Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

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Meg77
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Meg77 » Wed Feb 12, 2020 4:54 pm

If you do quit, I would seriously get a post-nup executed to protect you and reimburse you for the financial sacrifice you are making in case of divorce. And also make sure he has plenty of life insurance with you as the beneficiary.

You've already sacrificed your career and prioritized his. And reading between the lines it sounds like now you're considering sacrificing it entirely - not because you ache to be home but because HE is too stressed and busy so you want to help even more at home than you already do. That's fine, and I'd be tempted to as well - women always to want to put the kids and family first (and we wonder why there is still a gender pay gap). But I would require him to pony up in writing to protect you if EITHER of you wants to leave one day for whatever reason.

Another idea would be for your husband to balance out his life a little. Maybe HE gets a part time job too and you both get to spend time with the kids and also have some earning power. I realize that is a lot easier said than done, but just throwing it out there. Or maybe he doesn't climb the ladder as fast, or at all.

I have lots of female relatives and friends who stayed home for many years, some for decades or entirely. They would never say they regret it, but now they enjoy lower incomes and lifestyles after divorces, some of which occurred after their kids were grown. They can't go back to careers in their 50s or 60s (and frankly don't want to), and those that must work make precious little in non-professional roles and can't give their grandkids as much support as they'd like. They are comfortable for the most part, but they aren't rich or powerful or in control or calling the shots. They get what they get from their ex-husbands' retirement portfolios, and they make do. Given you may live another 70+ years, it's a big risk to take to give up your income now, particularly given the perks and lack of hours.
"An investment in knowledge pays the best interest." - Benjamin Franklin

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

Post by fresh_boglehead » Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:14 pm

goblue100 wrote:
Mon Feb 10, 2020 7:46 am
bligh wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:44 pm

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
Yes, I'm considering a new career, and 3 days a week for 80K would fit the bill nicely. What qualifications do I need?
Bump :D

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

Post by Gray » Wed Feb 12, 2020 10:37 pm

sambb wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:02 pm
i would not quit
Don’t quit. You’ve got a good job that may not be available later. Also, FERS will probably cost you more In the future.

Get a really good day care situation which will handle school drop offs and pickups, with classes for young ones. You’ll make it through those years, but you’ll have your job, and your years of service factor into your retirement pension and progression of salary.

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

Post by Financologist » Wed Feb 12, 2020 11:49 pm

Could the greater regret be missing out on making the home.. infusing it with your spirit and love (and more of your cooking) while the kids are young and stand to benefit most from your presence?

If yes.. it's time to lean out.

My wife was a stay at home mom for our first 10 years of parenthood. It was great for my career and even better for the family.

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

Post by boomer » Thu Feb 13, 2020 12:14 am

Sam1 wrote:
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.
I agree. I don't think she should quit. It may be quite unlikely she would get a similar job later. And she enjoys working. Just use some of her salary for meal prep delivery or take out, cleaning, and whatever else would ease any burdens so that when she is home she can spend quality time with the kids. As some one else said, dragging kids through the grocery store is not necessarily fulfilling, and once that reality is experienced, regrets might set in big time. Plus, another poster mentioned that it is definitely nice to have the second job in case the main job earner loses his job. Which could also happen!

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

Post by Unladen_Swallow » Thu Feb 13, 2020 1:01 am

OP,

If I were you, I would make the husband quit his stressful job, and you go full time.

You have a stable federal job, with health insurance and pension. And your salary seems good. And they don't bug you outside working hours. But the husband is in a high stress environment, insurance costs more, and his job isn't stable. High demanding means long hours and very little personal time as well. His health will suffer, and being the sole provider will push him into a corner.

Let him be the stay at home dad, and you will have a stress free job to be involved as well.

This is a no brainer to me.
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?
"I think it's much more interesting to live not knowing than to have answers which might be wrong." - Richard Feynman

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

Post by PeterParker » Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:12 pm

Reality check--

Your pay per day likely surpasses 90% of all individual adults in this country, and 99% of the world.
It's a 3 day part time gig, that still has full pension and benefits.

You didn't indicate how grueling the job is, but by all indications it's a typical corporate welfare job.
You already spend 4 days at home.

Maybe I'm biased because I was raised by a single mom working full time (and not for much money). And I graduated valedictorian among a class of 700.

I think the kids will be more than fine if you're only fully home 4 days a week instead of 7.
There's no reason to follow societal norms though -- it just seems like you have a very, very sweet setup you're willing to throw away.

