Australia Getting Used to Involved Fathers (Kind Of)
The father-child bond is becoming “central” in some Aussie households – but there’s still a ways to go before the land of kangaroos and boomerangs accepts involved dads as the norm.
The Fraser Coast Chronicle has an article about dads and their “new role” – which is actually their old role, and they’re just doing it differently. And while Aussies are finding that dads are more likely to play with kids and change diapers, eschewing the old image of distant disciplinarian, the ol’ Chronicle calls out United States father involvement as “most prevalent in lower socio-economic groups”.
Last month, family studies expert Kathryn Edin did a seminar at the University of Queensland’s Institute for Social Science Research, telling the Aussie crowd that her study of low-income unmarried dads showed a whole new image of fatherhood.
Parenting expert Steve Biddulph points to the Industrial Revolution as the point in time when fathers disappeared – at least from those core, now-industrialized nations. “We lost the knack of fatherhood when work took men away from their families in the Industrial Revolution, but we are getting it back,” says Biddulph.
Australian family studies have found that one of the biggest roadblocks to involved-father acceptance is – get this – the older generation of fathers. These older dads, now grandfathers, are uneasy with a home where dads are staying home and moms (or mums as they like to call’em) are out earning the paycheck.
More interesting Australian factoids from The Fraser Coast Chronicle linked below.