Househusband: Father On Parental Leave

The classic role model: The father brings home the money and feeds the family. The mother stands in front of the stove and devotes herself to raising the children. Outdated and obsolete? Absolutely. There has long been no question that raising children is the responsibility of both parents. Nevertheless, fathers have only had the option of taking parental leave since 2007. In the second quarter of 2015, 97,000 men took parental leave. Alongside those, however, are still the 40% of Germany’s men who admit: “I’d love to take time off for family and child, but I don’t dare admit it in front of my work colleagues and boss.” We want to encourage you to take advantage of the state-subsidized time off! Fear of the supervisor’s reaction is often unfounded. Many bosses value a man’s request for parental leave as a high level of social competence and credit him with a good work-life balance. Of course, there are still the conservative, misogynistic office animals, but parental leave is your right and you can help make it normal. During parental leave, you can build a close bond with your child at an early age, take the pressure off your wife, and strengthen your relationship. Of course, parental leave also helps you personally and helps you to assume your role as a father. In addition, there is the financial advantage that you can draw parental allowance for two months longer. We will inform you here about everything concerning parental leave and parental allowance as a father and show you the advantages! Don’t be put off by formalities, but enjoy the time you have with your child!

Entitlement To Parental Leave: You Need To Know!


Birth parents are both entitled to parental leave and can share it. The same applies to adoptive parents, of course. With the consent of the partner, parental leave may also be taken for children of the partner.

For How Long?

Together, both parents are entitled to a maximum of three years of parental leave. They can divide this between themselves. Of course, your parental leave months may also overlap. This can be a nice way to bring more time as a family. Fathers therefore have the opportunity to take parental leave immediately after the birth. At this time, maternity leave is included in the parental leave for the woman. At least two months of parental leave must be taken: This means that it is not possible to take only one month off. The three years of parental leave may be divided into three periods. If only the mother takes parental leave, it normally lasts until the child’s third birthday. However, it is also possible for the father or mother to take part of their parental leave between the child’s third and eighth birthday. The prerequisite for this, however, is that at least 12 months of parental leave have been taken before the child’s third birthday.

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What exactly does “taking parental leave” actually mean? It is a claim of the employee against the employer. Father and mother are allowed to take time off to raise and care for their child, but their employment relationship remains in place during this time. When parental leave ends, the employee is entitled to return to the same employment relationship. Therefore, the protection against dismissal begins as soon as the parental leave is registered.

Can I Still Work?

During parental leave, you may not work more than 30 hours per week. Even if you have several jobs or are self-employed, you must work a total of 30 hours per week. This is strictly controlled and failure to comply can result in the cancellation or reduction of parental leave and parental allowance. As a rule, only 14 months are financially supported by the state. You can find more information on financing in the section on parental allowance.

When Do I Have To Submit The Application?

The application for parental leave must be submitted no later than 7 weeks before the start date and no later than 8 weeks before the start date. You therefore have a time window of one week. You should therefore talk to your partner early on during your pregnancy about how best to divide the parental leave. The application for parental allowance is independent of this, because this can only be applied for from the birth.

Can My Employer Prohibit Me From Taking Parental Leave?

Your employer is not allowed to refuse your application for parental leave, as stipulated in the so-called Parental Allowance and Parental Leave Act (BEEG). However, the application for the third period between the third and eighth year of the child’s life may be rejected for urgent operational reasons. However, this must also be submitted as early as 13 weeks before the start date.

Entitlement To Parental Allowance: You Need To Know!


You do not receive any income during parental leave. To ensure that you are still financially secure, you are entitled to parental allowance. During this time, you do not receive your money from your employer, but from the state. Parental allowance is therefore an income replacement benefit and at the same time a social benefit.

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How Much?

The amount of parental allowance depends on your income before the birth. You do not get your entire income, but about 65%. However, students, pupils or trainees do not go empty-handed: Everyone receives at least 300 euros per month, regardless of their income. The parental allowance is not taxed.

For How Long?

Together, both parents are entitled to 14 months of parental allowance. Just as with parental leave, the father and mother can share it. Again, you must apply for at least two months. However, a single parent may only receive parental allowance for a maximum of 12 months. Conversely, this means that if both parents take parental leave, they also receive more financial support from the state. This regulation, which has been active since 2015, is intended to encourage more fathers to take parental leave. Single parents, i.e. fathers or mothers who have sole custody, are of course allowed to take 14 months of parental allowance.

When Do I Have To Apply?

Parental allowance can only be applied for from the time of birth, as this requires the birth certificate. The distribution of this social benefit is a matter for the federal states. You should therefore contact the relevant state authority.

