HOW SOCIETY FEELS ABOUT STAY AT HOME DADS

How Society Feels about Stay at Home Dads
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A stay-at-home dad serves as the primary caregiver and homemaker. As families developed, it has been common to have stay-at-home dads in the society. Media has also displayed the varied roles of fathers in American families. Headlines emphasizing the superior roles that women have started to portray served as constant reminders of the changing times in the roles of parents in the family. The consistency and visibility of the message has echoed across the nations and challenged the perceptions of gender roles as well as the typical family in America.
The present-day`s fathers have demonstrated encouraging signs of good parenting. These were mostly fathers devoted to and functioning on the desire to be involved caregivers while simultaneously recording the frustration they sensed when they failed to do so. However, there were a number of apparent flaws in the career-life planning of these male groups that resulted to frustrations. While 75% of the male figures desired to spend time with children, these are also the same individuals who wished to find a job with loftier responsibility.
The public acceptance that majority of men are generally devoted to shared responsibility with children has not yet reached its fruition. While a number of media coverage was represented and favorable in finding evidence that men`s increasing devotion to shared care is genuine, some individuals were just skeptical. There are a lot of men who have chosen the path of becoming full-time caregivers to the family and to the children.
Greater Number of Stay-at-Home Dads
Despite the fact that there is still a small group of stay-at-home fathers, the number has continued to grow rapidly in the United States. In the data gathered by the Census Bureau, the percentage of stay-at-home dads has increased by 1.8% from 2001 to 2011. Over 53% of fathers expressed their desires of being stay-at-home dads if their wife has enough earnings to permit it. The huge proportion of dads who would take into account this choice indicates the possibility for increased growth in the population of stay-at-home fathers in the future.
The increasing trend of fathers who are left to tend the needs of the households has captured much of the headlines all through United States. The shift in the working demographics is triggered by economic recession, greater earning power of the female population in the workplace, as well as increased acceptance of gender responsibilities. Based on the data obtained from the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, since 2009, the number of stay-at-home dads has increased by 13%. It has also been observed that the number of stay-at-home dads mostly becomes apparent during economic downturn. According to the Dr. Aaron Rochlen, the number of households in which women are the income earner has increased by 29% since the 1950s (Morgan 2011). For most men in the 50s, being stay-at-home dads was never an issue. The need to be able to fulfill the demands of every member of households became more significant than the need to wallow in pity and keep one`s sense of pride.
The Interview
Few days back, a personal interview with stay-at-home dads was conducted through the use of a social networking site called Facebook. Initially, I inquired from friends if they know any stay-at-home dads who got Facebook account. After gathering their names, I sent a message to them asking if they can answer some questions pertaining to their situation as stay-at-home dads. In my interview, I gave them the option to answer only those questions which they want to answer and skip the questions which they feel are too personal.
Apparently, after gathering the responses, I learned quite a lot about how stay-at-home dads feel being in the situation that they are in now. One thing I learned in this interview is that people think differently thus there will always be varied responses. When stay-at-home dads were asked how they feel about their situation, majority of them stated that while it is troubling sometimes, they have no choice. The dads pointed out to the fact that it is difficult to get a good employment these days. Further, it is also a reality that at present there are lots of women who are working to help meet the needs of the household members. When stay-at-home dads were asked if they find their situation challenging, all of them answered yes. According to these dads, it is only now that they realized how difficult it is to maintain the house and take care of the children. Nonetheless, they find fulfillment in doing these responsibilities as well.
Literature Review
Society has caused a lot of stereotypes between men and women. Gender and sex have always been perceived as the primary social categories in nearly all cultures. Society made people believe that women must be only second to men in terms of achievement, height, and everything. Women are often restricted in achieving recognition in education, sports, politics, and almost all aspects of the society. The acknowledged culture of masculinity in America is concentrated on success in careers and the capacity to perform the role as breadwinners. Despite the fact that the tide has changes over the years, stereotypes continue to endure, thus making it challenging for male`s ego to let go of the dream to be the family provider.
In the past, society labeled women in different ways. Most often than not, women were perceived as highly reliant on men for assistance. Women were defenseless Because of this exposure, women became at risk to abuses. Women often take on the most mind-numbing tasks. They are merely caretakers of the family. Women were not allowed to have a good education which could possibly offer them massive economic profit (Rutledge et al, 2011). The low economic structure for the widely held group cannot prevail over the immediate and concealed costs of school. The research studies reveal that in terms of geographical location, the following are the factors that contributed to the low literacy rates. Gross differences in spatial arrangement of school provision, stark rural/urban dichotomy secondary single sex in towns, and the rainy seasons affected the education of people (Rutledge et al, 2011).
The frail educational system is crucial, thus challenging access of girls to education. With lack of education, women`s legal knowledge is also hampered. Due to insufficient or absence of knowledge, women are unable to gain just and right compensation for physical assault, inability to gain assistance for handling contracts in connection with paid employment and land or property ownership, and a lot more. In many developing countries and even among developed nations, although women are able to obtain employment, it seldom brings them to the top position. Yet, the governments of these nations fulfill their accountabilities with the women group. However, there have been several changes in the position of women in the society. As a matter of fact, managers of organizations are warned to take into account that gender stereotyping is an act of discrimination and prejudice.
