A major new parenting report indicates that ‘Stay At Home Dads’ are on the rise, with the data suggesting there has been an 80% increase in the past year.
The findings from the first Tesco Baby & Toddler Club Expectant Parent Index show that a rise in working mums has driven a role reversal, with more dads staying at home than ever before.
More than three quarters of those surveyed now believe it is just as acceptable for men to stay at home to raise the family as it is for a woman.
Men are increasingly taking an active, rather than solely financial role in the upbringing of their children. Responsibilities around the home are now equally shared between mum and dad, with 70% of parents sharing parenting duties and 78% disciplining their children together.
“Dads used to regard mums as the experts when it came to parenting and were happy to take a back seat, but this is really changing. Today’s Dads want to have a much more ‘hands on’ approach’ – and that’s great for the whole family,” says Lorraine Thomas of The Parent Coaching Academy.
“Dads have really strong ideas about how they want to bring up their children and are keen to share the emotional and practical challenges of parenting with their partners. Dads have always been good when it comes to talking about facts – but now they’re happy to talk about feelings too. And if they want to boost their expertise, they’re likely to do it by chatting to other dads – or finding information on the internet.”
The Tesco Baby & Toddler Club Expectant Parent Index also found that parents today are reassessing their priorities and placing an increasing importance on their family, with 84% of them feeling that spending time with their family is more important than spending time at work trying to get a promotion.
Going back to work is also now seen as an obligation rather than a lifestyle choice, with more than 40% of mums admitting that they only return to work to earn more money.
Love and children’s confidence are considered to be much more important than the material benefits of money and education – only 1.7% of parents surveyed believe ‘money’ is the one thing they would give to their children.
Dr Richard Woolfson, child psychologist, comments, “Today’s parents have a much better grasp of the work/life balance than previous generations. I see parents not going for promotions, and not going back to work full time, so that they have more time to spend with their kids. They understand what it means to spend time with children. They understand the value of family life more.”
“Raising a family is considered to be more of an opportunity than ever before. In many cases it is no longer an obligation, and a new generation of parents are determined to create the perfect balance of work obligations and family commitments in order to give their children the best possible start in life,” comments Tom Greatex, from consumer insight and trend forecasting agency Greatex & Tong.