Stay at Home: The sacrifices


Hi All,

My husband and I am trying to decide whether or not I should go back to work next school year when our son will be 11 months old. If I work for a year, we can pay off my student loans and my car and that will make us debt free. If I stay home, we can still manage the student loan payments, but we’ll have to sell my car because the payment it too high. I know that it’s just a car, and my husband can take the bus to work on the days that I need to drive his car, but we still go back and forth about what we’re going to do. I’d love to stay home, but it is tempting to work for that year and pay off everything and then I’ll get to keep the car. My question is, what kind of sacrifices have you made in your family to stay home with your children? Has anyone gone back to work and regretted it?



**Can you afford to keep the car if you work part time? Also do you know who is going to watch your child if you have to go back to work? Even if you do go back to work full time and now you have money to pay for the car you will still need to pay for childcare, which depending on what kind you are using will cost anywhere from $500.00 a month and up (this is the figure for a home daycare i know group daycares are quite a bit more)…

Saying that however i believe you’d be in a better spot once you pay off your student loan. Then you’ll have no worries once you have another child…**


I’ve always been at home so it’s difficult to say what we’ve sacrificed - we don’t miss what we’ve never had.

I think if you go back to work now, it will be for your car & loans this year, and something else the year after that. You’ll get used to having two incomes and
it will seem all the more difficult to quit work.

Your car will get old and need to be replaced someday anyhow - and you’ll never get back your child’s second year of life. The time you’d spend with him is priceless and worth whatever sacrifice you’d make. I promise.


Perhaps you could sell your car and buy an older, less expensive car for cash.

Why not look in to keeping one, or even, two children in your home-- that would bring in extra income without having to leave your child in daycare.

I agree with the other poster who said it will the car this year and something else next year. There are so many things you need for work-- wardrobe, daycare, meals away from home-- all those things start to add up and before you know it… you’ve used up all that “extra” income.


The cost of working is more than just daycare (which is expensive!!), it’s added doctor bills when your child gets sick, taking time off–because your child’s sick, eating out, gas to get to work, clothes for work, added car insurance and maintenence, etc. It adds up fast.

We only have one car and we share it as needed, though usually I have it as I have to ferry children to and from school. With children not in school, you don’t really need a car during the day. Depending on where you live, there might be a park or library within walking distance, but even a sidewalk will get you out of the house! LOL

I worked when ds was an infant, but dh was able to stay home with him and we did split parenting, not fun.

When dd came along, I was still working but dh wasn’t able to be home full time, that meant part time daycare, almost as expensive as full time daycare. And the children were sick all the time. I used all my sick days plus some.

I was grateful when the next dd came along as my dh had a full time regular job and I was finally able to be home and have been home ever since. I don’t miss the working world, the stress, the commute, the stress, the juggling of schedules, the stress, the daycare and btw, did I mention the stress? And I was a music teacher :stuck_out_tongue:

For us, my working just isn’t worth it, in terms of our family’s happiness and my sanity level.

God bless,


I think the other posters have made good points and suggestions, and I would just add is there any way you can work (part-time) while your husband is home with the baby? A friend of mine who homeschools does this to earn a little extra income.

I have stayed home with my children because I grew up in daycare (my mother was widowed and had to work), and it was not a pleasant experience for me, and I didn’t want that for my children. God has always provided for us, and I don’t regret whatever we’ve sacrificed (just luxuries, not necessities) for me to stay home with them. The early years are especially important to develop strong bonds with the mother. If it’s at all possible to stay home, please do so.



This is a very important year for your baby. He will learn to
walk and talk and discover the world! The things your baby
learns from you this year will have a lasting development on
his brain for life. Crucial connections are being created in
the brain cells this year. You have the chance to give him
a variety of experiences that will literally create his brain!

If I had to choose only one year of my child’s life to be at
home with him, this is the very year I’d choose.

I’d choose the baby over the car any day. I know a girl who
chose the car, and let her sister take care of the baby.
That baby wouldn’t go to her for a hug, he just wanted her
sister. That was a high price to pay for a car.


**i’d like to add to what i said about paying off your student loans if this will help you stay at home in the future then do it. Just use whatever salary you have left at the end of the day and use it to become debt free. You child will know you are his mother no matter what…Don’t let people make you feel guility about your decision or scare you into a decision you don’t feel comfortable making. I had to go back to work when my son was 6 months (we’d be out on the street if i didn’t work and since i don’t believe in taking government handouts just so i could stay home) and my son has never not known i was his mom. He also went to a home daycare which ran about 130 a week.

