Making The Transition From Office to Home Mom

November 19, 2012 by Abu  
Published in Motherhood

Is your family stable enough for you to quit your job and live off of your spouses? Are you mentally ready to become a stay at home mom? Find out the ins and outs of making the transition from office to stay at home mom.

Perhaps you’re hoping to make the transition from working full-time outside of your home to staying home full-time. If you’ve decided to quit your job and become a stay-at-home mom, you’re entering a brave, new world! You’ll experience so many wonderful things as you have a front row seat to the happenings in your child’s life. 

But making the transition from working to staying at home can be difficult. You’re likely to get mixed reactions from your family, friends and co-workers. Some may applaud your decision and wish they could be in your shoes. Others may be bewildered by your choice. Everyone tells you that as a new mother, you’ll be sleep deprived, moody, overwhelmed, exhilarated, and depressed, in turn. As a professional woman turned at-home mother, you’ll face more adjustments than just learning how to care for a new baby. If you’ve been in the work force for several years, you may face a difficult transition in giving up your title, salary, and business accomplishments in favor of family life. 

You may feel delighted with your decision to stay home, but the first several months after leaving your job still may be hard as you work at creating a new life for yourself as an at-home mother. 

All the rules and structures you’re used to at work have changed, and it takes time to get adjusted. At-home mothers often find that their new career includes chaotic, disorganized schedules, irregular work hours (with plenty of overtime), no clear job assignments, no performance evaluations, mundane chores, few coworkers, and obviously, no salary. For women who have been used to being in control of their time and of themselves, this can be extremely frustrating. Along with the freedom from commutes and meetings and work clothes comes frustration because you miss adult conversation or would just like a private trip to the bathroom!

Though rewarding, being a stay-at-home mom isn’t easy. In fact, many women are surprised to find it’s the hardest job they’ve ever had. Days spent without a single adult conversation, quieting your child’s screams in the store, cleaning bloody knees, carpooling, disciplining, doing laundry, changing diapers, packing lunches, cleaning house and planning meals may leave you wondering, “Is this really worth it”?

But you must plan for the change. The first thing to do is calculate your expenses to see what changes you’ll have to make to get by on one paycheck. Go through your checkbook and list all the expenses and bills your family has every month. Don’t forget once-a-year and irregular expenses like doctor bills, taxes, car licensing, insurance, holiday gifts, birthday presents, and school supplies. As you list your household expenses, you’ll see that some will decrease when you’re at home full time. You might be surprised to see how much of your take-home pay goes to work-related expenses like day care, gas for your commute, work clothes, meals at work, or convenience foods and take-out meals you picked up because you didn’t have the time or energy to cook.

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