Sure I’m scared to be starting out as a stay-at-home dad, hereafter referred to as SAHD. Even just that acronym is full of doom. If you are a man and stay at home with your kids, you will not just be sad, but SAHD. It’s like sad, but you put a little bit of disgust into the “a” sound right before you hit the D.
I’m scared of all sorts of things, let me try to list them for you:
-I’m scared one of our kids will die. We’ve had some close calls mainly involving 400 E traffic in Provo. Our home area is a lot safer here, with very restricted road access, but there are plenty of other ways for our kids to die.
-I’m scared that Cait will never forgive me if one of our kids die or are seriously injured. She worries about this so much, I don’t know if she’d get over it soon enough to save the marriage.
-I’m scared that I will scar our kids for life, mainly through not stimulating them educationally. This is also somewhat of a transmitted fear from Cait, but is still legitimate.
-I’m scared that I’ll hate it. 3 years old and 5 months are tough ages, especially with Tallulah still breastfeeding. I’m afraid I’ll just get overwhelmed and go into some kind of survival mode that won’t help anybody.
-I’m scared that I’ll resent Cait for getting to go to school, or that she’ll resent me for getting to be home with the kids.
-I’m scared I’ll get to the point where all I talk about and think about is my kids. And that my intelligence will significantly decrease.
-I’m scared that I’ll feel under appreciated.
-I’m scared that I’ll deserve the lack of appreciation that I get.
-I’m scared that I’ll never get in the habit of cooking and Cait will always have to do it.
-I’m scared I’ll never write a good book or reach my potential as a runner because I was playing with my kids.
-I’m scared that there really is something about being male that makes you a terrible stay-at-home parent.
-I’m afraid that I’ll never find friends among other stay-at-home parents.
-I’m afraid of judgement for violating social norms. I’m afraid people will see me as lazy or incapable of getting a real job.
Yep, I’m pretty scared. I was going to post some of my possible solutions to these fears, but I don’t really have that many and what I did have pretty much comes down to this:
-Terrible stuff might always happen, I can’t live a life governed by fear.
-My kids are real, individual people and there’s no way I can make them be anything they don’t want to be.
-Other people have it much harder than I do. Much, much harder.
But I’m still scared.