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Leaving a job to stay at home? 3 things to discuss first

Staying at home to raise your children and maintain a home is a full-time job. As such, many parents ultimately leave another job to do this.

Whether leaving the workforce is something you want to do or must do, it can be a big change. And as such, it may likely trigger some critical conversations with your partner. Below are a few specific things you may want to discuss before leaving a job.

Financial support

Losing a source of income can be the biggest change, so it is critical to discuss how you plan to adjust. Will you have to create a budget? What will your monthly expenses look like? Will one of you be tasked with managing your finances?

Another important thing to consider is whether you should create or update a marriage contract. If you divorce, not having your own income can be distressing. And it can be very difficult (and for some, unlikely) to re-enter the workforce. As such, you might discuss setting guidelines for spousal support. Doing so can give both parties peace of mind.

Decision-making for the children

Being home with the children all the time can shift the relationship between parents and children. It can also mean that the stay-at-home parent is more familiar with a child’s schedule, schooling and interests. As such, you might discuss whether one parent will now be in charge of making decisions regarding academics, discipline and other child-related matters.

This is also something you may choose to address in a family law agreement.

Workload expectations

Partners often split household duties and chores when both people are working outside the home. However, when one person stays home, that balance can shift considerably. It can be crucial to discuss your expectations ahead of time to prevent feelings of resentment or anger.

You might discuss who will be responsible for cleaning, making meals, buying new clothes for the children and dealing with household repairs. Creating a list provides clarity and structure, which can be crucial during familial changes.  

Having these discussions with your partner before leaving your job can allay some concerns you may have. It can also set everyone up for a successful and more enjoyable experience.

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