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

Post by stoptothink » Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:52 pm

PeterParker wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:12 pm
Maybe I'm biased because I was raised by a single mom working full time (and not for much money). And I graduated valedictorian among a class of 700.

I think the kids will be more than fine if you're only fully home 4 days a week instead of 7.
There's no reason to follow societal norms though -- it just seems like you have a very, very sweet setup you're willing to throw away.
+1. Except I was salutatorian among a class of ~900 (I was a year younger than all my classmates though). My sister was the valedictorian. Mom raised 5 kids on her own, as a medical assistant, and she did not graduate high school. Anecdotally, my wife was raised by a SAHM and believe me, it did the kids and mom no good (one of the primary reasons she has no desire to stay at home, although I make plenty). People have very strong feelings about this topic, but IMO if you model positive traits to your children, I am leery of the added benefit an extra few hours a day at home provides (especially once school starts).

More than anything this is a lifestyle decision. If you desire to stay home, then it is definitely possible.If you don't want to, than don't.

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

Post by Kenkat » Thu Feb 13, 2020 3:22 pm

I know people are saying you are already home 4 out of 7 days, but another way to look at this is that you are gone 3 out of 5 weekdays / school days which is in my experience when your kids may need you the most. By need, I mean things like being there when they get on the bus in the morning or being there when they get home from school or when they are sick or off school for the day (or the summer). All these things can be accommodated when both parents work; I’ve seen grandparents or neighbors step in to this role and there are also daycare facilities or private daycare that can also handle all of these things as well.

I think kids can handle all of these scenarios and both parents need to be happy with the arrangement (either working or not). It has to be a partnership; after that, it’s a personal choice as to what works best for the family as a whole. A situation where one parent sacrifices all of their personal goals and needs for the benefit of the rest of the family is not a good situation in my opinion. It has to be a balance and that will vary by family.

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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by JGoneRiding » Thu Feb 13, 2020 3:43 pm

I am sort of in your shoes except I am also the bread winner and made 110k working full time and 70k part time.

If I could write what you did about my job, then no I wouldn't quit.

You will never get another job like that, part time full benefits excellent pay and off when you are off

But if you can afford to stay home do it!

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

Post by pennywise » Thu Feb 13, 2020 3:58 pm

fourkids wrote:
Mon Feb 10, 2020 7:36 pm
Absolutely DON’T QUIT.
You have the best of both worlds now.
Don’t mistake meal planning, prepping, errands, volunteering at school etc as “quality family time”. It’s not. It’s unpaid female labor.
Take a portion of your very good salary and outsource absolutely everything that is not direct time spent with your family.
At work, You are continuing to grow skills, knowledge, connections that will benefit the rest of your career.

I’m a decade older than you and see way too many moms trying to reenter the workforce again unsuccessfully. Many divorces, husband job losses, family issues have caused them to need to work, but after 10 years, they are starting from scratch. I have a few 45-50 year olds working along side my 25 year olds, same pay.

So, don’t leave. Get a trusted nanny/ household manager to make your busy lives easier
+1000

Actually make that + 1 million

While one should never discount anyone's opinion, in this topic the voices of men who have or had SAH wives IMO is a minor contribution. They truly have no conception of the true costs both fiscal and non-monetary of that configuration to the wife and mother. Those are enumerated beautifully above. Who knows, perhaps the author is a man himself (though I somehow doubt it LOL).

I was able to go on permanent PT status when my first child was born and gradually ramped up, only returning to a FT work schedule when my youngest child was in middle school. It was sometimes hectic but now that I'm retired and can more clearly see the arc of a working and family life it gave the best of both worlds. And I wasn't making anywhere near $80K annually.

gr7070
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by gr7070 » Thu Feb 13, 2020 4:05 pm

My simple approach to this and so many things that are, in part, financial decisions is to answer the financial decision definitively and then move on.

Can you afford to do X, within the confines of your annual and retirement budgeting? If yes, move one to the actual question. After that finances don't matter. Finances are not that important in life, especially for something as important as family.

So, simply, do want to be a stay at home mom? If yes, make it happen!

