How to get In Laws off my back about going back to work?! help

Roxie - posted on 01/03/2012 ( 34 moms have responded )

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So steamed this morning! Me and my husband before we had our son saw that it financially didn't make sense for me to go back to work because my entire check would go to daycare cost. Granted things have been tight, but we haven't been complaining because we both feel that Gabe is worth eating beans and rice for. However the In Laws see the big change in our finances over the months, can't travel as much, clothes, i.e. material possessions, and tell my husband maybe if i was working life would be better for us. Ok, one time to make the comment is one thing, but they have been harassing my husband about me finding job and how we aren't accurately planning for the future. This morning, they went to the extent to say to my husband i was being lazy and not thinking about the "well-being" of the family!...My question is should i say something or let my husband handle this? Does anyone else ever feel judged by others for making the choice to be at home with your kids? I am so taken back left field and i don't know how to explain that i don't sit at home eating chocolate all day!

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You should probably let him handle it, but if he's not stepping up as much as you need him to, or they are attacking you directly without him present, you should have something to say in return.

Do a quick internet search on the benefits of having a sahm. Take note and compile the info in your mind so that next time they say something, you can reply "Studies show that children with sahm's are more confident, have less separation anxiety issues, and do better academically than children who have limited time with their parents. We are able to pay our bills in our situation, and we feel that sacrificing a few material possessions in exchange for these valuable benefits is the best decision we can make for our son." or something to that effect.

For us, the decision was not financial--we would have a lot more stuff if I worked, but we decided that we wanted J to have a sahm because that is the kind of childhood we envision for him. Plus, we don't really need anymore stuff--we have a ton already!

Btw, I HATE the comment "now that J is in school you can look at working again." Hello? Who would take care of him after school? Help him with his homework? Who would run the various volunteer posts at school (no I don't run them all, but it's our job to help out). Also, If I spend the time he's at school working, when am I going to do the cleaning, shopping, and other crap--when he's home! I'd have NO time with him!!! okay, off my soapbox :)

Denikka - posted on 01/03/2012

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Oh yea. I've had a few comments about how I should go get a job. Even just stuff like *when the kids are in school, you can finally work...* pisses me off. It's no ones business but ours.
I say let your hubby handle it is it's his parents. Anything you say, any justification you make will only sound lame to them. Sometimes you just can't win and you just have to ignore the comments.

Sherrine - posted on 01/03/2012

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Hi Roxie, first of all your in laws can go kick rocks, ur reason for stayin hm is exactly y I do. I hv 3 kids and daycare will definitely eat up my whole paycheck. I understand about the financial struggles but as long as the essentials are taken care of and ur baby and u guys aren't starvin then I think u guys hv made a great decision. I wldnt even want my children in daycare bcuz now a days u can't trust some of them, I definitely can't c myself puttin my babies in daycare, i'll stay hm for the rest of my if I hv to. My in laws completely understand y we made the decision for me to stay at hm wit the kids, anybody with common sense wld understand that, they jus want something to complain on u about. If I were u I wld say one thing to them, " Mind ur business and let me and my husband run our household". My family is completely supportive of me stayin hm, except for maybe one person but I pay no mind to negativity. So dnt ever feel like u being a stay at home mom is being lazy, like I said tell them to kick rocks.

Jen - posted on 01/09/2012

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I'm glad its working out for you. :)

The isolation got to me. For my first child, I started volunteering. Stuff I could do with my little man. With my youngest I went to three parenting groups? Maybe that included one family night. I can't remember. She loved it. She was one social little baby.

When she saw babys she recognized she would get excited and start babblying at them.

As for money; people can survive on less $$. What's important is family. If your family is happy; who care's what brand toilet paper your using. Along those lines, your baby doesn't care what diaper they're wearing.

Kids aren't going to notice or remember details like that later; they'll remember whether they were happy or not though.

VICKIE - posted on 01/03/2012

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Been at home for 5 years and it has been hard buy we made the decision until our 2 and 4 year old is in school full time then I will be home. I have a Finance degree and would be making more if I worked and he stayed home but ny husband said that isn't a option and our children going to childcare isn't either. People act like we are trash now because we can't jump through hoops and do what we could 2 years ago but God has a plan and I know it will be alright if we continue to trust God. Our children is worth the sacrifice. I know they are safe and being educated. One is in school full time now and one is half a day at a private school for a small fee to get ready for school since they never went to day cares but I don't regret staying home no matter what anybody say and we have been through alot but we are still together. Let them talk until they are blue in the face. Pray for them and focus on your family in your home. May God Bless you guys and wish you all the best.