Supplements And Special Features

If there are several children, the parents naturally receive more money. Thus, in addition to the sibling supplement, you can also apply for the multiple-child supplement.

ElterngeldPlus And Partnership Bonus

Balancing career and family as a father? This is now to be supported by ElterngeldPlus and the partnership bonus, which were introduced in 2015. Parental allowance can now be paid out for twice as long, but only half as long. This means that the amount of one month’s parental allowance is equivalent to two months’ parental allowance plus. The purpose of this is to make better use of the budget. The partnership bonus is particularly popular with fathers. This grants parents four additional ElterngeldPlus months if both partners work an additional 25 to 30 hours per week during this time. This strengthens joint childcare and a time arrangement based on partnership. Separated couples who work part-time together can also receive the partnership bonus.

Why Should You Take Parental Leave As A Father?

Many fathers are afraid of neglecting their careers or being seen as a wimpy stay-at-home dad at work. In our age of equality and emancipation, this should no longer be an issue, but theory usually takes a back seat to practice. Many fathers take the first step by opting for the minimum, the two months of parental leave. This way, the career is not in danger and still some free time with the child can be used. The right to parental leave should definitely not be missed, because it offers many advantages…

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Closer Bond With The Child

Especially in the early childhood phase, the child is very strongly shaped and influenced by its environment. It also needs a lot of love and affection. An intimate bond with the mother is usually already given physically alone: The baby comes out of the woman’s womb and is now breastfed by her. Because of this, fathers often find it more difficult to build up a similar emotional relationship with the child in the first few months. If the child is at home with the mother all day and the father only returns from work in the evening, this is not exactly supported. Parental leave is therefore a perfect opportunity to build up a close emotional bond with your own child and is therefore also a benefit for you personally. You can spend more time with your child and don’t have the feeling that you always see too little of it and neglect it due to work. You will never have a chance like this again, so enjoy the free months with your newborn!

Relief For The Mother

After sleepless nights and days consisting of full diapers, baby tears and breastfeeding, the mother is also glad to be able to rest. A second hand with the child and in the household can be a real help for her. That’s why many fathers take parental leave to support their wives in the first few months after the birth. Another advantage of this is that you come to terms with raising the child together right from the start. You will then face each other as equal educators. This strengthens your ability as parents and you learn to work better together as a couple. Another popular time period for parenting time as a father is at the end of the mother’s parenting time. This allows you to support your wife in that she can more easily re-enter the workforce. She doesn’t have to manage her job and her family at the same time, but can take her time to get used to working again.

Relationship With Your Wife Is Strengthened

Relationship problems often arise after the birth. The father can’t understand why his wife is completely exhausted in the evenings and often longs for emotional closeness or even just rest instead of sex. Conflicts often arise because the partner does not feel properly understood. You can find out more about the causes of such relationship problems after childbirth here! Parental leave allows the man to have more understanding for his partner. He understands how exhausting the care and upbringing of a child can be. In addition, both parents can exchange information about the child’s development much better. It’s different to look after a baby day and night and to get up together when it cries, than to experience the little rascal only once in the evening at dinner. This shared experience will strengthen your relationship with your wife and the child will not distance you from each other, but will actually bring you closer together.

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Financial Advantages

In addition to the emotional and personal benefits, parental leave also brings positive benefits to your wallet. For one thing, you can draw parental allowance for two months longer, and for another, you are subject to protection against dismissal during the time off and are therefore financially secure. In addition, your wife’s career will not suffer completely as a result of the baby. Especially if she earns more than you, it makes sense to split the parental leave. This way, your wife does not completely drop out of the working world. She can either return to her job quickly or, if you both take parental leave at the same time, start working part-time. Of course, you can also be the one who works part-time. If you are indispensable at your company, the 30 hours per week are a good way to balance family and job. This way, you’ll have an additional source of income in addition to the parental allowance.

Settle Old Role Models: Fatherhood Time Leads To Shared Parenting

The time when the woman belonged in the kitchen and the man at the desk is long gone. Women dominate the working world and men increasingly identify with their role as fathers. It is the ‘together’, the raising together, earning together, cooking together, that offers both woman and man the opportunity to develop and enrich themselves. Parental leave as a father supports equal parenting, strengthens the bond between child and father and promotes a healthy relationship. Fortunately, more and more men are taking advantage of father time. Of course, you will always get stupid comments from somewhere, be it the conservative boss, the grumpy neighbor or the tradition-conscious mother. Here, however, you should not feel ashamed or ‘unmanly’, but be proud of the fact that you and your wife are taking care of the upbringing and care of your child together. So feel free to talk about your desire to take father time. Most colleagues at your workplace probably feel the same way, after all, everyone likes to have time for their family.

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