The 21st Century Dad

My husband forwarded this article to me last week.  The timing was ironic, as we had just been discussing how men spend more time with their children nowadays than they used to. 

What do you say?  Do you expect your husband to share equally in the household chores and child responsibilities?  Do you think your husband does more of these domestic tasks than your dad did? 

And what about if you are a stay-at-home mom?  Do you think that should make a difference?  Should you have a larger share of the household tasks since you’re at home all day?


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19 Responses

  1. I agree that men are a lot more involved these days with their families. I think they find rewards in the relationships with their kids and wives by being more hands on.

    I am a SAHM and I do think that part of my “job” is taking care of our home, saving money on groceries and taking care of things that my husband does not care to do or have time to do. He works very hard and I don’t want him to come home to more work here. Our house is not always clean and void of chaos, but happy and full of life.

    He always helps when I ask and takes very good care of me and the children. He does many thing without asking like giving the kids baths and putting them to bed. He even enjoys cooking AND cleans the kitchen. And yes, I too joke about this being foreplay.

    Early on in our marriage, when we first had kids, I did feel resentful of the freedom I thought he had. Then it occured to me that I had great freedom in not having to worry how bills got paid or supporting a family.

    I really do feel now like we work as team. We work together to make our family the best it can be.

  2. At various times in my Mommy life I have been a SAHM or worked part-time. Both times I felt like my part of the deal was to primarily take care of promote the development of DD PLUS do a majority of household chores so when Dh came home from work he could relax a bit and then spend time with DD. Why on earth should he work full-time and then come home and start on the laundry? With that said, he is just the type of guy who doesn’t mind doing some dishes and will just do something if it needs to be done.

  3. I’m a sahm, and my husband and I have always agreed that my job is to raise the kids and keep the house. When he gets home from work he does a lot with the kids, but I don’t ask him to help with the housework at that time. Since I’ve been doing housework during the day, instead of saving it all for after he comes home, we can have family time and then time for the two of us before bed. On weekends I do ask for some help, but I still don’t expect him to do half the chores.

    All that said, I love it when he does a chore without being asked. Whether it’s taking out the trash, throwing in a load of laundry, or cleaning the top of the stove, I really appreciate it when I don’t have to ask. And when I comment on it and he tells me he did the chore (especially cleaning the stove or doing dishes) because he knows I don’t like doing it, well…. 🙂

  4. One thing that struck me reading that article is that if men are doing so much more and women are so much happier than 1960, why is the divorce rate so much higher? Just a thought.

    Anyway, one of the reasons that I am still home even though my 4 kids are all school age, is that I don’t want to work at a job all day and then come home and have six more hours of work to do at home! Also, my husband has a very stressful job and I want him to be able to come home to a clean house and a warm meal so he can decompress after a long day. I try to have all the housework done before he comes home, so that if he wants to sit and watch tv at night, I can sit down with him!

    That being said, he does help out some around the house (I just don’t want him to feel like he has to) and he spends a lot more time with the kids than either of our fathers did. I’d much rather have him come home and play with the kids than do laundry.

  5. I agree with the concept: a helpful man is going to make his woman hot for him! 🙂 Cuz, women like to be THOUGHT of. At least THIS woman does.

    But I have to disagree with part of the thought. That is: Men should do housework to make their women love them.

    I don’t think Kevin should have to do his own laundry. He is not that good at it. I do however appreciate it A LOT when he cleans up after himself and helps me get the kids to do THEIR share of the cleaning responsibilities.

    I am lucky, I think, because my dh is not the type who sits around, even to watch football. He just does not do it that often. He is a worker, and if I ask him to do something, he will do it.

    Having said that, though…I do love it when he gets up and starts doing household chores without my asking him!!

    (He never did help much with the babies. But he plays with them, and hey, that is a help cuz it keeps them off my back so I can get stuff done, right? LOL)

  6. I’m a stay at home mom. I feel it is my job and duty to care for our home, and do most of the chores. However, my husband is a great helper, he will do the “Honey-do” list, he will see what needs to be done and do it, and will help when I have a bunch of other things going on. We are a TEAM!

    However, I think it is wrong, to expect him to wrok all day, while I sit at home and slack off….that would not be nice or honoring to him, and my staying home.

    We homeschool, so that does count as a “job” and he sees that…..

    We are a TEAM, we respect each other.
    Kelly S.

  7. I’m a SAHM (12 years now), and my husband does a TREMENDOUS amount — when he’s home. The best part about having him home is his willingness to take our youngest kids outside to play. I’m not an outdoor girl, but would love my kids to get out as much as possible, so that’s what I love about weekends. He also does 100% of the cooking, always has!

  8. After reading the above comments I feel like the world’s worst wife. I am a SAHM, but my husband helps with the kids and the housework. I don’t feel that it is fair that he works 8 hours per day and I work 24. I do most nearly all the cooking, cleaning, chaufering, etc. Our arranagement is that I get Saturday off from work and he gets Sunday off. Everyone in the family has chores, even the primary bread winner. I guess I am lucky to have a husband who is willing to put up with me.

  9. I was just telling my 5 yo, who had been quite taciturn this week, that people who love each other ,like mommy and daddy, try to be NICE to each other. We always try to make each other happy.