My wife stayed at home fill time for 7? years then worked part time for 3, now back working full time. Cost us hundreds of thousands of dollars. We couldn't care less. We 100% made the right decision, and hundreds of thousands of dollars mean something to us - as it would most (read we're not incredibly wealthy).
Last edited by gr7070 on Thu Feb 13, 2020 11:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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

Post by metacritic » Thu Feb 13, 2020 4:23 pm

I tend to agree with this as I've watched many women (and two men) leave the workforce to raise children and then struggle mightily to reenter in a meaningful way once all kids were in school. There is a boredom and frustration that comes with full-time child care for many and that spikes when the kids are in school for long hours. I tend to think (rightly or wrongly) that is accentuated for those who have skills and training that position them for good jobs. The market is totally punishing of those who leave for several years. I watch lawyers today who went to top 10 schools and worked in big law now find themselves looking for decent jobs without many opportunities. This in an era of 3% unemployment!
MillennialFinance19 wrote:
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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RootSki
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by RootSki » Thu Feb 13, 2020 4:29 pm

Unladen_Swallow wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 1:01 am
OP,

If I were you, I would make the husband quit his stressful job, and you go full time.

You have a stable federal job, with health insurance and pension. And your salary seems good. And they don't bug you outside working hours. But the husband is in a high stress environment, insurance costs more, and his job isn't stable. High demanding means long hours and very little personal time as well. His health will suffer, and being the sole provider will push him into a corner.

Let him be the stay at home dad, and you will have a stress free job to be involved as well.

This is a no brainer to me.
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?
OP, it was your thread, that inspired me to write mine. I agree with Mr._Swallow and if our situation was reversed, I’d LOVE to be stay at home dad.

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

Post by HomerJ » Thu Feb 13, 2020 10:30 pm

Kenkat wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 3:22 pm
I know people are saying you are already home 4 out of 7 days, but another way to look at this is that you are gone 3 out of 5 weekdays / school days which is in my experience when your kids may need you the most.
I completely disagree.

The days where young kids are at school most of the day is NOT the days a kid needs you most. After school care is fine. It's 2 hours a day. Give up $92k a year for 6 extra hours a week with your kids?
By need, I mean things like being there when they get on the bus in the morning or being there when they get home from school or when they are sick or off school for the day (or the summer). All these things can be accommodated when both parents work; I’ve seen grandparents or neighbors step in to this role and there are also daycare facilities or private daycare that can also handle all of these things as well.

I think kids can handle all of these scenarios and both parents need to be happy with the arrangement (either working or not). It has to be a partnership; after that, it’s a personal choice as to what works best for the family as a whole. A situation where one parent sacrifices all of their personal goals and needs for the benefit of the rest of the family is not a good situation in my opinion. It has to be a balance and that will vary by family.
Wait, I guess I don't disagree with you... What were you trying to say again? I'm confused... Sorry.
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Kenkat
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Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Kenkat » Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:10 am

HomerJ wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 10:30 pm
Kenkat wrote:
Thu Feb 13, 2020 3:22 pm
I know people are saying you are already home 4 out of 7 days, but another way to look at this is that you are gone 3 out of 5 weekdays / school days which is in my experience when your kids may need you the most.
I completely disagree.

The days where young kids are at school most of the day is NOT the days a kid needs you most. After school care is fine. It's 2 hours a day. Give up $92k a year for 6 extra hours a week with your kids?
By need, I mean things like being there when they get on the bus in the morning or being there when they get home from school or when they are sick or off school for the day (or the summer). All these things can be accommodated when both parents work; I’ve seen grandparents or neighbors step in to this role and there are also daycare facilities or private daycare that can also handle all of these things as well.

I think kids can handle all of these scenarios and both parents need to be happy with the arrangement (either working or not). It has to be a partnership; after that, it’s a personal choice as to what works best for the family as a whole. A situation where one parent sacrifices all of their personal goals and needs for the benefit of the rest of the family is not a good situation in my opinion. It has to be a balance and that will vary by family.
Wait, I guess I don't disagree with you... What were you trying to say again? I'm confused... Sorry.
What I am saying is that kids would prefer mom or dad to be at the bus stop when they leave for school and be home to meet them when they get off the bus or need to be picked up. Grandma or grandpa works pretty well as does other family or a trusted neighbor.

On my commute to work, I pass a daycare. Sometimes I see a school bus stop there and pick kids up for school. I would guess they get dropped back there after school until their parents can pick them up. I would guess that would not be most kids’ preference though. You are not staying home to get 6 extra hours a week with your kids; you are staying home for their benefit not yours. Somebody has to fill that role. And if school ends at 2 and you don’t pick them up until 6, it’s closer to 12 hours a week. Maybe more if you count another hour in the morning.

