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Survey finds that work impinges on fatherhood

Author James Dunsford
Submitted 13-06-2008

Contrary to the popular image of dads as ‘hands off’ parents who prefer to leave the day-to-day child rearing to moms while they go to work, a new survey has found that many fathers dream of staying at home with the kids.

More that a third of respondents to Careerbuilder.com’s study said they would leave their job if their partner’s income could easily support the entire family, while the same proportion reported that they would be willing to take a pay cut to spend more time with their children.

Meanwhile, 22 per cent of working dads admitted that their jobs impacted negatively on their relationships with their kids and 46 per cent had missing a significant event in their child’s life of the last year due to work.

Richard Castellini, vice president of consumer marketing at CareerBuilder.com and father of three, offers the following parenting advice to working dads.

Firstly, he suggests that the most important thing is to keep in touch. "Checking in periodically with the family will keep you up-to-date on the goings on at home and school," he states.

Working from one household calendar is also a good way to ensure important dates are not missed, he says, reducing scheduling confusion.

Mr Castellini also recommended: "Pull out your work only after the sun has gone down. On the nights that you bring work home, limit the amount of email checking or even working until the children have gone to sleep."

According to 2006 data from US Census Bureau, there were 143,000 stay-at-home dads on Father’s Day two years ago, not including single parents, compared to 5.6 million stay-at-home moms.