Mom Gets Higher Marks Than Dad, New Poll Says [AUDIO]
A majority of Americans agree; moms have it harder today than they did years ago.
That's according to Fairleigh Dickinson University's latest PublicMind survey, which finds that three-quarters, or 74 percent, believe moms have it harder today as compared with generations past. At the same time, Americans credit their mothers more than their fathers, 46 to 24 percent, for contributing in a positive way to their development over the course of their lives.
"All of the juggling that moms have to do today isn't easy, but apparently they're doing it well given the high marks Americans give to their moms for helping them grow in a positive way," said Krista Jenkins, director of PublicMind and a professor of political science at Fairleigh Dickinson University. "These numbers confirm what we all know. Moms are owed a debt of gratitude for their hard work and that's especially true on Mother's Day."
According to the poll, 80 percent of women and 78 percent of individuals with children are among those most likely to perceive motherhood as something that's harder today than it once was. That compares to 68 percent of men and 61 percent who do not have children.
The difficulty of combining work and family topped the list of reasons why being a mom is perceived harder today compared to generations past. Still, 86 percent of respondents said they believe paid employment outside the home doesn't prevent a woman from being a good mom.
"Whether out of choice or necessity, many moms today are faced with the demands of 'having it all' at the same time and fret over the compromises they feel they make to their children. These numbers at least suggest that society no longer believes they're doomed to failure," said Jenkins.
The survey also found that two-thirds, or 68 percent, believe mothers today are under more pressure to look youthful and fit compared to their mothers while 21 percent say there's been no change while four percent believe less attention is paid to appearance today.
Meanwhile, 73 percent of women compared to 61 percent of men are more likely to believe the change in emphasis has been for the worse and not for the better.
"Americans appear to believe that motherhood no longer provides any degree of respite from the cradle to grave monitoring of a woman's appearance," said Jenkins. "Moms today are expected to do it all well and look good while doing it, even though being a good mom often leaves a woman with little time to herself."
Do children today rely too much on their moms? The poll found that a third believe maternal influence should be stronger, a fifth believe kids are too tied to their mom's apron strings while a quarter say the mother/child bond is strong enough.
When asked which party does a better job of representing maternal interests, Democratic moms edge out Republican moms 32 to 20 percent. But, 39 percent say neither take the prize.