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Old 10-15-2009, 11:52 AM   #21
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I work part-time and DW is the one working full-time and making the mega-bucks. We are both happy with this arrangement. A lot of people don't get it, my family least of all. My dad used to say that I threw away my career to become a maid... until he retired and became himself a maid to his much younger wife. Now he cooks and cleans while she goes to work and pays the bills. Needless to say that he has stopped giving me grief for it.
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Old 10-15-2009, 11:54 AM   #22
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Tell them that in your early working years you were frugal and saved and invested....and people made fun of your frugality....but now you're getting the last laugh because you can afford to have choices and you've decided to stay home and take care of your family.
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Old 10-15-2009, 01:53 PM   #23
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Hmmm - you Italian? Practice your best Marlon Brando/Frank Sinatra - Godfather/Chairman of the Board routine explaining how with your 1st 20yrs at mega corp you put yourself in such a position the you can make life/the world 'an offer it can't refuse.'

Be colorful, embellish and don't use too many hard figures or traceable facts.

Create a family legend that will resonate thru the ages.

heh heh heh - of course if they really tick you off - tell'em to go pound sand.
Right on. This has got to be the best responce of the thread.
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Old 10-15-2009, 01:56 PM   #24
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Hey all, just checking back in - What a great community! Thanks for the comments and advice it helps.

I do need to be careful of being oversensitive, ironically it's mostly immediate family (parents / siblings / in-laws) that are the reoccurring offenders. The interesting thing about "friends" is that we drifted away from a couple of friends after the change due to their "uncomfortableness", it's amazing how imprisoned some folks are with cultural baggage. On the other hand, many other friends, and many new friends since we rearranged things are wonderful and supportive, most are wishing they could do it too.

Again thanks for the advice, picked up several new ideas of how to reverse the subject matter and move on.

Have Fun!
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Old 10-15-2009, 05:05 PM   #25
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What everyone else said. I think it would be a tremendous plus to have a parent available to the kids before and after school during the teenage years.
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Old 10-15-2009, 05:14 PM   #26
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Just one more...

When you have the "best grin" down pat, add to it a single word.

Trifecta.
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Old 10-15-2009, 08:11 PM   #27
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Mickslick, congratulations! You are now a CHE (I call it Chief Household Executive). It's a noble calling with a long and glorious history.

I can think of three responses to those who would mock you:

"Well, the laundry isn't going to do itself."

"My wife just LOVES having a wife, and I like to keep her happy. Your wife might like one, too. Think about it."

And, finally, for close family who might be stuck in the tease-o-cycle: "Hey, this change has been a big one for us but it's working out well. However, I'd really rather prefer to have your support and encouragement, and I'm finding your comments snarky and demeaning. I'm sure you don't mean to come across this way and are only trying to tease, but it's getting old. Thanks for understanding."

I've used this last one with my brother (and he with me) to break old one-upmanship habits. It's worked well for us, especially when said respectfully and in private.
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Old 10-15-2009, 08:24 PM   #28
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This is fairly common difficulty that gets reported on this board from time to time. It's no wonder, to live this way you are ignoring social custom of very long standing and also a certain amount of biology.

I am glad that it is working pretty well for you.
Ha
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Old 10-15-2009, 10:08 PM   #29
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Of course, it may simply be a gentle form of "ribbing" and you are a litte too sensitive. .
I'm leaning that way too. OP's post emphasizes his 20 yrs of contribution to supporting the family, building up a nestegg, etc., implying those things are important to him. In fact, as long as he's comfortable it shouldn't matter if he never worked a minute and a highly compensated DW has always brought home the bacon.

I have a bit of the opposite problem. I occasionally attend a weekday afternoon gathering at a local pub with a few other guys who are also home and free to do so. Those of us who are "kept men" wear a special badge of honor and are held in high respect by the others. My DW only works part time (about one third) and the compensation isn't really significant so I have to keep my answers simple. When asked if I'm a house hubby with a working DW, I just say "yes!" So far that has allowed my to keep my "kept man" status despite saying that DW "w*rks is stretching things a bit.
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Old 10-23-2009, 12:47 PM   #30
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I didn't really read this thead till now. My advice? Get some new friends and limit contact with nosy family if possible. They are just jealous..........
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Old 10-30-2009, 10:25 AM   #31
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I recently ERed this year when I closed down my business, and after a couple of months DW decided to go back to work as a public school librarian. She doesn’t make big money ($41K gross), but the health benefits are pretty good and she gets summers off plus big breaks for Christmas and Thanksgiving, so that works out well for traveling (going skiing this Christmas and we were able to stay a month this last summer in Costa Rica, for example). She quit working when our kids were born 10 and 12 years ago, and she was getting bored around the house doing house chores. When the market crashed soon after I started ER we both figured it wasn’t a bad idea to have a little extra income coming in for awhile.

It was a big adjustment for me mentally becoming the “house husband”-- cleaning, cooking, taking and picking up the kids from school and events, grocery shopping, etc. I’m still trying to get used to it, but so far it has been a very satisfying change of pace for me. I do feel a little guilty when DW has to get to her school at 7:15 since she is not a morning person, so I try to do as much as I can around the house during the day so it looks good when she gets home and sometimes I even cook a meal that doesn’t suck! Frankly, I do feel a little silly doing some of this stuff, and I’m very sensitive to any comments made by others about our status—my usual response is, “F off—you’re just jealous”.

