Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

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whattodonext
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Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by whattodonext » Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:39 pm

It's always nice to use this forum to gain a better perspective, which I could use right now.

I have a good job. It's a stable job that pays well (read: Federal govt). I work 3 days a week and have been doing this for over 8 years. I've been with the gov't for a little over 10 years. I work in the office 3 days, and on the days that I'm off, I'm really off. I don't get any emails/calls from work. I also carry our health insurance and will receive a pension. I make around $80k part-time. I enjoy working and I like my job.

My husband also has a good job. His job is becoming more and more demanding as he climbs the corporate ladder. With the demands has also come a significant increase in pay. If I quit, we would have to switch to his health insurance which is a bit more costly than mine (roughly $1k/month more).

We are considering having me quit my job altogether to be home with the kids full-time. I would be doing this to improve our quality of life as a family. More meal planning, prepping, working on homework, taking kids to activities, volunteering more in their school, etc. Kids ages are 8, 6, 1.

Am I crazy? Would I have major regrets? Have you done this and have any advice for me?

Trader Joe
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Trader Joe » Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:53 pm

If I were you, yes, I would quit.

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Watty
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Watty » Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:55 pm

whattodonext wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:39 pm
Am I crazy? Would I have major regrets? Have you done this and have any advice for me?
As long as the numbers work for your expenses there is no one right answer.

One thing that would be good to do would be to make a spreadsheet and a dummy tax return to see the actual impact would be when you factor in all the things like taxes, daycare, commuting costs etc. It may not be as much as you might think.

One thing to keep in mind is that there are all sorts of daycare and after school care options for your kids when they are young. As they get older finding supervision for older kids gets a lot harder especially in the summers and over school holidays.

You would be depending a lot more on your husband's income so you should also make sure that there is ample life and disability insurance.

The big pitfall is if you are a stay at home parent for ten years then need or want to get back into your current career path that can be very difficult and many women run into trouble after a divorce or if their husband cannot work for some reason.

ThankYouJack
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by ThankYouJack » Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:57 pm

How much do you spend a year and how much do you have saved? Since you enjoy your job and only work part-time, have you considered him quitting assuming you can swing it financially?

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by BionicBillWalsh » Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:59 pm

Hmmm. Interesting question.

Sounds like that financially, at this time that you don't need to work

But:
What if...your husband's health prevented him from working...or worse?
What if...he lost his job?
What if...you went through a divorce?

Both of those things are probably not going to happen. But what if they did?

Could you continue to support your family?
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Dottie57 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:01 pm

I see it both ways. You will lose substantial income from your job. Also will you lose your pension? 12k in added costs too. Will your husband have less incentive to strive for family time if he knows you are at home full time?

On the plus side, these years at home could be your best years. Only you will know.

P.s. good questions from poster above.

sambb
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by sambb » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:02 pm

i would not quit

mortfree
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by mortfree » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:04 pm

Are you early 30’s?

You work 3 out of 7 days and make 80k.

That’s a tough call.

Any flexibility in your husbands schedule on the 3 days you work?

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whattodonext
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by whattodonext » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:08 pm

Dottie57 wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:01 pm
I see it both ways. You will lose substantial income from your job. Also will you lose your pension? 12k in added costs too. Will your husband have less incentive to strive for family time if he knows you are at home full time?

On the plus side, these years at home could be your best years. Only you will know.

P.s. good questions from poster above.
I will receive a reduced pension if I leave before Minimum Retirement Age (57). Currently, I"ll get roughly $600/month at age 62 if I were to quit now.

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whattodonext
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by whattodonext » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:10 pm

mortfree wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:04 pm
Are you early 30’s?

You work 3 out of 7 days and make 80k.

That’s a tough call.

Any flexibility in your husbands schedule on the 3 days you work?
No flexibility in his schedule, although he does have the ability to work from home just not on any consistent basis. I'm 35 and my husband is 36.

beernutz
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by beernutz » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:12 pm

I'll add my perspective though we're in different situations.

My wife and I both worked full time with nearly equal salaries until our oldest of two was starting middle school. DW then went part time (half days five days a week) for about the next 10 years until both kids were out of high school and then she resumed full time until taking a buyout a year ago.

She made about the same salary as you during her part time years, earned a couple of small pensions and had great benefits including an employer-matched 401k and an EESOP.

The big difference though was she telecommuted the entire time (both full and part time) so she was in a home office working except for quarterly trips to corporate and maybe one or two other yearly trips.

Telecommuting isn't nirvana as there were still hurdles to overcome but it allowed her to stay in a job she knew and liked rather than quitting and trying to find something local at probably half her salary.

