Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Should Mommy Stay With Baby 24 hrs a Day: Response to an Article

    A friend posted this article last night and after reading it I began to get a tad angered by what it was saying. The article speaks of the matter of mother-child bonding, being securely attached and preventing separation anxiety. So anyone who has read this blog more than once should know... I am devoted to all three of those things in my child's life. Yet here is where they lost me. They imply that no one BUT Mommy will do. Not Daddy, not Gramma, not even a close Aunt who resembles Mommy. Mommy is then charged (according to this article) with being the SOLE caregiver until (they say) 36 MONTHS! 36 months????????? Are you out of your minds. Bug is 33 months right now. According to them having ever left his side STILL is bad for him. My child is old enough (and has been for a year now) to write some letters, know them all, sound out words, order his own food in restaurants, work my tablet, work our wii, and help me in the garden (among thousands of other things), he has certainly mastered the ability to understand Mommy and Daddy going away for a while doesn't mean they won't come back. As a working Mom/student Mom and Hubby working full time, we juggled our schedules so that Bug only had to be with a babysitter (who was Gramma until he was 23 months old) 2-3 days a week. It also was usually for only 5-8 hrs a day. We nursed/ coslept until 9 months and then coslept as he wanted from then to now. I feel he is securely attached, fully secure in his knowledge that we love him and quite independent. He is a happy go lucky kid and he loves his daycare. 

    Here is where their article is just so false. First of all I find fault with most of the science of this. I majored in biology that is what my degree is in but originally I was minoring/setting up to get a masters in Child psychology so about half of the classes I took other than science ones were in child psych. In those we learned children learn object permanence by 12 months, usually around 9ish months. Secondly Dr. Sears talked about this in his books. He spoke about how Mom is NOT solely responsible for attachment parenting. That an attachment need to be formed with both parents as well as some support people such as Grandparents, God parents, Aunts and Uncles. Bug mostly had me and Hubby but he also had Gramma and his God parents. I stayed home with him as long as I could.. the first 4 months of his life. When I went back to school I knew he would be safe and happy with Gramma. The attachment Bug had formed with his grandmother allowed us multiple times over the last 3 years to let him stay overnight with her, or over the weekend. This came in very handy when I had to go on a MANDATORY research trip in Cape Cod for 4 days. Bug stayed with her (Hubby was working the whole time). If anyone had separation anxiety it was me. I cried most of the whole 4 days.  (It happened during Mother's Day). Bug was 20 months at the time and he just felt he had a fun few days with Namma and was happy to see us sure but never felt frightened or that we were never coming back.

    Personally this article made me want to cry they are saying that a mother should be with their child every minute of everyday until 3 yrs old??? I feel that a good support system , securely attached with the child is best. There is little need for the Mother alone to be the sole stability in the child's life. I also feel they are greatly greatly underestimating toddlers. Under 12 months... maybe but to 36 months??? Bug at 33 months  long ago started understanding the concept of going to work... or going to school. He has spent almost his whole life on campus with us and knows what Mommy and Daddy do all day. He is fine with it and happy. I think that going back to school and finishing my degree was as important for our family as was marrying Rob or the choice to TTC. Now that I have my degree, going back to work is not a question, I have to do this for my family. I do not feel guilty for any choices I have made because I at every step of the way made sure he was my first priority. I research and carefully consider every choice I make with my child. I don't do this because I am The Green Mommy.. I do it because I am HIS Mommy. 

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