Funny how we never read reports about working fathers, that there isn’t a flurry of criticism of fathers around Fathers Day? Instead we have a mass of negative press around mothers for working or not working or, as far as I can, just existing. Anything you do as a mother seems to be up for criticism.
And yes just in time for Mothers Day there’s another report out that suggests that working mothers spend ‘just’ 81 minutes a day with their children including meal times.
Family groups have felt the need to wade in suggesting that children’s emotional development is being harmed.
Blah blah blah.
Actually I’m not sure how they got to 81 minutes.
Does that count the half an hour from 6.15 when I’m trying to persuade them to go back to sleep as I lie in bed with them slapping me around the face with wabbit?
Does it count the 15 minutes of TV time together when I get home from work whilst we’re doing nanny handover? I’m cuddling them but I’m not entirely focused on them.
And what about the fact that once I get up in the morning I’m focused on getting washed, dressed and out of the door. Yes I’m playing peekaboo around the door whilst struggling to not fall over putting my tights on but does that count or not?
Actually during the working week I’m a long way shy of 81 minutes unless they are ill. And then its more like 12 hours…
But you know what interested me, even a father who does not work spends less time a day primarily focused on his children than a working mother. A whole 18 minutes less. And you were trying to make me feel bad with this report? I’m better than even the best bloke so yay! Go me!
You know what, being a working mother isn’t exactly a walk in the park. Everyone seems to want to have a pop at you – employer, family, friends. So come on men, husbands, fathers, friends, how about you give the mother in your lives a bit of TLC, a bit of time to herself which is probably the only thing she wants*. How about fathers have a go at working on their stats by giving mothers a bit of a break.
Happy mothers day all!
* obviously a voucher for a facial, a bottle of champagne or a lovely new handbag would also be very nice.