She Was the Sole Breadwinner
Did They Succeed?
Brenda: It's hard to remember the way we were. Now we have two terrific boys; Dylan is 17 and Jared is 11. Eight years ago, we moved to Chipley, Florida, where Don's parents live. We'd been there on vacation, and on a fluke, I heard about a job at a hospital pharmacy that paid much more money than I'd been earning. I got the position that day. It was tough for me to leave my family in Iowa since we were all very close, and other than my in-laws, we didn't have a network of friends in Florida to call upon for things. But it forced Don and me to depend on each other again. Don: ...And we needed to get away from those fierce Iowa winters! Brenda: I don't resent being the breadwinner anymore. Counseling helped me realize that one reason I felt I couldn't count on Don was because I never gave him the opportunity to show me how much he could help out. I was so super controlling that I always insisted we do things my way. Once I stepped back, I saw how the boys thrived under their father's care -- and how special it was for them to have him around. Don: But I needed to regain my confidence. So I went back to college part time, and took care of the boys after class. But we soon realized that my being a stay-at-home dad was working so well that I should stay home full time.
Brenda: He has also become the kids' soccer coach and scout leader. We're having fun again as a family. Don: And financially, we're doing just fine. Still, it's hard to shake the feeling that I should be doing more to provide for my family. Even though there are a lot more stay-at-home dads these days, down here I'm the only guy on the field trips. But between Brenda and me, it's no longer an issue. Brenda: Raising children is such an important job, and now Don excels at it. I thank God for that every day.
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