Fotolia

8 Reasons Being A Working Mom Is Still Harder Than Being A Working Dad

By
Share
Ad failed to load

Today, more moms work outside the home than they did in previous generations. Still, and while dads contribute to household chores and are more involved parents than ever before, moms are burdened with the majority of the household work and child rearing responsibilities in addition to their full-time jobs. In other words, being a working mom is still harder than being a working dad. Why? Because moms are still considered the primary caretakers of their children.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the percentage of American households with dual-career couples rose from 34 percent in 1975 to 47.7 percent in 2014. Still, numerous studies have shown that women still take on the bulk of the housework. In fact, according to one such study out of Indiana University, highlighted by HuffPost, in most American homes "chore roles align with traditional thinking on masculinity and femininity ― even among couples where a woman is the primary or sole breadwinner and even in same-sex couples." Long story short, women are still taking on the bulk of the household responsibilities while simutaleousy bringing home the bacon. Who says you can't have it all, right?

My husband and I divide our responsibilities based on our schedules. Since I come home from work earlier than my husband, I pick up our son from daycare, take care of homework with my daughter, and cook dinner. My husband then bathes the kids and puts them to sleep as I clean up after dinner. But while my husband is a fantastic dad and partner, I still do the majority of the housework and childcare in our home. I still do most of the cooking, the cleaning, the laundry, the childcare, and the household management. I'm still the primary worrier, scheduler, and go-to multitasking parent. When we were childless our household responsibilities were split pretty evenly, but children added a lot more to my plate and only about half as much to his.

Ad failed to load

Honestly, another reason why responsibilities are so unevenly split in our household is because many things just don't occur to my husband. He doesn't think about what activities our kids should be doing, he doesn't really realize our kids grow out of their clothes and shoes and need to go back-to-school shopping, and he isn't concerned with their yearly well-visits and semi-annual dental checkups. These things are just simply not on his radar. I mean, I have to remind him to get a physical, so how can he remember that the kids need one? So with that in mind, here are just a few reasons why being a working mom is forever harder than being a working dad. Period.

Ad failed to load

Because Moms Still Do The Bulk Of Household Chores

Giphy

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, moms are doing a disproportionate amount of household chores. In 2016, on an average day, 85 percent of women did household activities such as "housework, cooking, lawn care, or financial and other household management," compared to 69 percent of men. Furthermore, 49 percent of women did laundry and cleaning versus 19 percent of men, and 42 percent of men did food preparation or cleanup, compared with 68 percent of women. These statistics don't lie, people; women are still doing the bulk of household chores while also working full-time outside the house.

Because Moms Still Attend Most School-Related Events

Every month I receive an email from my daughter's school asking for volunteers. When I was home on maternity leave with my son I was able to come read to the class or help plan a Halloween bash, but now that I work full-time, volunteering at my daughter's school is simply out of the questions. Nevertheless, moms all over the country are being bombarded with volunteer requests from their kids' schools and moms are usually the main attendees. Furthermore, parent-teacher conferences are usually attended mainly by mothers and a quick Google search will result in hundreds of thousands of articles with titles similar to "A Busy Mom's Guide To Volunteering At School."

Because Moms Still Handle Most Doctors Appointments

Giphy

Overall, moms are still primarily responsible for maintaining their kids' health and wellness. In fact, a study from The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation found that "women are 10 times more likely than men to take time off to stay home with their sick children." The study also found that mothers are five times more likely to take their sick kids to doctors appointments.

So yes, us moms are still keeping track of appointments, scheduling sick visits, and making sure our kids see the dentist every six months, all while simultaneously dialing into conference calls, heading company-wide meetings, and planning brainstorming sessions.

Ad failed to load

Because Motherhood Can Still Hold Women Back From Advancing In Their Careers

According to The Economist, pregnant women are perceived as “less authoritative and more irrational, regardless of their actual performance" and mothers are seen as "less committed to work than non-mothers." Mothers are often penalized for the same family commitments fathers are praised for. This double-standard is often referred to as a “motherhood penalty” and “fatherhood bonus."

Furthermore, since women still make less than men, a lot of the inequality is based on financially-based decisions. A 2015 study by Catalyst found that in "dual-earner couples, 71.8 percent of husbands outearned their wives." If the husband makes more than his wife, she is usually the one left taking more time off in order to take care of their kids and not risk the higher household income. Yet, one of the reasons women make less than men is because they take off more often, so it really is a never-ending cycle of gender-based inequality.

