Mothers Stress more than Fathers when Caring for Babies

Mothers Stress more than Fathers when Caring for Babies

Last update: 16 October, 2017

If we can say one thing about our male partners, it would be that they tend to be far more relaxed than we are. In fact, mothers stress more than fathers do when caring for a baby.

It’s true that we worry too much; we care so much about our little ones that we want to protect them from even the tiniest of scrapes. Dads, on the other hand, tend to be more relaxed, and give their children a little more freedom. Sometimes too much, for us! Which, of course, is just one more thing to stress out about.

What does the research say?

A recent study indicated that mothers feel less happy about parenthood-related tasks than fathers. This does not mean that we are not happy about being mothers. Rather, we have more responsibility and carry more weight on our shoulders than fathers do. For this reason, mothers stress more in general.

The research was carried out by scientists at Cornell University, the University of Minnesota and the Minnesota Population Center, and focused on the time that mothers and fathers dedicated to their children. It determined that women feel more tired, more stressed, and less happy.

According to the American Time Use Survey, which surveyed 12,000 parents in 2010, 2012 and 2013, moms and dads engage in different activities with their children, and in different environments.

Mothers are in charge of the home, school, doctors’ appointments, birthdays and more. In many cases, this prevents them from fully enjoying being with their children. The time that children spend with their fathers is completely different.

This can even cause problems between couples.

The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other’s life.

-Richard Bach-

mom holding baby in her arms

Fathers enjoy their babies more

The study also showed that fathers enjoy the time that they spend with their children more. It is good for dads to spend more time with their children, as the way they treat them is different from mothers.

Mothers stress more because of the amount of activities they take on to care for the baby.

The sociologist Ann Meier, who was also part of the study, added that:

“When mothers are with their kids, they are more often by themselves. When fathers are with their kids, they are more likely to have other adults around, offering some back-up. This helps us understand why fathers are less stressed when with kids.

“The good news from our study is that parents generally enjoy being with their kids, but the bad news is that mothers enjoy it less than fathers because they do more of the ‘work’ and less of the ‘fun’ parenting tasks.”

Father holding baby and smiling

It is beautiful for fathers to become friends to their children, protecting them from all fear but inspiring in them a great respect. 

José Ingenieros-

Motherhood is more tiring

A lack of sleep is another consequence of the accumulation of fatigue in mothers. We are always the first ones awake when the baby is crying, which adds to our stress.

Based on information from thousands of fathers and mothers, the study concluded that bringing up children generates stress.

A little help for mothers doesn’t go amiss

Although we should take care not to generalize, the study states that these data and statistics were compiled from most of the households in the survey. It’s good to give mom a helping hand – just a little help can go a long way.

It is true that men are starting to contribute actively to childrearing. However, this is still not the case in many families.

If all the responsibilities that come along with a new baby can be shared, mothers will have much more free time with their children, and will be able to enjoy being with them much more.

When fathers are getting up at night, taking the baby to the doctor and spending time on some of the tasks associated with motherhood, mothers are able to relax and have fun with their child.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.