I follow a woman on Facebook called Janet Landsbury. She’s an advocate of the RIE (Resources for Infant Educators) philosophy and a lot of what this encompasses aligns with my own parenting beliefs. RIE is all about treating infants and children as “unique, separate people” who deserve our respect. I like that it encourages independent play, natural progression, and child led learning. (You can read more about it here).
What I don’t like is the way the philosophy is presented. I don’t like the closed view that there is only one ‘right’ way to raise our children. And I particularity don’t like the guilt and shame that underlies some of her posts.
I want parenting advice to bring me up, not make me feel shitty even though I’m a great mom.
I read this post last night called “Is Two Too Young for Preschool“. On the surface the article appears to be understanding of a parents situation. I like that she says ‘For many families, group care is a necessity. Needing (or wanting) child care and having access to an excellent facility .. are good reasons to begin daycare or preschool.’ However, this is prefaced by ‘Group care adds stress to the life of a preverbal child… If we can’t yet communicate all our needs verbally, combined with the fact that we are being cared for in a group, it can create stress, even in the most ideal setting. Playing with one friend from time to time, going to the park, meeting the plumber and saying “hi” to the mailman is plenty of social interaction for a child 2 and younger.’
Hello bold text.
And hello guilt.
So she says this thing about adding stress to our kids lives, and then follows it up with, but if you have to then oh well kind of thing.
So my son is 2 years and 7 months now and started a preschool/daycare program a month ago. Since starting “school” as we call it, he’s talking a lot more, but I would hardly say he’s able to ‘communicate all his needs verbally’. I know he’s having a hard time transitioning into the group setting as he’s been acting out by pushing, hitting, and even attempting to bite other kids.
Sometimes I think daycare good for him (and me!), and other times I question whether we’re doing the right thing.
Luckily it’s a really great place and we have very open communication with the teachers, so I feel good about that.
But then I read articles like this and I can’t help but think about all that extra stress he’s now experiencing. All because I was getting burnt out having him home.
I should want him home with me.
It’s a luxury for us to be able to have him home, isn’t it?
I think at the end of the day I need to just do what is right for our family – always!! I know this is the right thing. And he is actually really happy there, I can tell. They spend so much time outside, he gets to play with all kinds of new toys and run around with other kids. He’s also napping there which he doesn’t do at home.
And my baby girl naps and eats so much better when her big brother isn’t around distracting her. And she gets some much needed one on one mamma attention.
And me, well, I get my sanity. Which is kind of important.
I’m thinking I might unfollow her on Facebook. Trust myself more. I want advice and I know in some situations I can be better, but I also need to stop reading stuff that makes me feel like a shitty mom.