Patt Morrison for June 23, 2008

When Mom and Dad Share It All

The mother-knows best mold paired with the bread-winning dad just isn't cutting it any more. But nowadays many parents also want to stray from the "involved" stay-at-home dad married to the stressed-out working mom. Instead the go-between has shifted toward parenting partners, equals and peers - Shared Care, as the Third Path Institute puts it. The message is simple: gender should not determine the division of labor at home. Both women and men can redesign their work to earn a living while actively - and equally - raising their children. A new work-family model if you will, and often at the expense of higher incomes. But how fair is this ideal in practice?

* Marc and Amy Vachon, a young married couple who agreed to share parenting duties.
* Francine Deutsch, Professor of Psychology and Education at Mount Holyoke in Massachusetts.
* Jessica DeGroot, founder and president of the Third Path Institute.

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