Men in Dual-Career Families: Current Realities and Future Prospects

Men in Dual-Career Families: Current Realities and Future Prospects

Men in Dual-Career Families: Current Realities and Future Prospects

Men in Dual-Career Families: Current Realities and Future Prospects

Excerpt

The viability of a lifestyle in which both the husband and the wife are career-oriented is in question. Can both spouses find satisfying employment? Should they be hired? Is a man who follows his spouse really career-committed? Is divorce more likely? What about children? Is there a place for them? Will careers suffer because of increased home and family responsibilities? Can such people compete effectively in a tight job market? Will there be long-term negative effects to society?

The main purpose for writing this book is to provide an increased understanding of what it is like to be a husband and a father in a dual- career family. Previous research and writing have focused almost exclusively on the wife in such marriages, mostly because women's lives in the 1970s and 1980s appear to be changing more dramatically than men's. However, the effects of this lifestyle on the lives of men can no longer be ignored: increasing numbers of men are committing themselves to a dual- career marriage and many are questioning traditional views of the male role.

The dual-career family represents a marked shift from traditional marital relationships, and the issues involved and the day-to-day realities associated with it are often exaggerated or misunderstood. Men and women may enter into what they want to be egalitarian relationships only to find that they are ill-prepared for the psychological and attitudinal changes that may be necessary or for the lack of societal support for their chosen lifestyle. This lack of information and understanding about men in dual-career families also influences societal views, including those of employers and providers of mental health services. Employers, for example . . .

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