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Deanna - posted on 01/14/2012

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Roxie,



I hate to sound crass, but its your life..You and your husband made this decision and its OK:) I have 4 children..3 at home 1 in college..and its tough financially but its what we chose to do..daycare is OVER the top....



Not to sound like a commercial but you can always do a home based business. I started 4 months ago and just love it



Hope things work out..stand firm!! you have alot of support!



Deanna

tssparkles4me@yahoo.com.

Megan - posted on 01/10/2012

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the MOST important job u will ever have is being a mom. and your in laws need to realize that. it may not help with the bills, but its helping your son and his future. i was a stay at home mom for almost 4 years and it is the hardest job. you are responsible for a LIFE! id say if your husband doesnt handle it soon,then you should very respectfully let your in laws know what exactly it is you do to be a stay at home mom. you make sacrifices when you have children,and a job is one of them if you and your spouse choose that. stay at home mom is not looked at as a job,but its 24/7 365. no time off,no sick days.hardly ever any recognition. but u do get paid in hugs and kisses.

Nete - posted on 01/09/2012

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I knw,... what is with friends and family?? everyone is on my back about sending our twins to pre school or kindergarden...
as u point out it will cost abt the same as what u can take in.. every mum with kids in school say they are sick for the first year, that should make a good impression having to take all that time off ... I got both kids on www.abcmouse.com they love it and for their age they are fare ahead of their piers ... yes I get tired of working like Cinderella sometimes, like I need to add a full days work to my chores as well ... who exactly is it that going to pick up the slag if I'm not here cleaning, mopping, scrubbing ...etc ... I went to the playground with my kids yesterday, an older girl runs up out of now where and pushes my girl of the swing ... couldn't see her parents or nanny nowhere ... why would I want to send my kids off to more of that ill mannered behavior so they can influenced by rude kids and bad language .... more often than not I'm horrified by how poorly kids act, and just how little their parents seam to care where they are and what they are doing ....

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Ignore them. They aren't worth your time. My MIL thought I should have been working untill one day my husband sat her down and showed her how it all works. You are right daycare cost so much and I can't imagion trying to get everything done plus work. Maybe she is a bit jealous too. If she didn't get to stay home with her kids she might feel like she missed out on something. Everyone chooses their own path and explaining is all you can do. You can't make someone understand. Good luck :)

Nola - posted on 01/08/2012

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Back in 1984 I did the Math. With 2 kids, daycare, extra vehicle, clothes, losing tax exemption... It would actually COST us $4000 for me to work.
So I volunteered, found cheap hobbies and got myself a library card. The biggest challenge was to do as much as possible keeping your brain challenged and yet spend no money. I clipped coupons, shopped sales in the cross season, Went to second hand stores, put in a Garden and Canned. Made my own bread and cooked from scratch.
Taught my kids how to cook, clean, do laundry... we were a team not slave/master. Our kids were so much better off for it. We also did Eldercare for the parents and that taught the kids humanity 101.
No regrets...However...
I learned that I needed to toss societal expectations out of the window... Martha Stewart has no flipping clue.
Your kids will turn out just fine if your towels don't match. Invite your friends to lunch at home. Going out and blowing the budget is stupid.
Learn to set a little time aside to be a couple first, parent second.
Put a lock on your bedroom and bathroom door.
Tell friends and family that offer opinions that just as you don't second guess them, They need to MTOB.
Agreed... there are very few moms that want a do-over on what staying at home does for their kids.
There are more working moms that have regrets and wonder why Johnny acts like the Babysitter's husband.
The era of supermom is done... is was mostly BS and illusion anyway.
Backpat for your hubby on putting his foot down. Read Barbara Coloroso's books on parenting... It will help keep you from going nuts. LOL Enjoy... they grow so fast,

Zee - posted on 01/08/2012

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I agree with the other posters. If your husband is in 100% full agreement with you and reflecting that fact to his parents then he needs to ask them to refrain from making those comments and if they are making them to him only, maybe he needs to stop telling you. Sometimes my husband would tell me the things my inlaws would say and I'd get soooo peeved but sometimes I'd realize it was how my husband took the comment as to what was actually meant by it. Maybe too, if the problem persists you could all 4 of you sit down and talk. Maybe once they realize that you guys do have a plan they will back off. Sometimes it's hard for parents to let go and realize that their children are capable of making life decisions the good and the bad. Good luck to you.

