More than 2 years ago, I made a career change so I can focus on becoming a father.
My call center job gave me some of the best luxuries in life, like no hellish traffic and the best employee benefits a person can get. Most 9–5 jobs now pay very low and not to mention the traffic you have to face every single day. I’ve always told myself that I won’t be able to find a job that I’d love enough to not think about the horrible pay, unforgivable employee benefits, and horrid commute. I felt so lucky to be working in the BPO industry. I would go around telling people that I love my job. Yes, the shifts may be bad, but at least the pay is great.
But as I reach my third year at work, a wonderful surprise came along. I was going to become a dad. This news immediately made me see a lot of things differently. For starters, I didn’t want my call center job anymore. I wanted to become the best dad in the world and the only way I know how to make that happen is if I get myself one of those “9–5” jobs.
It took me 3 long months to find a job that highly interested me. A job that I could take on while still maintaining an active role at home. I have never regretted leaving my previous job and anyone who knows me will tell you that my family will always be my priority.
It was the Perfect Change
More dads are now taking on an active role at home. According to a 2010 study by Workopolis, a staggering 71% of fathers feels guilt whenever they let work take precedence over family. Additionally, 51% of these surveyed fathers would gladly take less money to have more time with family. There’s no doubt that more dads are becoming more concerned about parenting than at any time in history.
The last 3 years has been the best time of my life. I was completely present for my son’s birth. I heard him speak his first word. I saw him take his first step. I will continue to see many of his firsts because I wasn’t scared of making a career change.
It’s All About Teamwork
My girlfriend and I have learned so much about each other through this journey. We are more understanding of each other now. Through our experiences, we were able to develop several working strategies to share the responsibilities. While I could say that most of the parenting comes from her, it’s the little things that I do around the house that makes a difference.
There are a thousand books to read on how to become a good parent. But all those books will tell you the same thing over and over again. It’s all about teamwork. Dividing the tasks properly and managing expectations of each other will help you get through anything. It may require sacrifices at times, but it’s always going to be worth it. We understand this more than ever now.
As a father, I want to encourage more dads to have an active role at home. Your kids need your attention and so is your partner. Fathers shouldn’t be ashamed of spending more time with the family even if it means having to pass up an opportunity at work.