About two thirds of mothers and of fathers think that parents should share responsibilities. Only about one third report that they do, according to Duncan Fisher, author of Baby’s Here! Who Does What?Mothers- and fathers-to-be usually think that once their baby is born they’ll share the care. They know the father will soon be back at work, but they still imagine he’ll be doing loads of childcare. This rarely happens – and both parents feel pretty miserable about it. One – typically dad, but always – finds himself squeezed out of home into earning money. He can feel a second class parent. The other parent – typically mum, but not always – finds herself squeezed out of all but maybe a little paid work into caring for the baby. She can feel isolated and lonely as a result. And if they swap? Then you often get a mother feeling guilty at not caring enough and a father feeling inadequate at not earning enough!
Things are changing, though. Half of mothers with children under one work, mostly part-time.
– Today’s fathers do eight times more caring for babies and young children than their fathers did.
– In the first year, new fathers work shorter hours than other men.
– One third of fathers work flexibly to spend more time with their children.
– Mums and dads both worry about getting the balance right between work and home.
– Two out of three mothers think fathers don’t do enough in the home. Two out of three fathers agree!
Find out more about Baby’s Here! Who Does What at www.whodoeswhatbook.com, including some enthusiastic reviews and endorsements from Agony Aunts of national newspapers, such as Deidre Sanders at The Sun.