Tracie - posted on 01/08/2012

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If your husband is standing up for the decision you both made, then let him handle it. In my experience, in-laws don't really hear anything you say if it doesn't jive with what they already think. Contrary opinions have to come from the blood relative if they are to have a chance of being heard.

If he's starting to slip and side with them, you'll need to sit down and talk it over again. If that still doesn't work, turn the tables on them. When they make an insensitive comment about your life choices, give it right back and make an insensitive comment about THEIR life choices. It will shock them, and then you can say with a smial, "Oh, I thought it was Unsolicited Advice Day! It sneaks up on me every year!" That should shut them up.

Good luck!!

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I had the exact same problem until our 3rd was born and now I would loose a lot of money in child care expenses and they laid off. I just went with "my kids are more important then money" and I want them to know that :). Things are tight but It is only until they start kindergarden and then back to work I go

Erin - posted on 01/07/2012

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Whenever anyone suggests I should go back to work, I politely remind them that during this time in child development, the brain is growing at its fastest rate. What are the chances that my child will receive the stimulation necessary to improve and develop to their full potential while in daycare, where they are likely sitting in a playpen all day... Then I casually remind them that the boys from Columbine were raised in daycare. I find that after these rebuttals, I rarely hear anything from the same people a second time about my work status... (and in fact, my SIL, who was a working professional, a child psychologist, is pregnant, and suddenly planning on staying home for a few years....)

But I agree w previous posters, I would let my hubby handle his parents.

Julie - posted on 01/07/2012

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If you like children and want to make money at home and help other moms too you could get licensed and care for a small group of children and have income that way. I did this too when my children were small and now its my career. Your job right now is being a mother and wife. I have been married almost 29 yrs. and no matter what I do or say in my monster n law mom goes on dead ears. We were a military family for 20yrs, had some problems with two of our children in the 90's as teen girls, husband had cancer and we had to file bankruptcy. So she thinks we are financially ruined but I work 60 + hours to take care of my family while I took care of a very sick husband. Cancer free and disable veteran now but we are still here no matter what. You do what is right for your family not anyone else. They dont live in our daily lives and they dont walk in our shoes. Its all about what you need not what you want to financially care for a family. Basic needs are food, shelter, clothing, pay utilities, food, insurance, mortgage or rent, only have one car payment and secound car drive till you can drive it no more. Dont overextend yourself. Thrift store, garage sell, downsize, live happily and satisfied with what you have. We live in a society that has taught our young people to have greed, over wanting things that they got to have NOW instead of working for it and letting God decide when they need it. We have entitled generations and a fast world that needs to slow down and enjoy the lives of our small children. When we dont the times go fast and furious and we lose all touch of why we had children in the first place. Children are gifts from God and as a educator and caregiver just this problem of finances I see become the importance over a child and the child or children suffer because the all mighty buck becomes more important than Love,their education, development, their well being, and growing up with happy families and parents. You do what is best for your family not what anyone else thinks you should be doing. Our husband are the leaders and providers of family. My income was for the extras for clothes, outings, and some savings. The Navy always provided the housing and our insurance for health, dental everything else was a choice to have. Dont live beyond what you can afford. Alot of activities can be free be creative and find them amoungest friends, church, and the internet. Be strong and stand up for what you believe. My husband many times have ask his mother to butt out. It takes strength and love to say it but he has and sometimes he hasnt spoke to her for awhile but then she apologizes and their talking again. Hope my advice helps giving it from experiences in life. Julie

Carole - posted on 01/06/2012

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Haven't read all of the posts but have you asked them if THEY would like to babysit your son full time so you could work without paying for childcare? Of course that should include planning appropriate activities such as walks in the park and playing on the floor or games of chase or hide and seek. Also all of that wonderful exercise called "bend and stretch" for changing diapers! Then there is laundry, cleaning, paying bills, planning shopping for and preparing meals, etc. I think your in-laws might get pretty tired just thinking about it! BTW my daughter works and soon will have a baby and a 3 yr old and I think she should get mother of the year! I gladly help her in any way I can!

Sandra - posted on 01/05/2012

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Oh yes! I am in the same situation as you are. I too feel that my children are worth the financial sacrifice we are making for me to stay home however, my inlaws feel otherwise and worry more about their son than they do their grandchildren. When my husband moans about me not going back to work right away, I have to remind him that I am working. I say to him,"I already do have a job and what you mean is that you want me to get a second job." That really puts him in place and gives him perspective. That is what your inlaws need to be reminded of as well! I hope your husband stands up for you when they say things like this. If he does, let him handle the situation. You don't need the added stress. In my situation, I now speak up for myself and they hate it, but I have to worry about my emotional well-being as well! Your inlaws should also know that if you were to ask to be paid for your job, no one could afford you! You are raising your son and the future of our country! That is priceless and well worth the time and sacrifice!

Rachel - posted on 01/04/2012

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It's not for them to say what is best for your family. You stated that you and your husband looked at everything and saw that your check would just go to daycare. It is a MUCH better thing that you, his mother, be the one to care for him. I believe it is so important that you do! I would say maybe talk to your husband and ask him to politely tell them to mind their own business. They had their own family, and I'm sure they made choices their parents didn't agree with. Now, it is your turn, with your family. Be nice, but be firm. The decision has been made. It's rude of them to try and change that decision.

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Although your religious convictions may or may not having anything to do with your decision to stay home, the Bible is clear that men and women are made differently and that men are to provide for their families. It doesn't say that women can't work, The Proverbs 31 woman had servants and a business, but it does state that we areto respect our husbands and train up our children. I applaud your decision to be the one to stay home and train up your child. Money and possessions aren't going with us when we die, but the legacy we leave behind in the lives we invest in can have the opportunity to bless future generations.

Joy - posted on 01/04/2012

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You can also bring up this article about how much SAHM's are worth: http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,354638,00.html The article's from 2008 & for a Massachusett's based income, so adjust accordingly. Might help if you get any more questions about it.

Stacie - posted on 01/04/2012

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Did your mother in law get a job after she had your husband? If not, I'd tell her you are just following her good example of raising your child for a few years while you have the chance. You can always get a job once he enters school and that day comes faster than you would think. You only have them for such a short time before school starts. If you can manage it, do it and if the financial burden becomes too great in the future, don't beat yourself up either about having to go back to work. We all do what is best for our families and if being a stay-at-home mom is what is best, do it without regret.

Roxie - posted on 01/04/2012

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:::UPDATE:::

Hubby talked to the inlaws rather "firmly" and i think they get the picture that if the topic is brought up again we won't be coming up to visit anytime soon, nor are they allowed down here. They were a little taken back because my husband is not a man of many words, which made it more impactful when he said what he had to say. Basically in a nutshell, told them this is our family our child and our finances have nothing to do with them, esp. when we don't ask for anything. And that me not working in "society" and working at home for the well being of our child is OUR decision not mine alone. I have to say i was very proud of him :0)

I'm hoping that this will be the last time because Lord knows i don't want them not to see Gabe, but being disrespected is not an option.

CJ i am exploring the option myself about doing something part time when he gets a little older, just so i can have me time and make a little extra money when the time is right. Turn my hobby for Dance into a part time job or something. But you are right and a few other ladies said the same thing, This "Job" that we're doing is the most important one in society and actually makes a difference. That the tired and stressed feeling that we get is a good feeling as we are investing it in our kids, not giving ourselves away for a boss that can care less about our families. This whole ordeal and the help of everyone here really helped me work past this insecurity that i had been feeling being a newbie SAHM. So thank you everyone!



I really appreciate everyone's comments and advice. And i'm glad that i did stick my nose out of it and let my husband take care of it because it was also kind of a bonding experience to see him take up for me like that. He said he never took it to that level before because he just wanted to keep the peace, but when he saw how much it hurt my feelings he got pissed.



SO glad i joined this group, this was exactly what i needed! Have a awesome rest of the week!



