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Family a half a century ago and now

How Parents Spend Their Time: A Dramatic Change Related Topics: ResearchWork-Life Balance Life for couples who marry today is likely to differ greatly from the life of couples who married 50 years ago.

  • In fact, over the past 20 years, virtually all of the growth in births outside of marriage has been driven by increases in births to cohabiting women;
  • As part of the National Childcare Strategy , the Labour government also instituted the Sure Start initiative, which aimed to improve childcare, early education, health and family support with an emphasis on outreach and community development.

It left me wondering just how surprised a visitor out of the past might be to discover how marriage and parenthood function nowadays. The Pew report underscores the changed roles of women in the workplace and of men at home.

It shows that contemporary parents struggle to balance life in the workplace with life at home. Couples report feeling rushed and pressured.

Labour stepped in

It also shows these parents wanting to devote even more time to their children. The Pew report is noteworthy for the attention it focuses upon so many pieces in the puzzle of 21st century home life.

  • How Parents Spend Their Time;
  • While in the early 1960s babies typically arrived within a marriage , today fully four-in-ten births occur to women who are single or living with a non-marital partner.

A number of points stood out for me in the report. I hope the following 10 points from the report serve to highlight its complex, but informative, purpose: Tough economic times may have ushered in a new mind-set. Into the Future The changing roles of men and women at work and at home have preoccupied social analysts throughout the time of my long career as a journalist.

How Parents Spend Their Time: A Dramatic Change

Many changes noted in the Pew report were anticipated decades ago, though some were not as clearly predicted as others. Society undoubtedly will continue to undergo changes.

  1. Stevenson and Wolfers maintain that divorce rates have declined since that time, while Kennedy and Ruggles find that the divorce rate has continued its rise.
  2. It may be the case that some families that began as stepfamilies may no longer identify as such, if the stepparent went on to adopt the children. By contrast, in 1960, the height of the post-World War II baby boom, there was one dominant family form.
  3. About three-fourths of all employed moms are working full time. Third, any care that was offered to the under-fives should be cost-effective.

So I suspect journalists 50 years into the future still will be covering developments that influence the workings of home life. In any event, parents today are continuing to think things through on the home front.

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The Pew report itself creates that impression. By way of example, it suggests that many fathers want to find ways to spend more time with their children.

Parenting in America

It appears that for many couples, achieving the best possible balance between life outside the home and life in the home remains a work in process.