Quitting altogether, which we discussed before she went part time, would have she claimed driven her mad with boredom. Now she's in a different place and manages to stay very busy even with no kid activities at all.

So since you seem to be financially able to be a single earner family to me the big question is will you be happy not working?
Last edited by beernutz on Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Sandtrap
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Sandtrap » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:12 pm

whattodonext wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:39 pm
It's always nice to use this forum to gain a better perspective, which I could use right now.

I have a good job. It's a stable job that pays well (read: Federal govt). I work 3 days a week and have been doing this for over 8 years. I've been with the gov't for a little over 10 years. I work in the office 3 days, and on the days that I'm off, I'm really off. I don't get any emails/calls from work. I also carry our health insurance and will receive a pension. I make around $80k part-time. I enjoy working and I like my job.

My husband also has a good job. His job is becoming more and more demanding as he climbs the corporate ladder. With the demands has also come a significant increase in pay. If I quit, we would have to switch to his health insurance which is a bit more costly than mine (roughly $1k/month more).

We are considering having me quit my job altogether to be home with the kids full-time. I would be doing this to improve our quality of life as a family. More meal planning, prepping, working on homework, taking kids to activities, volunteering more in their school, etc. Kids ages are 8, 6, 1.

Am I crazy? Would I have major regrets? Have you done this and have any advice for me?
As long as the financial numbers work for you and family, and the missing income stream, and later retirement benefits, don't put undue strain on the family or yourself.

What a great decision and option to take.
1. Children 8,6,1. A perfect time to be with mom vs sitter, etc.
2. Spouse will notice the change immediately because life's focus' have changed.
3. Later, if needed or wanted, you can always resume work.
4. Great personal growth and health, time, finally, for yourself to pursue other things you love. Which helps #1-3.

IMHO: a win on a win on a win with zero losses.
The only question is. . . . how soon can you make this wonderful change. . . .

Congratulations!
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MillennialFinance19
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by MillennialFinance19 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:16 pm

As a fellow federal employee, I’m a no on this. You have a way better than average part time gig. It has a pension. It has great healthcare. Etc etc. I think once the 1 YO reaches school age, you’ll quickly be glad that you hadn’t done this.

With all that said, only you can know what the right move is.

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Kenkat » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:21 pm

No, you are not crazy. Many people make this decision. My wife quit her job when our youngest son was around 2 years old. It was a good decision for us but not without its trade offs. Money was less of course and this led us towards a different lifestyle than if we both kept working. We have been very fortunate and my income has grown and we have a good life overall. We live in a nice house, but we drive Hondas, Toyotas and Chevys, not BMWs and Mercedes. Our newest car is 6 years old. We don’t belong to “the club”. Our kids went to (good) public schools and State U. I know it’s been hard at times for my wife to be the mom and not have a career of her own. It becomes your identity. It’s not for everyone. If you see your job as just a job, it will be easier to quit than if you derive an identity from your career. Both types make the world go around and both are valid choices.

It’s also not a permanent choice but jumping back into the workforce would certainly be more challenging than if you stayed in your current position.

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Hug401k » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:23 pm

This is a tough crowd to ask. Whatever they did seems to be the only right answer.

I have been a work in the office Mom, a stay at home mom, a FT work from home mom. None of them are just right. For a few months, I had a 3 day a week schedule and I really enjoyed it. Some of your hardest decisions have been made. You've decided your husband's career is the priority. It sounds like you have enough money to live off of just his pay. Consider this, take a chunk of that money you are making and hire some help so that the 2 days you are home are 100% dedicated to kids and volunteering. You may find that all your time dedicated to meal planning and cleaning gets old fast and that you miss using your big words... so I hear :wink: . Also, dragging kids through the grocery store is not necessarily bonding good times for either of you. So take a chunk of your pay, hire someone to clean, come in and do laundry and pick up the house. Get groceries delivered. Leave the kids stuff to you and hire out as much as the other stuff as possible since you probably will make more working. Use the rest of the $ for the 401k and 529 plans.

One exception to all this.. if you childcare costs exceed your pay, it may be worth the time off for now.

BTW, you are not crazy. I think every exhausted mother asks themselves this all the time.

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by RevFran » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:28 pm

Do you enjoy the work? Would you miss the intellectual or social stimulation? In the federal system, would it be easy for you to go back to work (this job or another) if for whatever reason you needed to?

I do think it’s worth noting that you seem to have what many many mothers say they want but can’t find: professional (maybe even meaningful or sometimes enjoyable?), stable, well-payed p-t work. That doesn’t mean you have to stay, of course!

