There are more than 73 million children in the country under the age of 18, and of these, 57 percent of all the infants have working parents. Plus, there are 9.9 million single mothers in the nation. Just thinking about all the parents out there that may work the overnight shift in hospitals, factories, convenience stores, and other settings makes it easy to see how quality overnight care is essential to the health of the child, not to mention peace of mind for the working parent.
The US Census Bureau reports that 52 million US children live in homes with two parents, possibly leaving one parent able to watch the child overnight while the other one works. But what are the other 21 million parents supposed to do when many of them work the overnight shift and don't have another parent to rely upon to watch the child? These parents still need to find quality childcare. Help is out there, but parents will need to be a bit more proactive in seeking it out, because it won't come as easy as it does for those seeking daycare.
A Few Extra Z's
Not only do some parents work the third shift and need someone to watch over their children as they sleep, but some others may find it a fine way to get caught up on some much-deserved sleep themselves. Christina Norris, a mom from Daytona Beach, Florida, recently started offering overnight babysitting services to parents, because she thinks it could benefit even those looking to catch up on some sleep.
"Having a 9-month-old baby at home, I have a lot of empathy for other mothers struggling to get a good night's rest," Norris says. "I often think if only I could get one night a week of uninterrupted sleep, I would feel 900 times better. Yet, my baby hasn't yet spent a night away from me."
Norris likes the idea of overnight care and says that if she could afford it, she'd like to have it one night per week to catch up on sleep and get a break. "For single mothers especially, it can be draining and somewhat depressing to never have any help," Norris says. "This is where overnight babysitters can be saviors."