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Old 02-17-2016, 08:23 PM
Location: here
24,473 posts, read 28,756,384 times
Reputation: 31056


Originally Posted by stevek64 View Post
I think EvilCookie framed it well:

Plus again, we are asking adults on what works for them, not the infant/young kid on how their quality of life is which I think should be the priority here if we are thinking in context of what's best for the kid. For me if my mom asked me, and I could answer, "what do you want son, to go to daycare all day/most of the days while I work or be home with me"? I know how I would answer in a heartbeat and how I would guess the vast majority of kids would answer, assuming the mother is a fit parent.

Most parents I've met today middle class and up have lots of material things/trinkets/large homes that could easily survive on one income if they were willing to scale back a bit on such things. Most people I know easily "could".....most choose not to.
Again, these adults grew up this way. They seem to be ok with it. Plus 480 days of paid parental leave. 480 days. 480-90 for the dad = 390 days /5 = 78 weeks. That's 1.5 years off, paid, that mom gets.
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Old 02-17-2016, 08:30 PM
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
1,106 posts, read 855,631 times
Reputation: 3060
Originally Posted by EvilCookie View Post
Quality of life index is, for the most part, based on material status, as well as on the social benefits, amenities etc. So it makes sense that it's high in a well-organized society where many people are financially successful. It is by no means, however, a measure of 'happiness' or personal life satisfaction in any way.
Actually quality of life measures include:

1. Material living conditions
2. Productive or main activity
3. Health
4. Education
5. Leisure and social interactions
6. Economic and physical safety
7. Governance and basic rights
8. Natural and living environment
9. Overall experience of life

So it does get to personal life satisfaction.
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Old 02-17-2016, 08:30 PM
Location: here
24,473 posts, read 28,756,384 times
Reputation: 31056
Originally Posted by charisb View Post
Sweden has one of the highest 'quality of life' indices in the world. Almost 75% of mothers with children younger than age 6 are in the workforce. Children aged 1-6 spend an average of 33 hours a week in child care. So clearly children aren't harmed by having working parents.
And my problem with Warren's conclusions (although I haven't read he source, just the references to it her) is that dual income families have always been around. Middle class white women may have fought to get into the workforce but lower income women and racial/ethnic minorities have always worked after marriage. In the 1950s 1 in 3 women was in the workforce; today it is 3 out of 5.

US Stats
Mothers with younger children are less likely to be in the labor force
than mothers with older children. In 2014, the labor force participation
rate of mothers with children under 6 years old (64.2 percent) was lower
than the rate of those whose youngest child was 6 to 17 years old (74.7
percent). The participation rate of mothers with infants under a year
old was 57.1 percent. Among mothers with infants, there was little
difference in the participation rates of married mothers (57.9 percent)
and those with other marital statuses (55.8 percent). However, the
unemployment rate for married mothers of infants, at 4.1 percent, was
considerably lower than the rate for mothers with other marital statuses,
at 15.6 percent. (See tables 5 and 6.)

Employment Characteristics of Families Summary
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Old 02-18-2016, 05:04 AM
11,759 posts, read 5,213,572 times
Reputation: 7964
Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
A very honest and thorough look at what "having it all" looks like today. I feel sorry for younger women in our society. No- or little- maternity leave, full expectations at home and work to never let a ball drop, little family support, financial demands, and criticism from others(mostly other women) no matter what women choose all face women who want a family and want/have to work.

Having It All Kinda Sucks
Sorry, but that's ridiculous. It might have been true 20-30 years ago, but today husbands of highly accomplished women pick up a lot of the slack. In fact, there are tons of stay-at-home dads who do basically everything at home. Really, that's common. That's a necessity, because it is otherwise impossible for a woman to be a great mom and great worker in today's world.

You know that saying about behind every successful man, there is a woman. The reverse is true, too.

And don't forget that "having it all" is often "miserable as funk". Kinda stupid . . . . you are told to work hard to "have it all" which apparently leads to happiness, and then you somehow end up being unhappy when you accomplish that goal. Most people in that position forget the phrase, "means to an end."

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Old 02-18-2016, 07:56 AM
Location: Leaving fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada
3,836 posts, read 6,612,527 times
Reputation: 7254
We are too geared toward having it all in a material sense in our culture. Too much keeping up with the Joneses. Only the latest and greatest technology, the newest fashion, the most extravagant fill-in-the blank.

Scaling back the consumerism might help that writer's family. They could scale back and her life might slow down and suck less.
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Old 02-18-2016, 08:21 AM
15,200 posts, read 16,058,326 times
Reputation: 25121
Originally Posted by EvilCookie View Post
I agree with your reasoning and it's very admirable; really, I admire those who can plan like that and juggle work and parenting, because I personally couldn't do it.

I just couldn't do it.
I agree planning for their futures may even be more important than those early days they won't remember.