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by KlangFool » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:28 pm

OP,

The answer is no. You are quitting a job to spend 3 extra days at home. Based on your description of your husband's job, he may not last long. There are fewer spaces on the top of the ladder. As you climb up, you may get knock off. You are your husband's safety net. He may get paid well but he may have a limited career. He could make hay while the sun shines and take a break if necessary. Without your job, he can't do that.

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Normchad » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:32 pm

I do not envy the difficult decisions that working mothers must make. I’m a male, so I don’t really feel qualified here to be honest.

However, m y wife did quit her job when we had children, and was out of the work force for 12 years. There are a lot of great things about this, if the numbers work out. Raising a family is hard, really hard. And having two working parents doesn’t leave slack in the system for the unending parade of unexpected things. Working just makes it harder. Plus, for us, spending those years at home and really concentrating on child raising was so wonderful and personally fulfilling.

The downside of course is an immediate loss of income. But it also dramatically stunts your career to be out of the workforce for years. While the world is moving ahead, and others are advancing in their careers, you’re actually moving backwards. Rejoining the workforce at an older age, with an older set of work skills, and all your former colleagues are gone, is tough.

However, for us, the financial impact of her not working wasn’t that bad. Taxes would have taken a third of that income. Child care would have chewed up a lot for the first five years, then a lesser amount for K- 8 after school care, etc. probably would have consumed an entire car, etc.

Being at home time full time may help your husbands career, as he won’t be pulled away for sick kid days, etc. you might be a happier couple with the reduced stress, etc

If it was me, yes, I’d advise you to quit but this reflects my biases and past experiences, which are not universal or right for others.

It’s just a really tough decision to make.

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by ThankYouJack » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:40 pm

ThankYouJack wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:57 pm
How much do you spend a year and how much do you have saved? Since you enjoy your job and only work part-time, have you considered him quitting assuming you can swing it financially?
OP, I didn't mean to pry, but was in a similar situation. I have the part-time government job with lots of flexibility. Spouse was climbing the corporate ladder but it started getting stressful and she wanted to be more with the kids. We saved a lot and could swing things financially so she decided to stop work to spend more time with the kids. It's been fantastic having more time with the kids and also together. I believe it's made us closer and stronger as a family and we're only a few months in. We're especially looking forward to this summer traveling a bunch while the kids are off school.

So not a big deal, but if you're willing, I think providing more info about your expenses and savings would give people a better feel for your overall situation. Best of luck with whatever you decide!
Last edited by ThankYouJack on Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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wander
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by wander » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:42 pm

My sister-in-law is stay home mom taking care of the kids. The kids do not appreciate it and often ask "Mom, why are you not working?". Because their mom strictly tells them to finish homework and chores before playing. :D I think it's a win win for you to stay home and taking care of the kids.

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by RevFran » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:43 pm

Hug401k wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:23 pm
Consider this, take a chunk of that money you are making and hire some help so that the 2 days you are home are 100% dedicated to kids and volunteering. You may find that all your time dedicated to meal planning and cleaning gets old fast and that you miss using your big words... so I hear :wink: . Also, dragging kids through the grocery store is not necessarily bonding good times for either of you. So take a chunk of your pay, hire someone to clean, come in and do laundry and pick up the house. Get groceries delivered. Leave the kids stuff to you and hire out as much as the other stuff as possible since you probably will make more working. Use the rest of the $ for the 401k and 529 plans.
This sounds like a great suggestion!

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by bligh » Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:44 pm

whattodonext wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:39 pm
It's always nice to use this forum to gain a better perspective, which I could use right now.

I have a good job. It's a stable job that pays well (read: Federal govt). I work 3 days a week and have been doing this for over 8 years. I've been with the gov't for a little over 10 years. I work in the office 3 days, and on the days that I'm off, I'm really off. I don't get any emails/calls from work. I also carry our health insurance and will receive a pension. I make around $80k part-time. I enjoy working and I like my job.

Am I crazy? Would I have major regrets? Have you done this and have any advice for me?
Crazy? no. Major Regrets? Probably not.

But definitely a very tough call. Making $80K at a stale job, working just 3 days a week is a really great setup. Any chance you could go on extended leave? 6 months to a year? To spend more time with your littlest one, and to see how you adjust to being a stay at home parent? Perhaps work from home one day a week?

If you do not mind me asking, I would love to know what kind of job is it that you do? Asking for a friend. :D

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by HomerJ » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:07 pm

whattodonext wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:39 pm
It's always nice to use this forum to gain a better perspective, which I could use right now.

I have a good job. It's a stable job that pays well (read: Federal govt). I work 3 days a week and have been doing this for over 8 years. I've been with the gov't for a little over 10 years. I work in the office 3 days, and on the days that I'm off, I'm really off. I don't get any emails/calls from work. I also carry our health insurance and will receive a pension. I make around $80k part-time. I enjoy working and I like my job.

