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Being the breadwinner mom

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#1 s00n

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 02:11 PM

Does anyone else have experience being the higher earner?  I have always been, in our marriage, and now my DH is a SAHD.  We don't have an expensive house, we only have one car, that's paid, and we don't take expensive trips - I'm not working more than we need to pay for stuff we don't need, I don't think.


I'm wondering how your experiences have gone with being the earners-  do you find it difficult to manage family, or to manage perceptions of you as a woman in the workplace having family responsibilities?


Do you feel like you're able to give your family the attention you deserve, especially if you're putting in long hours?


I found myself yesterday working my day, and then being online for work until 9pm.  It's not commonplace, but I know DH is likely frustrated with me and my lack of time.


I'm feeling like I don't have the hours in the day to get everything done.  It's 2pm and i'm taking my lunch break at my desk, to write on here.


I am happy to support my family, and I'm happy that my husband is able to spend his time at home with our daughter, and i'm actually kind of wanting more kids... 


I have a strong headache today, which is likely exacerbating my worries.  Just wanted to know other moms' thoughts on this!



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#2 jojo10

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 02:42 PM

Hi s00n!


I have struggled heavily with this.... My Dh lost his job literally with in days of me getting pregnant with our twins over 2 years ago. Granted I was the higher earner. He could not recover from his job loss and we found me at the end of my year of mat leave and him finished with EI and it only made sense for me to go back to work and him to be a SAHD. I was sad/jealous/hurt/angry everything because I was not the one home with the girls and to this day this "issue" rears its head. i cried a lot when I first went back to work, I am finding it a bit better these days as I divide my time.


Now I am pregnant with our third and DH is ready for a change and is looking for work as I prep for my mat leave. There is no solid plan for when I must return to work ( and right now I can not see Dh staying home any longer). I would like the twins to be in a pre-school program and perhaps baby with family for the day.


We have done well watching our finances and living "frill free".  I do find that people get that certain look when they ask who takes care of the twins. There is still a stigma like Dh is at home "living off his wife". I have come to not care, have a kick at staying at home FULL TIME and those stuck up attitudes would be adjusted quickly.

I struggle with wanting so badly to stay at home and advancing my career. I have found this very hard. I think every family is unique and must find what works for them and find that happy balance, me  I work on this everyday!


I think these issues can really be exasperated when you are tired or sick, it signals a time for some needed rest and relaxation, and believe me I know that is near impossible to get when a busy 2 year old(s) are always on the go.


Good luck!

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#3 My_time


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Posted 07 March 2013 - 04:46 PM

this post is deleted due to personal reasons. sorry.

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#4 Pat9

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 08:50 PM

I am and have been the major breadwinner my entire life. I thought I always would be - was always driven to be just that. Then something changed and I realized it was not enough. But, me making the decision alone was not enough. I remember many a night discussing the need for my DH to be happy in what he was doing and for him to be making some dough. It was rough, but we made it through. Sometimes just talking about it (even if you do not resolve anything) can help. Just acknowledging that we were in the situation we were in made me feel better.

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#5 Rain

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 10:56 PM

I am currently going through the same struggles and emotions if being the working parent and DH being the SAHD. I am in management and prior to being on mat leave, I worked many hours to get to where I was. I find now that Ine back, I struggle with many things - how I get my team back up to performance levels before I went away (we were a top performing group, and now at the 'bottom') without having to put in the same hours as before. I struggle with getting home early enought to releive my DH and spend time with DD before she goes to bed. I struggle with trying to be a great mom, a good wife, good at my job, and somewhere in there good to myself. I'm still nursing my 19 month old, so I come home at lunch (luckily I work close to home) and never have a moment to myself. I struggle to have patience with DH who sometimes acts like as soon as mommy has walked in the door, he can relieve his duties as I take over. I struggle every day to 'do it all' and want to do it all well. Havin said all that, as you all can relate, I wouldn't change it for the world.

I am also challenged with not wanting work to think I am less of anything BECAUSE I am now a mom. Is that just my perception, or is that still reality in this era?!?!?

My DH is slowly coming into hir role as a SAHD and for the first months he couldn't even label himself that way. He does have an annual project that he still will do that brings in money, but I find that he feels less of a man because he is not the higher income earner. I respect him for taking on this role, and if we were in a better financial situation, I would have loved to have he tables turned and be the SAHM.

