All Articles Tagged "stay at home dads"
The idea of a stay-at-home dad, a notion mocked by “The Real Househusbands of Hollywood,” once seemed incredulous. However, according to a new study, house husbands are becoming more common than ever. Over the past 10 years, stay-at-home dads have increased by nearly four percent, Time reports.
That’s 550,000 fathers that are staying home with the kids. A large leap from the 280,000 stay-at-home dads in the 1970s, according to research published in the Journal of Family Issues. When it comes to stay-at-home mothers, that number has dropped 51.9 percent over the course of 40 years.
While many wonder whether being a “house husband” is a choice or simply a necessity because he’s out of work, a survey last year claims “[c]ontrary to popular belief, these fellas aren’t at home with the kids because they got laid off and had nothing better to do. Being a full-time father is a conscious choice they’re proud to defend.”
“It’s clear to us that men strongly identify with this as a role,” says Brad Harrington, lead author of last year’s stay-at-home dads report. “They don’t have a feeling of ambivalence of, ‘What am I doing, I’m a man.’ There is no sense of angst. These guys strongly identified with being a [stay-at-home dad]. They are proud of it.”
However, the results of that 2012 report are iffy. With a sample of only 1,000 stay-at-home men, it is called too small to generalize these conclusions to a whole population. This current, more representative report from the Journal discovers that “only about 22% of stay-at-home dads are primary caregivers.” Karen Kramer, the author of the recent study, finds a majority of house husbands are taking responsibility of the kids only because they are disabled, sick, or have trouble seeking employment.
Kramer, a sociologist at the University of Illinois, came to her conclusions from the Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey to “compare characteristics of families in which at least one spouse had a full-time job,” Time said.
What are your thoughts on stay-at-home dads?
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It’s very rare that you find a man playing the role of the “house spouse.” The role of homemaker is usually associated with the wife, but more and more men are deciding to be stay-at-home husbands – and not just because theyr’e being lazy or trifling. For most men, being a house husband can be rough on the ego and quite emasculating. And for women, explaining this arrangement to their girls can be embarrassing – especially if they’re the judgmental type. But doing what’s best for you and your family may go against traditional gender roles, and gender-biasing may have to go out the window when considering the benefits of having your husband literally be the “man of the house.” As women are continuing to kill it in the work force, the number of stay-at-home husbands continues to grow…and for good reasons. Here are a few benefits to having your man rule the house while you’re out ruling the world!
This is something stay-at-home moms hate, so you can imagine how much more irritating it can be to a man still trying to accept the home as his place of employment. You are not his supervisor. He is the house manager and, so long as he keeps things in order, it would be wise to keep critical commentary to a minimum. As long as the babies are alive, clean and fed, don’t sweat it. Conducting daily home inspections will only feed the monster that says, “See, I told you! You don’t belong here.”
Being a full-time spouse and parent is probably the most underrated occupation. Many mothers will tell you it was less exhausting and (at times) less stressful working outside of the home. There are no breaks for stay-at-home parents. The hours are generally 24/7 with, if you’re lucky, an evening or two weekly to break away for a few hours. Much of the dissatisfaction that comes from staying home full-time is feeling like the working parent doesn’t understand how hard it is managing a household. Be sure not to compare the difficulty of your day to his, as if he has it easy sitting on his butt, tweeting Wendy Williams’ hot topics. Keep him involved in money matters.
If your husband managed the finances while he was working, continue to let him do so. You should always be aware of what’s going on with the family’s finances; but if he is used to paying bills and allocating funds, don’t stop him because subconsciously you’ve begun to regard it as yours. Zero influence over financial matters will leave your man feeling powerless, and powerless men tend to cower. Maintain roles unrelated to work.
We have a tendency to take become domineering when we feel like we are supporting our men—bossing them around, threatening financial restrictions, rationing sex and intimacy. Keep giving your man back rubs. Cook for him. Let him know you still expect him to take the lead. Support him. Keep being his wife. Find a local network of men like him.
Connecting with other fathers in his position will be more affirming and give him the sense of belonging to something bigger that comes from working with an organization. Plus, playdates with others fathers will also be beneficial to your children. Seeing others dads in non-traditional roles will make their situation appear less unorthodox also. But, don’t expect him to look it up on his own. You’ll have to help out by pointing him in the right direction. There’s a popular saying “happy wife, happy life.” Well, in the case of the house-hubby, it’s the opposite. LaShaun Williams is a Madame Noire contributor and blogger whose work has appeared in the New York Times and across several popular sites, such as HuffPost Black Voices and the Grio. You can visit her blog at lashaunwilliams.com or follow her on Twitter @itsmelashaun and Facebook.
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By Charlotte Young
These days the kids aren’t waiting in anticipation for daddy to come home from work. They’ve been with him all day. According to Bloomberg, while mommy is working, it’s the husbands that take on the role of keeping house and children.
Stay-at-home fathers are no new trend. According to family demographer Lynda Laughlin with the Census Bureau, the number has been growing since about 1988. But now, data from the Census Survey of Income and Program Participation shows that 54 percent of unemployed fathers with a working wife and preschool-age children are the primary caregivers, or the adult that spends the most time with the child. The number of dads providing consistent child care to children under 15 jumped to 32 percent in 2010.
Part of the reason behind the rise is attributed to the recession. Men were hit harder than women financially when the economy took a downturn. A report from the Pew Research Center revealed that men lost more jobs between December 2007 and May 2011 than women.
The recession may have taken a toll on the financial strength and the traditional roles in the family, but it certainly brought untold happiness to kids glad to have their daddy around.
“You can’t put a price on a father-daughter relationship.” Jeff VanderHejiden told Bloomberg. The former counselor at a residential program for troubled teens was fired last year, two weeks after he’d received a raise and a promotion.
But the recession can’t be blamed completely for the rising number of fathers as primary caregivers. Despite the loss, the study also revealed that men have regained job more quickly than women. It seems some men want to stay at home with the kids.
Ellen Galinksy, president and co-founder of the Families and Work Institute in New York, tells Bloomberg that as women become a stronger economic force, more men are deciding to stay home with the kids.
Some couples make the decision for the husband to stay at home as a financial decision regardless of the recession. After budgeting the potential cost of outside child care and the income of a low-paying job, they realize the two cancel each other out.
Patrick Spillman, 42 made the decision to stay home with his daughter for that very reason.
“If I’m making X and my wife is making X plus 10, who do you want making the money?” He said to Bloomberg. “It’s a matter of dollars and cents.”
(TheLoop21) — With the recession raging on, black men are fighting higher-than-ever unemployment rates. The latest unemployment rates recorded in August 2011 found that unemployment among black males reached 18%, the highest in more than 25 years. But as the ax comes down at work and new opportunities dry up, many black fathers are easing into a new role: stay-at-home dad. Mohammed Wright, a new stay-at-home dad living in Southern California, was laid off two years ago. His original plan was to hit the pavement, network like mad, and land a new and better-paying job within a few months. But “a few months” turned into several months, and then a year with no good prospects in sight.