My husband also has a good job. His job is becoming more and more demanding as he climbs the corporate ladder. With the demands has also come a significant increase in pay. If I quit, we would have to switch to his health insurance which is a bit more costly than mine (roughly $1k/month more).

We are considering having me quit my job altogether to be home with the kids full-time. I would be doing this to improve our quality of life as a family. More meal planning, prepping, working on homework, taking kids to activities, volunteering more in their school, etc. Kids ages are 8, 6, 1.

Am I crazy? Would I have major regrets? Have you done this and have any advice for me?
You didn't show any numbers.

You make $80k... What does he make? $120k? $300k?

What are your expenses? If his salary is covering all your expenses now, then you guys must be saving a ton.

What about your pension? Govt pensions are pretty nice I hear. How much will this loss of pension and savings hurt your retirement plans?

Me, I think you have a perfect job... Only 3 days a week, and when you're off, you're completely off. I don't think you should quit that. That's a dream job. I think it's a great balance for you AND for your kids. They see you working, you're still with them a ton of the time, and you have the extra money to spend on them.

I wouldn't quit. I'd like to have your job. But that's just my opinion.
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HomerJ
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by HomerJ » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:09 pm

Sandtrap wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:12 pm
3. Later, if needed or wanted, you can always resume work.
This is not guaranteed. Especially not a 3-day a week job where no one calls you on the other days.
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Fletch » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:10 pm

My perspective: There is NOTHING more important than loving parents raising their children and teaching the family values that are important to the parents. That means if you can spend time with them showing you care, you value their activities by being there, you are there for the bumps and bruises of daily life, and you can still provide for their physical needs of food, shelter, and some fun social interaction - go for it. The memories and values you provide and teach to your children cannot be replaced by day care workers or baby sitters. My very best wishes for your family.

I'm somewhat biased on this topic as my wife only worked for a couple of years when our kids were pre-k age. My wife being there for them was truly a blessing that they remember fondly - they are now 46 and 50 and the relationships we had and have with them are quite strong. We have seen the results of having a full time mom, at least in our case (as contrasted to some of our friends who thought it was more important to have two incomes).
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by AerialWombat » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:18 pm

Do you have the type of personality that demands the mental stimulation, adult socialization, or authority figure recognition that comes from working a job?

These factors should not be overlooked. You’ve got a great gig, and while family time is important, so is your own mental health.

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HomerJ
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by HomerJ » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:18 pm

Fletch wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:10 pm
My perspective: There is NOTHING more important than loving parents raising their children and teaching the family values that are important to the parents. That means if you can spend time with them showing you care, you value their activities by being there, you are there for the bumps and bruises of daily life, and you can still provide for their physical needs of food, shelter, and some fun social interaction - go for it. The memories and values you provide and teach to your children cannot be replaced by day care workers or baby sitters. My very best wishes for your family.

I'm somewhat biased on this topic as my wife only worked for a couple of years when our kids were pre-k age. My wife being there for them was truly a blessing that they remember fondly - they are now 46 and 50 and the relationships we had and have with them are quite strong. We have seen the results of having a full time mom, at least in our case (as contrasted to some of our friends who thought it was more important to have two incomes).
What do you mean we? You were still working, so you couldn't possibly have had a strong relationship with your kids.

That's tongue-in-cheek, of course... I'm sure you DO have a strong relationship with your kids. Even while working full-time. So you know it's possible to work full-time and still have a strong relationship with one's kids.

And that goes for mothers too.

The OP has a pretty sweet situation. She's not working late, only 3 days a week. The two older kids are at school most of the day. The calculus changes a bit with the toddler. My wife stayed home for one kid during the toddler years, and worked during the day-care years for the other two.

All three turned out pretty well it seems.

Either choice is good.

There are not a lot of $80k jobs ($92k once you factor in health care) that give such nice work/life balance as this one... I'd keep it, but again that's just me.
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by holycow007 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:23 pm

Depends
If your husband is making a 1M a year and your expenses are low, then sure
If your husband is making 150K a year, then NO

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by willthrill81 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:25 pm

whattodonext wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:39 pm
We are considering having me quit my job altogether to be home with the kids full-time. I would be doing this to improve our quality of life as a family. More meal planning, prepping, working on homework, taking kids to activities, volunteering more in their school, etc. Kids ages are 8, 6, 1.

Am I crazy? Would I have major regrets? Have you done this and have any advice for me?
Which are you more likely to regret years down the road, earning less household income or not spending as much time with your kids as you want?

