Woman’s Work or Manly Duty?

Is the current stigma accurate….Is it woman’s work to tend to the children, or is it also part of the manly duty? This question is something that many families reflect or object. There are different categories of work that are necessary to maintain a family household. Housework, is defined as cooking, cleaning, and home repair. Child care, on the other hand, “is attending to the physical needs of a child — dressing a child, cooking for a child, feeding and cleaning them,” this does not include recreational activities such as reading or playing (Belkin, 5).

In a family where the father works and the mother stays home, the average care the mother spends on the child is 15 hours and the father spends 2 (Belkin, 5). However, in a family where both parents work, the average hours the mother spends caring is 11 and the father spends 3 (Belkin, 5).

The most convincing factor that the stigma of women as the child carers still holds is that the numbers have not changed over 90 years! Think about it…. since the days when women tended to the fire and the men hunted. The ratios are still the same. “Where the housework ratio is two to one, the wife-to-husband ratio for child care in the United States is close to five to one.” 

Belkin, Lisa. “When Mom and Dad Share It All.” NY Times. 15 June 2008. Web. 01 Dec 2013.


One thought on “Woman’s Work or Manly Duty?

  1. olto2013

    It’s interesting to think that so little has changed, especially considering that the hourly allocation is basically the same if a woman works or not! I’d be interested to see more data on non-heterosexual couples and the changes in the amount of men who choose to stay home with the children (in heterosexual couples).


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