family- and truthfully I feel a little bit weird about that.<br><br>
Now we also work opposite schedules, and even though DH is part time, it ends up that we don’t have very much time together as a couple or time together as a family. We are trying to make the most of the time we do have at the moment, but there have been challenges with having him back at work. We’ve only been doing it a year, and I still think we are working out some of the kinks. Getting back in the work force has been tough. It has almost been like starting over for him. He isn't in a professional field, so I don't know if he had been if returning would have been easier or more difficult.<br><br>
You need some perspective... I guess the only perspective I have to offer is that you are in a tough situation and I have been/am in it too. You have some reasonable things to have angst about. There may not be an easy answer. You might have to prioritize and try some different approaches. Thats where we are now, and lately I am thinking we might need to try something different, but I am not sure either. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks, ladies, your kind words and thoughtful posts are worth a hundred pounds of chocolate to me. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> I don't have any other families IRL that have a SAHD, so the opinions and experiences are really helpful.<br><br>
Erika, I was hoping you would give me some feedback. Thanks. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/loveeyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Loveeyes">: I remember when we chatted before that our situations seemed so similar. Thanks for the validation.<br><br>
Geez, I'm sitting here tearing up. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> I think this is something that has been simmering under the surface for a while, and now that I'm facing it, it's harder than I thought it would be.<br><br>
Plus, it's just been a rollercoaster week of work stress, extended family drama, and sickness for both me and my DH. Maybe I should just put this all out of my mind until I don't feel so overwhelmed by LIFE. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment"><br><br>
Thanks again.<br><br>
~Diane
 

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Diane-<br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
I am sorry that you are so overwhelmed. Right now I am in the no-easy answers stage too. I sometimes feel bad because I think that if I could just be happy with all the blessings that I have (and I really do have so many!) that I wouldn't feel this way. Yet there is something more that I am wanting.<br><br>
You know, I don't regularly come to this board any more, but I am glad I dropped by the other day. Sometimes it seems that there just isn't anyone out there facing these same types of issues. But you know, there are, and we can help each other.<br><br>
PM me anytime, okay? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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My dh has been the SAHP for over 2 years now, but with both boys in school starting Thursday, he will be returning to work P/T. He does some work from home now also. But he will still be the primary responsible for transportation, meetings, etc. (I go when I can)
 
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