I haven't heard anyone late in life say that they wished that they had sacrificed time with their family in order to make more money.
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Sam1 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:26 pm

HomerJ wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:18 pm
Fletch wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:10 pm
My perspective: There is NOTHING more important than loving parents raising their children and teaching the family values that are important to the parents. That means if you can spend time with them showing you care, you value their activities by being there, you are there for the bumps and bruises of daily life, and you can still provide for their physical needs of food, shelter, and some fun social interaction - go for it. The memories and values you provide and teach to your children cannot be replaced by day care workers or baby sitters. My very best wishes for your family.

I'm somewhat biased on this topic as my wife only worked for a couple of years when our kids were pre-k age. My wife being there for them was truly a blessing that they remember fondly - they are now 46 and 50 and the relationships we had and have with them are quite strong. We have seen the results of having a full time mom, at least in our case (as contrasted to some of our friends who thought it was more important to have two incomes).
What do you mean we? You were still working, so you couldn't possibly have had a strong relationship with your kids.

That's tongue-in-cheek, of course... I'm sure you DO have a strong relationship with your kids. Even while working full-time. So you know it's possible to work full-time and still have a strong relationship with one's kids.

And that goes for mothers too.

The OP has a pretty sweet situation. She's not working late, only 3 days a week. The two older kids are at school most of the day. The calculus changes a bit with the toddler. My wife stayed home for one kid during the toddler years, and worked during the day-care years for the other two.

All three turned out pretty well it seems.

Either choice is good.

There are not a lot of $80k jobs ($92k once you factor in health care) that give such nice work/life balance as this one... I'd keep it, but again that's just me.
I agree with this. Great work life balance and good benefits. No way I’d give that up for 3 more days at home.

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by abuss368 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:27 pm

Sandtrap wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:12 pm
whattodonext wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:39 pm
It's always nice to use this forum to gain a better perspective, which I could use right now.

I have a good job. It's a stable job that pays well (read: Federal govt). I work 3 days a week and have been doing this for over 8 years. I've been with the gov't for a little over 10 years. I work in the office 3 days, and on the days that I'm off, I'm really off. I don't get any emails/calls from work. I also carry our health insurance and will receive a pension. I make around $80k part-time. I enjoy working and I like my job.

My husband also has a good job. His job is becoming more and more demanding as he climbs the corporate ladder. With the demands has also come a significant increase in pay. If I quit, we would have to switch to his health insurance which is a bit more costly than mine (roughly $1k/month more).

We are considering having me quit my job altogether to be home with the kids full-time. I would be doing this to improve our quality of life as a family. More meal planning, prepping, working on homework, taking kids to activities, volunteering more in their school, etc. Kids ages are 8, 6, 1.

Am I crazy? Would I have major regrets? Have you done this and have any advice for me?
As long as the financial numbers work for you and family, and the missing income stream, and later retirement benefits, don't put undue strain on the family or yourself.

What a great decision and option to take.
1. Children 8,6,1. A perfect time to be with mom vs sitter, etc.
2. Spouse will notice the change immediately because life's focus' have changed.
3. Later, if needed or wanted, you can always resume work.
4. Great personal growth and health, time, finally, for yourself to pursue other things you love. Which helps #1-3.

IMHO: a win on a win on a win with zero losses.
The only question is. . . . how soon can you make this wonderful change. . . .

Congratulations!
j :D
Well said Sandtrap!
John C. Bogle: Two Fund Portfolio - Total Stock & Total Bond - “Simplicity is the master key to financial success."

TallBoy29er
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by TallBoy29er » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:29 pm

Be careful of the "what if's" above. If we succumbed to them, we would be paralyzed by inaction in any direction, b/c there is always a hidden "what if" hiding and waiting to strike. That is a downside to this site sometimes.

My insights are from personal experience. My wife left the workforce for 8 years to stay home w/ our kids. Once the youngest got to kindergarten, she went back to work, and is doing exceptionally well, and loving it.

So, I will tell you that having one spouse at home full time was Awesome! Like, AWESOME. Mornings were serene. No more rushing around trying to get bottles, bags, etc., packed up. However, there was a downside. Sure, there's money, but life is bigger than that. For me, it was the pressure I put on myself being the sole provider to a family. So, my advice, to talk to your spouse, and make sure they are ok with being in this position. Don't just do it once. Do it repeatedly. You are a team, make sure you keep in touch with each others' concerns, stresses, and needs. You can do this, but it takes effort by both of you.

I am excited that you are getting to have these conversations. All the best to whatever direction you choose -

ThankYouJack
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by ThankYouJack » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:38 pm

TallBoy29er wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:29 pm
Be careful of the "what if's" above. If we succumbed to them, we would be paralyzed by inaction in any direction, b/c there is always a hidden "what if" hiding and waiting to strike. That is a downside to this site sometimes.
+1 I find a lot of advice too conservative / risk adverse for me personally. When the what-ifs come up on here, I tend to think what-if I die tomorrow - how do I want to live today.

