Recently on NPR they had a panel of parents discussing feelings, costs, and challenges with daycare. They had a variety of working moms, previously a stay at home dad, a grandmother, etc. debating the concerns with daycare, predominantly from a financial perspective.
Parents Sound Off On The Economics of Child Care
This topic has been one I have spent a great deal of energy and time discussing. The financial burden of putting your children in a high quality daycare can be quite crippling. If you can’t be the one to care for them, what other choice do you have?
The first year of Drew’s life we spent a great deal of time trying to shuffle him back in forth from our very generous, loving parents (Drew’s grandparents). Mostly because we felt that an infant was best with people who sincerely loved him. There was a tremendous financial benefit to keeping him with his grandparents too.
As time went by, we realized that the inconsistency of having him different places was ultimately detrimental to his well-being. We eventually put him in full time daycare. And although I felt confident he was in an environment designed for him to thrive in, it was frequently hard to stomach leaving him let alone the cost.
When Gabby came into the picture, the financial burden of having two children in daycare seemed unbearable to manage. That was why we looked into some alternatives to a center atmosphere which seemed warmer as well as more cost efficient. That clearly didn’t work out (reference: Neglect). We went back to the high quality care associated with the center that Drew was attending.
After time, though, it seemed quite ridiculous that we were forced to lead such a frugal lifestyle just to have our children in daycare 40 hours a week. It was always heartbreaking to leave them, but under such financially challenging circumstances just seemed wrong. It was still cost efficient for me to work but it forced us to re-prioritize.
And now that my children no longer need daycare, I still find us bearing a large financial burden of sending my kids to preschool and classes. I would not change a thing to ensure that my children are at a high quality, clean, safe place but it is a challenge at times. But then again, no one said kids were cheap. And putting it in perspective, it’s a heck of a lot cheaper than college! Oh, the things to look forward to!
Daycare is such an issue! We were forking out a lot for Seth to go to a nice preschool/daycare full time. I finally put him in a church preschool. He goes full time and we pay half the cost and have had a much better experience!