I read somewhere that of the parents who do stay at home with her children, 35% of them are the fathers. Times are changing, but for both DH and myself, we still both feel like there are still some stigmas of how the family structure 'should' look.. In the end we all do what is best for our own situations, and for us this works.

Thanks for starting this post though. It is good to hear what others are feeling, and knowing we are not alone :)
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DH: 39 Me: 39

TTC 10 years
5 months Clomid BFN
Fibroids and Polyps removed Nov 2009

IVF #1 Apr 2010
14 eggs retrieved
13 fertilized (w/ICSI)
5 survived to day 5
2 x 5 Day blasts transferred
3 Frozen

FET #1 Aug 2010
2 frozen blasts made it though defrost!
1 frozen one still waiting

October 21/10 - Uterine biopsy

IVF #2 Nov 2010
CD 3 - Nov 11 start injections
CD 7 - Nov 15 - US/BW = Estrogen 1025 - start Orgalutan
CD 9 - Nov 17 - US/BW - Estrodial 2578
CD 11 - Nov 19 - US/BW - Estrodial 4698
CD 13 - Nov 21 - US/BW - Estrodial 9224 - HCG Trigger
CD 15 - Nov 23 - Egg Retrieval - 12 eggs retrieved
CD 16 - Nov 24 - 9 fertilized
CD 18 - Nov 26 - 3 fertilized eggs transferred - 5,6 and 7 cell - 4 still watching
2dp3dt - Nov 28 - no frosties
13dp3dt -Dec 9 - Beta# 1 - 121 BFP!!!
19dp3dt - Dec 15 - Beta #2 - 1592

July 23/11 - DD arrives!!!!

#6 s00n

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 11:29 AM

Thanks ladies, for your thoughts.  I agree, it helps feeling less alone.

Similar to Jojo10- dh was laid off about 2 months after our dd was placed for adoption.  It was lovely being home together, especially while he was funded through EI.


Dh has mornings free during the school year, while dd is in a preschool program.  He'll be with her alllll day during the summer (and other kiddo for a week or 2 as well, although he's in camps, etc due to his age.


I kind of feel like we should adopt more NOW while DH is home, taking care of kiddo anyways - but I know it'd change DH's life - he's not FULL TIME with kiddo right now.


See my about me page for details on our IF journey including adoption and other avenues.

#7 silverdollar

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 11:45 AM

I'm in a similar boat. My DH is self employed and brings in about 1/4 of our family income. My income is what we rely on to pay all of our bills and his is our float for unforeseen expenses and extras. I'm the only one that qualifies for EI benefits, so right now I'm working full time while heavily pregnant and he's home during the day with our one year old. They are developing a wonderful bond, and it's a great short term solution for us with one child. Longer term with two kids so close in age we've decided it makes sense for me to drop down to 3 days a week and to trim some of our expenses down rather than try to afford full time daycare and miss out on the time with them. I hope you find the best balance.
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#8 Emily81

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 01:21 AM

I have been the breadwinner most of our marriage. Just after the boys were born my Hubby got laid off, so he was at home with us as well(also took some parental leave). Hubby ended up taking a job that wasn't in his field, but would work for us b/c it had flexible hours and meant that we wouldn't need to pay for child care. He tends to work 1-2 days a week on days that I am home, and makes 1/4 of what I make, but saves us alot of money on child care. My preference is that he works part time rather than full time, which would really just mean that we would pay out alot more in child care. It def isn't the way we had envisioned things working for our family, but worked for us for a while. I think Hubby will soon want to return to more of a full time job soon(he's also taking some courses and should be done later this year)..


I work 12 hrs shifts and find that hard to manage, when I get home they are getting ready for bed, so feel I am missing out on alot..But finding another job isn't a good option either so we will make it work.


Hope you find something that will work for you all..

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#9 s00n

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 10:34 AM

Thanks Emily!  I would love for DH to find something part-time.


We had a good discussion recently after this post, and we discussed the job market in our city.  He's worked mostly contracts since moving here to marry me, and he's tired of starting again all the time.  He's only looking for permanent things now (which works better for me - finding child care for a short period, and then paying while he's working, or letting it go - that sounds too disruptive.)


