What Are We Doing To Our Children!
My experience and ideas regarding parenting suffer a jolt on a daily basis these days. I strongly believe that there is no perfect method of parenting, yet there are certain things that can never be compromised with. One such thing is availability of a parent especially mother at the vulnerable moments in a toddler’s life. Earlier the school going age used to be five years but nowadays it has dramatically come down to six months. Yes, you read it right. With the mushrooming of Day Care centres and Pre schools, the working couples have started sending their 6 month olds to day- care facilities. I don’t know about others but personally speaking, it is really heartbreaking.
Few years back as incharge of a Pre-School and Day-Care, I experienced the worst frustration level attending an admission query for our day care facility from a new mom. The shock I got was hearing the age of her baby; two months. Seriously! How can someone think of leaving a two month old infant in a day care facility? When asked about the reason for making a day-care choice for the infant, pat came the reply,” Ma’am, I am getting an opportunity to go abroad and if I don’t take it up, I will never get it in the near future.” I banged the landline receiver back with just a “Sorry, no vacancy”, fearing that I might shower her with choicest abuses. Oh come on dear mommies! What do you think you are doing? I ask all such women, “Why the hell did you decide to bring a helpless life in this world, when you were not ready to give your all to nourish a life?”
My one year in that institution made me emotionally and physically broke. As a woman and mother I used to get affected watching the tiny sleeping beauties being handed over to the attendants in a hurry. Today, I am no more part of that ‘Tamasha’ but as I look back, the crying babies in the morning and their eyes gazing at the entrance in the evening, their disappointed faces seeing other mothers coming but their, still makes me get jittery.
My experiences with the young parents had been a roller-coaster ride. There was a parent who regularly walked inside the school with the little girl sleeping in arms with milk stains on her mouth and dirty diaper. Before leaving the facility this parent would never forget to ‘order the attendant’ to feed an early breakfast to the little one. Reason, the parents overslept and didn’t get time to feed the baby at home. It was such an impossible task to make such parents understand that the kids are offered first meal of the school at a stipulated time and it was not possible for the nanny to feed all the kids at their parents’ convenience.
There was another mother staying in a joint family but didn’t want her child to be left at home with her inlaws since they couldn’t converse in English. Tell me about it!
I suffered parents not informing about the child’s previous night’s fever to us and later when called back to pick the baby to be taken to the doctor; would blame the facility for not looking after the kids. How could a mother leave an ailing one year old baby just like that!
It is the birth right of every new life to enjoy a wholehearted commitment from the parents. If the parents have their other priorities above the life they brought to this world; they better be doomed to a childless life. A child is much more than just a proof of your fertility.
Shaken with all these experiences that I announced to my children that if they can’t commit their hundred percent to parenthood, it would be sensible for them not to give birth to a helpless life.
I am a woman in fifties with two adult children of marriageable ages. Both of them wish to marry career oriented individuals. Although there is nothing coming up in the nearest future yet my above mentioned experiences have left me paranoid and I dread the day when they have kids and start looking for a good Day-Care facility for their 6 month old. To spare myself the horror of neglected grand kids, I have already offered my voluntary babysitting services for the (yet nowhere in sight) future babies and with a commitment that we the grand-parents will always converse in English.