Dads Are Working Harder At Home, Moms Are Just Working Harder

Feb 20, 2015 at 11:39 AM ET

The scales of work-life balance are shifting.

The proportion of families where both parents work has increased by 40 percent since the late 60s, new data suggests. One chapter of the annual Economic Report of the President focuses on on the economics of family homes, and showed that in 2013, 6 in 10 households have both parents as part of the workforce, whereas in 1968, it was a mere 4 in 10 households. It’s women who are contributing more: Today more than 40 percent of mothers are the primary source of income for their households.

With more moms entering the working world, there has a parallel uptick in the number of fathers contributing to childcare. Over an eight-year period, the number of dads who helped with homework, read to their kids, and bathed and diapered their infants rose by at least five percentage points in all categories.

What’s more, dads are also increasing the time they spend at home. Compared with stats from 1965, when fathers spent 42 hours a week in the office, a paltry 2.5 hours on taking care of their kids and 4.4 hours on housework, in 2013 they clocked only 38 hours a week in the office, spent 6.7 hours taking care of their kids and more than doubled the time spent on housework.