That said, kids are pretty resilient and can adjust to either situation. They will be fine as long as the parents work together as a team. Kids get raised with two working parents and they turn out fine. But if one working parent ends up carrying all of the load and effectively is trying to be both a working parent and the main caregiver, that’s not good either. The best thing you can do for your kids is to be together and be happy, regardless of the working situation. Sometimes that doesn’t happen for many avoidable and unavoidable reasons so as a couple you need to be on the same page on any decision made.

After that, it’s an extremely personal decision.

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

Post by Arabesque » Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:21 am

I know I am late to this discussion, but I wanted to add some research in the discussion in case the topic comes up again.

Most of the studies are positive on the benefits of working mothers on the mother and the child (especially 3 days/week).

https://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/17/upsh ... thers.html
https://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/kids-of-work ... ppy-adults
https://journalistsresource.org/studies ... -research/

In my family (not yours), patterns of divorce would keep me in the workforce. You never know when the desire/need to self-support and engage with adults will arise

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

Post by EddyB » Fri Feb 14, 2020 10:50 am

Meg77 wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 4:54 pm
If you do quit, I would seriously get a post-nup executed to protect you and reimburse you for the financial sacrifice you are making in case of divorce. And also make sure he has plenty of life insurance with you as the beneficiary.

You've already sacrificed your career and prioritized his. And reading between the lines it sounds like now you're considering sacrificing it entirely - not because you ache to be home but because HE is too stressed and busy so you want to help even more at home than you already do. That's fine, and I'd be tempted to as well - women always to want to put the kids and family first (and we wonder why there is still a gender pay gap). But I would require him to pony up in writing to protect you if EITHER of you wants to leave one day for whatever reason.

Another idea would be for your husband to balance out his life a little. Maybe HE gets a part time job too and you both get to spend time with the kids and also have some earning power. I realize that is a lot easier said than done, but just throwing it out there. Or maybe he doesn't climb the ladder as fast, or at all.

I have lots of female relatives and friends who stayed home for many years, some for decades or entirely. They would never say they regret it, but now they enjoy lower incomes and lifestyles after divorces, some of which occurred after their kids were grown. They can't go back to careers in their 50s or 60s (and frankly don't want to), and those that must work make precious little in non-professional roles and can't give their grandkids as much support as they'd like. They are comfortable for the most part, but they aren't rich or powerful or in control or calling the shots. They get what they get from their ex-husbands' retirement portfolios, and they make do. Given you may live another 70+ years, it's a big risk to take to give up your income now, particularly given the perks and lack of hours.
While I think the last paragraph is a valid caution, I don’t see where the OP reports that she’s “sacrificed her career” for her husband’s. While they’re often careful about how they “message” it (depending on the audience), I know many women who would rather not work and can “get away with” that choice, so they don’t work (or they work less than full time). I also know men who would rather not work, but through a combination of factors fewer of them think they can get away with it (and some of them have complicated feelings about their spouses’ non-working status). The OP may have a tough decision to make in her circumstances, but projecting on to her situation doesn’t help with her choice.

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

Post by getthatmarshmallow » Fri Feb 14, 2020 1:41 pm

I think you should continue to work, and increase the amount of household help you get. The reason is that you have a sweet job with a good salary, plenty of work-life balance, and it's unlikely to be the kind of thing that you can pick up again in a couple of years. And in a couple of years, your youngest will be in school all day, at which point a three-day-a-week schedule allows you to make money and be super PTA mom/bake cookies/drive to soccer just as much as you want. And you'll give your spouse the flexibility of stepping back if he needs to (and it sounds like he's the one closer to burnout.)

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

Post by Christine_NM » Fri Feb 14, 2020 1:51 pm

fresh_boglehead wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:14 pm
goblue100 wrote:
Mon Feb 10, 2020 7:46 am
bligh wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:44 pm

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
Yes, I'm considering a new career, and 3 days a week for 80K would fit the bill nicely. What qualifications do I need?
Bump :D
Yes, perhaps OP does not appreciate that she will never get this good a job again. I would be grateful for the 4 days at home and for the other 3 days at work. I worked full time and it was a constant battle against burnout. The part-timers were always the happiest ones. Marriage alone (SAHM) is way too risky as others have said.
16% cash 48% stock 36% bond. Retired, w/d rate 2.85%

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

Post by aristotelian » Fri Feb 14, 2020 4:26 pm

How much does your husband like his job? "Climbing the corporate ladder" doesn't exactly sound super fulfilling. What about both working and retiring early?