::Thanks again Everyone::

Heather - posted on 01/03/2012

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I would tell hubby not to talk about financial stuff with them anymore, think of another reason that you can't travel and stuff. Have hubby make it clear that he made the choice and he wanted you to stay home and he didn't want his child in daycare. or I would ask her if she's willing to move closer so she can be the babysitter. LOL

CJ - posted on 01/03/2012

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I get comments all the time...only in my case it's more often my parents than his. I say ignore them, and let your hubby handle it. They're probably just going to think your making excuses if it comes from you. In my case, the thing that really bugs me is when my dad gets on my case for not having a job when he only works a maximum of 2 months a year himself. There's nothing wrong with being a stay-at-home mom, really it hasn't been that long since most-all moms were home with the kids. People seem to think there's something wrong now when a mom wants to stay at home and focus on raising her family, because everyone seems to think all women should prefer to have a career. I have always wanted to be a stay-at-home mom...granted, I am planning on putting my daughter in preschool and getting at least a part-time job, but that's because I find myself needed some time apart from my daughter. And she needs some time apart from me. She is so mommy clingy that she cries when I go to the grocery store for ten minutes without her. We have trouble going out together without our daughter because we're so worried that she's just going to cry for me the whole time she's being babysat. She also will insist I do things for her when her father tries to help out. It's getting really hard for us, so I think a little time at a preschool while mommy works would be the best for both of us. But don't give in and get a job if it's not what is right for your family. And YOU know what's right for your family, not your in-laws. At least your husband seems to be supporting the decision to stay home. Often my fiance makes me feel like he's not okay with being the only one working, even though we both agreed it was best for me to stay home, that getting a job would not help us financially because daycare would suck my paycheck dry anyways. I know it's because he hates his job, but it really hurts sometimes, that he thinks just because he's got a job and I don't that I've got no reason to be just as worn out at the end of the day. Be thankful to have a husband who supports your being a stay-at-home mom.

Emmy - posted on 01/03/2012

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My parents always tell me that I should go back to work and think I'm being lazy by staying home. I have 2 kids so daycare would definetely come close to what I make plus my youngest is only 6 months old so I want to enjoy her more

Samantha - posted on 01/03/2012

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shut them up by taking in a chid your sons age! you provide care for someone elses child and get paid for it you still get to be home and your son gets a play mate to grow up with! it works out for everyone you will still get to stay home and have an income at the same time!!!

Christy - posted on 01/03/2012

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First of all, make sure your husband isn't feeding into their concerns. No, not saying he is doing it intentionally by any means, but since they are HIS immediate family, once they bring it up when you aren't around, he needs to make the conversation stop dead in it's tracks, and if they won't shut up, then he needs to leave. Period. It's your life with your family and they need to butt out, and he needs to set the boundaries in this case. And no, I would not say anything to them at all. Take the high road!!!!!!! Good luck!!!!!!!!! :)

Laura - posted on 01/03/2012

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You should definitely have a talk with your hubby. Make sure he knows that it is his job to set the in-laws straight. And if after he talks to them if any more comments come up then I'd let em have it.

Michelle - posted on 01/03/2012

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I went from working to SAHM. It was hard at first and I guess some days it still is. I had been worked in high school, college etc so suddenly not working at 30 was a big change. My friends were all working so I was pretty isolated. But you find things that make it better. Join a playgroups or even just taking the kids to a play area. I think the biggest Help is making friends with other SAHM's if you can. You don't have to drop your current friends, just add some who share your lifestyle. I am constantly judged most often by working moms who really don't get what I do. I think I really just had to realize that I am happiest being home with my kids and I shouldn't listen to all those people that think what I do is a waste of time and that I'm lazy. Just look at your kids and you'll see their opinion doesn't really matter.

Roxie - posted on 01/03/2012

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Yeah that's been the hardest adjustment, is the isolation thing. Before we had Gabe, we did discuss me working but i didn't feel like i was in a "career path" so it didn't matter to me to stay home. But i don't think that i knew what i was getting myself into, as in what the lifestyle would really be like. Friends started to disappear, invites to get together stopped and i won't lie i was a little hurt. I just wasn't prepared for the lifestyle change.

Like you, we weren't rolling in dough and vacations by any means before him, and certainly not now. I don't have a relationship with my mom, or any women in my family for that matter so i just had nothing to go off of. I often feel like i'm lost with no map, and i rely on books upon books to get me through what the heck i'm supposed to do now...lol..Maybe my insecurity shows and thats why people feel that they can say these awful things.

