Dads are definitely getting more involved with their children. According to my friend and colleague, Dottie Lamm, MSW, they’re helping with childcare and household tasks because they want to be present for those special moments, and they want to contribute more time, focus and energy to their families.
Dottie has worked as a social worker with single mothers and with parents of emotionally disturbed children. As First Lady of Colorado from 1975 to 1987, as Colorado’s Democratic U.S. Senate candidate in 1998, and as a Denver Post columnist for 17 years, she has fought for women’s rights and the well-being of children and their families. After having been “blown away” with the way in which her son and son-in-law were so involved with their new babies, compared to their own dads back in the sixties and seventies, she wrote “Daddy on Board: Parenting Roles for the 21st Century.” You can get a copy of the book by contacting: Cassandra@fulcrumbooks.com. 303-277-1623
I’m happy to share with you a recent conversation I had with Dottie.
Joanne: You say that dads are clearly on board the family boat and are even steering the ship. Can you tell us more about how that has come about?
Dottie: Wow! I originally thought, “Of course, dads are more involved than they were in my generation of child rearing. Mothers and the women’s movement have pushed them—ready or not.” Seventy-five percent of married moms with children are now in the paid work force, including sixty-two percent of college educated married moms with infants. So these two working parents are going to have to share the kid care role at home. Right? Well, yes. But I also found that even the dads whose wives were full time homemakers were getting “on board” with their babies too. There appears to be a whole new ethic and desire on the part of dads to get involved from the get-go. One dad said he felt his own dad missed out on the joys (and trials!) of early bonding.
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