matt has hinted at being a stay-at-home dad, which i'm fine with. financially, i think it would be a bit of a struggle, but probably no more so than it will be for the first few years with a child in daycare. daycare is expensive, and sometimes it's just not worth spending more than 1/2 of one of your salaries on it. we'll have to sit down and do the math, but it may just about even out and make having a sahp be more worth it. but if it is, matt will probably be the sahp, not me.
in my mind, the answer has always been daycare. it's a no-brainer for me. i grew up in daycare. i went from the time i was 6 weeks old until i was (i think) 11. and my sister was in it with me until she was (i think) 7. and both of us turned out ok.
i've heard and read that a lot of women don't want to put their kids in daycare because they worry that their child will feel abandoned. they worry that they won't get enough time with their kids. they worry that they'll miss out on important milestones. and some of that may be true. but as a product of the daycare world, i can tell you that i never once felt abandoned by my parents. i never once felt like they didn't want to be with me. i never once felt like they missed anything. at least, i don't remember ever feeling any of that. sure, maybe i did when i was, like, 2, but obviously the feeling didn't stick around long and it certainly didn't scar me for life. i have no attachment issues. my mom traveled a lot for work when we were younger and i still don't feel like she missed out on anything. i remember her always being there for the important things - school plays, dance recitals (and the dress rehearsals), piano recitals, synchronized swimming shows and competitions, cheerleading tryouts. she was there when it counted, and that's what i remember.
i think as long as your children get a sense that you care and that you'll be there for them, they'll make it through daycare just fine. daycare provides socialization opportunities for your child that a few playdates and mommy and me classes a week just can't match. it exposes them to germs, and builds up their immune systems. it also, i think, encourages independence.
what are your thoughts on daycare? what drove your decisions to do daycare vs. sahp?