Women are absolutely killing it in the professional world these days. In 2018 alone, men only earned 74 bachelor’s degrees for every 100 women earned. Not only that, but 64% of women are equal earners or even the outright breadwinners in their households, which is amazing. The problem is that millennial men don’t think it’s that great.
- Author Lara Bazelon explores this trend in her new book. In her book Ambitious Like A Mother, Bazelon reveals how not only do women hold down amazing careers, but their male partners tend to expect them to take on a “second shift” when they get home. In other words, not only do they need to work outside the house, but they need to come home to do all the domestic work that housewives performed back in the day.
- Childcare is the biggest responsibility for women. While a lot of women take on the majority of the household chores, even where that’s not the case and chores are split evenly, most of the childcare comes down to the mothers. An estimated 75% of moms are the ones who take care of organizing their kids’ appointments and looking after them when they’re sick. As the New York Post reports, women are four times more likely to call out of work to look after sick children than men. Yes, even in 2022.
- Women are simply doing more. While back in the day, men would go out to work while women would stay home to raise the kids and look after the home, that arrangement isn’t the standard these days. In most households, both parents work full-time, and yet women are still expected to do the work of 1950s housewives as well. As economics professors, Francine D. Blau and Lawrence M. Kahn said in their 2013 research paper: “Modern men do not adjust the amount of time they dedicate to housework based on their wives’ employment status.”
- Not having a partner who’s willing to pitch in can cause serious problems. As Bazelon wrote in her book, she was making more money than her husband and yet it was still up to her to take care of “anything related to schoolwork, doctors’ appointments, [my child’s] IEP plan… My husband didn’t make any effort to understand it.”
- For women who find themselves in a similar position, it can make things really tough. “Professional working mothers who find themselves with partners who are unwilling to make that shift in perspective and allocation of time and resources have a tough choice,” Bazelon writes. “Radically compromise who they are and what they want to stay in the marriage, or leave.”
- Many women are choosing to leave unequal relationships. A 2015 study from the American Sociological Association revealed that women initiate roughly 69% of divorces. For women with college degrees, that number jumps to 90%. No surprises there!