Parenting roles continue to evolve as families look for solutions that meet all of their needs. In an effort to meet the financial demands of raising a family, parents may be taking on less traditional roles. For example, many fathers are now stay-at-home dads.
The number of stay-at-home fathers continues to climb. The Pew Research Center indicates that roughly 550,000 men have become full-time stay-at-home parents in the previous 10 years.
Economics have forced many couples to make less traditional decisions for their families. The National At-Home Dad Network says the stay-at-home dad is a growing trend because men want to be more involved with their kids.
The following factors may give families pause to consider swapping parental stereotypes in favor of stay-at-home fathers.
• Earning potential: Money is often a factor in deciding that Mom will be the breadwinner and Dad will be the caregiver. In the event one parent earns considerably more money than the other, and paying for childcare so both parents can work would be a detriment to the family, it can make sense to have the higher earner be the sole breadwinner.
• Personalities: Some women simply see themselves thriving more in the workforce than as a primary caregiver at home, while some dads want to be home with their children and do not measure success in job titles or income. These scenarios make the stay-at-home dad model more plausible.
• Open-mindedness: If the situation does not affect the children, and grandparents and other supportive people in the kids’ lives are amenable to the idea, then accepting less traditional roles can be successful.
Traditional family roles are increasingly falling by the wayside as both men and women put their families first and make decisions based on what’s best for all members of the family.