The 6 Essentials On Being A Stay At Home Parent: Who, What, When, Where, Why and How

Monday, October 8, 2012
A typical conversation of parents at home:
Person X: So what do you do for a living? Parent at home: I am with my children, I do what I love all day long and I'm happy. Person X: Oh, uh, your work? (Implying that we are defined by our role, our work, when it's just a label, a role and we are more than that.) Parent at home: Uh, I'm a family manager (hey it's nice said like that!)... Person X: (Question marks in the eyes.) Parent at home:... a parent at home, I stay home to raise my children. Possible answers: Person X: ''A what? (You repeat) What's that? '' ''(...). (Questions himself, tells himself it must be because you're mormon(my note: no offense!) or have no money. Take pity on you, will not discuss the subject anymore...) The weather's nice eh!'' ''You have to be busy with your children... but what do you do all day? '' ''Are you bored being home all the time?'' ''When will you return to work? '' ''Oh lucky you! You got time, you're home!'' Parent at home: ''(Feels obliged to detail his life.) It's by choice, yes it's fun, yes it is work, no I do not think of returning to work, we're not always at home, I've got as much time as you in a day one we just have to manage it well! (Would like others to be happy for him and that they see it's great most of the time: there is no set schedule, you can enjoy the nice weather, you're there for your child, it is natural, yes you can be accomplished in this role, etc.).''

It's really after making the choice to stay at home that we realize the prejudices or lack of information on this function in our society. Yet it is the most practised job through time and it is still important around the globe! Fortunately, this role can really make us happy and we can stop these questions, both in the minds of others than in ours with those that present themselves which make us doubt that this is the right choice, by passing the information on what is actually being a parent at home.
A tour on being a blissful parent at home...
Parents at home nowadays are those of a new lifestyle. Through time, typically at least one parent would care for children at home, at least until they entered school when it existed. The baby boomers saw women leave the house but often after being housewives, when children are older. In our days, stay at home parents of generations X and Y are not so numerous, but they do it by choice, measuring the benefits of doing so. They are mostly mothers, but also fathers, about 100,000 in Canada who like to combine this role with a work from home and are equally competent (as related in an article by Jean-Franois Gazaille). Parents who decide to stay at home put on hold their careers, or do it part time from home spending most of their time with their children. In short, it is an alternative to the hectic life of two parents working away from home, a chosen way of life, and it is a return to cohesive and natural values that were forgotten by an individualistic and materialistic society.
We could advance that more and more of the new parents of Generation Y, born in about 1980 to 1995, will choose to stay home because for them work is not the most important, even if the influence of the family has diminished in favour of peers, and they seek an alternative to flourish, take care of their children and have a better quality of life:
Unlike their parents, young people of Generation Y do not put work first. They refuse to work during holidays and weekends (except student employment) and want time off to decompress, because the mental and physical health appears to be their priority. They seek a better quality of life, balancing work and personal interest. (French Wikipedia, Generation Y).
You are now at stay at home mom or dad, you have many varied tasks. Being a parent at home is like running a small business with love. From pregnancy to support throughout the life of the child, the parent at home juggles with giving love and attention to the whole family, education and discipline, needs, inventory management such as food, clothing and necessary activities, being a life coach, being available almost 24 hours on 24, 7 / 7. Yes, sometimes it's demanding, but yes you can also take it easy at times. Everything depends on your one income salary, the quality of your management, your choices and your attitude in life.

