A society where people can raise children with comfort

Last week my youngest daughter had the flu.
She had been absent from nursery school for three days.
Yesterday, my eldest daughter caught the ful.
She will be absent from her school for at least three days as well.

So we parents have to take turns leaving from work because we can’t take our sick children to the nursery school.

It is difficult for us to get off work for six days even though we have a special leave for taking care of sick children.
Sometimes I am able to depend on my mother, but she also works on weekdays.

We wish we could take our children to school even though they’re sick.

Recently the number of centers which can receive children with disease are increasing
However, the most of the centers are run by non-profits which face financial and human-resource difficulties.
The government doesn’t treat this problem on a good level.

On the other hand there is an opinion that parents should take care of their own children when they are sick.
This will require flexibly work hours.
The problem is that work is more important than family to Japanese people, although this thought is changing slowly,

Anyway, many working parents are worried about taking care of their sick children now.
The solution to this problem will be one of the countermeasures against the falling birthrate.

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I live in Kawagoe-city Saitama-prefecture Japan. There are many traditional warehouses in Kawagoe. So many Japanese and the people from overseas come to sightseeing. http://www.koedo.or.jp/foreign/english/index.html

21 thoughts on “A society where people can raise children with comfort”

  1. We have the same issue here in the US. We can’t send our kids to school if they are sick, but we must miss work to stay home with them. companies will say that family is important, but they don’t want us to miss work. The company I work for now is good and they will let me work from home if my children are sick.

  2. It is also very difficult on the US. I think it is one of the biggest dilemmas for working parents: Do you neglect the job you studied, and trained so hard to get? What is the right choice? My children are older now, but I still don’t have an answer. I was listening to public radio a couple months ago, and they were talking about certain companies that allow employees to work from home sometimes, and I thought it sounded interesting. Of course, I don’t think it would be feasible for every kind of job but I think the idea would be worth exploring.

    1. That’s interesting. I want to work from home sometimes. It takes two hours to my office from my house.So if my daughter’s teacher calls me to take my daughter, I can’t go to school soon.

  3. A difficult dilemma, but being a parent involves making a lot of sacrifices. You say you wish you could take your children to school even though they’re sick, but not only would that expose a lot of other people to getting sick, but I’m sure would be uncomfortable for your kids. I suppose it’s a cultural thing, but I think when you’re sick sometimes it’s very helpful to just stay in bed or at least at home and rest for a couple of days. In my experience Japanese people seem to push themselves pretty hard.

    Take care – hope you don’t catch your children’s flu!

    1. Thanks.I’ll take care. As you say, many parents mind that their children get sick in their school.So if there isn’t isolated room, children with disease should not go to their school.

  4. It’s always a dilemma for working parents. Having a family support systems sometimes help but we can’t depend on them all the time and unless you have an understanding boss, taking time off for family matters can be frowned upon. 😦

  5. Hello,

    Sorry to hear your children had the flu. That is always difficult. My wife is worried about me working in Japan because of the long hours and obligations. However, it is similar here: I work long hours and don’t see my daughter much. My schedule is flexible, so I am lucky, but I still feel bad when I can’t see her.

    My wife’s family lives in Japan, and my own family isn’t dependable, so when there is a problem, my wife must either solve it herself, or I have to sacrifice work. It’s difficult sometimes.

    Anyway, please take a break (children and parents πŸ™‚ ).

    1. Thanks.Flexible working is good.
      This problem seems to occur at any place.
      Growing children is hard work for your wife.
      Take care your wife. πŸ™‚

  6. I hope your child feels better soon so you won’t have to choose… If the work policy allows time out to care for a child… do try to take some of it. πŸ™‚
    Not easy I understand!

  7. There’s really no excuse for employers not to be more flexible with their employees when it comes to family sick leave–esp. for office employees that can still get work down on the computer or via telephone. (Direct sales/customer serverice is a bit different). I hope the attitude changes soon. Children are only young once and need a parent to care for them when they are sick.

    1. Japanese business practice is old a little.
      So only one company can’t change the work policy.
      If most of the companies will be more flexible, the companies don’t need to locate even within the country. πŸ™‚

  8. I am sad that your children are poorly and that you also wish to send them to school when they are sick because of work comments.
    I was left to bring up my children (now 26 and 18) on my own, so I returned to work so that I didn’t have to have state help. However, at the interview stage, I made it very clear that a) I was a lone parent with two children and b) I was also a very loyal, hard working person and that this could and should work both ways; if I was needed/required to stay on late for a ending project, I would do so, however if my child(ren) were poorly, I would not ask permission but would let them know that I would be staying at home until my child(ren) could return to school.
    In the last 15 years I have not been out of work and even though I treated work/home both 50/50, I have still managed to have a fantastic relationship with both my children and have two very loyal directors and earn a very comfortable wage.
    I know I am a luckly lady but I do also wonder if some of it is because I discuss the problem before it is even there.

    Hope you all stay fit and well and that your employers become more family friendly.

  9. Thank you for telling your story.It seemed hard to grow two children so far.
    Of course I think to take care our children by ourselves.

    Unfortunately, it is difficult especially for women to work full time while they grow their children.Once they leave their job, they can’t find another job in Japan.
    So as you say, you are lucky and I hope that a society where people can raise children with comfort will come soon. πŸ™‚

  10. it is a very difficult problem. businesses don’t want employees to take off, schools don’t want sick kids (and i don’t blame them, if a sick kid gets all the other kids sick, then those parents have to stay home and the problem is rolling). luckily i am able to stay home with the boys for now, i have one who doesn’t go to school yet. to do this though, i have to sacrifice the income, insurance coverage for myself, and the gratification of having a career.

    1. Yes, What a dilemma.You are happy to stay home with your boys.
      Time together can’t be bought with money.
      it is up to someone to accept the situation. πŸ™‚

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