Sons of Working Moms Do Twice as Much Housework as Adults, Says Study

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Being a working mom comes with a lot of mom guilt for a lot of us. We’re pulled in so many different directions, and it can feel like we’re not able to give 100% to any part of our lives! But the fact is, many of us need to work to support our families. Finding that balance can be so tough. But a new study shows some surprising benefits of being a working mom, so maybe we can all relax on the guilt for a bit? According to a study published in Work, Employment, and Society, sons of working moms grow up to be much better partners!

The study found that sons of working moms grow up to do twice as much housework as men who had stay-at-home-moms. That’s outstanding!

Working moms know: if you want things to get done, you have to delegate. We’re just one person trying to do it all, so everyone in the family has to pitch it and carry some weight. So while the results are a nice boost for a working mom’s confidence, they’re not entirely surprising.

Researchers surveyed more than 10,000 people across 29 countries.

What they found was sons who grew up with working moms contributed eight more hours a week to caring for their kids, doing household work, and otherwise helping other family members. Considering the research we’ve seen about how emotional labor in the home can have a dire effect on relationships, this is great news for future partners of these men. Hopefully, all these sons raised by strong working moms do the dishes in their own relationships (since that chore seems to be the biggest sticking point!).

The same report revealed some interesting data about daughters of working moms, too.

Women who were raised by working moms end up doing LESS housework than peers raised by stay-at-home-moms. Harvard Business School professor Kathleen McGinn, HBS researcher Mayra Ruiz Castro, and Elizabeth Long Lingo of Mt. Holyoke College authored the working mom study. They found that women raised by working moms performed better in the workplace, ended up in higher positions of power, and had higher earnings and earning potential. It’s no wonder they do less housework, they’re busy being bad-ass boss ladies!

I’m a working mom myself. I know the guilt that goes along with it, and I know how hard it can be to balance everything. But let’s cut ourselves some slack, mamas. We’re raising our sons and daughters to be good partners and successful human beings. That sounds like we’re doing something REALLY right.

(Image: iStock/DGLimages)