Equally Shared Parenting

After reading Belkin’s article, “Mom and Dad Share it All”, Belkin showed many examples of heterosexuals believing that equal parenting is the best way to raise children, and yet, it never seems to work.  This is not because the parents have a change of heart as they face challenges in creating equal parenting, but more that the cultural norms that exist thwart the possibility of the work being split 50:50.  Even with more women working full-time and earning higher wages, there is still an implication that men should be working full-time to support their wives, and that women have the option of remaining housewives if the total income can support that lifestyle.  As soon as a couple decides to share parenting equally, there have to be major changes, such as the husband giving up a significant number of working hours to be at home with the children.  However, as stated in the article, for a man it is very difficult to find a job working only four days a week, whereas for a woman, this would most likely be easier.  This societal expectation, among other reasons, is why sharing parenting equally is very difficult for the heterosexual couple.  However, for lesbian couples, not only has work for one woman over another been defined (we don’t perceive lesbian couples as having a breadwinner and a housewife), but these are still women.  Women will most likely have an easier time finding high paid part-time jobs than men, and I would expect that if a study was done for gay men, it would most likely mirror that of heterosexual couples.  Taking gender out of the equation changes everything.

How men respond to being called a “good dad”.  This is an example of a man’s rejection to equally shared parenting.



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