- You get to be with your little one all day.
- You get to make all the decisions about food, diapers, and toys.
- You get to set your schedule.
- Baby will have your full attention, love, and affection to build attachment, learn, and grow.
- Some families believe staying at home is best for young children’s growth and development.
- It is very lonely. Even when you make an effort to be involved in a larger community you will likely often feel alone.
- Setting a schedule can be difficult.
- It can become challenging to keep your child stimulated. You have to come up with ideas of things to do, find people to meet up with, and keep children engaged all by yourself.
- You may find yourself falling into bad habits. (Talking on your phone frequently in front of your child, becoming overly responsive or under responsive.)
- You will no longer be working: This can create some stress between you and your working partner. You may worry more about how you are spending money. You may not feel fulfilled. Not only are you not returning to work to earn income now you also will likely have to do a lot of retraining, lose opportunities for professional advancement, and start at a lower salary when you return.
Reflect on Choosing to Staying At Home
Staying at home will be a lot of work. Consider the positives and negatives above and the reflection questions below.
- How will I feel about no longer contributing financially to the family?
- What is important to me as I plan for supporting my child’s growth and development?
- What are my goals while staying home with my child? At what age would I want my child to have more experiences outside of the home?
- How can I reflect on my time with my child to support both our learning and growing?
- How will I find others and stay socially active?
- How can I provide social opportunities for my child and support his or her independence?
- How does my partner feel about making this choice? What are my partner’s expectations outside of child care if I stay home?
- What will my expectations for my partner’s role be in child care?
- Picture my perspective five hours from now, five months from now, and five years from now, how will I feel about the decision to stay home?
- At what point will I reconsider this decision?
- How can I grow in my profession and engage my own mind while staying home?