I’m thankful that my circumstances allow me to be a stay-at-home mom, and because Germany makes it quite easy, most of the mothers I know are in the same situation. And apart from me, all of them put their children into day care several times a week to have time for themselves.
I do sometimes feel like I’d like some time for myself, but it’s not really a pressing need. Many moms say it’s so their kids get socialized, but I don’t find my son lacking in social skills. He’s a very friendly, very outgoing, almost 2 year old (a very typical Leo). The other moms in my local mother-toddler group have given me the name and number of the woman who runs the local day care. They tell me that it’s important that Oliver get contact with other kids, but he gets along fine with all the kids in the group and with all the children of my friends. I’ve even been told it’s not healthy for us to be together so much, but I haven’t seen any signs of it.
Can we really be too attached?
I look at history, and think that for most of history, in most human groups, children stayed with their mother continuously through early childhood. There was no day care, there wasn’t the idea that the child needed time apart from the parent. I also look at myself and my child. I don’t feel the need for time apart, so why do people want to pressure me into it? Oliver, while independent, also prefers to have one-on-one time with his caretakers. Something he won’t get in a day care situation.
My gut tells me I’m doing the right thing, and I’m a strong believer in listening to your instincts. So what do I tell the naysayers?