Who is Looking Forward to Parenthood?

Who is Looking Forward to Parenthood?

Olivia Douglas, Guest Writer

Taking home the electronic baby was something that I was looking forward to. I thought it would be a simple project that required little to no work. When you think of a play baby, you may see the little Baby Alive dolls that we used to play with as kids. You do not expect the project to require you to wake up at insane hours at night and try to complete tasks based from a cry. This was an eye opening experience for many of us.

In my parenting class we used the RealCare Baby Infant Simulator to simulate the tasks a parent would have to do with their newborn child. The baby cries when it wants to be fed, rocked, burped, and changed. Based on the website of the doll, the baby is used to prevent teen pregnancy, prevent child abuse, to teach childcare and parenting skills, and to teach infant health and awareness. This baby was a true learning experience for myself and other people that decided to take the baby home.

When I decided to take the parenting class it was all based from the baby project, because I thought it would be easy. I was not prepared to go through the endless nights that I experienced. I received my baby on a Friday, game day for a cheerleader, not looking forward to having to take care of the baby as soon as I got out of the game. Thankfully, it didn’t turn on until 11 o’clock P.M., but it was still a handful because I had to work the next day. They don’t explain to you that the baby may want to be fed for 20 minutes at a time in the middle of the night. Waking up in the night was one of the hardest things I had to do while having the baby.

One student, named Jaylynn, who had the parenting class two years ago, said that the baby was one of the hardest projects she had to do. “The baby woke me up in the middle night three times and started crying,” she said, “it was so overwhelming that I eventually started crying too.”  This projects tests your patience and makes you really think about if you truly want children.

Taking parenting class helps a person to realize if they should look forward to parenthood. Taking the baby home helps a person to realize if they want to have a child or if they are ready to have a child. The baby pushes a person into adulthood for the little time that you have the baby. You have to deal with the stress of having to take care of a child, by yourself, and trying to do the other activities that you want to do. Having to juggle work, school, and taking care of a “baby” was a stressful experience for many of the students that did the project. You cannot do many of the things you used to do when you did not have to take care of a baby, and it makes you think of your parents. Your parents put their lives to the side to make sure that you have what you need and want. Your parents sacrifice their wants to try to give their children the things they need.

This projects offers students an insight to parenthood. You are put in the position to make a choice between doing what you want and taking care of their baby. This project helps to prepare students for what single-parenthood would be like. This can lead to a student questioning whether or not they are ready to be a parent. You ask yourself, “Am I ready for parenthood?”