Not too many years ago. only the fathers from their families used to work. Their job was confined to being just the bread earner of the homes while the mother looked after the children and nurtured them. She was considered the homemaker and was there to greet the children when they returned home from school. But there have been drastic changes in this picture. Today. mothers of nearly 80% children over the age of 5 are in the workforce, and during workdays, no parent is at home or readily available (survey in America). Another adult, usually grandparents or commercial child nannies care for the children there. With most of their waking hours spent away from their parents, the quality of children’s everyday experiences is difficult to predict and control.
The advocates of this, that both parents should work argue that it is the best way for both the spouses to contribute financially to the family. Millions of families find that they need two wage earners in order to buy a home, pay the rent, and afford vacations or simply to maintain the family budget. Increased income may contribute to fewer financial stresses. Also when both parents work, there is a potential for greater equality in the roles of husband and wife. Both withstand the requirements of work and are thus more co-operative. Moreover it is the best way for the woman to achieve independence and become more equal in the marital relationship than generally allowed.
Other factors may include that if the wife gives up her job. she could do irreparable damage to her career. The lower-earning spouse may have the health insurance benefits. benefits. It may keep the parents more active and informed about what is going on outside their homes. it may help if the father suddenly loses his job. And lastly it helps to improve the child’s development when children are left in day cares: they learn social skills by interacting with other children. It helps them develop interpersonal communication skills.
However both parents working also has a negative side. The cost of their working, emotional and stress related, is so high that it’s better for one parent to stay home. It is important for the child to feel that somebody is there for him. It makes the child feel more nurtured and loved.
When both spouses work. there are two particular aspects that often suffer. Firstly some parents become less nurturing or less emotionally available. Caught up in the hectic pace of their lives parents may give their children less attention and loving care than they desire. And secondly, some parents are afraid to set limits. Setting limits is an important component of gaining the respect of the youngsters. For children to grow into happy and secure adults, they need to be sensitive to feelings and values and listen to what their parents have to say. If they follow the rules set they will eventually adopt many of them.
Many a times when both parents are working, the child is neglected. He may indulge in drugs or other bad activities like stealing etc when he knows there is nobody in front of whom he may be accountable for his actions. Often, neglected children even suffer from abuse but their workaholic parents are too busy to notice.
Therefore in my opinion, children may not be less happy or healthy when both parents work but they do suffer from stress, lack of emotional availability and unreliable schedules. This also creates a gap between both the parents if they become too caught up in their own lifestyles. This further results in parental disputes and the child may no longer view his family as a normal happy family.
Consequently either only one of the parents should work or they should work in shifts so that at one given time at least one of the two parents is there for the child.