Leaving Children For Work

Dear Sara,

I have two babies ages two and three (the second one was not planned.) They are very active and into everything. I have to watch them every minute. Even at nap time they will get up and find something in their room to get into like pull things out of the drawers. I had planned to go back to work but have decided to wait a while. I am so tired but I’m afraid they will get hurt if I put them in daycare plus I don’t think we can afford it if I’m not working. How can I get a break?

Dear Alma,

First you need to take care of yourself. It sounds like you could be anemic or maybe depressed. Why don’t you make an appointment with your physician and see if there is a problem that could be helped.

I know that you are afraid to leave them but even a couple of hours a week at a daycare or a mother’s day out would be a break for you.  Also try to get your two little ones out in a stroller and walk around the neighborhood on days when the weather is good. They will enjoy it and the exercise will be good for you physically and emotionally.

All you can do is baby proof everything and do the best you can for now. They grow up really fast.


  1. Hi Alma,

    I was in the same situation, I have two boys, twins, 2 years now. Four months ago I decided to go back to work, I was exausted, they stay with a nanny 3 days and started 2 days in daycare now. In the first days when I started working one of them didn’t want to talk to me, I couldn’t hug him… but after few days he was back to be my sweet little boy. Working definetely help you to have your time but the days get even more crazy now… I’m always running so I can arrive as soon as possible at home and have time to cook for them and etc. So if you can afford a daycare for 3 hours maybe 3 days a week, it will help you a lot! Enjoy your kids and try to have fun with them! Everybody keep saying they grow fast! Good luck! :)

  2. Why do you need to watch your children every second of the day? Honestly our forbearers brought us up in huts and hovels and when wild wolves bears and other terrible things roamed around and look we thrived. I am sorry but your problems are totally modern and self made. Kids bounce they fall they cry and thats how they learn. If you need a break then take your children to the park and let them run wild have fun and learn.

    A note on childcare, they wrap your kids in evenmore self indulgent cotton wool than you do. The only real damage your kids will go through in daycare is not having mum there for them. If you can afford it be a mum first and put career second.

    Any man can be a father but a child will only ever have one mother.

  3. They probably ‘egg’ each other on…so mischief is inevitable. Maybe ask if they would like to go back to being in a baby’s bed/crib to sleep since they refuse to stay in a big boy/girl bed. Maybe they could take turns sleeping on the couch or in your bed so they are not in the same room for nap time. Is there a friend or relative who would watch them for a couple hours each week? My kids used to like going to the park to feed the ducks and/or swing, go down the slide, use the teeter-totter, climb and roll down the hill. Hope you have somewhere you could take them for an hour or 2 ‘vacation’. Enjoy them! Good luck!

  4. Dear Alma,
    You need a break.
    I agree, you need to see if you are anemic (simple blood test, simple cure), or have hypothyroidism
    (also a simple blood test and easily treated).
    In the old days, “new” mothers had family close by to help, even if it only meant getting together for tea or coffee. Both of my grandmothers, new immigrants to the United States at the turn of the 20th century, had no extended family here, but they met friends and neighbors from the “old country.”
    Those friendships lasted for generations.
    They supported each other.
    Their grandchildren ended up as my friends!
    Our neighbors had a daughter the same age as our younger daughter. We shared many meals together
    and our daughters are still friends, 30 years later.
    Another set of neighbors offered to take care of our daughter so we could go out one night.
    He was a social studies teacher and helped her with her homework!
    There is probably a support system near you.
    Please enjoy the best and probably most stressful job in the world!

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