If it only took me one year to pay off my student loans i’d do it in a heartbeat. Then i’d have the relief knowing that i am now able to not have concerns like that hanging over my head. I am sorry if this a personal question but other wise y’all are fine fiance wise? **


Those are all very good points. I hadn’t thought about the fact that I could always find an excuse to work if I really wanted to. If I did work, my mother would watch the baby. I don’t like the idea of working part-time. I think that job-sharing as a teacher would be almost as much work as full time teaching but with half the salary.
The reason it’s so hard is because I have a choice, not a need to work. Financially, we’re fine. We don’t own a home, but my student loans aren’t that much since both my husband and I had our undergraduate educations paid for, and I only had loans for grad school and most of that was paid for by scholarships. Our other car is paid off and will last a long time.
We lived on my husband’s income while I was in grad school and that was fine. We had less stuff, but we didn’t have the stress of both of us working. We know that me staying home is the ideal for the baby, but we’re wondering if it would be wise just to take a year and have me work so we won’t have to think about the loans anymore. We know that me working would be stressful and make our home life more chaotic and fast paced and that we wouldn’t have as much time to relax as a family.
I think sacrafice was the wrong word. It’s not so much the car as getting my loans paid off and I need to keep the car to accomplish that. Or I can take the whole ten years to pay off the loans and we can afford that, with one car. As I ponder all of this, **I’m just really wondering how others experiences have been as they transitioned to one-income. Or if anyone chose to go back to work and regretted it. **


:frowning: Oh I see, and what about us parents who HAVE to work? I guess we just miss out huh?

I disagree completely. Sometimes you need to work and you need to make this decision for what is best for you and your family’s future.


I went back to work when dd was about a year old and I regret it! I got pregnant around the same time, so I only ended up working for 7 or 8 mos. But I still regret leaving dd. —KCT


We do have to make difficult decisions. But we still miss out on stuff. I did when I left my dd. —KCT


Yes, I’m sorry to say but you missed out on alot. If your child was in the care of someone else - she got to spend the time with him - not you.

Does that make you a bad parent? No - not at all. You did what you had to do. If you HAVE to work - you HAVE to work.

This poster doesn’t though. She said she had a choice. In my opinion, the best “choice” is to care for your own child.


Me, too. I taught 3/4s of a year when my oldest was 3 months-10 months. Then, I worked pt until he was 17 months. When I stayed home fulltime, I realized how much I missed. And, when I had my 2nd child (he was 17 months). I realized how much I regretted missing that special time with the first child. My second child was very demanding and I never got that just sit on the floor and count toes time…

If you don’t have to work, don’t do it.

For those who have made the decision to work, don’t get all defensive. We know everyone is doing the best they can. :slight_smile:


If you read your own words, I think you have answered your own question.

You have a choice!!! There are so many parents out there who HAVE to work. I’m sure they would trade places with you in a heartbeat in order to stay home with their little ones! God has provided you the option to stay at home and be there for your baby. You already “know” that that is best for your child. Knowing that, how can you make any other decision but to stay home?

Do you really want more stress, chaos, and LESS family time? Aren’t we all striving for the opposite???

You are very blessed to be able to stay home with your child…don’t pass up this great opportunity to live your vocation to the fullest!

May God lead you to where He wants you to be and may you be open to His will…



Yes, sometimes you “HAVE” to work.
My DH works 60-80 hours a week to support our family…so I can stay home. Well, he misses out on A LOT of milestones and fun that we do. When he comes home I tell him what happened. It would be the same with a babysitter…having to ask what happened or having a babysitter experience all the firsts…

((((Hugs))) to anyone (mom or dad) who has to work, but their heart aches to be there. You are doing what you have to do.
If you “have” to work, then you have no other choice.


I did. And I do. You can never, ever get back the years that you missed. I know for youg moms it seems like the kids will always be there. But take it from a grandmother, they grow up and are gone much faster than you think. And then you are left to wonder, where did time go?

Bottom line, if you have a choice, and you are fortunate to have that, don’t blow it.


It’s nice to hear from mothers who both worked and stayed at home. It seems like everyday I change my mind. :confused: I guess my husband and I have a lot of praying to do.


I might get beat up for this but my own opinion is that, if you have good child care, the first few years of a child’s life are the easiest time for you to be working. By good care, I mean a person, maybe a relative, that is caring for your child alone or with their own children but not a day care center. Infants, in my opinion, need to be held, cuddled and responded to immediately but they don’t really care if it is their biological parent or not. By the time the child is two or three, they do much better if they can be home with mom and once they are pre-school age, that effect is even stronger.

I was fortunate to find a loving woman who cared for both of my kids in her home. She had one child who was in part day pre-school so she gave the kids so much attention. We were able to get out of debt and move to a much better financial position so that when I did leave my job and stay home it was with much less financial pressure.

When people talk about missing milestones in their babies life, I think it is important to separate those milestones that are important to the baby from those that are just important to the parents. For example, as a mom, I feel I really would need to be there for baby’s shots or any illness. But does the baby care if you miss his/her first word?


But if someone has a choice, who would CHOOSE to miss her baby’s first words?? Oh my gosh, I can’t imagine not being the one to hear the first words or clap at the first steps or all the milestones in the early years.

What makes you think that babies don’t care who holds them? I couldn’t disagree more. Babies DO want their parents (I don’t think biological has anything to do with it) more than they want anyone else. My baby will cry to come to me, rather than her sibblings whom she knows so well & loves - she is bonded to ME because I’ve cared for her the most. I wouldn’t want her bonded to the sweet daycare provider or her grandma because they cared for her most of the time. I waited my entire life for my children - I’m not going to miss a minute of it if I don’t have to.

LOL though, I don’t mean to beat you up… I just disagree. :slight_smile:

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