    Having worked 60 hr weeks for 17 years, and gotten into upper management role before becoming a SAHM, I would say that both jobs are hard, but hard in VERY different ways. Ppersonally, had I been dealing with difficult co-workers all day, I wouldn’t mind coming home and building Legos with my son for an hour. On the other hand, having done laundry, unloaded the dishwasher, coloring and other intellectually taxing activities, I wouldn’t mind doing something actually intellectually taxing for an hour! 🙂

    I guess you all sound like you have it so that it works out for your family, which is great. It IS a partnership and I don’t think one person’s job is necessarily harder than the other’s. The point it to serve each other, uphold each other, in the love of Christ.

  10. When we were first married, I worked outside the home. We both shared the responsibilites inside the home as far as cleaning, cooking, etc. I totally feel that if the husband and wife both are out in the workforce and making an income that benefits the family, then the home responsibilites should be shared as well.

    But when the first child came into the picture, I chose for my job to be taking care of my home and family. I don’t feel like I’m not contributing by doing this – it is definitely a full time job. But it is my job, the one that I chose. So no, I don’t feel like my husband should have to help with the home responsibilites. He works very hard, and I don’t help him with his job, so why should he have to help me?
    He does, however, take care of the outside stuff. And by choice, he will sometimes cook and help out in general. But I don’t expect it. The only time I really need for him to step in is if I’m sick – and he does. He will even take off from work to take care of the kids and me if I’m sick. And he does his best with the house in that case as well. And he always makes time to spend with the kids and helps out as much as he can with them. He is always willing to stay home with them to let me get out for a bit, and for that I am forever grateful!!

    So no, I don’t think he should do more. And yes, I think I should have a larger share of the household tasks.

    I do think he definitely does more in the home than my Dad did, and my Mom worked full time. (But her income was for her – she didn’t help out with the bills and stuff, so I feel differently about how that was handled, but I won’t go into that!)

  11. I’m not yet a parent, so it is possible I have no idea what I’m talking about. However my husband and I talk about this a lot. We don’t know what we will do when we have children. Currently, we share in the household chores.

  12. I think it is my job to take care of the house and such. Having said that, I still need his help in this season of our lives. Three little ones makes it very hard for me to do all that I think is my responsibility. I’m lucky in that my husband doesn’t mind helping out and has relatively low standards.

  13. I’m very happy to hear about the shift toward dads spending more time with their children. That’s good for kids, good for dads, good for moms, good for everyone.

    I’m fortunate in that my husband is a very hands-on dad and an extremely hard worker. He mops, does dishes, does the laundry, changes diapers, scrubs toilet, cooks, etc. He understands that taking care of our daughter is a full-time occupation that requires more time, energy, and patience than any outside-the-home career ever could.

    All that to say, I think the work-outside-the-home partner should still pitch in with housework and baby care even if there is a stay-at-home parent. It doesn’t make sense that both people are working hard all day long and then one gets to come home, put their feet up, and watch TV.

  14. Before the kiddo when we both worked outside the home, we shared chores pretty equally. Now that I am home with the little one, I do feel that my “job” is take care of the home as well as our baby. Although Hubby does helps with a lot of chores, I don’t ask or expect it.

    Not only does he work full-time, he is a full-time grad student and we lead worship at our church, so Hubby has a very full plate. I do expect that he make time for our daughter every day. She is more important than any chores that he could do.

  15. I’m a stay at home mom with 6 kids. My husband works outside the house at a very demanding job. Routine is 7am-7pm, plus meetings a night or 2 a week. I primarily do the laundry,cooking, house keeping and whatever the kids need. He does home repair, all the bills, and he cleans up after himself. No dirty laundry on the floor or toothpaste in the sink. He loads and runs the dishwasher at night and he cooks breakfast both weekend mornings. We help each other. Now, if he walked in the door at 5:15 every night, I’d expect more! He’s a great guy and he works really hard to allow me to stay home, which was my dream, not his.

  16. I think that my husband does much more than either of our dads did. I am a SAHM now and I expect him to do a little especially when it comes to helping out with the kids. If you work a job outside your home, you get a break or 2. So why should I not be entitled to a break sometimes too? When I worked full time which was just a short 8 months ago I expected it to be equal. Now I do laundry, cook meals, keep the house clean, etc. He does outside work and helps take care of the kids. Definitely a lot more than my dad did.

  17. My husband does a lot with teh kids, not so much around the house. Because I think its more important for him to play with them than to help with the dishes.

    Plus, I’m often pretty sick of the kids by then, so even though I’m doing dishes….

  18. It was very interesting reading the differing comments especially from the sahm’s. I am a teacher and hubby works an 8-5 job so we are both home in the evenings. He often does the cooking and then I do the cleaning up. We have a cleaning lady every other week and the night before is pick up night where everybody (including kiddos) straighten things up so she can actually find something to clean. Hubby on his own is not the most tidy person so the cleaning mostly falls on me. However, he is an awesome dad and will come home to go outside to play, play a board game, video game, or just read a book with the kids. In some sense he is a more active parent especially in their night time wrestling! During the summer I do more since I am not working, but think that I work as much as he does during the school year so it is only fair that we split the household chores. It seems to work for us although I don’t think he “get’s any more” for doing his chores!

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