Not too long ago I watched a video of men caring for children. I have included the video below. Upon inspection of this video, the men were simply interacting with their children. They were not doing anything extraordinary, (I will admit the cute factor is high.) These men were taking care of their children just as women do, yet this was, “another level?” I did not understand. Is it because men are unable to take care of children? (Yes, they can.) Women interact the same way towards their children, yet when we see men doing this, we lose our shit. Why? Because stereotypes about gender roles of men and women have our brains mixed up.
Dads can be great parents!
In spite of growing evidence to the contrary, society still tries to tell us that men are not able caretakers, many men and women still believe this lie. This stereotype is harmful to all involved, men, women and children. Plus, this bias is wrong, unhealthy and needs to stop. We need to start looking at parenting differently. It could change the world.
Over the next seven(ish) weeks I will be writing a series about women and motherhood. I don’t want the guys to “check-out” just because I am focusing on the female issues. Instead, men can take this chance to review how they see the women in their lives, consider and empathize, and possibly make changes to their own understanding and perspective.
1. Spend at least 15 minutes watching YouTube videos about both men and women interacting with their kids.
2. Pay attention to your first reactions to each video (good and bad). Write your observations down.
3. Take notes about what stereotypes you see.
4. Reverse the gender of the parent and consider the video again. (For example, if it is a video like the one I mentioned above, imagine that the men are women.) Do you still have the same reaction to the video?