Motherhood and family life have evolved dramatically in only a few generations, creating new challenges and issues for modern moms to overcome. For an idea of the astounding statistics surrounding parenting, see Mom Facts and Figures. We've introduced some of the major challenges below, along with links to more information:
|Balancing Work & Children||Delaying Motherhood|
|Child Care||Breastfeeding & Formula|
|Stay At Home Moms||Single Mothers|
|Preterm Births||Postpartum Depression|
If you have suggestions on other mothering topics or links, please contact Shirley.
Today the vast majority of moms - almost 3 out of 4 mothers - are employed. (That is, they hold a second job in addition to being a full-time mom.) Moms that juggle a career and kids average 13 hours a day working at their job or at home, and as a result are often time stressed. The biggest challenge these moms face is finding the elusive work/like balance.
Families and Work Institute
Alliance for Work-Life Progress
Women are delaying motherhood to concentrate on their careers. The average age of new moms in the U.S. was 25 in 2003, compared to 21 in 1970. Birth rates for women in their late 30s and early 40s have doubled over the last 30 years. Having kids later impacts life planning, increases some health risks to mother and child, and results in more multiple births.
March of Dimes: Health Facts of Pregnancy after 35
BabyCentre - Advantages and Disadvantages of being an older mother
Nearly two-thirds of U.S. preschoolers are regularly cared for by someone other than their parents. Besides quality of care concerns, there's also the cost, averaging between $3500 and $7000 per year per child, based on the age of the child.
National Resource Center for Health and Safety in Child Care
National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies
Child Care Aware
A few generations ago there was only one option for infant feeding: a breast, supplied by mom or a wet nurse. Societal changes during World War II led to a major adoption of infant formula, and by the mid-1950s only 25% of U.S. infants were breastfed after they left the maternity ward.
Wikipedia - Breastfeeding / Wikipedia - Formula
Linkages - Benefits of Breastfeeding
U.S. FDA - Discussion of Infant Formula
International Baby Food Action Network
Contemporary Pediatrics - History of Infant Formula
Since the 1960s more and more moms have left home to join the workforce, and today the majority of moms have a job on top of being a full time mom. However, over the last 5 years this trend has begun reversing a little, as mothers and families balance the benefits of career and dual income with lifestyle, the benefits of being their child's primary caregiver and the high costs of external child care.
BabyCenter - A Look At Stay At Home Mothering
Mothers & More - Advocacy Group
Stay At Home Moms Meetup Groups
There are over 10 million single moms in the U.S., and 3 in 10 children live with just one parent. Over 25% of all families are single mother families, more than double the proportion in 1970. In the U.S., single parents have their own official day - National Single Parent Day is celebrated annually on March 21.
About.com Single Parents
Parents Without Partners
Since the early 1980s premature births have increased by 27%. Today, 12% of babies born in the U.S. are premature (less than 37 weeks gestation), and 8% of babies are born with a low birth weight (less than 5.5 lbs). Premature babies can suffer from increased birth defects as well as long term development issues.
National Institute of Health Information
University of Wisconsin Pediatrics
March of Dimes
KidsHealth Primer on Preemies
It's estimated that 1 in 10 mothers suffer from major depression following childbirth, which if untreated can create long term issues for moms and their families.
National Women's Health Information Center
Postpartum Support International