A new report by Pew Research Center has found that after decades of decline the share of mothers who stay at home with their children has risen over the past several years.
In 1967 about 50% of all mothers with children under age 18 stayed at home. That number had been on a steady decline until 1999 with approximately 23% of mothers staying at home but since 1999 there has been a steady increase to almost 30% of mothers saying home in 2013.
Pew Research Center attributes the rise of stay at home mothers to several factors including:
- Societal factors
While 85% of married stay-at-home mothers say they are doing so by choice, only 41% of single mothers and 64% of cohabitating mothers are doing so by choice. This same report also saw a decrease in women working due to the recession, this trend has lingered as the economy continues to recover.
Pew conducted a companion public opinion survey where they found mothers more likely than fathers to have reduced work hours, take significant time off, quit a job or turn down a promotion to care for a child. A survey by the same group found 60% of the general public say children are better off with a patent at home as opposed to 35% who say children are just as well off when parents work.
- Evangelical Christians
- People with a high school degree or less.
The data use for Pew’s analysis of trends for stay-at-home moms is based on the Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey. Stay-at-home mother is defined in this survey as those who say they are staying at home in order to care for their children, not able to find work, are disabled or enrolled in school.
Other notable information from Pew’s report includes the lack of change in college-educated mothers dropping out of the workforce. In 2000, 20% of college educated mothers stayed at home; in 2012 that percentage was 21%. The report also reviewed how stay-at-home moms used their time versus working moms.
Stay-At-Home Moms Working Moms
Housework: 23 hours per week 14 hours per week
Childcare: 18 hours per week 11 hours per week
Leisure: 31 hours per week 22 hours per week
Sleep: 63 hours per week 58 hours per week