But personally for me, a major, huge part of that joy of having kids and parenting have been those very early years, especially the first baby year. I'm still reveling in it with my youngest who is 7 months and it is flying by even though I'm with him all the time, my oldest is 6 and it went by so fast it's a blur.
That time goes so fast and its such a short period of life, yet it is so so precious. Spending mornings cuddling them in bed, and seeing the way they develop and grow, and being there to see them do all their firsts - to me these are some of the best moments of parenthood, that make it all worth it, and i couldn't imagine missing a single moment of it - never mind a full 9-10 hours every day. I couldn't imagine a nanny being the one to see their first step or hear the first word. No thought of college funds or retirement funds could make it worth it for me personally. Hell, life is so so unpredictable. There's no guarantee I'll even LIVE to retirement age, something could happen tomorrow, and I want to live my life today the way it's worth living to me - and for me that includes being the one to raise my kids and witness all these happy everyday moments. It's not even for them, it's for me, it's a selfish thing I admit. I didn't carry them for 9 months and give birth and stay up nights only to miss out on those beautiful things that make it all worth it. No way in hell.

My parents weren't able to pay for my college. big deal. My mom stayed home, though due to circumstances more than choice. I loved having her home. IT's not something i would ever fault or resent them for. I took a loan and paid it off. I have a fantastic, wonderful relationship with my parents.
My husband didn't have a cent of student loan. His parents both worked, paid for college, got divorced, and he's not particularly close to either of them. Paying for stuff is not end-all.
I appreciate your honesty and I'll give you some back: I wouldn't have wanted to stay at home full-time with my daughter even if I could have afforded to. I found the unstructured time and the lack of adult interaction to be very depressing. Yes, I loved being with her and snuggling her and watching her, but I was also happy to have other things to think about when I went back to work. I cried on my first day back because I missed her, but I also was happy to have things to talk about with my husband at the end of the day besides "she pooped" or "she spit up."

Having said that, I'll also add that WOTH doesn't mean you miss all the moments. We co-slept and I nursed her til she was 3.5 years old, so we had lots of cuddle time. Evenings and weekends were spent playing, going for walks, reading--all of the things you do with small children. Nor do I feel like I missed any firsts. It's possible she said a word at the babysitter's house before I heard her say her first word, but that doesn't make my memory of that any less magical. It's possible your son said his first word when he woke up from a nap and you weren't in the room. But you still heard him say a word for the first time.

And I have never said that "paying for stuff" is the end-all. I've said that when we looked at our situation we determined that saving for the future was important and we thought we could do it without harming our daughter in any way. I believe that has been the outcome of our decision and I feel no guilt about it at all. And while I do miss those younger years, I think I would still miss them even if I had stayed at home.
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Old 02-18-2016, 08:40 AM
15,200 posts, read 16,058,326 times
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Originally Posted by stevek64 View Post
I have nothing against people working hard. It's just what the main priority is when they have kids. I've seen lots of people, friends, acquaintances choose making a $ over spending that time with their kids. And in my view, many have indeed taking it far into a selfish level. I grew up with kid friends who had such parents. As an adult, I've seen the same thing.

Yes, kids can have the greatest/best upbringing and turn out to be monsters. Some kids in less ideal/frankly rotten situations can turn into gems. But kids with good home life's with parents that are present and involved increase those odds of turning on the better side I think we can agree. Most life falls somewhere in the middle of the bell curve. It's all about giving kids the best possible base to increase the odds of having kids that turn out well. And hopefully the parents had kids in the first place to want to be with them, not drop them off for long periods of time for others to bring them up/watch them.

I do agree with this and am happy to share that my daughter has grown up in a household with two parents who have been present and involved in her life. Although I've worked full time since she was an infant, I have never missed a single school or extra-curricular event. I've helped with homework, gone on field trips, hosted parties, volunteered at her school, helped with projects--all of it. My husband and I both came home from work and cooked dinner together and ate as a family. We've taken wonderful, fun vacations together. In short, we've had a lovely time as a family.

How about this approach/question.....what if a parent asked their kids what they wanted most, their parents to make more money, things, material items or more parent time, especially in their infant years/pre-teen years? I think the answer would be pretty obvious unless the kid was brought up to worship material things above all else in life, which of course that mentality would come from the parent in the first place. College can be paid for via loans and in a smart fashion without needing to go 100's of k in debt. Time lost from working instead of spending more time with kids can never be made up. I worked with some IT consultants who traveled about told me while the money they made was super, the one big regret they had? They missed lots of time watching their kids grow up.

I asked my 17-year-old daughter last night if she would have rather I'd stayed home and she said, "No." First she said that SAHP's tend to be "all in their kid's business" and that she wouldn't want that. Then she said that she thought providing financially for a family is important. And finally she said that she thought I would have gone nuts as a SAHM. She made me laugh by saying that I would have been looking for all sorts of hobbies to keep myself busy, but wouldn't have liked any of them. She knows me pretty well.

