Double Duty Daddy

Conflicted Dad – Where To Live?



I think it’s fairly normal when traveling to ask yourself, “could I live here?”, when visiting another state or country. We do it all the time and last week when visiting Los Angeles, no exception. This time however, I had no doubt in my mind I could embrace the Southern California lifestyle.

I don’t feel that way about all the places I visit. Reality is, our jobs and proximity to family will probably keep us in South Florida for a long time. My inner voice started whispering and questioning what neighborhood in South Florida I would want to raise G&O in.

Right now, we’re at a crossroads in our lives. We bought a townhouse a little over a year ago near Aventura because we needed more space and wanted to own. Where we currently live is a gated community with lots of families and located practically halfway between Miami and Fort Lauderdale. We moved not to our ideal neighborhood but to a place that afforded us more space and allowed us to see our families more frequently despite longer commutes to work. Now, the girls are growing and nearing the daycare phase and in the blink of an eye, we’ll be scouting out elementary schools.

Oh God that’s scary. 

Deciding on where to permanently call home is no easy feat for a tortured soul like myself. I grew up in Sunrise (a city in southwest Broward County) in a house with a pool and 2 car garage with a big backyard and yet I always admired families in big metropolitan cities that made it work without having to surrender to the ever-increasing pressure of moving to the suburbs. I value things like being in the epicenter of cultural activities, good restaurants, family friendly spaces, solid schools and a diverse community. And it may sound minor to most, but I don’t want to drive 45 minutes to have access to those things. I want to walk out of my door and have these privileges at my disposal yet I have to find a happy balance between what makes me happy and what’s best for my family.

I have a love/hate relationship with South Florida because many times, I don’t fully identify with any given neighborhood. Each neighborhood has it’s appeal but none are the epitome of what I would call a perfect, or close to perfect, neighborhood.

I’ve got friends that stand on both sides of the spectrum and have their strong opinions on suburbs/rural vs urban living. The opinions of others don’t sway me one way or another because I’m inherently aware that the decision will eventually come to me and I may never be 100% thrilled with the choice but I’ll accept it with hopes that it was the right one for G&O.

Have you struggled with the decision on where to raise your family? Is it something you accepted and still crave the opposite or do you conform to your current state?




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