Like many parents, you probably became your own work at home daycare staff while complying with the governer’s “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order. You had few other options, of course, so you worked at home, and you took care of your children. You cooked, and you cleaned. You taught lessons and planned playtime. You probably went to bed early each evening and rose early each morning. You’re probably still doing these things.
Even if you were an efficient, highly productive worker on the job, that probably changed overnight. You quickly learned that you couldn’t do your best work while adding school, childcare, and playtime to your schedule.
You likely learned that daycare is just as important for parents who work at home as it is for those who commute across town. Before you begin to work at home, daycare can seem optional. The reality is far more complicated.
What Happens if You Continue Working at Home?
Everything is evolving in Connecticut. Businessowners are gradually opening up their shuttered companies. Children are still out of school. You’re probably still working remotely. Now that you’ve adjusted to working while caring for your children, do you still need work at home daycare? Ask yourself a few questions before you decide.
Do you really want to work and take care of your children simultaneously?
The New York Times opinion piece, “Two Parents. Two Kids. Two Jobs. No Child Care”, describes the tribulations of parents working at home during the Bay Area lockdown. The author, Farhad Manjoo, talks about the stress and burnout of working at home while “…rooming with, feeding and educating…” children.
He and his twitter followers describe a lack of focus, emotional stress, and an inability to maintain workflow. While the current lockdown circumstances are extreme, it’s a relevant example of the work-at-home/childcare balance parents have always tried to accomplish.
Do you work full-time or part-time?
When you work a full-time job, it’s hard to find enough productive time if you have a child at home. Young children want and deserve your attention. It’s difficult to focus and maintain a full day’s workflow when you’re stopping to change training pants or play peek-a-boo.
Do you work part-time?
When you work a part-time job, you have a few more options, but only if you can work a flexible schedule. You can:
- Arrange your work schedule around your child’s needs
- Commit to working only when your child is asleep
- Work while your child is in school
Are you on the clock?
If you work flexible hours, it’s easier to mix job tasks with childcare tasks. That isn’t an option when employers hold you to a set work schedule. As more employees work from home, some bosses can’t abandon their “overseer” management styles. Some use time-tracking software to make sure you’re working when you’re supposed to. Working on the clock can be an added stressor, especially when your toddler wants a mid-morning snack.
Will your spouse or partner care for your child while you work?
When you work at home, daycare becomes optional if your spouse or partner stays home. As long as your partner agrees, you’ll have a built-in child care provider.
Are you happy with your work/childcare balance?
If you’re not career-driven and you’re getting your job done, working at home with your kids can be a joy. You can earn money without leaving home. You can save on commuting costs and child care expenses, all while spending time with your children. That doesn’t work for everyone, but If it makes you happy, that’s what’s important.
Contact The Learning Center
Give us at a call at (860) 643-8639 to learn more about daycare options for parents who work at home.