Being a SAHD Is Basically Retired

Being a SAHD is Basically retiredYou know what. A lot of people disagree with me about early retirement. They say being a SAHD is NOT the same as being retired. Stay-at-home moms and dads have a lot of responsibilities. Staying home is as hard as working. Yes, that’s true when our son was little. I retired from my engineering career to become a SAHD/blogger when our son was 18 months old. It was very difficult at first. I had to take care of a toddler who needed 100% of my attention. It was a lot of work. I had no time for myself until he started preschool.

That was the turning point. Our son started by going to preschool for 2 days/week, then more often every year. Finally, I had time to do what I want. After our son started kindergarten, I had 8 am to 3 pm to myself every weekday. That’s basically retirement. I can do whatever I want for most of the day. After 3 pm, I spend a couple of hours with my son. Then I start preparing dinner a little after 5 pm. I don’t think a full retirement will get much better than this. For me, being a SAHD is basically being retired.

BC (Before Covid)

However, that was BC (Before Covid.) Now, life is very similar to when I first quit my job. These days, I spend 9 am to 3 pm homeschooling my son or as some people call it, crisis-schooling. This is nowhere close to retirement. We are stressed out and mad at each other for half the day. Now, I see why people say being a stay-at-home parent is a tough job. They are right. It’s really hard when the kid is home all day long.

So I concede for now. Being a SAHD isn’t the same as being retired. I can work on some projects with my son, but some projects I need to work on alone. Blogging is one of these. I need time to think and formulate a blog post. I can’t write a good blog post with constant interruptions. By 3 pm, I’m all worn out and need a nap. (We usually go bike riding and play basketball from 2 to 3 pm.) Then, it’s time to cook dinner. After dinner, I need a break. There is no time or energy to read, research, and write a blog post. For the duration of the lockdown, I’m not retired. I’m just tired. (Mrs. RB40 is working full time from home. After dinner, she helps our son with writing.)

Actually, it’s kind of amazing how I was able to blog when I first started in 2010. Back then, I worked a stressful full-time job, helped with a baby, and still managed to crank out 3 blog posts every week. How was that possible? I guess I was 10 years younger and had more energy. Also, I was desperate to find a way out of my engineering career. It was easy to blog when you’re properly motivated.

**My guide on How to Start a Blog and Why You Should. Everyone should have a blog. It’s a great way to build your brand and improve your writing. You can even make some extra income if you’re lucky. Try it out if you’re stuck at home with not much to do. It’s way better than watching TV all day.

I can’t wait for normalcy

Okay, that’s all I got today. It’s a short post, but you should lower your expectations in this Covid era. Our son’s teachers told us we should just go at our own pace. Most of the work won’t be graded anyway. I’m taking that advice to heart. We’re doing less academic work and taking more breaks. It’ll be the same way at Retire by 40 as well. I’ll be happy to put a new post up occasionally.

Anyway, I hope things go back to normal this fall. RB40Jr needs to go back to school. I want my early retirement back!

How about you? Are you handling the lockdown okay? Is it harder to be a stay-at-home parent right now? 

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Joe started Retire by 40 in 2010 to figure out how to retire early. He spent 16 years working in computer design and enjoyed the technical work immensely. However, the job became too stressful and Joe retired from his engineering career to become a stay-at-home dad/blogger at 38. Today, he blogs about financial independence, early retirement, investing, and living a frugal lifestyle.

Passive income is the key to early retirement. This year, Joe is increasing his investment in real estate with CrowdStreet. He can invest in projects across the U.S. and diversify his real estate portfolio. There are many interesting projects available so sign up and check them out.

Joe also highly recommends Personal Capital for DIY investors. He logs on to Personal Capital almost daily to check his cash flow and net worth. They have many useful tools that will help DIY investors analyze their portfolio and plan for retirement.

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