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

Post by iamblessed » Sat Feb 15, 2020 1:19 pm

Sounds like he should quit not you. If your family can make it on 80k

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

Post by Regattamom » Sat Feb 15, 2020 5:06 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.
This sentiment is so ridiculous it actually made me laugh out loud!

stoptothink
Posts: 7002
Joined: Fri Dec 31, 2010 9:53 am

Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by stoptothink » Sat Feb 15, 2020 6:43 pm

Regattamom wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 5:06 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.
This sentiment is so ridiculous it actually made me laugh out loud!
Depends on who you ask. I would agree with you, my wife wouldn't.

bltn
Posts: 618
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2017 9:32 pm

Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by bltn » Sat Feb 15, 2020 7:41 pm

Sandtrap wrote:
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
Very nice summary. I agree completely.
Neither path is inherently superior to the other.

Herekittykitty
Posts: 683
Joined: Wed Apr 16, 2014 8:11 pm
Location: Flyover Country

Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by Herekittykitty » Sat Feb 15, 2020 10:48 pm

This is a personal decision. For me: If I were in your situation with a great 3 day a week job that I loved, that doesn't intrude on home life when not at work, great hours, and great benefits I would look at it like this:

I could do a lot of meal planning and taking care of household duties in the 4 days a week you have. You can easily cook and prepare food for the week in the time you already have at home, in fact you can do it in 2 days. You can spend a lot of time with the kids during 4 days a week at home plus home in the evenings the other 3 days. You mention volunteering at the kids' school - looks like you could do that 2 days out of the 5 week days with the job you have.

I would keep the job. It looks to me like with good planning (even with average planning) you have plenty of family time and volunteer time already just working 3 days a week. And who knows if you could ever get a job situation like that again if you give it up now.

Can you use your income to save, to pay down/off debt if any, and to invest? (Ex: Max your TSP contributions if you aren't already.) If you can and do, that can give your family financial security and even wealth along with all the options that brings years before it could happen otherwise.

That's my perspective.
I don't know anything.

fatFIRE
Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Feb 15, 2020 10:44 pm

Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by fatFIRE » Sat Feb 15, 2020 10:57 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?
No, I would not. Not unless you've hit your numbers and are ready to FIRE. Why quit working? You're already working 3 days a week!

Have you done a stress test of how your family finances would hold up in bad times, like an upcoming recession? Dual income streams is necessary especially when you have dependents.

DonIce
Posts: 749
Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:44 pm

Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by DonIce » Sat Feb 15, 2020 11:01 pm

whattodonext wrote:
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.
No. Keep working. A lot can happen in the next ~60 years.

Plenty of families live just fine with two working parents, and you are already a lot better off than most, only working 3 days. Maybe see if you can reduce it to 2 days. Use the extra money to buy time - hire someone to do chores you don't want to do: cleaning the house, etc.

Also consider the reduced stress your husband will have knowing that there is your 2nd income as a safety net. Climbing the corporate ladder can be very stressful and high pressure, and high profile managers can easily be fired for a failure of a certain project or department. Him knowing that the family will still be fine will add peace of mind, even if only on a subconscious level, and perhaps even let him be bolder in his decisions and push his career even further if he so chooses.

BradJ
Posts: 349
Joined: Sun Jan 21, 2018 6:06 pm

Re: Am I crazy to consider quitting my job?

Post by BradJ » Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:43 am

Regattamom wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 5:06 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.
This sentiment is so ridiculous it actually made me laugh out loud!
I didn’t laugh at all, rather the comment made me sad for anyone who truly thinks this way. It’s one thing to feel like you aren’t “pulling your weight” because you don’t bring in any income (by the way, not true at all), but to feel unequal is just depressing. Too often I see spouses treat the other like a competitor, heck I’ve seen this sad phenomenon between parents and kids. My wife stays home with our youngest, but she would rather be working. At this time, we have no choice (our son is very ill), but I constantly remind her of the sacrifice she is making for the family and the money she is saving (which is generating in my book) by staying at home.

All that being said, it’s a personal choice where your kids will be blessed beyond measure as long as you love them and give them attention, be it stay at home or working.

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