The New Normal: Working Mom And The Stay-At-Home Dad

October 7, 2016  |  
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The family unit has undergone a variety of changes over the past few years. Some of the scenarios that weren’t so common are now the face of what most people call “family.” One of those changes is the increase in the SAHD, or the Stay-At-Home Dad. The roles of the family unit have flip-flopped. A lot of fathers find themselves at home as the primary caregiver for their children while their wives or significant others go to work full time. This is the perfect arrangement for some families but it takes some adjusting…Okay, a lot of adjusting. Some men can’t handle the changes that come with being a SAHD and end up schlepping back to work. How easy is it to put pride aside to become a stay at home dad with a working mom?
With companies folding all over the place, people are losing their jobs left and right. Families are strongly affected and have to figure out a way to make things work quick. Being laid off or suddenly becoming unemployed is a very difficult thing to deal with. When there is a routine in place and consistency is at the core, losing a job can turn things upside down. Construction companies, technology companies, and even some financial institutions are just a few of the businesses taking unemployment hits. Given the economy, the cost of child care, and the cost of living, it is sometimes easier to just leave one parent at home while the other one works.
In some situations, people choose. When unemployment hits, the choice is kind if made for you. A lot of couples decide it is easier to have the women work while the men stay home. On the flip side, some men choose to leave their jobs. Once a person becomes unfulfilled with their profession, it’s usually time to move on to something else. If two people can agree, he can stay home and work on other endeavors while taking care of the babies. This situation is a little different and creates a different scenario.
When men choose to stay home and work, the mindset is different. They are ready and willing to accept the many changes that come with being a SAHD. Some men who plan to stay home have tried to cover all bases. They have money saved and usually a plan in place to embark on a career-changing venture or something. The transition from working man to stay-at-home dad is not so easy when men get laid off.
Not every man is designed to be a stay at home dad. Being laid off does a lot to the ego. Pride gets stepped on and feelings of insecurity can take over. Men have a history of being the provider in the household. Some men take this responsibility very seriously and not being able to do so can cause a lot of feelings to emerge. Having to cook, clean, and take care of a child full time is exhausting and believe it or not, some dads say it is harder than an actual job. Some men feel weak, inadequate, and extremely guilty once they become stay at home dads. They feel like they are dependent on their wives for everything and some people can’t handle that. Pride is hard to set aside and if it doesn’t settle itself, it can get in the way.
What a lot of people don’t realize is that being a stay at home dad is important. Childcare is hella-expensive and having one parent stay home full time saves money. The dads get to see what it’s like to be the mama and what the workload is all about. Some men appreciate their wives more once they experience what it is to be in her shoes. The playing field is leveled and some marriages become stronger. Don’t get it twisted, some men never conform to the whole stay at home situation and it is a disaster. For some, their “manly” ways don’t ever allow them to fully get into the role as a stay at home dad. Their manhood is challenged with the idea of a woman being the breadwinner and taking care of the family.
The role of a stay at home dad is important. Their wife couldn’t fully engage herself in her work if it weren’t for him being home to take care of the child. There is a calm that comes from a child being with their parent and not an outside person. The bond between a father and child is definitely different from that of its mother. Whether it’s the result of a layoff or a decision to leave the workplace, having dad at home brings a different dynamic to a household. Having nannies and daycare for childcare services is a big help but there is nothing like a parent being home to take care of a child.

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