Are fathers ready to prioritize their family life over their careers?

More and more fathers prefer to invest in their family life rather than their professional life. If this is good news, for now it is only the beginning of a trend that remains fearful.

Parenthood, a woman’s issue? Let’s face it, this is still too often the case. But attitudes are changing slowly and more and more men are investing in their children, sometimes at the expense of their careers. An article published in The world last week focused on these fathers who claim their desire to let go of professional ballast to take care of their children on a daily basis, on an equal footing with their spouse.

New fathers, these everyday heroes?

The magazine followed fathers who had choose to prioritize their family life over their professional life. Reduction of working hours, refusal of time-consuming missions and promotions, testimonies illustrate a fearful trend, but which is gradually taking root in society.

Some big companies have already gone up by offering childcare places, emergency childcare or hybrid and flexible working methods. In February 2020, a column was published in The echoes and signed by 105 company heads, also committed to extending paid leave for the other parent to one month compared to 11 days at the time.

Today, recruiters are meeting more and more young men who are taking on their family responsibilities. But despite notable initiatives, working life is generally struggling to adapt to the times and accept that working people can dedicate themselves to their personal lives (hello meetings after 6pm in the evening). 59% of men regret sexist thoughts when making their investment and are asked why it is not their wife who manages the family’s logistics.

Women at home, men at work

Societal changes or not, it is always the women who take care of the children. An INSEE study published in 2020 reveals that they still carry out 71% of parental tasks. So are they 47% to interrupt or reduce their professional activity after a birthcompared to 6% of fathers. The professional world has understood that a mother would take on all or almost all of the domestic duties and see her availability reduced to a trickle.

Instead of encouraging male employees to share this burden and make the professional space more flexible, we prefer to punish women, it is less complicated. Also according to INSEE, mothers are 60% less likely than fathers to access the 1% highest paid jobs. As the concept of mother punishment and father bonus perfectly illustrates, Becoming a parent slows some careers and boosts others.

In short, the time has not yet come to confirm that society has indeed changed, but nothing prevents us from rejoicing in these small changes, which begin, who knows, a more equal world.


Also read:

The maternity malpractice: when companies make us pay for our pregnancies

Photo credit image of a: Getty Images Signature

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