“The aged women likewise…teachers of good things, that they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be be discreet, chaste, keepers at home.” Titus 2:3-5
Question:”How old should my child be before I think of returning to work?”
Mother, by asking this question you are indicating it is a settled fact that you belong back in the work force just as soon as you can possibly get there. Have you ever considered the fact that God wants you with your child? That your first responsibility is to your home?
Many voices are talking to you women today. The feminist has sold well their message, “Woman, if you ever wish to feel fulfilled, you must have a career outside your home.” But who is speaking for the children? Your child has the right to have a nurturing and loving mother at home–during all of his formative years.
Most children in America are being raised by strangers and substitute parents – baby-sitters, day care workers, school teachers and television (the unpaid baby-sitter). These will never be a substitute for Mother. Many thousands and thousands of children in America go home, with a key around their neck, to an empty house — latchkey children.
I am reminded of a poster I once saw: “The children in America do not need better teachers as much as they need a better childhood.”
Every child is born with a need, just as strong as the need for food and being kept dry. It is the need for the presence and security of his mother. This need is known as ‘bonding’ or ‘attachment’.
This special attachment begins even before birth, for studies have shown that a child can recognize and respond to his mothers voice even at birth. Babies three months old can connect mother’s voice with mother’s face.
Real bonding, however, takes place during the first eighteen months of life. The baby shows his needs by crying and then mother satisfies the need. The baby soon learns to trust her to meet all his needs.
As a mother holds her baby close, feeding and talking to him, a feeling of security and a trust is developed within the child. For this to happen the mother needs to regularly, and consistently be accessible throughout the child’s critical first two years.
When mother is absent, the baby becomes fretful and seriously depressed. If this happens over and over, the child feels rejection and then may have trouble in later life building relationships with others. Many of our psychopaths, who prey on others in later life, are believed to have been ‘unbonded’ children.
One-half of everything a person learns, he learns before age two. One half of the remaining knowledge is learned before five years of age. Why not be part of the most important years in your child’s life? No one can convince me that a mother of a small child will ever be happy out in the work force away from her child. In fact, I have had teachers in my office breaking down and crying because of the conflict and the desire to be home with their young child.
Mother, if you are gone during this time, someone else is teaching and training your child. Someone else will have the joy of seeing your child take his first step. Someone else will have the joy of hearing the sounds similar to “mamma.” Someone else will cool the feverish brow of your baby when he is sick. Someone else will hold him close and read stories to him. Someone else will model values for your child.
Even when your child leaves and goes to school, he still deserves the privilege to come home to loving smells and sheltering arms.
I heard of a little boy who was placed in a foster home. When he was enrolled in school, he could not function and could hardly wait until school was over. When he was let off the bus, he would run ‘home’ as fast as he could to see if his new mother was there for him. It was only after he knew that she would be there for him, every day, could he relax and then learn at school.
“But you don’t understand, I need to work. We need the money.”
First be honest with God and yourself. Is it really for needs or is it for your wants? In America, we have the two mixed up. God has promised to supply your needs.
When you subtract the cost of day care, the cost of special clothes, the restaurant bills, the pre-prepared food and the taxes from your paycheck, are you really gaining that much? Is it worth missing the most exciting years with your child?
I realize there are emergencies in every family. If you do need extra income, prayerfully read Proverbs 31 and then look for ways to augment your income from within the home. Here is a very liberated woman, whose abilities are not inhibited – they are just focused toward her husband and her children. Maybe God wants you to take in other people’s children so you can enjoy what those mothers are missing and at the same time get paid for it.
Mothers, never buy into this world’s value system. Never hang your head and say, “I am just a housewife.” Rather say proudly and assertively:
“I am a Homemaker! I am a full-time Mother! I mold lives for Eternity!”
“She who rocks the cradle rules the nation.”
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