I agree very strongly with you on parents who prey on their kids, expecting this/that from them when they are adults, "I brought you up so you owe me" mentality. That to me is the height of selfishness and beyond. Yikes. In our situation, my dad worked a couple of years longer to feather his nest egg. If it weren't for us kids, he could have retired sooner, no doubt. So there are other ways to handle funding retirement though I understand you're coming from a good place. Again, my parents put us first, their kids, not money, their retirement, etc. as the #1 priority. My sisters approach? Have kids a little later in life. Right after college when they got their jobs, she and her husband socked away money for retirement early on their life in their deferred accounts(smart time to do it with compounding and all), built up a big down payment on a house, built up their savings, stayed far out of debt, all in prep for her to quit her job and spend time with her kids when they were born. So there are indeed ways to accomplish the same thing, it's all just a matter of planning it out, sometimes delaying gratification, and setting the priorities.

But I respect your perspective. We all have choices to make in our own lives and must live with the +/- of them.

You claim that you respect my perspective. But then you say that your parents put you kids first, as if I haven't done that. That is not a very respectful thing to say. Both of my parents worked outside the home, but I never doubted for a second that they weren't putting us children first. They did what they felt was necessary to take care of us and I've always appreciated it. I especially appreciated that they saved for retirement and I never had to worry about supporting them as I was supporting my own family. I know it's hard to get up and go to work every day and I was grateful for their sacrifice.

Again, many parents don't have cushy work hours/consistent schedules for the most part. I know many professionals in many fields who do indeed chase the $ above all else. Or parents who have kids and work swing shifts, travel a bunch for their work, etc. Stand around in an airport, a hotel, etc. any midweek day and there's reality of all those millions who work such schedules, consistently. These types of jobs take parents away from their kids and more than a few see their kids once a week, only an hour before bedtime, etc......that kind of thing apparently works for more than a few people. We once had neighbors down the street, the dad, who we heard went off to work in the oil fields of North Dakota. He'd be gone 6 months at a time, "visit" for a week, and go back again for another 6 months or more. The wife had 3 kids and she worked full time at all sorts of odd hours in her retail job. I felt very bad for the kids as neighbors told us 2 of the kids were having lots of emotional issues/getting into trouble. And perhaps some wonder why(?). Again, these are not uncommon scenarios. Or the parent who simply works the hours you do and some who drop their kids off to daycare all day and misses many parts of them growing up while they are infants. That's reality. I don't get it but many people apparently do.
As I said in a post above, I don't feel like I missed anything about my daughter growing up. We co-slept and I nursed her til she was 3.5 years old. I saw her learn to walk and talk and eat with a spoon. I took her to swimming lessons and spent endless hours playing in the pool with her. I took her to soccer and ballet and all the other activities that kids get to do. I read to her every night until she wanted to read books on her own. I'm not saying any of this to defend myself, because I'm completely happy with the choices I've made. But you seem to think that people who WOTH are strangers to their children and that is simply not the case.

Last edited by Marlow; 02-18-2016 at 08:54 AM..
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Old 02-18-2016, 08:52 AM
15,200 posts, read 16,058,326 times
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Originally Posted by HighFlyingBird View Post
People totally underestimate the importance of a single, invested, solid and stable caregiver in the first months and years of life.

If that is their choice, I'm cool with it. But paying for college is not nearly as important as giving your child that time and attention...

Sorry...but dealing with attachment (adoption, fostering, step kids), I feel strongly about that. And people who work with children (therapists, doctors, etc) have told me the same.
If you're throwing shade my way, you can stop. My daughter got plenty of time and attention and is going to have college paid for as well. Her father and I are both invested in being solid and stable caregivers in her life and always have been. The woman who cared for her as an infant and toddler was loving and affectionate and my daughter was happy when I dropped her off and happy when I picked her up. As I mentioned earlier, my daughter is now a very well-grounded 17-year-old who has good solid relationships with peers as well as the adults in her life and is successful in school and all of her activities.

To imply that a child who stays with a loving caregiver while his/her parents work is at risk of the same type of attachment disorders as a child who has been neglected or abandoned is simply ridiculous and NOT supported by any therapist or doctor anywhere. If you can link to any sort of empirical study showing cause and effect of what you describe, please do so.

You're obviously free to hold whatever opinions you want to, but there's no need to invent evidence to support your contentions when there isn't any.
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Old 02-18-2016, 08:57 AM
10,090 posts, read 6,503,366 times
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Originally Posted by Marlow View Post
If you're throwing shade my way, you can stop.
I was not throwing shade. After that I stopped reading. I was responding to evil cookie's post. As I said, I am fine with what ever choice you make, but that people underestimate how important that time is because "a kid can't remember them". Its just not accurate.
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Old 02-18-2016, 09:01 AM
Location: Denver area
21,142 posts, read 22,127,166 times
Reputation: 35582
Gotta love the posters who give backhanded "respect".....as in they completely "respect" your decisions to be selfish, materialistic and basically wrong - when they know pretty much nothing about the other person's situation or life. Hey...it's your choice if you want to give your kids short-shrift. Yeah, that's totally respectful. Thanks a bunch.
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