Thus far in my daughter’s short life, the decision of staying home or opting for child care has been made for me. I’m a single mother and since a household requires an income of some sort, working is my only option. That decision has recently been placed back in my hands though. If things pan out and I’m capable of generating a substantial income from home, would my children benefit more from being home with me or spending the weekdays in child care?
I’m not a huge fan of in-home sitters. As a slightly over-protective Momma who believes in everything being a learning opportunity, the only type of child care that I would send my children to would be a state licensed facility that has a curriculum-based day planned and plenty of security measures in place. Yes, these places tend to run a little more expensive, but to me the benefits outweigh the price tag.
I’ve always felt that time was the most important thing you could give your child. Spending precious time with my children not only creates memories that they will hold forever, but it builds a bond that’s irreplaceable and trust that can be invaluable in the future. That being said, time away from a parent is also important. Child care offers a level of socialization that I simply cannot give my child. The opportunity to play with and learn from others their age is crucial to a healthy development. Spending this time away from each other now will help with possible separation anxieties later in life and open my children up to more positive experiences with school and camps when the time comes for that.
There are many things that I can teach my children. Playtime with Momma has already resulted in many great skills for my daughter. She was talking early and running before she was a year old. She’s learned love and kindness. I anticipate that my son will also learn such amazing skills from time with myself. Decision making, how to appropriately act around others, and taking turns are things better learned away from the person who lives to protect you from everything.
Working from home will allow me certain privileges that I’m well aware not all parents have. I will have the time and availability to attend field trips and classroom parties once they start school. I will be able to keep a sickie home from daycare without it having an impact on my income. I will be able to choose not to take one or both to child care every day to allow for extra time one-on-one or for special occasions. So, in the end, I think the best option for my family is to go with child care. This allows my children to have the best of both world.