We have two respectful, responsible young teenage sons. They have worked on school projects, played sports and volunteered for various community services. Our friends ask us numerous questions on how to handle certain child-rearing issues, and childless acquaintances often say “When I have a kid, I want them to be just like yours.” I always tell them about the privilege of staying home and the impact of a mom’s influence when the time comes for them to start a family.
Sadly, almost all of these “friends” have chosen to return to work and put their kids in day care or have hired a nanny for them. They want what we have, but are not willing to put in the time, and then they’re dismayed when their kids struggle academically, emotionally and spiritually. They’ve often justified their decisions by saying they’ve found “a great nanny” who can speak a foreign language, so their children will learn a new skill. Or if the kids are in day care, I’m told that they can “make friends and that is so important for kids.” No. What’s important is having a loving parent day in and day out. I’ve often said “I don’t care if the nanny is Mother Teresa; she is not ME.”
After a recent visit to our pediatrician, I noticed a ceramic sign hanging on the exit door. It read “You are not raising a major inconvenience; you are raising a human being.” I wish every parent would embrace that sentiment!
The Value of Having a Loving Parent Day In and Day Out
The Dr. Laura Call of the Day Podcast