“Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne?”
From the beginning of life, children need their mothers like they need no one else. A baby in the womb depends on his mother for the nutrients that help him develop. After birth, the quality of bonding between mother and child can have lifelong implications. For example, a Harvard University study found that 91 percent of men who did not enjoy a close relationship with their mothers in their early years developed coronary artery disease, hypertension, ulcers, and alcoholism by midlife; only 45 percent of men who recalled maternal warmth and closeness had similar illnesses.
This is only one of the countless reasons why we encourage you to care for your baby yourself and avoid day-care facilities unless there is no reasonable alternative. Research on this subject consistently supports this recommendation. If you are a single mom, you may have no choice. Do the best you can, and don’t feel guilty! Yet if your financial situation requires you to work, ask yourself: Could I cut back on my hours? Could I work from home? Are there other ways to spend more time with my child?
Every precious newborn needs five things to thrive: touch, connection, permanence, nurturance, and reassurance. By God’s design, no one is better qualified to provide those conditions than mom.
Before you say good night…
(mother) Lord, it is so hard to balance the needs of my children with the realities of life. Help me to be the best mother I can be, grant me wisdom to make wise choices, and give me peace when I am doing all that I can. Amen.
Statistics from “Parent’s Love Affects Child’s Health,” Reuters, 10 March 1997, as quoted in Bringing Up Boys copyright © 2001 by James Dobson, Inc. Published by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. Used with permission. All rights reserved.
This devotional is taken from Night Light for Parents. Copyright © 2000 by James Dobson, Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission.