Every year on the third Sunday of June, we honor one of the most important men in our lives, our dads!
For Mike Krause, practicing sitting up, is daddy’s duty, as is playtime and snack time.
Since losing his job a few years ago, he’s been fulfilling the role of Mr. Mom to his two young kids, while his wife Linda is at work.
“It really wasn’t planned at first, but that’s the way it happened, and I’m glad it did,” said Mike. “It’s been a wonderful experience so far. It’s been great.”
The Krause’s have two young kids Lauren and Emily. Mike learned fast that being a stay at home parent isn’t as easy as he thought.
“I quickly learned as a father, that silence is bad, because I found when things are quiet they’re trying to get into something they shouldn’t,” he said.
Another lesson learned: how to keep his sanity during days that can become very repetitious. He tries to come up with activities and take the kids outside as often as possible. He’s even gotten used to being one of the only dads at “Mom’s Only” events.
“People look at me less different than they would five to ten years ago,” said Mike.
One tip that Mike would give to other stay at home parents: make time for yourself and adult time. His release is running.
“It’s what keeps me sane. I get up each morning around 4:30-5am and do my runs in the morning, before my wife goes off to work. It’s my own little slice of sanity.”
Being the stay at home parent means you’re not missing out on any milestones, especially with kids at a young age. But it’s not always easy on the other parent.
“My pediatrician told me nothing ever happens for the first time until their mom sees it,” he said. “I know she struggles with that, missing out on the firsts.”
Mike’s current situation makes him appreciate his own parents even more. He says while being a stay at home parent is harder than he imagined, it’s all worth it, about 99% of the time.
“I feel like in a way, every day is Father’s Day, because you do get to spend so much time with them. Some days better than others,” said Mike.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are about 189,000 stay at home dads in the U.S., compared to 5 million stay at home moms.
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