Why bringing up baby isn’t just for parents
IT really may take a village to raise a child – with several people looking after youngsters rather than just their parents, experts believe.
In modern ‘ hunter-gatherer’ groups such as the Congo rainforest’s Efe tribe babies are cared for every day by 14 people apart from parents.
An article for the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry says this takes the pressure off the mother, who in the West is still often expected to do the bulk of childcare alone. It suggested Western parents should see other adults not as babysitters, but as partners who help raise children.
Cambridge University co-author Dr Nikhil Chaudhary said this could reduce ‘stress within the nuclear family and the risk of maternal depression, which has knock-on effects for child wellbeing’.