Stay-at-home dads aren’t an apparition. The trend is real. In fact, more and more fathers are opting to stay home and raise the kids full time while the wife becomes the main breadwinner.
This has surely changed since the 1970s when there were only (hold your hats) six U.S. men who called themselves stay-at-home parents. But in 2014, there were a whopping 1.9 million stay-at-home fathers. This figure accounts for 16 percent of the stay-at-home parent population, according to a Huffington Post analysis of U.S. Census data.
But don’t celebrate just yet. Many of these fathers are not at home by choice, but due to being out of work. One study found that 80 percent of those 1.9 million dads would be working outside the home if they could.
Still, the Huffington Post decided to find out where most of the full-time fathers live. What it found was that in West Virginia, for example, where men make up an estimated 30 percent of stay-at-home parents, the unemployment rate is 6.6 percent, which is above the national average of 5.4 percent.
However, in a place like South Dakota where unemployment is relatively low, 39 percent of stay-at-home parents are fathers. That state had the highest percentage of fathers who stay home. So the correlation of unemployment and men who stay at home doesn’t always hold up.
The states with the lowest percentage of stay-at-home dads were: Utah (7 percent), New Jersey (8 percent), and Wyoming (9 percent).