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More Men Are Making Transition From Business World To Stay-At-Home Parenting

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WAKE FOREST — Raising a family is tough. Many couples have to choose between putting their kids in day care or staying at home with them. One father knows firsthand what staying at home means.

Chris Coby is playing a key role in shaping the lives of his children, Summer and Jonathon. Coby has been a stay-at-home dad for four years.

"After a couple of years, you come out of the pantry and say I'm an at-home dad," Coby says.

The second annual Fatherhood Conference at North Carolina Central is proof that men's roles are changing.

"Those lines are blurring a little bit," says Darryl Lester of the Triangle Community Foundation. "I think you see a lot of formal and informal support groups that are taking place where the men can come together and share their own experiences which, I think, women have done all the time."

Coby admits the transition from the business world to the kitchen has not been easy.

"There was some adjustment still in the neighborhood and some isolation," Coby says. "I was not as comfortable getting into the playgroups scene as you would be with moms, but after four years, you get over that."

Summer and Jonathon enjoy spending quality time with Dad. Their days are filled with Play-Doh and peanut butter.

Coby and his wife, Rita, have an agreement: if she decides she wants to stay home, Chris will go back to work.

There are currently more than two million men taking on the role of primary child care provider.

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Julia Lewis, Reporter
Lynn French, Photographer
Kamal Wallace, Web Editor

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