The transition to a stay at home parent can be a challenge, as it is much different than what you have been used to. However, there are a few things that can make the process easier.Whether you are leaving your job, or just starting out as a stay at home parent, these four tips will help smooth the transition. Click To Tweet
Don’t Neglect Your Finances
Becoming a stay-at-home parent may mean your household income decreases, even if you find some part-time work on the side. To combat this, look for ways of reducing your monthly expenses, so your budget still works.
One way of doing this is to refinance current student loans to get a lower payment each month. You can take advantage of Earnest student loan refinancing when going this route.
Understand What It is Like
If you are starting full-time work, you will get a handbook that explains everything you need to know, but the same is not true of parenting. You will be around your kids much of the day, and it can be hard to adjust to this.
You might not be used to spending this much time with them, so know what to expect. There will be demands on your time, but the stress and needs will differ. It is impossible to predict what each day will hold, but being prepared now will help you transition to a stay-at-home parent better.
Don’t Neglect Friendships
One of the hardest things about the transition to a stay at home parent is saying goodbye to your workplace friends. But just because you are leaving does not mean you need to sever these ties completely.
Try staying in touch, including texting them, meeting up for lunch, and keeping in contact through social media. Having friendships can help you avoid isolation, and it also helps with networking if you need to work in the future.
It would help if you also tried making new friendships as soon as possible. Other stay-at-home parents also want friendships with other parents, so make a point of looking for them. They can offer support, and they may have valuable information.
Finding hobbies to destress and relax can benefit you twofold. First, you can take the time you need to step outside your new role and focus on things that bring you joy other than your children. Second, hobbies are an excellent opportunity to make new friends who share your same interests.
Get the Support You Need When You Make the Transition to a Stay at Home Parent
For many couples, both partners working full-time jobs is the norm. But when one partner transition to a stay at home parent, it can be a big adjustment for the whole family.
You may have worked with your significant other to tag team responsibility when you worked your job, so don’t let that change, even if you are no longer employed. Your significant other can help you with laundry, house cleaning, meal preparation, and other duties.
Have an honest conversation with them about how you expect your roles to change. Remember, just because you no longer have a full-time job does not mean you are not providing value.
You may want to rely on other outside support services as well, such as childcare. There are many options, whether it is a co-op, traditional childcare, or an in-home mother’s assistant. Many have flexible scheduling, so you don’t have to worry about being locked into specific times.
Having someone available to watch your kids can be invaluable when it comes to getting around town, taking some time for yourself, or just getting work done. It also gives you a break, so you are less likely to experience burnout, which can prevent you from caring for your family.
Your tips are all good. My situation was the opposite – my husband lost his job when my daughter was 2, he stayed at home and I went back to work. That was VERY hard for me….my husband considered it “babysitting” rather than parenting. It caused a lot of problems for the 3 of us.
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I’m sorry. When it’s your own child, it’s parenting; when it’s someone else’s, it is babysitting. Men forget that a lot it seems.
These are great tips. It can’t be easy. I was always a stay-at-home mom, so the only transitioning was from being a carefree teen, to being married and being a mom.
This is great advice, thank you so much for sharing! It is definitely a big change to go from working all of the time to be at home all of the time. I have been doing it for 10 years now and I am still not fully used to it. It can be difficult at times, but also very rewarding.
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You should be a pro stay-at-home parent by now. We all have those hard days, though and sometimes need a breather.