It is often devalued when it should be seen as a profession, it is calculated that a parent working at home should have a salary of about 115 000 (! It is important to make it recognized better. On recognition of parents at home nowadays, even if we see the benefits of being a parent at home, people who do may be stigmatized and devalued. Their pillar role in society does not seem to be taking seriously, because in our industrialized societies people are judged by the revenue they make and social programs do not particularly benefit them. For example, in Quebec we could pay them the amount that is given to those who place their child in daycare. The political party ADQ wants to establish a salary for the parent at home, but it's not done yet. It is therefore advantageous to publish information on the benefits for all for a parent to stay at home, break down prejudices and join together to have a good social recognition:
- Is it unrealistic to think that one day, stay at home fathers could form a strong network capable of forming a lobby to influence policies of governments and family companies? - As I reported in my book, most fathers I interviewed argue that they have never experienced job any harder than being a parent. Therefore, men come to see how parental work, though vital, is socially devalued. They add their voices to those women who, for generations, claimed the valuation of unpaid work. (Sociologist, author of Do Men Mother?, Andrea Doucet, interviewed by Jean-Franois Gazaille)
You can prepare to stay at home before having children up to stay home for the rest of your life if it suits you well. For example, we bought our house so one of us would stay home (me, ye!), on a calculation of a single parent working. We were sure to live well on one income. If you want to be a parent at home, you can also put the salary for the parent who will stay at home aside in a savings account, it will be both a financial cushion and a way to see if your lifestyle must be adjusted. Then you'll see it's relatively easy with willingness and preparedness to take the plunge!
Given that the quality of life seems to always improve and that the planet in general improves their living conditions, one might think that being a parent at home will remain an important role for such benefits as flexible hours, less fatigue among parents, and close parental presence for children.
It is called ''stay at home parent'', but really a better term would be ''parent with his child'' because this role has the ability to be mobile. Being less taken by work you can travel more if desired and have time to prepare it. There are plenty of stories of parents who have toured the world with their children, including sailing. They are truly inspirational, also it is one of our personal projects to travel when my kids are older. They may be schooled on the road, and they learn a lot from this experience.
The activities are not confined at home, in general. With time but no fixed plans, parent and child ''at home'' explore the surroundings, are present in the communities, activities and committees, and interact with society in general, for children not only with their peers. Still, the residence is the nest where the basic material is and is generally well organized so the parent at home can make their tasks with her child nearby, or sets activity periods together.
In industrialized societies, there is a choice between living as a tenant or owner. Parents at home who have restricted expenses often opt for an apartment, because the cost may seem lower. One can also stay in town and get rid of the car and its costs. But staying in a condo or house has its advantages, although some costs, because the amount given on the mortgage is a capital. To reduce expenses, at-home parents can buy a house in the regions because the costs are lower. Another advantage of staying there is that communities have greater solidarity values and there can be a good local support network (in addition to the non-local stay at home parents communities on the web that make it easy to stay connected to each other). Besides the regions repopulate today. Whatever the choice made, it reflects the values and needs of the family in question.
It is personal to each family who chooses this lifestyle, but here are some advantages and benefits: - More time with good management of it; - A return to family values that have been proven; - Possibility of a better attachment link child-parent, which is essential for the proper development of the child, and a close relationship that can continue for all of your lives, because the link has been fed and not remote. - An opportunity to fully meet all the needs of the family, be it those of the child, partner and yourself. - Possibility of flexible hours and accomplishment for the parent and the child; - More happiness! Indeed, a study by Wilcox and Nock demonstrated that when the mother stays at home (but it might as well be the father) the family is happier with fewer hours of work for each and not spending money to work, even if the parent who stays at home does not have a''career''; - The opportunity to be the educator, the main influence for his child and share all stages of life and magical moments with him. - The possibility of raising a citizen who has good values, solidarity, and accomplished being helped to follow his path. - An increase to the overall quality of life.
Firstly, for those who are on the labour market, for one parent to be at home you must leave work to care for your child. You can do this even before pregnancy, but for most it will be during pregnancy or childbirth. If we plan to stay home, we can arrange the details to be able to do it before, adjust our standard of living on the future income and even take advance to start a part-time business or project that will be paying, ideally from house.
Once home, you start more specific family managing and it is good to continue to have a schedule for your tasks, even if it is super flexible, for not to get caught in a routine of ''laziness''- it's understood that just taking care of your child is not lazy but you must pay special attention to not forget the other tasks and needs that you must attain to. It is also important to stay connected with others such as parents at home, for example, be accomplished, and take care of your wellbeing.
Regarding what to do in particular, the choice is left free to each family, who are the best judges. It is even possible to send your child to daycare part time for socializing if that's what he wants and give you more time to relax or do a project. My only advice is that you must have fun at home, it is important. For some it is natural - the freedom from work, the joy of their child, the little moments of happiness are easy to see and enjoy. For others less used to it, do things such as going outside for some fresh air and taking vitamin D in the sun, eating pizza for lunch and try out the games your children do for example, you might be surprised how fun there is in there! I've just been climbing with mine this morning and I rediscovered how much fun it is. Being at home is to enjoy the magical moments of life, so write them, enjoy them thoroughly - you will realize the happiness in your life and be proud of what you do.
In closing I applaud all parents who decide to stay at home. First, you do what has the potential to be best for your entire family, including you because you can really thrive at home. Give it a try to see, but beware, trying this lifestyle is adopting it. And it is guaranteed that you will not regret having lived all those moments of tenderness, surprises, and of support when your child had difficulties, even if you later decide to return to working away from home, because you were there for your child during important years of his life and you did all you could to give him the best.
Be proud of your choice of being a parent at home!
Oh, and don't forget to pass this article to people in your surrounding, who will know more about it... Also, who knows, there may someone looking for information to be one of the blissful stay at home parents that you could connect with.