Most of the research on parenting centers around moms, their better halves (dads) are curiously understudied. But take a note according to the Pew Research Center, “Fathers have tripled their time with children since 1965”, the data from Pew analysis of US Census Bureau says “the number of stay-at-home dads has almost doubled in the past two decades”.
Head of global sales at BabyCenter, Julie Michaelson says “Millennial dads are more involved in the day-to-day of childcare than any generation before them”. They have their own unique characteristics: They are more likely to participate in decision making on household chores, do the shopping for kids, and use technology while doing all of the above.
Kasi Bruno, SVP, and strategic planning director at Y&R Toronto said, “Millennial dads are leading the charge in redefining fatherhood”. She added, “They aren’t ‘deadbeat dads’; they are actively making parenting decisions.”
They’re pretty tech savvy in parenting
Whether shopping or research shopping, dads heavily rely on smartphones or any internet connected device for decisions. According to the study by BabyCenter, 59% of millennial dads are looking for parenting guides online using their smartphone. Google data says, “Searches for baby-related phrases on mobile phones have grown to 52% year over year.
Dads are really tech savvy when it comes to parenting. The millennial dads want to balance work and home life. They wish to keep an eye on their kids, even when work keeps them busy, often they tend to make use of parental control application on their smart devices to remotely check their kids’ GPS location so they’re always in the know.
“I can remain connected with my life while being connected with my children”, says a dad of 1-year-old in a response to the survey (Parenting Age Digital Technology). All the stats & comments from the survey prove millennial dads are ready to invest in new technology for better parenting.
Dads play a vital role in taking care of kids these days – They are the ones who initiates parental control in most occasions. Common Sense Media says “kids average six hours of daily screen time and teens average almost 9 hours per day”. And obviously, your home may have a dozen devices that kids might use. Millennial dads are very well aware of how it affects their kids, that’s why they install parental control application like Remo MORE to limit kids screen time.
The Internet of Things has certainly changed parenting concepts and dads are adopting it quickly than millennial moms. In the very near future taking care of babies & grown up kids, maybe, one of the easiest things for dads. Wanna’ know how? Check out some of the latest IoT devices that dads are already keen at.
Smart devices to track baby’s vitals
Baby world is changing, companies have found space to develop their business for the youngest in the house. Toys have become baby monitors now, so your child’s best friend is no more a mere toy. For example, Mimo that takes the shape of the turtle is a baby monitor that sends information like baby’s breathing, body position, sleep activity and skin temperature to your smartphone. Teddy the guardian is another example- A typical teddy bear by look but it’s smarter. Its paw consists of sensors, a simple touch will enable parents to measure their child’s vitals.
On the wearable side – Owlet, it’s a smart sock that monitors your baby’s vitals. It alerts the parents, if the baby’s heart rate and oxygen levels are abnormal with a primary alarm and also in the smartphone. Another example is Sproutling, which fits around baby’s ankle. It consists of a sensor that takes heart rate, skin temperature, and position of your baby and sends this information to your smartphone.
Baby Gigl – a smart baby bottle holder that allows you to track how much and how quickly your baby is drinking, by using the accompanying tablet and smartphone app. There are so many products out there for taking care of your babies and grown up kids, you can keep on adding to your bucket list. Dads are good in finding the best of technologies to care of their kids. And no doubt, they will not like to be called as “babysitters”.
When Al Ferguson, the founder of the popular parenting site The Dad Network, posted a picture a picture of himself in a T-shirt declaring “Dads Don’t Babysit, It’s Called ‘Parenting’. He never thought it will go to masses. The photo has received more than 3000 upvotes and many dads joined the conversation in the comments on what it really means to be a father. The statement has nothing to do with mom’s involvement in taking care of kids.
Ferguson said, “The message is to simply take dads seriously and to raise awareness that dads are also taking more active roles in the lives of their children”.
Millennial Dads study by BabyCenter also revealed “88 percent of millennial dads aspired to be “the perfect dads” as compared to millennial moms”.
As dad’s role grows, so do the expectations to narrow the gap between what they know and what they supposed to know. It’s true that there are less parenting guides specifically for dads, as most of the sites for parenting are thought from the perspective of moms. But it matters less, millennial dads are pretty smart, they actually are parenting, when they are not babysitting, thanks to technology.
- BabyCenter, Millennial Dads Study, June 2015. Based on the online population of U.S. males age 18–54 expecting a child or having at least one child age 0–5 years, n=1,250; millennial dads defined as age 18–34, n=583.
- Google Data, April 2014 and April 2015, United States.