Caring for an Infant: The Challenges and Perks of Relative Care

Infants and young children have extra emotional needs and by fully understanding these needs, most of our troubles in dealing with them will be settled. This specifically applies to dealing with the infant’s attachment needs and the possible effects of separating them from their parents.

Gone are the days that only a mother can truly take care of her baby. Anyone of us is capable of providing these youngsters the adequate attention and love they need. Dads and other male relatives, such as older brother, uncles and grandfathers are no longer shadowy figures. They were once cast as passive participants in raising infants, but not anymore.


These days, not only the mothers are considered integral and crucial persons in a care giving team. The people surrounding the infant can do their share of parenting tasks to raise their newborns.

The Challenges of Relative Care

There are many advantages and some disadvantages in using relative care. However, the strengths of it can also be the weaknesses.

  • Perhaps the parent is telling the relative the do’s and don’ts in taking care of the baby, there could awkwardness between them. The older generation may feel that they know better than the parents. Chances are they will ignore your ideas about child care issues such as discipline, sleep and feeding.
  • It can bring confusion to the child when he or she can understand things which may end up hurting the relationship between the relative and the mother. You can avoid this by establishing clear communications and ground rules at the onset.
  • There are also instances that parents may offer payment for taking care of the baby. Whether or not you pay them, you may still feel indebted which can result to awkwardness.
  • Some relative caregivers may not be able to keep up with a fast growing child. The infant’s changing routines, colic episodes and tantrums can be too much for them to handle.
  • Relative care is not regulated or guided by any associations nor licensed by the government. Thus, one should fully trust the person to look after their baby.


The Perks

Despite these disadvantages, there are also compelling reasons why you should use relative care. More often than not, your family member or your husband shares the same child rearing philosophies.  As long as you live in peace and harmony with these people, you may find a childcare option as the most effective solution. You can be sure that they will provide your baby the love, comfort and security he or she needs.

  • Most of the time, relative care is cannot be compared to other childcare option. Aside from the parents, these people can deliver utmost love and care for the infant. They can even go beyond what is needed of them just to make sure the baby is safe, healthy and happy.
  • You can fully trust your relatives than “strangers” such as the people in day care centers or nannies that you can get from agencies. They can give you the much needed peace of mind. Since they are the infant’s own family, you can expect them to be genuinely interested in the baby’s welfare. They can be fully accountable with the baby’s health and well-being. This gives them the edge over day care centers or nannies for hire.
  • You are also knowledgeable about the person’s background, habits and personal preferences that may affect the baby’s welfare.
  • In some instances, your relatives may also share the same values with at home which they can easily teach to your baby.

  • Another advantage is your relative can look after the baby on your own home or their home. Hence, you can be sure that the baby is properly nourished and comforted. Unlike in day care centers, the caregiver-to-child ratio is not always 1:1.
  • Even if the relative is looking after more than one child, it is much lower compared to centers. Fewer kids mean less chances of getting viral illnesses.
  • Although payment could be a disadvantage, it could be also one of the main reasons why you should opt for relative care. Their fee is cheaper and you could offer another kind of compensation aside from monetary.

Nonetheless, most of us are still fond of the idea that mothers are the best child caregivers due to plenty of reasons. However, your relatives and even your closes friends are considered your child’s family as well. We can be mostly sure that the baby will get lots of attention and love from these people who can play a vital role in their early life.


Relative care simply means allowing your relatives such as sister, brother, grandparents, aunt or cousins to take care of your child. It is the original form of childcare and still, a popular option for many parents nowadays. Unlike the older times, mothers no longer stay at home to raise the kids as they also need to earn a living to support the family needs.

However, just like any form of child care, it also has its pluses. You relative can have the best interest for your child like a mother always has. But there are also situations that you will find it difficult to give your aunt or your mother some ideas and pointers on how you want your child to be raised.

The baby’ father can also play a vital role in his or her early life. They may not be the experts in this area, but they also share the same values, interests and ideas for the baby’s happiness and well-being. Remember that this set-up will work best if you have good relationships with one another. Work on flexible schedules and look for the person who is willing and able to do the job.

The modern times and its various circumstances prove that it is not only the mother who is capable of taking care and upbringing the child. While you and your relatives sometimes may have contradicted ideas, relative care most often fits the bill.

Walter F.Hallett

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 2 comments
Leek J - July 2, 2016

Great post. Thanks for share your post.

JadaEGalva - September 28, 2016

This is my first time go to see at here and i am really impressed to read all at alone place.


Leave a Reply: