Parenting

Survey Says: Women Don't Want to Parent Alone

W. Bradford Wilcox, director of the National Marriage Project, posted some interesting statistics on modern parenting. Not only has the concept of daddy working and mommy parenting been thrown out the window, the entire division of labor within the family unit has been restructured in the 21st century. In a primarily dual-income society, both women and men care less who is bringing in the money. The real concern, especially among women, is that they have a true partner in parenting. Don Draper is dead. Women want fathers first, breadwinners second.

It makes sense, given the fact that most western women are college educated and have children after their careers and incomes have been established. More confidence in themselves as providers translates into a greater need for their partner to help parent. It’s the one challenge we just don’t seem to want to conquer alone. In contrast, the least gender-equal regions of the world show the lowest birth rates, in part due to the fact that men are still living out ancient fantasies that women have left behind.

Millennial dads don Mickey ears and proudly stroll their babies around Disney World. They scan the ads for the best prices on diapers and wipes. And, like my own husband, they participate fully in the feeding, changing, bathing, entertaining and caring for their children from day one. When I told my husband, before we even married, that I wanted to stay at home with my children, he didn’t bat an eye. When I told him I wanted to work from home, he encouraged me to both parent and continue fulfilling my career goals without a second thought. His “you take care of us, we take care of you” attitude has sometimes been the only thing keeping this new mommy sane. I know I’m not alone, and that’s a good thing. Kids aren’t the only ones who need two parents around; mommies do, too.