Yet another study
Marlon raves against yet another parenting study that proves the glaringly obvious.
I have a particular pet-hate for ‘new studies’ that prove or disprove things we’ve known for centuries.

I’m not talking about real breakthroughs, I’m all for that. My bone of contention this time is a new study which apparently has found that ‘Babies did not suffer from their mothers returning to work after three months.’

According to report in the Telegraph, ‘Academics who assessed the total impact of a mother going back to work on a child’s mental and social development found that the positive consequences cancelled out the negatives.’

And yes, there is reference to a previous article about a then ‘new study’, that suggested that ‘mothers who return to work put their children at risk of a barrage of ill effects.’

Do we really need all these studies? Isn’t this a symptom of first-world over indulgence? A question of having too much time and too many resources to go faffing around doing studies on every little thing, most of which could be solved by common sense?

Let’s take this topic and explore it a bit. From the beginning of time, mothers would leave their babies as soon as they could, out of necessity. Certain civilizations figured out that when there was more than one baby around, it might be a good idea to have one mother watch the entire brood. I would argue that it is almost more natural in terms of our collective experience, to be without our parents, than it is to be with them. And dare I say it, we’re doing just fine this way!

Your average parent these days has a job. He or she typically spends a few hours (if that) with the offspring in the morning and evening of every week day. On the weekends they possibly get to spend a lot more time together. This is the norm. Parents who have the luxury of staying at home with the kids are by far the exception.

And isn’t it bizarre that in some cases, this even leads to social trauma when these kids have to interact with other kids who go to crèches or pre-school, because they have not had any interactions with their peers. How much quality time with our kids is necessary? Is there such a thing as spending too much time with them? And is a few hours in the morning and evening really enough? I really think so, it’s been this way since the dawn of time, why mess with it now?

Read more by Marlon Abrahams

Do you pay any attention to studies on parenting? And how much time is enough with your child?

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