Next week we have the unenviable task of looking for daycare for the kiddos. Fortunately we have my brother for awhile to fill in the gaps until we find something, but I'm really not looking forward to the whole process. I've made a few calls and scheduled a few appointments but even though the providers sound nice over the phone, I still feel nervous about leaving my kids with strangers.
I know that I am not the first or the last mom to feel this way, I'd bet 99% of moms feel the same when choosing a daycare provider they haven't known for years... So I'm in good company.
Then someone had the gall to tell me that they'd never put their kids in daycare because they "didn't want someone else to raise their kids" and THEN they said that it was "ok" that moms who "have to work" use daycare because they had a "valid excuse". Yeah. That actually happened.
Bryan and I raise our kids. Daycare does not. Period. Parents who work because they love it and not because they have economic need raise their kids. Parents who have to work because of economic need raise their kids. While I am sure a few shitty parents out there really don't do much parenting when their kids aren't at daycare, those parents are not the norm and assuming they are is some ridiculously twisted logic. If daycare providers are "raising" your kids then so are their school teachers, coaches, and summer camp counselors. No one talks about how 4th grade teachers are "raising" their students, so why do they insist that the daycare lady (or man!) is? It's just bull.
So anyway, now we have to figure out questions to ask and I have to worry about things like "what new 'fun' words will my kids pick up?" "how often will they get sick now?" "what will happen if someone bites my child, or if my child bites someone?" "how can I be sure my kids are never spanked?" "what ideas or concepts will my child learn that I don't sanction?"
There are a lot more.
I can't choose a religious daycare because I don't want my kids exposed to religion just yet. They will be eventually it would be impossible to hide it and I have no desire to do so, but it will be something we discuss as a family and not something that they are told is absolute truth when mommy's not around. I have no problem if my children decide to be religious one day, but that day isn't today nor is it tomorrow. I have a feeling most religious parents feel the same way about Atheism. Which is fine, it's a parents prerogative to raise their children with or without religion.
I also need to find a daycare that feels the same way about discipline as I do. i.e. No spanking, ever. We do not spank and I feel very strongly that spanking is both ineffective and counterproductive. It's not legal to spank a non-consenting adult, so why do we spank kids? Hitting is justified when? In the boxing ring and in self defense, neither of which apply to disciplining a child. Of all of the kids I have witnessed receive a spanking during my time working with at risk families, all of them have turned around a hit someone or something else within a few minutes of their punishment. ALL. They hit their siblings, pets, walls, toys, friends, and some have even tried to hit their parents. Not good. So we're a no spanking household. I have yet to personally see it be an effective form of punishment and most studies out there back me up on this one.
Then we get to call references and I have to refrain from asking for fingerprints and background checks for the workers and the parents of all the other kids. Because I'm crazy like that.
I'm sure we'll find a good place, nay, a great place. I'm sure the kids will love it. I'm sure I will cry buckets.
I'm sure that when they're 30 and looking for daycare for their own kids, they will feel the exact same way.
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