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Childcare or let dh look after her when I go back to work?

(38 Posts)
rockdoctor Wed 06-Aug-08 12:56:05

I am considering going back to work in September. Originally planned to take a year off but dh was made redundant at the end of last year and the money is running out. I think I will have the option of full time or part time and at this stage really need to go full time for the income. I am interested to hear peoples' experiences of having dh stay at home looking after the baby while I go to work? Any supportive websites for stay at home dads? I would consider paying for childcare longer term but at this stage our financial situation means it makes more sense for dad to stay at home.

CountessDracula Wed 06-Aug-08 12:57:26

What does he think?

I can't think of any reason why he shouldn't - why pay for childcare if one partner isn't working?

Maybe some part time to give him a break!

Kewcumber Wed 06-Aug-08 12:58:25

agree with CD - how does he feel about it - if he's fine why not try it?

moondog Wed 06-Aug-08 12:58:53

Yes. Will be good for everyone.

Anna8888 Wed 06-Aug-08 12:59:03

How will he look for a new job if he is looking after the baby/house full-time?

I ask this question because one of my first cousins has been in this position recently. Fortunately both grandmothers lent a hand with emergency childcare when he had interviews etc. But it wasn't at all easy.

CountessDracula Wed 06-Aug-08 12:59:31

yo moondog
are you in B??

moondog Wed 06-Aug-08 13:00:31

Hi CD.
Yes I am, here in Dhaka.
About to go for pre dinner stroll in park.

cornflakegirl Wed 06-Aug-08 13:04:42

Hi rockdoctor. My DH is a SAHD for our 3yo DS, because he didn't want to keep doing the job he was doing, and I enjoyed my job. He's been at home full time since DS was 6 months. He hasn't been looking for work, but is planning to start getting some work experience in a new field once DS starts (free) preschool in September.

DH has logged in to the homedad website a couple of times, but it wasn't really his thing.

How does your DH feel about being a SAHD?

MatNanPlus Wed 06-Aug-08 13:09:40

stayathomedads

homedad

dad page

dadathome

These seem like good sites.

seeker Wed 06-Aug-08 13:09:56

[baffled emoticon] Why pay for childcare if dh is at home?

ruddynorah Wed 06-Aug-08 13:11:45

dh looks after dd when i'm at work. and i look after dd when he's at work. he works days, i work evenings. works really well.

OrmIrian Wed 06-Aug-08 13:13:31

Yes I'm a bit baffled too seeker. It seems obvious. If and when he finds another job he can sort the childcare then.

findtheriver Wed 06-Aug-08 13:16:06

Definitely have DH look after your child while he's not working! Seems a bit strange (not to mention a luxury) to have one parent at home and still use paid care. But it makes sense to look at childcare options for the longer term, as you imply that the plan is for you both to work.

Laugs Wed 06-Aug-08 13:17:07

DP was a SAHD for 8 months (DD 10-18 months) and we all found it a very positive experience.

I was happier working knowing that DD was being cared for by someone who loved her, rather than someone who (as good as they might be at their job) didn't.

I watched them bonding over the months which was very touching as long as you learn not to be jealous. Although he's aback at work now, they still have a very good relationship and I think he's more hands-on than other dads. (though, not as much as I'd like)

DP loved it. Had his up and down days of course, like we all do, but did not want to go back to work and misses it still.

Although currently DP works full time and I am SAHM with a bit of freelance, I think we'd both be happier working part-time and this is what we're aiming for in the long run.

Personally, I think all men that can do it should do, and since your DP is at home anyway, it would be mad not to even try it.

Gumbo Wed 06-Aug-08 13:27:42

DH is a SAHD and both him and DS have flourished in this arrangement.

However, I would have to stress here that we CHOSE that arrangement - ie. DH quit a good job to become a SAHD and I went back to work when DS was 4.5 months old. I wanted to point this out because yes, there are a couple of sites for SAHDs, but DH has found that the few times he's met up with any of them he gets the feeling that most of them are pretty down/gloomy about life - and it seems to be mainly the ones who were 'forced' into being SAHDs (due to redundancy etc). The SAHDs we've met who love their 'job' tend to be people who are there by choice.

