When Kevin talks about buttons, a smile immediately appears on his face. Knöpfchen – that’s the nickname of his one-year-old daughter, he doesn’t want to reveal her real name, even if he talks about her on Instagram. “I don’t show any pictures of her either, at most a hand, so that people can see that we really are a family,” he says.
A call shortly after the start of the new job
Together with his husband, Knöpfchen came to the couple shortly after their birth. “I still remember, I got a call, I had just started a new job,” remembers the man from Hamburg. His boss reacted very positively. “But it was also a stone from her heart when I didn’t want to go straight to parental leave,” he says.
His husband went in a six-month parental leave, Kevin continued to work at Xing in the area of product management; for example, he is responsible for the conception of the profile. “The job fit me like a fist,” he recalls. When he took up the new position, he was still very career-oriented. That changed, however. “I was wondering if that’s what I want,” he says.
The “funny dad” switched from “career to family-oriented” ”
While his husband could spend a lot of time with their daughter, Kevin worked. “I was the funny dad for that, when I got a coffee in the home office, I would go to her once, tickle her a bit, have fun, she always laughed a lot,” he smiles. “The bad mood that comes along, my husband had to deal with it,” he jokes. And then, somewhere between children’s laughter and home office, Kevin’s attitude changes. “I went from career to family oriented,” he says.
Compensation through hobbies
He is currently on parental leave, after which he will return to his job part-time instead of full-time. “When I said that out loud, ballast fell off my mind,” said Kevin. He enjoys spending time with his family, which includes dog Sir Toby. “Sometimes it is a little break for me when I go out with him for 20 minutes,” he says. A work-life balance and structures have always been important to him, which is why he always looked for hobbies to compensate for his job. “Even now, Christian and I still have time for ourselves, also individually,” he explains.
One of the things what Kevin does for himself is acting. However, that was not possible during the pandemic. So a new balance had to be found and Kevin began to share excerpts from his family life on Instagram. “I had written a book, a family book, which I actually wanted to promote a bit,” he says. More and more people followed him while he reported on his rainbow family, as families with same-sex or non-heterosexual lifestyles are called. “I never expected that so many would be interested,” he says.
Positive experiences with employers
He would like to use his account to educate people about rainbow families and to counteract prejudices. He has not yet had any negative experiences in the professional environment. “Xing celebrates and lives diversity, they even advertised my children’s book,” he says. On his previous career path, he could imagine that he might have been perceived differently because of his sexual orientation. “Maybe I could have made a jump or two, but I can’t think of anything specific,” he says. “I don’t think that that’s why I never got a promotion or a job, I probably always looked for the right company”, Kevin continues.
Today he is satisfied with his path and his current position, but the path there was not easy. “I was bullied at school because I was supposed to be gay, but I didn’t even know that at the time,” he recalls. When he was 23 years old, he realized that he was into men. “At that time I was shy, the theater helped me not to hold back with who I am – a completely normal person,” he says.
Put aside prejudices through contact with others
Generally he believes that society has already further than is generally thought, but prejudices play a role in all of them. “We are a fringe group and we also have prejudices against others. It’s important to get rid of that, ”he says. Getting into conversation with others and networking is important. He also uses Instagram for this. “I invite people to follow us,” he says. He would treat negative comments, for example on Tiktok, where he is represented, with irony, among other things. With his content he wants to show the beautiful sides of family life. “I don’t show everything, I let out the strenuous part, it’s not what I want to represent” ,
so Kevin. At the same time, he makes sure not to spend too much time in the “Instabubble”. The cell phone stays off during family and friends time. “That is important to me,” he emphasizes.
This is how you see him building Lego, which is a balance to his everyday life, while baking a cake or on the trip with buttons. He’s a father who jumped from the career ladder to the family ladder – and seems very satisfied with it. The career that he could still make later. The time with the button is now.