There are many sound reasons for families to commit to having one stay-at-home parent, at least during the early formative years. Wanting to care for your child yourself, enjoying the smiles, and being a part of your baby’s fleeting childhood are all legitimate desires. But returning to work after a career break to look after young children for a few years might be more challenging than you expected.
Fathers do stay at home to be their kids’ primary caregivers sometimes of course, but in most cases the parent who ends up taking a career break is still the mother. Her career will be impacted by the very fact that she gets pregnant. Taking time off for prenatal appointments, regular pregnancy signs and symptoms, and of course going on maternity leave, can and often do all affect a woman’s earning potential and chances to climb up the career ladder.
Individuals don’t always have control over how being a stay-at-home parent will impact their future jobs, and it depends on the profession as well. Still, there are proactive steps everyone who is committed to being at home with their children for however long can take to improve their odds of being able to pick up where they left off when they want to. Here are our tips.
- Keep up to date on what is happening in your field. Read about the latest developments, follow new studies, and go to conferences – whatever is relevant for your profession.
- Take courses to keep your set of skills relevant to the changing needs of your career field if you need to.
- Network! Staying in touch with former colleagues and contacts and see what opportunities are available. Show that you are still relevant.
- Consider working part-time, if possible. This might eliminate a lot of the difficulties parents who took years off from the workplace face.
Plan ahead. Do you intend to go back to a similar job you had when you left work to parent? Or do you want to use this opportunity to change your career path, or even start your own business? Whatever your dreams are, they will be easier to realize if your plan out a strategy in advance.
About The Bloggers at Trying To Conceive
The bloggers at Trying To Conceive write about fertility, pregnancy, and parenting. Their free ovulation calendar is a great tool for women who are trying for a baby and want to find out when they are most fertile.