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“Children are a social asset for everyone, but they are a public good that mothers pay a disproportionately high price for,” said a researcher at the University of New South Wales’ Social Policy Research Center more than a decade ago.
As fathers take on more active roles at home, one needs to wonder why views about parenting roles, happiness, and wellbeing remain measurably different in 2020. Clinical psychologist Darcy Lockman, author of All the Rage: Mothers, Fathers, and the Myth of Equal Partnership, writes in a New York Times entitled “What ‘Good’ Dads Get Away With With the What Good Dads Get Away With Get Away Away Get Away With The What ‘Good’ ‘Similarly, men reinforce “a separation of spheres that underpins male ideals and maintains a gender order that privileges men over women”.
Ashley McQuire, who writes for the Institute of Family Studies, finds that “the liberal feminist obsession with household chores is out of date and tired”. She argues, “These women want to be the main caregivers for their children and are happy when they can prioritize what they do at home. It’s a cold, hard fact that feminists like Lockman just can’t accept for some reason. “
When the Pew Research Center recently examined the numbers, the breakdown for housework was 18 hours a week for mothers and 10 hours for fathers. Additionally, Pew found that more mothers, 53 percent, feel they have enough time with their children. Only 36 percent of fathers take this position. In short, most fathers want more time with their children.
Fathers spend about eight hours a week in childcare, according to Pew (an increase from the two and a half hours spent by men 50 years ago) compared to 14 hours with mothers.
Happy mothers, happier fathers
How mothers and fathers spend time with their children affects the wellbeing of mothers and fathers. A new study, titled Happy Mothers, Happier Fathers: Gender-Based Care and Parental Influence, underscores previous research suggesting fathers are happier and explains why. The study’s researchers, Cadhla McDonnell, Nancy Luke, and Susan E. Short, analyzed specific childcare activities to determine where and when the activity took place, which parent was present, how much care was required, and how moods were affected by mothers and fathers .
Their study, published in the Journal of Family Issues, looked at who did what to meet a child’s basic needs. who was busy with playtime or sports; or homework help; and who made children’s arrangements, made doctor’s appointments or did most of the transport. They focused on the context of care, rather than the time spent determining the level of stress and happiness in the parents. The authors explain: “Parenthood is emotionally demanding and very gender specific. We observe an imbalance between the sexes in the emotional rewards of childcare: fathers report more happiness, less stress and less fatigue than mothers. “
Work mothers say that “Despite these challenges, many working parents – including about 8 in 10 full-time mothers – their current employment situation is best for them at this point in their lives, regardless of the stress and feelings of work brings with it “They find it harder to be a good parent. ”
The stress factor
Aside from the difficulties for both parents, the emotional rewards for the fathers in the Happy Mothers, Happier Fathers study were greater. They were happier and less stressed because they did more leisure activities and less stressful aspects of parenting.
Michael Ungar reports on the results of an Austrian study for psychology. Today he takes the position that because fathers are more involved in childcare, they are more stressed than mothers, especially in families with young children.
Leah Ruppanner, who teaches sociology at the University of Melbourne, found something different. She and her colleagues reviewed data collected over 16 years from approximately 20,000 Australian families. Not only did she find that having a second child is affecting the parents’ mental health, but she also concluded that “Mothers and fathers report similar time pressures before the birth. As soon as the first child is born, the time pressure increases for both parents. However, this effect is much greater for mothers than for fathers. Second children double the parents’ time pressure and further widen the gap between mothers and fathers. “The time pressure and the stress they cause have“ not decreased as the children get older ”. Ruppanner’s results seem to hold true even after children reach puberty.
Age as children
The study “Parenting Parenting Wellbeing Across Child Development Arc: Parenting Wellbeing By Age Of Child” assessed how more than 18,000 parents felt doing various activities with children of different ages using American time Use the survey feel-good module. Ann Meier, lead researcher, found that both parents are least satisfied with teenagers, but mothers “report more stress and less concern [than fathers] with teenagers. “The study highlights that the teenage years have a major impact on the happiness and well-being of parents. Nonetheless, the researchers concluded that” Mothers experience shoulder stress that fathers do not, even after considering differences in the context of their parenting activities. “
Among the families you know or in your own family, would you agree that the father is happier, less stressed, and more content than the mother in raising children? Or, like Ashley McQuire, do you feel that “women want to be the primary caregivers for their children and are happy when they can prioritize what to do at home,” regardless of how it affects their wellbeing?
Copyright @ 2019/2020 Susan Newman