CFM300
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by CFM300 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:39 pm

I would not quit. In your own words, you have a good job, enjoy working, and like your job.

You already have four days off per week. That's more than enough time to plan meals, prep, and spend quality time with your kids, two of whom by the way, are at school most of the day anyway.

In addition, keeping your job keeps you financially independent, which is always good if things awry in one way or another.
Last edited by CFM300 on Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

sd323232
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by sd323232 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:39 pm

Absolutely not.

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mrspock
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by mrspock » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:43 pm

3 days a week for 80k? No way I’d quit that (3 on 5 off is a sweet deal). Keep working and so you both can retire earlier.

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F150HD
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by F150HD » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:45 pm

3 days a week? I would not quit.

Elysium
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Elysium » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:49 pm

whattodonext wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:39 pm
It's always nice to use this forum to gain a better perspective, which I could use right now.

I have a good job. It's a stable job that pays well (read: Federal govt). I work 3 days a week and have been doing this for over 8 years. I've been with the gov't for a little over 10 years. I work in the office 3 days, and on the days that I'm off, I'm really off. I don't get any emails/calls from work. I also carry our health insurance and will receive a pension. I make around $80k part-time. I enjoy working and I like my job.

My husband also has a good job. His job is becoming more and more demanding as he climbs the corporate ladder. With the demands has also come a significant increase in pay. If I quit, we would have to switch to his health insurance which is a bit more costly than mine (roughly $1k/month more).

We are considering having me quit my job altogether to be home with the kids full-time. I would be doing this to improve our quality of life as a family. More meal planning, prepping, working on homework, taking kids to activities, volunteering more in their school, etc. Kids ages are 8, 6, 1.

Am I crazy? Would I have major regrets? Have you done this and have any advice for me?
How about this, get a good nanny / housekeeper / cook for those 3 days to take care of the things you need help with. You have remaining 4 days of the week. I am surprised no one so far suggested this idea. Keep the job, it's only 3 days a week. Even if the outside help cost 1/3rd of your salary it is still worth it, because you get to keep the pension benefit growing, healthcare same (don't forget Federal health plan goes beyond retirement), and you get to keep the job you like.

It may be hard to get a trusted housekeeper who does everything, but eventually you will find one. Since your husband's income is going up, you can easily afford it, plus you aren't losing your income too.
Last edited by Elysium on Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

EddyB
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by EddyB » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:49 pm

HomerJ wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:18 pm
Fletch wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:10 pm
My perspective: There is NOTHING more important than loving parents raising their children and teaching the family values that are important to the parents. That means if you can spend time with them showing you care, you value their activities by being there, you are there for the bumps and bruises of daily life, and you can still provide for their physical needs of food, shelter, and some fun social interaction - go for it. The memories and values you provide and teach to your children cannot be replaced by day care workers or baby sitters. My very best wishes for your family.

I'm somewhat biased on this topic as my wife only worked for a couple of years when our kids were pre-k age. My wife being there for them was truly a blessing that they remember fondly - they are now 46 and 50 and the relationships we had and have with them are quite strong. We have seen the results of having a full time mom, at least in our case (as contrasted to some of our friends who thought it was more important to have two incomes).
What do you mean we? You were still working, so you couldn't possibly have had a strong relationship with your kids.

That's tongue-in-cheek, of course... I'm sure you DO have a strong relationship with your kids. Even while working full-time. So you know it's possible to work full-time and still have a strong relationship with one's kids.

And that goes for mothers too.

The OP has a pretty sweet situation. She's not working late, only 3 days a week. The two older kids are at school most of the day. The calculus changes a bit with the toddler. My wife stayed home for one kid during the toddler years, and worked during the day-care years for the other two.

All three turned out pretty well it seems.

Either choice is good.

There are not a lot of $80k jobs ($92k once you factor in health care) that give such nice work/life balance as this one... I'd keep it, but again that's just me.
I agree that compared to many people, the OP has a good situation, but I also think that my spouse staying home greatly facilitates not only her relationship with our kids, but mine too. I’m not suggesting that dual-working couples can’t have great relationships with their kids, of course, but I think there’s potential relationship and family value for both parents and the kids in freeing up more of one parent’s time.

OnTrack2020
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by OnTrack2020 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:02 pm

I left the workforce over two decades ago to be a stay-at-home parent. And I've never returned. Over the years, I've thought about returning to work occasionally--for about 30 seconds, but there is always something that needs to be done at home, and now I'm basically retirement age. For us, me leaving the workforce just really freed things up--we didn't have daycare, meals were made at home, yard maintenance, running errands, etc. were done during the day and it was just all around better than rushing here and there and everywhere.