Because Mothers Still Have Less Fun With Their Kids

Giphy

While I spend the weekends doing laundry, cleaning, grocery shopping, and catching up on every other errand I don't time time to do during the week, you can usually find my husband taking the kids out to a park, riding bikes with them, and doing whatever other fun activity that keeps them occupied. So while I have to do all of the chores, he gets to actually enjoy time with our kids.

According to the Bureau Labor of Statistics, on an average day women spent 1.1 hours providing physical care to their children children while men spent only 26 minutes. A recent study by a team of researchers from Cornell University, The University of Minnesota, and Minnesota Population Center concluded that "mothers still do more of the 'work' and less of the 'fun' parenting tasks."

Because Moms Still Take Care Of Their Kids When They're Sick

I am teacher and taking days off from work is nearly impossible, so when the kids are sick it's up to my husband to figure out how to work from home. When I was working in the corporate world, however, I was responsible for taking care of our sick children. My husband's career seemed more demanding at the time, so I'd use my personal days to stay home with the kids.

Ad failed to load

Because Moms Still Manage Everyone's Schedule

Giphy

Mothers are mainly in charge of everyone's schedule. They handle the family calendar and all of the children's activities. In other words, mothers do the “worry work” of parenting, according to The New York Times. In fact, sociological studies confirm that "mothers draft the to-do lists while fathers pick and choose among the items." While dads may do the drop-off at an activity, it's usually the moms who make sure everyone's schedules coordinate. While a dad may coach a little league team, the moms usually do all of the background work to make sure the existence of team is even possible. Moms worry, moms multitask, and moms make sure everything runs smoothly.

Because Moms Are Still Judged Way More Harshly

Let's be honest here, today's mothers are under an increased amount of pressure to be perfect. Our child-centered society dictates that in order to raise successful children, parenting should be "guided by expert advice and costly in terms of time, money and emotional investment." Therefore, much of the pressure is placed on the mothers since they are still in charge of much of parenting. While childless couples are generally no longer succumbing to traditional gender roles at home, a baby pushes couples further into a gender divide. According to Pew Research, a baby increases a mother’s total workload by 21 hours per week, while the father's workload is increased by only 12.5 hours per week. That is a staggering 70 percent increase in workload for women compared to men.

Plus, has anyone ever heard of dads being judged about anything child-related except for maybe how much work they don't put into parenting? And even that often gets excused by other factors. Moms, on the other hand, are pitted against one another and are judged for every single thing they do and don't do.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

8 Stereotypes About New Dads That Are *Totally* True

Much like new mothers, new fathers have a lot on their plate. Parenting can be scary and complex, especially at first and regardless of your gender. People want to do right by their kids, after all. And since all new parents are a hot mess, dads are …
By Priscilla Blossom

Khloe Kardashian, We Promise It's Totally Normal To Forget What Day It Is

Ah, new parenthood. It's a time filled with around-the-clock feedings, endless diaper changes, burping, spitting up, more feedings, rocking — not to mention celebrating when you survive another day and you remembered to take a shower. (Personal hygie…
By Michelle Stein

8 Differences Between Being Pregnant In Your 20s Vs 30s, According To Science

Whether you're planning a pregnancy, or just thinking about your future family, it's typical to think about things like child-spacing, how many kids you want, and when to start trying to conceive. When making your pro/con list, you might also conside…
By Steph Montgomery

16 Moms Share Remedies For Their Most Intense Chocolate Cravings During Pregnancy

For better or worse, pregnancy is usually synonymous with odd cravings. Sure, there are the stereotypical combos like pickles and ice cream that plague gestating women the world over, but there are other mind-boggling combinations, too, including but…
By Candace Ganger

Putting Sunscreen On Your Kid Doesn't Have To Be A Fight — Here's How To Do It

I am almost translucent, so me and sunscreen are basically besties at this point. Even though my children are beautifully deep brown thanks to my husband's genetics, I still slather them like biscuits being buttered because I refuse to take risks wit…
By Cat Bowen

7 Things A Mom Really Means When She Says She Doesn't Want Anything On Mother's Day

Every year my family asks me what I want for Mother's Day, and every single year I tell them the same thing: Nothing. So, by now, they know that when I say "nothing" I absolutely do not mean "nothing." In fact, there are more than a few things a mom …
By Candace Ganger

