Dual-Career Parenting: The 7 Scientifically Proven Benefits

Written by: Michaela Drake

  1. To no surprise, modern media often presents a bi-partisan view of modern parenting. Either you are a workaholic parent who neglects to care for your children, or you are a lazy stay at home parent who fails to present a good work-ethic. It is a lose-lose situation as whichever way you go, you will be ‘doing it wrong’ in the eyes of an unknown critic.

 

  1. Whilst London is a glorious melting pot of culture, fun and exploration it doesn’t do much for our bank accounts and for most parents, not having a job is not an option. Britain has seen the exponential rise of ‘dual-career’ parents; both parents with part- or full-time jobs who raise a family. Having the 2nd highest global rate of dual-career parents, since the 1970s when only 30% of children under the age of 6 had both parents working to nearly 80% of parents both working in recent years. And while these stats are often followed by mounds of emotional burden as they like to remind you of the potential negatives being a working parent has on your child, we believe it can’t be all bad… right?

 

  1. Like the proverbial cat, we are curious to learn about the positive impacts of dual-career parenting and whether these under-publicised positives could outweigh the potential negatives.
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So, without further ado, 7 fantastic reasons why dual-career parenting is great…

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  2. 1. Perhaps an obvious one but, two parents working = two incomes = more money:

  3. Money doesn’t make the world go round, but it definitely makes it spin smoother. And having economic security can allow more flexibility in terms of lifestyle - so you can afford the family holiday abroad or the takeaway when you can’t be bothered to cook, without the worries of breaking the bank.
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  5. 2. Socialising and engaging in the family dynamic:

  6. Often overlooked, but having two working parents means doubled social circles. This increases chances and variety of socialising opportunities for parents and children. And when parents are at work it encourages children to become more independent and encourages participation in the family responsibilities form children. Whether this be in socialising in after-school clubs or just learning to cook dinner for the family - not bad eh?
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  8. 3. Equity:

  9. The classic ‘a job shared is a job halved’ goes without saying here and while not applicable for single-parent families, having both parents working can provide a better work-life balance. If the pressure to earn enough money, or even with the more daily tasks like doing the school run is shared between two people, instead of one, this has been shown to reduce marital stress and ease family life, keeping everyone happy!

  1. 4. Efficiency:

  2. If you can manage to get the kids washed, dressed, fed and off to school as well as catch the commuter train into central London then you definitely deserve ‘super-parent’ status! Research suggests that parents who perfect the act of balancing a higher work-load in their job are better at prioritizing and learn to do things quicker and more efficiently in the house. Even better, is that these proactive habits tend to be passed onto your children - and they are definitely life skills you want to learn sooner rather than later!
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  4. 5. Educational benefits (for girls specifically):

  5. Daughters of employed mothers have been found to have higher academic achievement, greater career success, more non-traditional career choices, more independence with greater confidence in social interactions at school and greater occupational commitment - if that’s not a ringing endorsement for dual-careers, then I don’t know what is.

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  7. 6. Educational benefits (this time more for boys):

  8. Now research for the effects of parental employment on boys is a little more tricky - why? We’re not too sure but overall working-class boys showed more positive social adjustment when their mothers were employed, and this was true for both one-parent and two-parent families. Similarly, higher rates of childcare participation from fathers has shown increases in the academic achievement of both boys and girls!
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  10. 7. Gender-role attitudes:

  11. Say goodbye to the antiquated gender-stereotypes of the 1950s and hello to more balanced parenting roles! Research revealed that sons and daughters of employed mothers have less traditional gender-role attitudes.
    For example, when asked ‘who is more likely to be a Banker?’
  12.                                 a) Men b) Women c) Both
             children of employed mothers on average said ‘Both’, compared with those of non-employed mothers. Even better - often to accommodate for the mother's employment, fathers                  typically take on a larger share of the household tasks and child care. Long gone are the days of segregated roles in childcare, 2017 is welcoming the age of dual-career parents where          both men and women report a better work-home balance and happier family lifestyles.
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  15. Clearly being a working parent is not-all bad, like everything, it comes with its ups and downs. There are obvious advantages for working parents and their children that should be celebrated and the anyone will tell you that parenting ‘rules’ are not a one-size fits all. What works for one parent may 100% not work for another. Often the media tends to oversimplify the complexity of the family dynamic, telling parents their way is the wrong way. But, like most things these days, the ‘rules’ should be taken with a pinch of salt. If it works for you, great! If not, who cares?! Keep on going till you find a way that suits you perfectly!

 




Tags: dual-career parenting, poppins, working mums, working dads, benefits,

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