However, I never had a part-time, $80k a year job in my 30s. That would be hard to give up especially as you really like your job, and it offers benefits. There are some things you could do---limit the kids' activities, and, quite frankly, I would skip on the volunteering at school. It just doesn't make that big of a difference in the long run. Order groceries on-line; it's so much easier to pick them up than to walk through a large store to pick them up.

Sam1
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Sam1 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:06 pm

OnTrack2020 wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:02 pm
I left the workforce over two decades ago to be a stay-at-home parent. And I've never returned. Over the years, I've thought about returning to work occasionally--for about 30 seconds, but there is always something that needs to be done at home, and now I'm basically retirement age. For us, me leaving the workforce just really freed things up--we didn't have daycare, meals were made at home, yard maintenance, running errands, etc. were done during the day and it was just all around better than rushing here and there and everywhere.

However, I never had a part-time, $80k a year job in my 30s. That would be hard to give up especially as you really like your job, and it offers benefits. There are some things you could do---limit the kids' activities, and, quite frankly, I would skip on the volunteering at school. It just doesn't make that big of a difference in the long run. Order groceries on-line; it's so much easier to pick them up than to walk through a large store to pick them up.
Good advice about limiting activities and volunteer work!

I also add you should put the older kids to work at home if they aren’t already. The kids should be expected to help clean the house,’prepare meals, etc. they should take responsibility in running the household.

Sam1
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Sam1 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:08 pm

EddyB wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:49 pm
HomerJ wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:18 pm
Fletch wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:10 pm
My perspective: There is NOTHING more important than loving parents raising their children and teaching the family values that are important to the parents. That means if you can spend time with them showing you care, you value their activities by being there, you are there for the bumps and bruises of daily life, and you can still provide for their physical needs of food, shelter, and some fun social interaction - go for it. The memories and values you provide and teach to your children cannot be replaced by day care workers or baby sitters. My very best wishes for your family.

I'm somewhat biased on this topic as my wife only worked for a couple of years when our kids were pre-k age. My wife being there for them was truly a blessing that they remember fondly - they are now 46 and 50 and the relationships we had and have with them are quite strong. We have seen the results of having a full time mom, at least in our case (as contrasted to some of our friends who thought it was more important to have two incomes).
What do you mean we? You were still working, so you couldn't possibly have had a strong relationship with your kids.

That's tongue-in-cheek, of course... I'm sure you DO have a strong relationship with your kids. Even while working full-time. So you know it's possible to work full-time and still have a strong relationship with one's kids.

And that goes for mothers too.

The OP has a pretty sweet situation. She's not working late, only 3 days a week. The two older kids are at school most of the day. The calculus changes a bit with the toddler. My wife stayed home for one kid during the toddler years, and worked during the day-care years for the other two.

All three turned out pretty well it seems.

Either choice is good.

There are not a lot of $80k jobs ($92k once you factor in health care) that give such nice work/life balance as this one... I'd keep it, but again that's just me.
I agree that compared to many people, the OP has a good situation, but I also think that my spouse staying home greatly facilitates not only her relationship with our kids, but mine too. I’m not suggesting that dual-working couples can’t have great relationships with their kids, of course, but I think there’s potential relationship and family value for both parents and the kids in freeing up more of one parent’s time.
True. But it’s also beneficial for kids to grow up in a home where parents are equals. When your job isn’t paid then you aren’t an equal. You’re a dependent really.

Sam1
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Sam1 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:10 pm

The point made above about federal insurance is not to be overlooked! Does your spouse know about this?

The ability to buy federal insurance at age (54?) is a huge benefit and could be a big deal for your spouse if he ever wants to strike out on his own or retire early. Just go and read what some people pay for health insurance!

Make sure he is aware of this and what you’ll enjoy giving up. I know a few federal employees continuing to work for this benefit!

EddyB
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by EddyB » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:23 pm

Sam1 wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:08 pm
EddyB wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:49 pm
HomerJ wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:18 pm
Fletch wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:10 pm
My perspective: There is NOTHING more important than loving parents raising their children and teaching the family values that are important to the parents. That means if you can spend time with them showing you care, you value their activities by being there, you are there for the bumps and bruises of daily life, and you can still provide for their physical needs of food, shelter, and some fun social interaction - go for it. The memories and values you provide and teach to your children cannot be replaced by day care workers or baby sitters. My very best wishes for your family.

