This is almost a part three to why I am Indebted Mom…
We had our second child not that long ago and, just like with our first child, I started running numbers to see if I could stay home. One of our biggest hurdle in the stay at home race is that I make more money than my husband, who is mostly unable to take on a second job because his current job requires 50% travel. A little over a year ago, he made some extra income but it wasn’t worth the effort to me. He was unavailable every single night for about three months and made around $1,000. The hourly rate on that is terrible – I don’t even want to calculate it.
Instead of looking for other income, we started looking into using our 401k’s to pay off our student loan debt. Student loan payments and childcare consume almost all of one of our salaries, so if we paid off student loans, and I could stay home, we wouldn’t need childcare, so there you have it! But we still owe something like $100k in student loans and our 401(k)s are not doing super, so we’d practically drain our retirement funds.
As you do, I took to the internet to see what any experts thought of this approach, which I knew wasn’t necessarily the smartest thing… And I read one fine article that walked through the pros and cons and ended with a lecture about the couple needing to learn to live on one salary if she wants to stay home.
Clearly this financial guru didn’t really understand the question. This mom laid out a scenario much like mine, where one spouse is working just to afford student loans. They – and we – are effectively already living on one income!!
We have made no decisions on this matter; it’s something we are prayerfully considering and I’d even welcome input from the blogosphere.
No matter what we do, I am indebted to love the Christ has shown for me, and I want to “repay” that by raising my children to love God, honor His ways, and to be constantly in His service. I know I need to teach my children to better understand the financial world and I’ve been prayerful on these matters.