A perspective on the roles of parents
Last nights conversation with friends struck a chord deep within us all. It all started when, after having a beautiful meal prepared by Wasfieh (Moroccan vegetarian dinner – couscous with pumpkin and kale stew), the ladies stayed inside to make delicious herbal tea (by CreaTea) and bake some dark chocolate fondants drizzled with vanilla bean cream. During the course of this, while the boys happily sat outside by the heater enjoying their argileh and “manly” conversations, Nellie, with a light cheeky smirk on her face, mentions that it would be nice if one night the men can cook us dinner while we sit and relax for a change. “We should tell them” she says smilingly.
So, way after we had dug into our fondants – which deliciously melted in our mouths and vanished off our plates (I’m annoyed I didn’t get a picture of it, maybe it’s my chance to get Wasfieh to make a few more? Hehe) the girls decide to bring up the idea. I don’t know how, but I can understand why then, the conversation turned into this debatable argument about the roles of a stay-at-home mother vs a working father.
We live in an era where both parents aren’t always available to the child and growing up with one parent is a common experience, when one stays home the other is forced to work, hence, the bond between the mother and child vs the father and child is an important consideration. Although a child is affected differently between the bond with a mother to that of the father, they both have unique benefits. The more secure the bond between a mother and child, the more safe and confident the child will feel, it will allow them to cope more easily with change, to have better social skills with people and demonstrate a better understanding of other children’s emotions. Children who are securely bonded to their mothers are also most likely to be self-starters and require less help from their teachers. Fathers on the other hand, feel the responsibility to nurture with financial support (even though there are some mothers in the world who contribute financially), child care and limit-setting (rules/boundaries). This financial support, is crucial to prevent poverty and provide [community] resources for the child to become academically and socially successful, to grow their talents and expand their opportunities. The way fathers provide care and communicate feelings helps kids feel more satisfaction in life, and proper limit-settings contributes to academic achievements, less problems with delinquency and more social competence.
In saying all this, I think that both parents play a crucial role in the upbringing of their children. That whatever great amount, or lack of nurturing, will determine the outcome of the child. In terms of who does more work of the two however, depends on the individuals and how they live really. You can’t say that a mother who barely does anything at home for the child while the partner slaves away at work for hours is the same as a mother who does everything for the child at home while the husband sits at an office from 9am-5pm with an hour and a half break. However, a mothers job requires them to do all or most of the following every single day, lets not forget the father, some of these only apply when they’re present with the child and not at work ie: before and after work, on weekends or public holidays: feeding about 5 times a day (including snacks), check nappies, change nappies, bathe baby, play games with baby, nap times, make bottles/breast feed, down time, hugs and kisses, reading books, house maintenance, prepare dinner, grocery shopping, struggles to have a shower at times and get out of pjs, continuously cleaning after babys mess, quietly clean and do some laundry while baby naps, planning ahead with meals, organising playdates with friends, packing a meal and change for leaving the house then coming back and unpacking like you’ve just come back from an overseas trip. All of this starts at the crack of dawn and does NOT end until you’ve closed your eyes and finally slipped off into a deep sleep. In terms of who’s job is most important, I believe both roles are important, but life starts with the mother who is the prime educator of the child and it begins at her very core, before a child breathes its first air, before it bonds with any soul or being, it begins closer to a mothers heart than anyone else can ever reach – it starts in the womb.
DO NOT MISINTERPRET MY MANY POINTS BASED ON THE AMOUNT OF WORDS I USED IN SUPPORT OF THE ROLE OF A STAY AT HOME MOTHER – I AM ONE AFTER ALL. I APPRECIATE AND VALUE THE ROLE OF HARD WORKING FATHERS WHO SACRIFICE BEING AWAY FROM THEIR LOVED ONES TO SUPPORT THEM FINANCIALLY.
- Happy Mothers Day