I'd rather have DH working part time at something a day or 2 a week, too.  I'm not sure what type of jobs those would be or where to find them, or whether DH would be amenable.  If anyone has suggestions of jobs that are very part time or work at home, please PM me.  So far it's all been multi-level marketing and sales, which just doesn't really suit.


I definitely have to work on valuing the work that DH does - he is doing a great job for our kiddo, and her future. I'm a financial thinker - I have to remember that there is value aside from a dollar value related to what he's doing.

See my about me page for details on our IF journey including adoption and other avenues.

#10 Emily81

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Posted 29 March 2013 - 09:18 PM

Soon- Not sure it helps, but my Hubby does merchandising (previously worked in sales) so his work schedule is super flexible :)

Me: 31, DH:34
? Mild PCOS/ Mild Male factor- Low Morph- 9%
TTC- Since Dec 2005

August/Sept 2009- IUI + injectabes cycle- BFN- was converted from IUI to IVF(20 follies growing) and then back to IUI(3 mature follies)....

IVF/ICSI cycle Sept/Oct 2010- BFP- (I insisisted on ICSI against my Drs wishes, and in the end we needed it)..
Oct 12- ER- 19 eggs, 15 mature, 6 fert
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- OHSS starts 8dp3dt- Early beta in ER-636- 12dp3dt, #2- 4,267- 17dp3dt
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Baby A- CM- 4 lbs 4 oz, 17.5 in, 3:01 PM Baby B- CL- 4 lbs 2 oz, 16.5 in, 3:55 PM Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers

#11 AdeleC

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Posted 03 April 2013 - 01:27 PM

I am, and have always been, the breadwinner in my family. We don't have any children (yet!), however my husband has hopes of being a SAHD.  I have worked very hard, gone through 8 years of university, and LOVE my job.  I am one person who actually gets excited to go to work in the morning.


We have had very open conversations about it.  My DH and I believe that whatever each of us makes is 'our' money.  We don't separate it.  Along those lines of thinking, we are fortunate that one of us is able to make a high income to ensure that he is able to spend more time (during the day) with the kids when they come. Not quite sure how I would feel about him staying home all the time though...


My Mother is the breadwinner, and my father was always "Mr. Mom" so this is normal for me.  However, I know that some of our friends makes jokes here and there...  I don't think that female breadwinners are any longer considered odd- we are more dominant in the workforce and pushing through the glass ceilings previously created.


I think the ultimate key is the value the time, effort, and work that each of you put in.  For us, that has been the secret to success!

  • Lisa1981 likes this

Me: 27 DH: 29


February 2013- IUI #1

Ended w/ 166 Puregon & microdose of hCG

45 Cycle Days but finally one good follie!

IUI April 4, 2013

... BFN April 18th. sad.png


April 26 - IUI #2

No AF after 25po, Docs don't know why, but lining is thin again so switching to Menopur.

75 > 112.5 > 150 > 187.5 > 225 > 263.5 of Menopur > 263.5 of Menopur & 200 of Puregon

CD 30- Cancelled my cycle, but then call me and estrogen surges.  Cycle back on. 

CD 32-  8 follicles

CD 33- 19 follicles... Surprise!  Switching to IVF?!!  Add in Orgalutron. 

CD 36- 29 follicles and so sore... Trigger shot.

June 1- Retrieval- Sedation didn't work and went through the most painful hour of my life.  Left ovary blocked by bowel, so only right retrieved.  OHSS...  8 Eggs, 6 mature- ICSI for all 6.

June 4- Transfer 2 Grade 4 embryos, 4 frozen (3 Grade 4s and 1 Grade 3)  More OHSS.

... BFN June 15th sad.png


July 26- FET #1

After a 6 week break, my body is somewhat back to normal.

4 > 6 > 8 > 16mg of Estrace

CD 16 - Add in Endometrin x3 Daily

August 15 Trasfer- 2 Embryos; One Grade 4 Morula & a 3-Cell Grade 4 (most cells died in the thaw)

... BFN August 26th sad.png    AF finally arrived after 2.5 years!


