Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Child care vs stay-at-home mums

Pfft, I'm not going!
You want to put me into child care five days a week?

I was speaking to a lady at a wedding on Monday about her job as a child care worker. She told me that she looks after kids from as young as four months old to two years old. She told me she is staggered at how some parents drop their babies off at 7.30am and pick them up at 6.30pm five days a week and that they are asking for the center to be open on weekends. Whilst replaying the night in my mind on Tuesday morning, I replayed this conversation in my head and thought to myself "the poor kids".
My mum once said to my wife Suzie, "a woman in the kitchen is the heart of the home”. I can vouch for that. Suz is a ripper! She loves gardening. She loves our 19 fruit trees. She loves our veggie patch where she grows all our veggies. She loves the kitchen (she once ordered me to go and watch the footy as she wanted some time to herself in the kitchen. That wasn't hard!) She loves cooking and boy can she cook. Many guys will tell you that their mum is the best cook they know. Not me, my wife is. Sorry Mum.

The thing is, not only does Suz enjoy cooking and being in the kitchen, she thinks it is important as a wife and a mother. In a world that is obsessed with promoting women in the workforce, stay-at-home
mums are less fashionable than they might have once been.

I know many women who employ
nanny’s so they can pursue their career, at the expense of their kids. I used to work at two large professional services firms. The jargon about women in the workforce was almost enough to make you sick. I'm not saying for a minute that women shouldn't pursue careers. I'm saying, when they have a career and kids, the kids should come first. Family should always come first. Of course there are always going to be circumstances where a mother has to work shortly after giving birth due to financial stress or other family reasons but let’s assume the standard case of a married mother with a career and a young child.

I admire Suz for the role she plays as mother to our son and wife to me. I don't know how she does it to be honest. She looks after our
three-month-old all day, does the washing, does the dishes, cleans the house and then has the scent of a ripper meal wafting through the house when I get home from work. There is nothing better than opening the front door to the smell of her cooking! It's not unusual for her to greet me with a kiss and a comment along the lines of: "feel like a glass of red while I get your dinner ready?" Ka-ching!

I don't know the figures, but how many
modern-day mothers are like this? You only have to listen to our politicians bang on about the ratio of women to men in politics to understand that the reputation of stay-at-home mums is hardly at all-time highs. If I wanted to start my own business, I reckon I could make a pretty lucrative career in nannying!

Our kids are the next generation of our society. They will become the next Prime Minister, the next politicians, the next mothers, fathers or child care workers. We need to ensure they get the best upbringing possible with a balanced diet of love, affection, nurturing, discipline and fun
to name but a few. In my opinion, putting them in a day care centre all day, five days a week, is not ideal for their upbringing.

For all the
stay-at-home mums out there, keep it up. You go through a lot for your children and often go underappreciated! You are hugely integral to our kids, to our families and to our society and I admire you for your unwavering dedication to your kids and your families.

That's my piece!

All the best,
Dom Meese


  1. My previous long winded comment was deleted by fault of my one ... in brief.

    In my opinion, being a stay at home mum is a gift. One of the hardest, yet rewarding jobs anyone could ever have. For those that wish they could be home with their young child or children but can't I certainly do not envy.
    I am grateful everyday for my supportive, hard working partner who goes to work every day so that I can be at home with our son .. He misses out on a lot of the wonderful moments in being at work, yet he is happy knowing that I am here to nurture and guide and have fun with our son.
    I think i am one of the luckiest girls, being able to be that person.

    There are parents out there that choose to have their children in care, and I witnessed this when working in a centre as well as being a full time Nanny... It isn't so sad for the children, as it is for the Mothers, who will probably look back and regret exchanging their children's child hood for yoga classes.

  2. I worked with a high powered Mum who was promised she could have it all and of course like most leftie or feminist ideologies, it was a lie. She lamented her condition one day saying that aprx 50% of her considerable salary was going on Child care. Of course the stress on children, Mum's and Dad's in getting to/ from childcare each day/ meeting schedules etc is not dollar costed - but she sure felt it and acknowledged she was trapped. So much for the liberated modern day woman now enslaved to the greater evils of the dollar or a career. She was quite good at her job but now realised she didn't enjoy it because of the price she was paying elsewhere in her life. I think she eventually argued with her boss for part-time work but I suspect that's only a part time solution which adds to employment costs. And why should the woman get part-time work instead of the man anyway? It seems that if they're not prepared to acknowledge Nature's model, then they must want to have their cake and eat it too; something no doubt, that now has to be argued out within many modern day marriages.

  3. You have 19 fruit trees?! I have a healthy level of envy therein...

    I can say I have the same blessing as you Dom, with my wife enjoying her housewife role and staying with our children instead of a less demanding professional work.

    I can only advise, don't let her do the dishes always. Actually, don't let her do it at all if you can. Give a hand with whatever you can, moreover when your family grows larger. (Now don't mess with her cooking, sounds like you won't do half a good a job as she does!).