Dr Rose says another strategy is women involving their partners in housework or childcare tasks, but that many women described their husbands as “helpers” rather than as initiators of tasks.
“Social norms still expect mothers to take primary responsibility for the home domain - including child care and housework,” Dr Rose says.
“This silent expectation means that women often delegate tasks for their husbands to do or help with. Men, generally speaking do not initiate housework - with the exception of cooking and yard work.
“Despite women increasing workforce participation they still take responsibility for caring about family. This means co-ordinating child care and work schedules, health appointments, extra-curricular activities of children etc.
“This mental load or 'thinking about' family, even when at work, is exhausting for women.
“It is 'invisible' work women have done for centuries and continue to do.”
Dr Rose says there is huge value in fathers bonding with their infants and young children.
These include benefits for the child who will do better with their social, emotional and cognitive skills throughout life and benefits for the father who will form a closer emotional attachment with their child, and be more tuned into their needs.
She says ultimately this leads to benefits for mothers who will be relieved of time pressure when fathers can confidently and competently take care of children. These benefits then extend to society as a whole.
Dr Rose says that while it is often women who take up the offer of paid parental leave or flexible leave arrangements to care for children, these options need to be destigmatised for men.
“Policy makers need to better recognise the effort and cost of the invisible work women do for family from what I call the 'time management control centre' of the home.
“While workplaces have become much better at offering flexibility at work for women, this same flexibility is rarely taken up by men.
“This needs to change for it to become a more equitable situation of shared care by parents.
“Men need good role models at work, such as managers or bosses who use these options and encourage their male staff to do so.
“Fathers now have a two week Dad and Partner Pay - but these need to be longer to really get men involved in child care from birth.”