As years passed, women have been given place at work. Women obtained significant growth in the developed nations ruled by Western culture while in emerging places ruled by non-Western culture women remain overpowered and are deprived of any human rights. Most women have placed more priority to their work than their family. Most of the women nowadays are empowered. At one time, women in workplaces were directly designated to either a part-time job or a job that requires low responsibility merely because of the belief that women`s first priority should be to take care of every member in the household. As to women who are not married yet, they were believed to quit work as soon as they have tied the knot or when they have conceived a baby. For those with children, they were reasonably believed to care more for their children over their work. Furthermore, the most widespread notion is that women do not have the same physical, mental, and emotional capabilities as men do.
At present, women are no longer perceived as inferior beings. Majority of them have obtained education. Education provides various opportunities to enhance one`s skills in order to learn, to live, to work, and to become what one wants to become. It is a process of being able to learn how to come up with sound decisions that will someday benefit the economy and the society. It is a human right hence everyone is eligible and has the right to acquire quality learning. This simply means that people from all walks of life may go to colleges or universities where they can enhance their knowledge, attitudes, values, and life skills. Scholarships have been provided by companies and other agencies not only for those who lack the capacity to support their education but also for the rest of the students to help them obtain their educational goals. Increasing the people`s capacities to turn their vision for humanity into reality is only possible through education.
Involvement to the labor market is an essential component of the labor force, as it elucidates supply of labor in that market. Labor force is made up of individuals who seek jobs in the labor market. Labor force can also be defined as the unemployed workers and those who are actually engaged in employment. The great increase of women`s active involvement, especially married women, to the work force in the industrialized and urban places of the emerging nations is considered as a massive change in these markets.
Women`s Impact in the Workplace
Investigative studies have shown that the income of women is somehow at par with the income of men. However, challenges start to set in when a woman gives birth. Maternal walls have served as the main obstacle to women`s progress. Majority of these biases in opposition to motherhood is grounded on the periodic precise assumption that a number of hands-on parenting obligations will be on the mother. The evidence that most women are the leading caregivers and the presence of this bias are possibly the most pertinent obstacles to women achieving full potential in the workplace particularly in senior roles. Gaining awareness about the altering roles of fathers and the huge effect this can have on the career trajectories of women must be of significant to employer interested in promoting the advancement of women in the workplace.
Father`s Influence in the Workplace
Men are said to have greater work-life conflict compared to women as they struggle to integrate their responsibilities as caregiver and provider. Greater job demands, the unclear boundaries between home life and work, decreasing job security as well as flat incomes have created great challenge to men. Some facets of work have been recognized to dishearten the participation of fathers in child rearing such as long hours and cultures in the workplace that do not consider family lives and take into account work as the leading significant facet of individuals` lives. It appears that these cultural components are more apparent for men in various companies. These components create negative influence on the fathers` capacities to be the caregivers that a lot of men aspire to be.
The Role of Fathers as Caregivers
The small yet increasing demographic of at-home dads may be viewed as significant particularly when it comes to gaining awareness about the challenges and experiences that virtually all individuals will experience as they continue to be more involved and dynamic parents. While being stay-at-home dads is not a choice for majority of men, the male population will need to continually step up their roles as caregivers if they are to comply with their expectations as well as the expectations of their partners concerning their parenting role. Thus it is vital for people to have a great understanding of the factors that allow men to take the role as caregivers.
Conclusion
When women would be given the opportunity to advance themselves in the business world or in the employment industries, there will be more men who would desire to be stay-at-home dads. With enough stream of income flowing to the household, fathers would be more confident about giving their child secured futures even in the midst of his unemployment status. It has been apparent that problems with finances, job frustrations, and daycare concerns as well as the value of a parent staying at home appeared to general factors to several, if not majority of the decisions. In the interview which I personally conducted, I realized that most fathers would also love to spend time with children just as their wife does. However, according to these fathers, it is most often difficult to be staying at home and care for the children while the mother goes to work. With the increasing economic situation in which most prices are going up, there is extreme difficulty in making both ends meet if it is only one parent working. In addition, according to stay-at-home dads that I interviewed, they are often placed in a position of mockery particularly by people who still do not accept the idea of women working and the husbands staying home and performing the role of a home maker and a caregiver. What is acceptable to the society is the traditional view of men being at work, providing for the needs of the family, and being the best provider that one can possibly be, and the women, on the other hand, stay at home, take care of the needs of the children and the entire household, and ensure that the family has a decent and safe home to live in. It is in the best interest of the male group that one day society would be able to accept the idea of stay-at-home dads and working moms.
Sources
Doucet, A., & Merla, L. (2007). Stay-at-home fathering: A strategy for balancing work and home in Canadian and Belgian families. Community, Work and Family, 10(4), 455-473.
Hatter, W., Vinter, L., & Williams, R. (2002). Dads on dads: Needs and expectations at home and at work. Manchester: Equal Opportunities Commission.
Marshall, K. (1998). Stay-at-home dads. Perspectives on labour and income,10(1), 9-15.
Morgan, C. (2011). Role Reversal. [online] Retrieved from: http://www.rebelmagazine.com/articles/culture-shock/role-reversal.
Rutledge, E., Al Shamsi, F., Bassioni, Y., & Al Sheikh, H. (2011). Women, labour market nationalization policies and human resource development in the Arab Gulf states. Human Resource Development International, 14(2), 183-198.
Smith, J. A. (2009). The daddy shift: How stay-at-home dads, breadwinning moms, and shared parenting are transforming the American family. Beacon Press.