[twitter]As we arrived home last night, I remarked again to my wife about our neighbors three doors down. Frank was in the driveway cleaning the trailer and boat, as their quad and gear spilled out of the garage. Last summer they had a hot tub delivered to the backyard and they redid their basement.
“She’s a stay-at-home mom, too” my wife remarked with a twinge of envy at their excess.
We can’t afford to have a hot tub, boat, and camping trailer. Our kitchen needs new counters, and flooring that we’ve been putting off for a year. We can’t afford those and we can’t afford to have my wife stay-at-home. Even though 1/2 of her take home pay goes towards paying for a Nanny, it’s the other half that we need to get over the hump in our family budget.
We did a mental rundown of our friends. Everyone else who has kids has one stay at home parent. Some are looking to get back into the workforce, some have freelance jobs where they work from home, but all of them have an at-home parent. How do they afford that?
During the recent struggle when we were bouncing between Nannies, I did the math and it just didn’t add up. Even after selling a car, me taking the bus, and taking kids out of their french immersion pre-school, we’d still be in a negative income position without my wife’s paycheque.
“I believe that all children deserve to have an at-home parent. Its a shame that our society has rendered this nearly impossible for most families, and at the same time know that some people actually WANT to keep working outside the home full-time and still have kids that they shove off to daycare or into the hands of a nanny… which I don’t get.
My wife and I didn’t rush into things… we were together for 12 years and married for 10 before having kids.
James is right, but …
Image via Josette