Source | FastCompany : By Gary Barker and Michael Kimmel
Fatherhood is in the news, whether it’s high-profile dads like or renewed pushes for paid leave in the District of Columbia, New York City, and beyond.
For those of us urging equality between men and women in the workplace, the discussion is rightly focusing on whether men are, should be, or even can do half of the daily caring for children and housework. But elsewhere, in our court system, custody wars continue, and state child-welfare systems spend millions getting nonresident fathers to pay child support. That leads to a lot of strong opinions about fathers and modern fatherhood. But what’s really happening?
It’s true that involved fatherhood has become the norm in the United States. The main driver of the change is that we are now a nation of dual-career/dual-carer couples. The release this week of our new study, State of America’s Fathers 2016, illustrates this shift. More than 60% of Americans are in dual-income households, while only 20% live off only one income.
Over the past 30 years, American fathers have increased the time they spend with their children during the workday by 65% on average. According to our study’s data analysis, nearly half (48%) of currently partnered American fathers now self-identify as either sharing responsibility with their partners or as their children’s primary caregiver.
However, while fathers have nearly tripled their time on child care (from two and a half to seven hours a week) and more than doubled their time on housework (from four to 10 hours weekly) between 1965 and 2011, mothers are still spending twice as much time on child care as fathers are (an increase in women’s total time on child care from 1965) and significantly more time on housework.