Mothers are not so lucky.
The University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy & The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research have released a new poll that found that while women expect to do more in the household, Americans who don't have children are more likely to share responsibilities with a partner than what their parents actually report. This is true regardless of factors like the age of respondents.
A poll of eight household responsibilities was conducted and 35% of mothers reported doing more than their partners for each of the eight. Only 3% of fathers reported the same. For example, half of mothers reported that they were responsible for transporting their children, while just 3% of fathers report the same.
Fathers and mothers had different opinions about who should do the majority of the household chores. According to a survey, 21% of mothers stated that they and their partner equally care for children when they get up in the morning, while 49% said the exact same thing. Yana Gallen, an assistant professor at University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy who participated in the poll, said that women are more accurate than men when it comes to time use data.
Sometimes life can throw off the best laid plans. Liana Price, 35 years old, has a 4-month-old daughter who was born as a surprise to her during the heights of the coronavirus pandemic. Price was undergoing chemotherapy treatments and had a pregnancy problem. Price said that she quit work in January because of all the chaos.
"Things changed so drastically. Price stated that suddenly, for them, there was no plan. Price and her husband had intended to work full-time, and Price would take maternity leave from her job as registered nurse. Instead, she quit her job, and the couple began to save.
She insists that she and her husband share child care -- even night wakings.
"When I was breastfeeding, it was not necessary for him to get up in the middle the night. She explained that now that I formula feed, we alternate nights. My husband works from home during the day. He also travels. He travels a lot, so obviously all the expenses are on me."
Experts believe that women tend to do more housework and child care than men. This is partly due to the fact that they are often more aware of the effort involved. This includes organizing family activities, organizing appointments, and providing emotional support for children.
According to the poll, 57% of mothers claimed that they provide emotional support for their children. Only 1% of mothers stated that their partner provides this support. However, only 10% of mothers said their partner is the primary provider of their children's emotional support, and 24% claimed it was their partner.
Many people have spoken out about the impact of the pandemic upon women. This includes many women who left the workforce or stepped back to care for their aging parents or children. After COVID-19, the U.S. lost millions of jobs and states started closing large swathes of their economy. However, the economy has been rapidly recovering and employers have posted record-high jobs openings. Many women have resisted returning to work, whether they are willing or not.
According to a Census Bureau analysis, approximately 3.5 million mothers with children under the age of 12 left the workforce in spring 2020. Many of these women have never returned. McKinsey and Co. recently reported that one third of women had considered quitting their job or changing careers. The study's authors found that only one in four women thought about leaving their jobs early in the pandemic.
Gallen stated that another change Gallen noticed was the increase in remote jobs. This allowed for more people to work from home. Gallen stated, "So I believe that this actually helps women in the workforce because a potential problem has been that women don't feel capable of taking on higher-paying jobs that require travel or work long hours.
She said that the pandemic had "moved forward a shift towards more female-friendly conditions and many job opportunities."
Flexible work schedules and remote work are two examples. According to the poll, 74% of women believe flexibility at work is more important than 66% when considering whether to have children.
There are many other issues that children can bring into the mix. It is well-known that having children can affect women's careers in two ways: reducing their pay compared to men and helping them to get better jobs.
The poll found that 47% of women believe having children is a barrier to their job security, while 36% of men say the same. Americans younger than 30 years old were more likely to agree with this statement than those older.
Amy Hill, a 31-year-old West Virginia resident, stated that she is happy with her home division, even though her husband does more. He works 16-hour shifts in coal mines. Although her work is steady, it's not full-time. She does makeup for weddings, proms and other events.
She said, "It helps not being around one another a lot because I miss him sometimes when he's gone. He's been working underground for as long as we have been together. He doesn't fold towels as I want.