Monday, November 16, 2009
One of our local television stations ran a segment on stay-at-home dads last night (I missed it, but heard about it through the dad's email discussion group). The printed article focuses on how the recession and lay-offs have found more dads becoming the primary caregiver for families again (apparently there was a boom in 1991). While there is truth to the story, we shouldn't all be lumped into being in our position because we can't find work. We're not all unemployed. We're definitely not lazy. Our local area SAHD's directory shows that a big chunk of the men in the group are well-educated--many have doctorates. And while many of us may have ended up in our position because we were laid off or we couldn't find work, we're still doing this role because we chose to--and we like to do it. Many have set aside their careers to be with their children because that's the bigger priority to them. It's nice that the article gives us recognition--and doesn't just patronize us, giving us credit for being man enough to do "women's work." It's nice that they point out that it's a difficult decision for many dads to go back to work. I know it's seldom an easy decision for anyone. And yes, families can manage on one income. It takes some sacrifice in many instances, but it's doable. And very rewarding.