Monday, October 11, 2004

Cleaning Ladies Part 1: Raising Our Children

I used to work in a day camp in a fairly affluent bunglow colony. My campers were 2 years old.
I can count the numbers of the days their parents brought them to day camp on my fingers. I got to know the maids better than the parents. What do you think that leaves the child with?
These kids cried for their maids before their mothers. I corrected them, "No, you don't want [insert odd Polish name here], you want Mommy." and I took it from there.

These mothers are so worried about their kids' Yiddishkeit, they taught their maids "Shema Yisrael" so they can say it with them at night. Impressive, huh?

Listen, I understand that in this day and age, to get by without pinching pennies, both parents have to provide income, thus the mother is at work most of the day. But to never spend time with your children...there's something wrong. My favorite situation is the one where the husband rakes in millions, and the wives are out there spending them. They're not even working. They're shopping. I don't mean for groceries.

I also understand that raising children is extremely challenging and draining. After my 2 1/2 hours with those kids, I need a nap more than they do. But you can at least spend an hour with your children. Feed them dinner, put them to bed, help them with their homework, etc.

One of my teachers recently said, "Jewish mothers teach their maids to be their substitutes, they do everything for them," she listed everything, and continuted "Except..." she paused. "SHOP FOR THEM" we excaimed simoultaneously. Sure i got a buncha dirty looks from my classmates, but the sad part is, IT'S TRUE.


At 11/01/2004 5:31 AM, Blogger A Simple Jew said...

I enjoy reading your blog and put a link to it on my site. Have a great day.

At 4/28/2005 10:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just happened upon this and all I can say is how very, very sad. I am a frum mother as well and I have miraculously managed to work, earn a master's degree and most importantly be home for my children in the mornings to get them off to school and to pick them up from school at them end of each day. Our evenings are spent together doing their homework, making dinner, talking and reading books. Only after they went to sleep each night, for three years did I hit the books and write my own papers. I want you to know that although this has all been extremely challenging for me at times, I have always put my children first. My time with them is the primary focus of my life, everything else is secondary. My time spent parenting is far more rewarding than any silly shoppong spree could ever be! Not every mother can tailor their working hours around their kids, but I have searched for jobs where I can use my professional skills, earn much needed income, and still be home with my growing children. Many Jewish mothers prioritze their children and only have babysitters out of neccessity if at all, I am saddened to read your depiction of Jewish mothers as shallow and uncaring individuals.I do not doubt you, however you must know that there is a mcuh bigger, broader picture out there!

At 5/08/2005 8:09 PM, Blogger Michelle said...

It's very admirable of you to put your children first. I think you are the exception to the rule, believe it or not. From what I have seen (maybe I've hung around my neighborhood a little too long) mothers have children to shop for them, dress them, and show them off. And nothing more.


Post a Comment

<< Home