Thursday, 14 January 2010

Working V Non-Working mothers

Why do we have this war between working and non-working mothers? What is wrong with people making choices which suit their circumstances? When Feminism first started - even way back in the 18th century - it was all about giving women choices and opportunities. It was never about putting women in a straight jacket and telling them the only roles they could take up were wife and mother or alternatively career woman.

If you think about it logically, bringing up children is the only job where 'experts' say the untrained and inexperienced person - i.e. the mother - is the best person to do the job. In nursing untrained nurses are not let loose on the patients. You can't go and work in a shop without being given some training. No one would want an untrained solicitor. And yet any young girl who has a child is expected to be the best person to bring up that child without any experience or training.

Then of course there are all the comments about why have children and let someone else care for them. If that person is trained and experienced - e.g. a Norland nanny - who is the better person to do the job? The mother, whose abilities may lie in other directions entirely, or the highly trained professional? Not everyone can afford nannies but too few people consider employing a nanny between them to spread the cost. Nurseries seem in the main to do a good job, in spite of the horror stories you hear about them.

Would society's problems be solved overnight if all working mothers gave up their jobs and went back home to look after their children? I suspect not.

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