I'm somewhat biased on this topic as my wife only worked for a couple of years when our kids were pre-k age. My wife being there for them was truly a blessing that they remember fondly - they are now 46 and 50 and the relationships we had and have with them are quite strong. We have seen the results of having a full time mom, at least in our case (as contrasted to some of our friends who thought it was more important to have two incomes).
What do you mean we? You were still working, so you couldn't possibly have had a strong relationship with your kids.

That's tongue-in-cheek, of course... I'm sure you DO have a strong relationship with your kids. Even while working full-time. So you know it's possible to work full-time and still have a strong relationship with one's kids.

And that goes for mothers too.

The OP has a pretty sweet situation. She's not working late, only 3 days a week. The two older kids are at school most of the day. The calculus changes a bit with the toddler. My wife stayed home for one kid during the toddler years, and worked during the day-care years for the other two.

All three turned out pretty well it seems.

Either choice is good.

There are not a lot of $80k jobs ($92k once you factor in health care) that give such nice work/life balance as this one... I'd keep it, but again that's just me.
I agree that compared to many people, the OP has a good situation, but I also think that my spouse staying home greatly facilitates not only her relationship with our kids, but mine too. I’m not suggesting that dual-working couples can’t have great relationships with their kids, of course, but I think there’s potential relationship and family value for both parents and the kids in freeing up more of one parent’s time.
True. But it’s also beneficial for kids to grow up in a home where parents are equals. When your job isn’t paid then you aren’t an equal. You’re a dependent really.
I’m glad (and I really mean this) that in my family and life, things are not so one dimensional. I’ve certainly heard of (and sometimes, but rarely, seen) relationships like that, but I’m sure that neither my spouse nor our kids see things like this. Perhaps it helps that I work from home and also have a great deal to do with our domestic jobs, not just my paid work.

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TxAg
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by TxAg » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:29 pm

Stay.

student
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by student » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:38 pm

Given that I do not have children, I am probably not qualified to answer. In any case, given that you have a secure part time federal job that you work only 3 days a week (you still have 4 days a week to spend with you family), it would be very difficult for me to give it up. This changes if your husband has a super secure job and his pay raise is close to what you are earning.

Lalamimi
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Lalamimi » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:46 pm

Keep the job 5 more years, see how husband is doing. I am 66. I made $30K a year when I was your age. I was out of work a year and we suffered. Luckily I stayed in the field, and the last 10 years were great for me. My husband quit at age 56. Do it for you. The kids might need you more as teens. Only 3 days a week! wow. Like some said, hire out the household chores, but do give the kids chores. They will thank you. Have groceries delivered but going to the store is fun sometimes for kids. Invest your income. Your husband is going to burn out. Same situation as my SIL. My daughter has a 3 and 1 yr old. She works 5 days a week.

CoastalWinds
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by CoastalWinds » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:48 pm

What about the approach of you continuing to work and your stressed-out(?) husband quitting? That seems like a win-win-win. Your PT job allows you to see the kids plenty, and this approach allows the father to see them as well, which will benefit the kids (and save his health).
Last edited by CoastalWinds on Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

decapod10
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by decapod10 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:50 pm

No one can answer except you of course, but if I were you I would keep working personally.

Financially, you are certainly not worse off working. If you were making $20k a year, then it's a different story, but earning $80k per year working 3 days per week seems like a perfect mix to me. I wouldn't give it up unless you didn't like your job.

Quitting so you can do more housework and meal prep doesn't seem worth it to me. I agree with previous posters that you can pay someone to do that stuff if you wanted and still be net positive financially while freeing up more quality time to spend with the kids. I would guess with 4 days off per week, you can spend plenty of quality time with the kids, be involved in important events and such.

My wife has a job where she typically works a week, and then gets a week off (somewhat alternating though not always). She loves the kids and the kids love her, but by the end of the week "off" with the kids, she's ready to go back to work honestly. I think some variety is good for your mental health. It's nice to be able to interact with adults sometimes without the kids around. And I think there can be benefits to your family relationships if you are not with the kids 24 hours per day. More hours together does not necessarily lead to a stronger relationship. This applies to adult relationships, I think it can apply to relationships with your kids as well.

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Sandtrap
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Sandtrap » Sun Feb 09, 2020 10:01 pm

This is a fascinating thread.
And, it certainly reflects the broad and deep demography, and attitudes toward financial planning (and risk), amongst forum members. . . proving just how valuable a collective resource exists here.

Actionably:
OP: realize that comments and suggestions come from all walks of life, ages, and experiences. Hopefully, they'll be some things you haven't thought about or considered, as well as reassurances of directions you have in mind already.

FWIW: you are not "crazy to consider quitting your job" . . . or crazy to stay put. . for now.

j :happy
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