We’ve come a long way baby. Or have we?

Principal - WRLaw

Written by Di Dempsey

Since my daughter has returned to the workforce after maternity leave, I have been babysitting for her a couple of days a week. As she lives in Melbourne, I go down to her house the afternoon before my shift starts so I’m up and ready to look after the two little ones first thing the next morning.

All this is to say that just like a journalist in the Middle East I’m effectively embedded in her household, thus enabling me to observe the distribution of labour while both parents are working full time. (Heaven forbid that I should write an article and tell the world about what goes on inside their home).

Actually, I have to say that I am constantly impressed by the egalitarian nature of their household. I spend most of my time with my mouth open as I watch her millennial man scoop up his babies, change their nappies and put the dinner on. After my son-in-law has done the dishes, he often lies on the floor and acts as a human adventure playground while his two babies crawl over him and scream with laughter.

Whenever I point out to my daughter how lucky she is to have such a wonderful partner she looks at me puzzled. This is what all the blokes do nowadays, she tells me. And I’m also not allowed to give him praise for doing what should come naturally.

I tell her how bloody awful and unfair the distribution of labour was in “my day.” This was when women were considered to be lucky to go out and work in the first place. Once we found a job it was generally our responsibility to find the scant childcare that was available, as well as do all of the household tasks, of course.

The sharing of household tasks seems so much fairer now, but if you do some online research many Australian and overseas surveys conclude that women are still carrying the heavier load. Many blokes are doing a sterling job, but apparently they still have a way to go.

On another level, this conversation about equal workloads in the home may seem irrelevant when we stop and look at domestic violence statistics. Or is it? Perhaps it’s the case that the day the blokes are cheerfully mucking, it will be the same day that they no longer feel entitled to murder, bash, rape and generally disrespect women.

This article has been prepared for information purposes only and is not legal advice. For legal advice regarding your specific circumstances, please contact WR Law directly on (03) 5499 6131 or by email at admin@wrlaw.com.au

Rosa Raco

Principal - WRLaw

WR Law understands people and workplace culture, and it is with this understanding that we are able to achieve great outcomes for our clients in the field of employment and workplace relations.

The principal, Rosa Raco, has extensive experience working outside of a law firm environment, having worked in a major bank, the public sector and a small not for profit. Having been on the receiving end of legal advice, she understands what you need when you come to her for advice – advice that is practical, easy to understand and usable.

Bringing this ‘real world’ experience to all your matters, WR Law is well equipped to help you make the best decisions by balancing commercial considerations with legal implications and risks.

Approachable and practical, WR Law provides sound and considered advice to a wide range of businesses, from SMEs to international organisations across a variety of industries.

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