So I'd ask the same question as the other posters - does he WANT to do it? If so, he will probably have a whale of a time and enjoy it; if not, he may well resent being in that position.

Good luck with whatever you choose - it's important that both of you are happy with your decision.

cornflakegirl Wed 06-Aug-08 13:49:04

Stereotyping somewhat here, but I think that DH being a SAHD has been great for both of our relationships with DS. When DS was tiny, and I was at home with him, I'd have to coerce DH into spending time with him when he got home (to be fair, tiny babies are dull ;) ). When we swapped roles, I was really keen to spend time with DS when I got home - and still am. Those couple of hours before bed are our time. I'll also quite often do stuff with just DS at the weekend, while DH stays at home to do whatever he wants.

I'm not saying that there aren't dads who do the same as me - but I don't think DH would necessarily be like that if I was the one staying at home.

Cappuccino Wed 06-Aug-08 13:52:02

Anna why would he be looking for work if he was a SAHD?

cornflakegirl Wed 06-Aug-08 13:55:10

Also - DH was "forced" (obv not literally) into being a SAHD, because he hated his job. Sometimes he's down about being at home (he's not very imaginative about getting out the house), but he does enjoy a lot of stuff about it. Eg, until recently DS napped 2 hours a day - so plenty of time for computer games!

Laugs Wed 06-Aug-08 14:21:46

Despite all the positives, I do think it's harder for men to meet other parents socially.

At baby/ toddler groups it will still be nearly all women and him. My DP always found it awkward (and never did it) to ask another mother for coffee after a group in case she thought it was a come on. Depends what your DP is like really, but it's only fair to warn him he might be lonely.

bossykate Wed 06-Aug-08 14:26:03

do consider the fact that if he is a sahd and you go to work f/t - in the event of a split he would be likely to get the kids. that would put the kibosh on it from my pov.

findtheriver Wed 06-Aug-08 14:27:50

What a strange reason to not be happy about it bossykate. Is the father any less a parent than the mother??

cornflakegirl Wed 06-Aug-08 14:40:38

Agree with Laugs - DH does find the social side harder. We're fortunate that one of our (female) friends works part-time and has a daughter of a similar age to DS, so they spend quite a lot of time together. There are also another couple of DS's friends where he's got to know the mother well enough to invite them to play. But they were people I knew too, and it took probably 18 months to happen.

(I don't think bossykate's point is particularly strange. It's not an overriding factor for me (obv), but it does make me a bit upset if I think about it too hard...)

rockdoctor Wed 06-Aug-08 16:27:41

Thanks for all your comments, it's given us a few things to think about. I can't say that dh would choose to be a SAHD given other options, and the social side is going to be really difficult for him.

Full time childcare really isn't an option at this stage. As someone mentioned, I think the ideal for us would be both working part time but can't see that happening for a while. Also good point about how is he going to look for work at the same time as being a sahd - before dd came along I think we both had visions of happily working from home while she slept peacefully in a moses basket next to the desk.... hmm

Laugs Thu 07-Aug-08 07:58:43

I don't think that looking for work will be too much of a problem while minding DD. It sounds like your daughter is still quite young, so she will be having regular naps.

Are you thinking of it just for the interim period before DH finds work, or as a long-term idea? If it is only interim he'll have more of a social life if DD is around than if she's at nursery, plus less pressure to find a job immediately in order to make paying for her nursery worthwhile.

Oblomov Thu 07-Aug-08 08:19:53

Depends how your dh feels about it.
Just see how it goes. In a loving way tell him, he must keep you informed as to how he was doing.
It also depends on his job market. I work in accounts and could get a job tomorrow. Dh works as Ops Manager, quite specialised. His market is much slower, time to arrange convienient interview etc. With me, I would need to have someone to call upon to go to interview today, and start work tomorrow.
In the meantime, you can make sure you have investigated nurseries/Cm, and have in place, hopefully, that they could take dd, at short notice.
And just keep reviewing situation with dh, to see what other minor adjustments need to mabe made, as you go along.

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