Helen Clark’s recent pro-childcare direction comes on the heels of New Zealand and Australian research showing the amount a New Zealand mother works has no significant impact on her child’s development or on the amount of quality time spent with her child. Working mothers sacrifice personal and recreational time to spend the same amount of time playing with and reading to their children as non-employed mothers, though they spend less time feeding, bathing and clothing their children and themselves. This ‘time-squeezing’ pattern offsets popular claims that working mothers neglect their children’s development, showing that working mothers wear themselves out to be attentive parents to their children. Strong development in children was actually associated slightly with increased tiredness in working mothers.
The kids are all right, but how's Mum?