Making the Decision

Making the decision to stay at home and care for our children is not an easy one to make. Men face the thought of losing their identity as the breadwinner of the family. Here, you will be given the tools to aide you in making this important decision.

The time has come for you to make a decision.  Either you or your spouse is going to have to give up your career, at least temporarily, so that someone is home with your son or daughter to help them through this time in their life.  If the child in question has special needs of any kind, this decision is even more difficult to make.  After all, most of us are raised to believe that the mother is the nurturer in the family.  You go to Dad to get things fixed, for discipline or for money to get a candy at the store.

There are a number of factors to weigh in this decision.  A few of them include:

  • Income  (Which of you either makes, or has the potential to make the most income)
  • Availability
  • Education
  • Health

Income is the obvious, as the more income you have the easier your lives ought to be.  Other things to consider in addition to income is the company benefit plan.  Which one of you has the best benefit plan.  Health insurance is a necessity in this day and age.  Retirement is another biggie.  Just because you are 30 years old now doesn’t mean you shouldn’t plan for retirement.  At least one of you should have a retirement plan.

Availability is occurs if one of you were recently laid off from a job.  If you are off work, and your spouse still has a job, don’t be bashful about taking over most of the duties at home.  It will make your wife happy, and you won’t be quite as bored.  After all, this isn’t 1983, and you aren’t Mr. Mom.  (yet)  This doesn’t mean you can’t look for work if you are typically the high wage earner in your household.  Since you are home, let us deal with the present first.

Education has a factor for this as well.  If you are a skilled worker such as a welder or construction worker, you may have an education that didn’t cost you more than time and sweat.  However if you invested in 6 years of college and have an MBA, that is a different flavor of pudding altogether.  After all, you spent a lot of time and money on your brain.  You don’t just want to throw it all away.  Here is the question you will need to ask yourself.  “Which is more important, my ego or my child’s well being?”

If you have health problems, you may not have a choice to stay home. Any help that you can give to your spouse in caring for your household and family will be greatly appreciated by that person. Sure having health issues isn’t the way you planned your life, but it is here and you need to deal with it. If necessary, start seeing a therapist to learn how to come to grips with your new reality.

Men don’t ask for directions or help. It is not in our DNA to do so. Just ask Clark Griswold. We need to change that mindset if we are ever going to be successful in our role as the house-husband. Ask for help, the first time is always the most difficult. After all, you were born with knowledge. This is an education that you need which won’t pay monetarily. It will however pay off with a sense of satisfaction like you have never experienced before.