Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Daycare Dilemma

After reading Jan Hunt's brief article The Day Care Dilemma, I have been thinking. It makes some good points. She says:
"Ideally there would be little need to use substitute care, nor would any mother feel a strong personal need or desire to do so."
She explores ideas for how to remedy this issue. Many people say that we need to have longer maternity leaves, easy access to and time for pumping in the workplace, on-site daycare centers... and while all this helps working mothers to be with their babies more than they might be otherwise, it doesn't get all the way to the root of the issue. It all still encourages mothers to work outside the home. Could it be that it may even make the choice to go back to work an easier one for a new mother to choose?

How do we get more mothers to make the choice to stay at home with their children, especially in those important first few years? I'm curious if anyone has ideas on this!


johnston5in5 said...

I think one is community. So many people feel isolated. I am all for groups of mothers that get together with their kids to socialize and/or accomplish tasks like you previously mentioned. Maybe more opportunities for stay at home work also. I would love to find a way to make money from home (non-pyrimid scheme or selling something from home parties).

Carrie said...

Sadly, many women probably wouldn't have babies to begin with if they thought they would "have" to stay home with them. It's so so so sad.

Kris said...

I think the biggest factor is economics. Many women think they HAVE to work in order to meet the needs of their families. And unfortunately, when you have a young couple who is newly married and both working, they often live in a way that has to be supported by both incomes. They by a house that requires both incomes, and then when they do start to think about a family, they are stuck. I know, because this happened to us. Thankfully, with some very strict budgeting and a few months of help from my husband's parents, I only had to go back to work for 6 months after our first son was born. WORST six months of my life - even though I was convinced (through societal brainwashing!) that I WANTED to work. Until they handed me my son for the first time and I gazed into his eyes. I knew from that first moment that no one could care for him better than me. It's a process - but I think we start with young girls, letting them know there is no better vocation than being a mother, if that is where God is calling you. We teach our young men that as a husband and father, if it's within their power, they are fiscally responsible and support their family so their wife can stay home. We have to teach them that it's doable, but involves from financial sacrifice, and not always having what you want, but maybe just what you need.