The Case To Stay Home
Regarding Amy Joyce's May 13 Outlook article, "How to Handle 'The Return,' " about women returning to work after having children:
The Post, with all its working mothers, seems to almost exclusively print the viewpoints of mothers who work outside the home. I write from the other side.
As a full-time mother and homemaker, I would advise Joyce to follow her heart. If after the little one arrives and she and her husband decide they can afford for one of them to stay home, they should pursue that route. Surely, being present to witness and enjoy the day-to-day journey of their child through life's milestones is worth any luxuries forgone. A parent can assuredly do a better job raising a child than a day-care provider or nanny; the parent is much more emotionally invested in the child.
As for Joyce's assertion of expecting to be a better mother because she has a job: Young children do not care about their parents' careers as much as they just want their mother or father physically present. Indeed, full-time parents and homemakers do work, at raising responsible, well-behaved children and maintaining a smooth-running, happy home. A toddler is not going to be reassured during long hours at day care by how important Mommy's or Daddy's job is.
-- Jennifer Wolff