Having an above average sex life may depend on one factor among others: dividing not only bed sheets but also everyday tasks of child care. But since the US is the only developed nation that doesn’t require companies to provide mothers or fathers any paid parental leave, is this report really meaningful?
Parental leave needs to change first
Although women are not forced to stick to being a good wife like they were in the 1950s, sharing child care duties is easier said than done. While extended paid leave for new parents is an emerging trend in tech titans, currently only about 12% of American companies offer paid maternity or paternity leave, according to the Society for Human Resource Management.
Plenty of studies support the effectiveness of parental paid leave, yet the arrival of the first child can throw many previously equal partners into inequality.
Can two parents really divide family responsibilities equally?
Happy Face on a bad situation
In a new study of 487 families, presented at the Americans Sociological Association, parents who split child care duties evenly reported greater satisfaction, both sexually and emotionally. In couples where the work was mostly on a mother’s shoulder both partners reported being less content.
However, study leader, Dr Daniel Carlson, an assistant professor of sociology at Georgia State University, explained men doing a greater share of childcare did not have the same impact on the quality of the couple’s relationship.
Equal Childcare Responsibilities
Couples included low-to-moderate income parents where the woman was less than 45 years old. Carlson said the research was limited because only heterosexual couples were studied and measures of child care were fairly constricted. He went on to say “egalitarian couples” do not only enjoy a better bedroom life, but also tend to fight less. All this sounds great but again: how easy is it – realistically- for American couples to equally share child care responsibilities?
What do you think of couples’ sex life being affected by child care and of America’s parental leave policies? Share you views in the comments section below.
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