Thanks Jenna for your encouraging words, because now i don't feel like i'm losing it...lol..That this is normal to feel this way. I feel the same way, i know this will pay off in the long run maybe in the mean time i can find something i can do from home that belongs to me. In the "world" i didn't have a career path, but at least my job at home means something in the greater scope of things :0) ::sigh:: I feel much better now and i'm going to ride this wave for the rest of the day! Let Hubby deal with the IL ;0)

Jenna - posted on 01/03/2012

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Glad to hear that your husband is so supportive. I think for me it wasn't so much of a lifestyle change because I always expected that when I had a baby, I would stop working and stay home to take care of the baby and any other kids I might have. But it was a lot harder than I imagined it would be--the isolation and even the financial hardships that come with hit. We don't live a lavish lifestyle, which means we don't get to go to Disneyland several times a year like some of my friends, we don't go on "vacation" other than to visit family, and we can only do that when we have the means to do it (we haven't been to see my husband's side of the family for several years now--my side lives a little closer), and even just being able to buy a new pair of shoes because I like them. Those were hard adjustments for me. Not that I was oozing in money before, I certainly wasn't (I was a schoolteacher!) but it's definitely harder now.

I guess what helped me is that I have a lot of support from my side of the family (the wives of my five brothers are SAHMs and my own mom was too when we were all growing up) and that I have found a niche in my church of a good group of SAHMs where we meet for playgroups and have girls' nights and things. Being that isolated, though, day in and day out, can be really tough. Even now, nearly nine years down the road from when I had my first baby, and now I have five kids, the isolation gets to me. I don't have things that go on every day and some days, some weeks even, I hardly leave the house. It can be lonely, but I think it will all be worth it in the long run.

Roxie - posted on 01/03/2012

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My husband has been completely supportive of me staying home. He likes after coming home from work esp. on those bad days and i'm here with Gabe; reminds him what he's working for he says. He has talked to his parents about this multiple times, this morning their remarks we're in a nicely typed email after we told them last night we couldn't come up to visit them. Everything seemed fine but then we see that letter along with their other suggestions to "make life easier". He had a very close relationship with his parents before, but when we moved to Saint Louis from Chicago, the relationship became very strained, and esp. after we had Gabe. i honestly think they only say these things because they blame me for the move, but again, that is our business.



I guess i just wanted to say something to them because i was letting my emotions get the best of me. You ladies are right it is something that he needs to handle, i guess i just feel like if i don't they will see me as a push over.



But to take some responsibility, like Jenna said i need to become more confident in my decision. I love being at home with my snugglebug, but it's just an adjustment for me having my life change. Not having as much money in the budget can be stressful, but i love the fact that i am the one that sees his first and teach him. I just wish others would understand this as a blessing and not focus on the money so much. But i guess i need to do some more acceptance talks with myself so i don't allow this to bother me so much. Did any of you ladies have to deal with the lifestyle switch, working to not? if so, how did you do it on the emotional and mental level?

Jenna - posted on 01/03/2012

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I think that your husband needs to be the one to talk to his parents. There isn't a lot you can do about changing people's opinions. And really, your family's finances aren't any of their business.

I have definitely felt judged at times by others about my choice to stay home, but for the most part, I'm so strongly convinced that what I'm doing is the right thing for my family that I don't usually let other people's opinions on the matter bother me. I just ignore what they say and go on doing what I feel is right.

I think the biggest question I would have for you is how supportive is your husband? My husband wouldn't stand for his family to say things like that about me, he'd be pretty angry if they said something like that to him. My husband also is completely supportive of me staying home. Anytime I toy with the idea of going back to work simply because I'm tired of living on such a tight budget, he finds ways to pick up the slack and make a little more money because he wants to help me be able to stay home and I really appreciate him for that. If your husband is borderline about your reasons for staying home, you might not get his support in backing you up to his family. I hope he's more like mine and really believes that you staying home is for the best.

Michelle - posted on 01/03/2012

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Since it's your in laws let your husband handle it. It's more likely to be heard and taken seriously from him. They need to mind their own business. Your husband can be the one to point out that you went over the finances and daycare cost your whole paycheck (hence zero difference in money). They really just need to mind their own business. I still haven't figured out why people are so worried about other people's finances or how they take care of their kids.

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