The past months have seen the mums and dads taking on a multitude of additional roles – with many having to carry on doing their job while also having to become an amateur teacher. As a result, 67 per cent of parents admitted lockdown and their related experience has left them feeling more pressure as a parent. But while there have been issues, the increase in time spent together at home has also given families time to bond. This has led to 74 per cent feeling they have a stronger relationship with their children now than they did before.
Two thirds (67 per cent) of parents have experienced at least one of their child’s milestone moments that they would have otherwise missed, including first words, smiles, crawls, laughs, meals and bike rides. And one of the key silver linings of lockdown, highlighted by 46 per cent of parents was seeing their child’s development in real time.
The research was commissioned by JOHNSON’S Baby to look at the positive impact that the past few months have had on parenting and the key learnings that parents will be taking back into the world with them.
Due to spending more time with their little ones during lockdown, the top three traits parents have learnt are to be more patient (67 per cent), more kind (32 per cent) and more gentle (32 per cent). It also emerged 43 per cent feel more confident in the role of teacher since lockdown began.
Lauren Capron, from JOHNSON’S Baby said: “This research definitely illustrates some of the positives which have come out of being in lockdown. Whatever the age of the child, these results will be relatable for all parents. Whether you have a baby or toddler and have been lucky enough to be there when they’ve made a development such as rolling over or saying a first word. Or whether you’re the parent of a teen who would usually be out and about with mates, rather than sitting down to dinner with you. If there is one thing we can take away from this forced time at home, it’s the importance of quality time together, and a bond that will last a lifetime.”
The survey of 1,505 parents found that mealtimes have become a special time for the family to come together. Almost two thirds (65 per cent) have enjoyed lunchtimes together while 50 per cent have taken the time for breakfasts and 42 per cent have sat down together for family evening meals.
British Olympic hero Tom Daley is among the 88 per cent of dads who have experienced more with their child because of lockdown. The diving champ, dad of one-year-old Robbie, said: “Being out of our usual routine can be really daunting and hard to navigate for everyone. For me, this is the longest time in my career that I’ve been away from training. However, if this situation has taught me anything, it is the importance of family and time together. I’ve spent so much more time with Robbie learning about what he likes and doesn’t and bath times have become our thing, I love watching him playing with the bubbles and splashing around.”
The top five silver linings’ and learnings from parent’s lockdown experience:
1. The importance of spending time with my family all together (56 per cent)
2. Having the opportunity to bond more with my child (51 per cent)
3. The importance of slowing down and taking time to appreciate what I’ve got (48 per cent)
4. Seeing my children’s development in real time (46 per cent)
5. To be more gentle/put less pressure on myself as a parent (25 per cent)