“Baby” it's expensive. Swedish moms-to-be getting heavier. Early daycare pick up – a class issue in Sweden?
“Baby” it's expensive
Cecilia Edefalk’s painting “Baby” is the eighth most expensive piece of art in the world done by a woman. “Baby” was sold at Bukowskis auction house in November last year for about 6 million SEK ($943,000). It is also the most expensive painting ever made by a still active Swedish painter. The monumental “Baby” was painted in 1987. “It is of course flattering with these high estimates,” says Edefalk. “But the frantically high auction prices are at the same time scary. Many (artists) are put on pedestals just to come crashing down quickly afterwards.” Edefalk was born in Norrköping in 1954 and studied at Konstfack.
Pregnant women in Sweden are getting heavier according to a new report from Socialstyrelsen (The National Board of Health and Welfare). In 2009, around 25% of all moms-to-be were overweight (having a BMI – Body Mass Index – over 25) and 12% had a BMI over 30, which is considered obese. Compare that to 1993, when only a little over 20% were overweight and 7% were obese.
Early daycare pick up – a class issue?
Many Swedish parents feel pressured to pick up their toddlers earlier from day care centers, as a matter of fact over 800 who were asked in a survey by the 'Kommunal' union (locally employed public service), felt that way. The most common reason mentioned is that “everybody else pick up early”. Every fourth parent feels pressured to pick up their child before 4 pm, and over 50% of the parents feel bad if they don’t pick up before 4:30 pm. The short opening hours at day care centers as well as the fact that many feel the care their kids receive there is questionable, have turned pick up time into a class issue. “Unfortunately I recognize this kind of stress,” says Rebecka Edgren Aldén, author of the book “Skriet från kärnfamiljen”. “Many parents feel they’re better parents if their children have as short a day as possible at the day care center.” A problem is also that many people today work during hours when the day care centers aren’t open, such as nighttime or weekends. Using day care centers more than others has become something shameful. “It’s almost as if it is deemed better to have a poorly educated babysitter at home,” says Annelie Nordström, chairwoman at the Kommunal union. And Edgren Aldén says it is definitely status to pick up early: “Our own mothers were out on the barricades, fighting for daycare and saw that as a revolution of freedom. My generation rebels against that and live very conservative lives instead: We get married in churches, we bake our own bread, we are interested in gardening and knitting. And picking up early.”