Modern Parenting: The New Mr. Mom & Mrs. Dad

In her book “The Feminine Mystique” Betty Friedan has summed up the current modern family trends very nicely. According to her, family dynamics have been completely turned upside down, since parents are now under greater pressure to balance family and work. While women have taken huge strides in the workplace and academia, men have chosen to take the backseat and spend more time out of paid work and in rearing children as full time stay-at-home parents. This role reversal is bound to show up in some form in the attitudes of the teen being brought up with such post-modern parenting concepts, lets see how.

Changing Faces

As more and more men chose to indulge in the joys of parenthood, even if it means doing it alone as single fathers, women are reaching out and touching the proverbial career sky and achieving more than what they did even 10 years from now. According to a research conducted by the Pew Research Center on gender convergence, the number of hours women now spend at work has almost tripled as compared to the descending number of hours men spend at work now.

This trend is explained perfectly in the research of Kim Parker and Wendy Wang, who believe that this trend is not completely based on women suddenly becoming more ambitious and men getting broody. This is the result of the recent economic crisis which forced many fathers out of the job market and replaced them with mothers, who were forced to push the boundaries of the traditional family set up.

Matter of Applause

However, this transition has not been as disruptive for family lives of children as once thought. Statistics show that families with dual income sources are able to manage and provide better childcare and housework options.  Apart from this, teenagers from such diverse backgrounds get to enjoy more breaks in life in terms of opportunities, are much generously provided for and form lasting bonds with parents. In praise of stay-at-home dads and single dads and their positive parenting skills, it is important to note that experts believe girls brought up by fathers or those who got daddy’s lion share of attention, are more secure and confident in their relationships and less prone to getting divorced in future. Boys, who have had closer and stronger bonds with heir fathers, tend to be more ambitious and successful professionally.

While it is true that no working parent will ever feel adequate enough as a parent, most stay-at-home parents will also at some point of their lives, reflect nostalgically on their careers. The gist of the matter and best advice on parenting is that it is not just the amount of time a parent spends with a child which ensures a healthy, happy and successful future; it is also the kind of parenting and the quality of it that counts.

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