Obviously I’m not the most accomplished or polished communicator, so please keep the more socially acceptable comments coming. I can use them!
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Old 10-30-2009, 11:00 AM   #32
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I think "F off" is the appropriate response...
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Old 10-30-2009, 11:15 AM   #33
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It was a big adjustment for me mentally becoming the “house husband”-- cleaning, cooking, taking and picking up the kids from school and events, grocery shopping, etc. I’m still trying to get used to it, but so far it has been a very satisfying change of pace for me. I do feel a little guilty when DW has to get to her school at 7:15 since she is not a morning person, so I try to do as much as I can around the house during the day so it looks good when she gets home and sometimes I even cook a meal that doesn’t suck! Frankly, I do feel a little silly doing some of this stuff, and I’m very sensitive to any comments made by others about our status—my usual response is, “F off—you’re just jealous”.

Obviously I’m not the most accomplished or polished communicator, so please keep the more socially acceptable comments coming. I can use them!
I personally think you are being a wonderful husband.

So why do your responses HAVE to be socially acceptable?
I've got some real winners, not necesarily G rated, if you want some doozies. None involve 4 letter words.

Different gender here, so I don't have the "stigma" you describe. However, on the flip side, I voluntarily exited a high grade govt position with total j*b security and excellent benefits. Now what lifetime career woman in her right mind would "leave all that" to become a household engineer?

Yours truly.
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Old 10-30-2009, 12:27 PM   #34
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I recently ERed this year when I closed down my business, and after a couple of months DW decided to go back to work as a public school librarian. She doesn’t make big money ($41K gross), but the health benefits are pretty good and she gets summers off plus big breaks for Christmas and Thanksgiving, so that works out well for traveling (going skiing this Christmas and we were able to stay a month this last summer in Costa Rica, for example). She quit working when our kids were born 10 and 12 years ago, and she was getting bored around the house doing house chores. When the market crashed soon after I started ER we both figured it wasn’t a bad idea to have a little extra income coming in for awhile.

It was a big adjustment for me mentally becoming the “house husband”-- cleaning, cooking, taking and picking up the kids from school and events, grocery shopping, etc. I’m still trying to get used to it, but so far it has been a very satisfying change of pace for me. I do feel a little guilty when DW has to get to her school at 7:15 since she is not a morning person, so I try to do as much as I can around the house during the day so it looks good when she gets home and sometimes I even cook a meal that doesn’t suck! Frankly, I do feel a little silly doing some of this stuff, and I’m very sensitive to any comments made by others about our status—my usual response is, “F off—you’re just jealous”.

Obviously I’m not the most accomplished or polished communicator, so please keep the more socially acceptable comments coming. I can use them!
Clearly you are not comfortable yet with your new role. First you have to accept the fact that this is who you are now, a house husband. Then you won't be so sensitive to other people's comments.

But, in some cases, "F off" is definitely the most appropriate answer.

This recession has been particularly damaging for men (some call it the mancession because men have disproportionally lost their jobs during this recession) and I think that "house husbands" are probably going to be far more common in the future (I know of 3 other house husbands in our circle of close friends) . It's a brave new world...
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Old 10-30-2009, 12:45 PM   #35
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Clearly you are not comfortable yet with your new role. First you have to accept the fact that this is who you are now, a house husband. Then you won't be so sensitive to other people's comments.

But, in some cases, "F off" is definitely the most appropriate answer.

This recession has been particularly damaging for men (some call it the mancession because men have disproportionally lost their jobs during this recession) and I think that "house husbands" are probably going to be far more common in the future (I know of 3 other house husbands in our circle of close friends) . It's a brave new world...
Well, some of them will be house husbands until they simply become "divorced men".

Ha
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Old 10-30-2009, 01:35 PM   #36
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Well, some of them will be house husbands until they simply become "divorced men".

Ha
You mean, they will no longer have to cook, clean and take care of the kids, they'll just have to go cashing in that alimony check every month?
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Old 10-30-2009, 02:00 PM   #37
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You mean, they will no longer have to cook, clean and take care of the kids, they'll just have to go cashing in that alimony check every month?
Optimist?

heh heh heh -
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Old 10-30-2009, 03:39 PM   #38
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Just tell them you enjoy washing and ironing your wife's panties. This is kind of like all the 'What do you do all day?' questions. I always enjoy coming up with some off the wall response that usually ends all the questions.
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Old 11-07-2009, 12:40 AM   #39
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Tell them that you've changed careers and that you are now a gigilo with an exclusive long term client.
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Old 11-07-2009, 03:00 AM   #40
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Some more suggested replies:

1. Those put options I purchased on AIG a couple of years ago pretty much paid for my retirement [if the person asking the question works for a company whose shares crashed during the credit crisis, substitute that company for AIG]

2. I'm writing a book about how to retire early. Judging by the number of bad financial self help books out there it should be pretty easy

While "Foxtrot Oscar" might feel like an appropriate response, I'd go with something intended to make them envious of your freedom.
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