Differences Between Women and Men’s Everyday with Kids

The day-to-day changes a lot when you have kids. Responsibilities change. You have a little person who is dependent on your choices. However, the everyday seems to change more for women than it does for men, as women tend to assume more of the new responsibilities in both frequency and time.

Using data from the American Time Use Survey, the chart below shows the percentage of mothers who said they did a child-care activity compared against fathers (on a non-holiday, weekday). Activities are sorted by the size of the percentage difference.

Who Takes Care of the Kids

A higher percentage of women parents take the responsibility for all activities.

MEN

WOMEN

Physical care

Picking up/dropping off

Homework

Talking with/listening to

Looking after (as a primary activity)

Waiting for/with

Reading to/with

Organization and planning

Obtaining medical care

Attending events

Providing medical care

Meetings and school conferences

Waiting for children’s health

Home schooling

Arts and crafts

Education, misc.

Playing sports

Caring for and helping, misc.

Playing, not sports

Waiting for children’s education

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

MEN

WOMEN

Physical care

Picking up/dropoff

Homework

Talking with

Looking after

Waiting

Reading

Organization

Getting med. care

Events

Provide med. care

Meetings

Waiting for health

Home schooling

Arts and crafts

Education, misc.

Playing sports

Caring for, misc.

Playing, not sports

Waiting for edu.

0%

20%

40%

60%

This makes sense, right?

The above doesn’t answer my main curiosity though: Knowing that life changes after kids, how much does it change for men and women? The chart below shows the change in the percentage of people (vertical position) who did an activity and the change in median time spent (circle size and color), before and after kids. Orange is more. Green is less.

Differences After Kids for Men and Women

Circle size shows time difference with daily activity after kids. Position and color show percentage difference.

At the extremes, you see women working at a main job less and take care of kids more. For men, you see the changes, but they’re lower in magnitude.

Notes

  • The data comes from the American Time Use Survey for the years 2013 through 2017. I only looked at activities on non-holiday weekdays. I downloaded the data via IPUMS.
  • I analyzed and prepared the data in R. I used D3.js to visualize.

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