September 3 - FET #2

12 mg of Estrace and began Acupuncture

CD 18- Finally @ 8mm begin Progesterone

CD 23- Transfer day- 1 Morula & a 3 cell!  Acupunture before and after.

... BFN October 7th sad.png


Clinic approves us for a gestational carrier in late November!

December - February  Medical and pysch testing and approvals

March- Finished legal


April 9, 2014 - IVF (Gestational Carrier)

GC- CD 1: Starts on Superfact and BC

Me- CD 3: 75 Puregon and 75 Menopur

CD 8: Me 100 Puregon and 75 Menopur, GC starts Estrace

CD 22: Me 250 Puregon, 75 Menopur, x2 Orgalutron - 22 Follicles!

April 28- Egg Retrieval, GC starts Progesterone - 14 Retrieved.  11 Mature and 11 Fertilized.

April 30- Down to 9 embryos and decide to grow to Day 5

May 2- Transferred one 4BB blastocyst into our Surrogate.  5 more growing to blasts (until Day 6)

May 3- 4 of the 5 Embryos arrested.... only 1 left to freeze (3BC) sad.png

... BFN... again.  sad.png   May 15th


May 21st- WTF appointment and next steps.


#12 Pegara

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Posted 22 July 2015 - 07:01 PM

Hubby and I are both teachers but I have a lot more education so in our province I make significantly more money. Top it off with him being unable to pick up a permanent contract and he's been working temp contracts and subbing- so his pay is usually half of mine. It may come down to him taking most of our mat leave just to make ends meet. I would love to be a stay-at-home, but we have to eat.
Me - 38, DH- 37 (both teachers)
Three furbabies - Luna, Taz, Loki
Began TTC May 2009, finally saw specialist in Nov 2010
Diagnosed with complex hyperplasia with atypia Nov 2010, megace treatment for 18 months
May 2012 diagnosed with hyperplasia again, megace treatment for 10 months
One round Clomid October 2013
Diagnosed hyperplasia AGAIN Nov 2013, megace treatment 4 months
Rejected as patient from Aurora due to high BMI
Accepted as patient at RFP - August 2014.
First consult with RE at RFP - Oct 2014.
Three rounds of Clomid - Nov 2014, Feb & March 2015. - all BFN
IVF -July 2015 - 1 blast (5 day) transferred, 4 frozen. - BFN

#13 juice

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Posted 14 August 2015 - 01:03 AM

This is a great thread!! I can soooo relate! 


Pegara, I am in your situation. I'm a full time teacher and my husband is a teacher on call. I am going back to work after 6 months of my mat leave, for financial reasons. He's taking over the rest of my mat leave. Because he makes so little it doesn't make sense for us to put our twins in daycare - double expense. He's supposed to go back to work in Feb 2016 but his income is so unreliable...So he'll be the SAHD. That makes me jealous and frustrated because I want to stay home with the babies and I know I'll miss out on so many special moments while at work. I find my job so draining and I don't enjoy it these days. However that's just how it is and I have to deal with it...

me - 45.5, husband - 43.5

1 natural pregnancy but m/c in June 2011

7 failed IUIs, 3 medicated and 4 non-medicated, all BFN

I was a poor responder to the meds, only produced 1 viable egg so I'm not a candidate for IVF

Suffering  deeply, watching all my friends get pregnant and raise kids.

No one in my immediate circle of friends and family who has gone through this so forums are amazingly helpful.


Dec 2013 - have chosen a donor with San Diego Fertility Center and have begun the process. If all goes well we'll get me preggo in April 2014. IF all goes well... 


It DIDN'T go well - our donor failed her genetic testing. It took MORE exhausting searches 24/7 to find another we liked, and finally she's passed and good to go. IF all goes well we'll go down to SDFC mid-June 2014 for the egg transfer and get me pregnant..if all goes well...if... if... if... so many letdowns cannot allow me to be hopeful, just wait and see...


June 2014 Went to SDFC, everything went smoothly. Well, kind stuff... but transfer went well


July 16 2014 did blood test...BFP th_abfp.gif Wow. First time, feeling a lot emotions and crying uncontrollably for last 48 hours.


Hoping it sticks. That's all for now.


Aug 11 first u/s - TWINS. omg....good size, good heartbeat. I'm terrified.