19 Moms Share The Way They Cured Their Pregnancy Comfort Food Cravings

I was obnoxiously sick during the first trimester with, "lucky" for me, both of my pregnancies. For the first three months I lived on saltines, lemonade, and fresh bread. Once I was able to eat, however, all I wanted was savory and sweet comfort food…
By Dina Leygerman

8 Fascinating Facts About Babies Born In May, The Luckiest Month Of All

The height of all things fresh and springy, May is an excellent month to have a baby. It's a time of growth, graduations, and outdoor celebrations. And these fascinating facts about May babies will give you more reasons than ever to appreciate childr…
By Lindsay E. Mack

I Used To Judge Formula-Feeding Moms — Until I Became One

The other patrons in the hip Brooklyn restaurant probably couldn’t care less what I was feeding my baby, but I’ll always remember the shame I felt as I quickly mixed up his bottle of formula in front of them. I admitted to my childless friend that I …
By Katherine Martinelli

7 White Lies It’s Necessary To Tell To Keep Your Relationship Healthy

Telling lots of lies typically isn't associated with a healthy, strong, lasting relationship, and that's still certainly true, but not all lies are exactly the same. Though you've probably heard from someone at least once or twice that the lie they t…
By Lauren Schumacker

The Skinny Jeans That Saved Me Postpartum

Accepting my post-pregnancy body is hands-down one of the most difficult things I’ve ever done. It’s something that I still work on every single day. During my first pregnancy, I was 20 years old, so I managed to bounce back quickly. In fact, I dropp…
By Allison Cooper

7 Ways Your Baby Is Trying To Say They Feel Safe

In those first weeks of new motherhood, it can feel like you need an interpreter for your newborn. With their limited means of communication, figuring out what message your baby is trying to get across to you can be a challenge. With time, however, y…
By Kimmie Fink

Here's Why Dogs Are Obsessed With Babies' Poop, According To Science

Most family dogs seem to understand babies, and they're more than happy to make friends with the newest member of the pack. It's adorable... for the most part and until you go to change your little one's diaper. Suddenly, you're wondering why dogs ar…
By Lindsay E. Mack

6 Signs You're Meant To Have A Big Age Gap Between Kids

There's a five year age difference between my two children, to the day. Their age gap wasn't planned but, for a variety of reasons, works well for our family. And since I was so focused on having a second baby, I totally overlooked the signs that wou…
By Candace Ganger

13 Unique (& Totally Not Mainstream) Mother's Day Gifts For The Hipster Mom

Hipsters thrive on being outside the norm and not really digging anything considered "mainstream." Whether it's in their fashion, what music they listen to, the books they read, or how they enjoy beverages, there's just something that makes them dist…
By Abi Berwager Schreier

Here's How To Introduce Your Pet To Your Baby & Make Everything As Calm As Possible

Our home, which we lovingly refer to as “the funny farm,” is filled with four-legged family members. We have two crazy beagles and two cat jerks, and boy are they loved and spoiled. (As they should be.) But we are now finally having a baby of our own…
By Abi Berwager Schreier

Here's The Right Birth Method For You, According To Your Zodiac Sign

If you're pregnant, you've probably given childbirth some serious thought. Some moms-to-be prepare a meticulous birth plan, while others are comfortable just going with the flow. And me? Well, I made a plan... but that plan was useless when faced wit…
By Steph Montgomery

9 Things Your Baby Can Tell You About Your Marriage

Baby's can't do all that much, if we're being honest. Like, I don't want to be mean, but they're terrifically inept at just about everything. My kids needed help pooping when they were newborns. Pooping. I literally had to fold them in half to get th…
By Jamie Kenney

Before Your Shopping Spree, Here's What To Consider When Buying Maternity Jeans

When I first became pregnant, I was blessed with bloating from hell — I felt like I already looked like I was four months pregnant some days, and I was only 10 weeks. I immediately went and bought maternity leggings because my pants were cutting int…
By Abi Berwager Schreier

7 Surprising Benefits To Adopting A Dog When You Have A Newborn — Yes, Really

When you have a newborn baby, trying to balance night feedings, diaper changes, and your own desperate need for sleep become a never-ending battle. Why on earth would you add another creature to the equation? Well, surprisingly, there are actually be…
By Lindsay E. Mack

My Dog Knew I Was Pregnant Before My Family Did

Growing up, I was 100 percent sure I'd be a mom one day. To a dog, that is. My baby plans came later. And once my husband and I were sure we wanted both a dog and a baby, we'd add to our joint dog-and-baby name list over Sunday brunch or on date nigh…
By Melissa Mills
)}