Our society is engaged in heated debates about family values, child care, education, and the future of children. Largely missing from these debates is any serious discussion of the complex vocation we call "parenthood." This book recognizes parenthood as a lifelong process in which parents and children grow together. The distinguished contributors call for families, employers, communities, government, and society to give parents real help with their day-to-day concerns and challenges.
Parenthood in America brings the insights of experts in child development, education, health, media studies, economics, history, sociology, and human services to bear on practical aspects of childrearing and on the kinds of policies that have a real effect on parenting. In response to the stresses of parenthood today, they call for:
o family-friendly workplaces and decent childcare options
o pediatric health care for all
o programs that aid children’s development as well as their physical health
o recognition by professionals of parents’ expert knowledge about their own children
o alternatives to vapid or violent games and TV programs
o prioritization of time for family meals, talks, chores, and activities
o valuing of caring relationships above wealth and possessions
o appreciation of cultural and religious diversity
o supportive networks among parents, teachers, pediatricians, and childcare providers.