Child care is the most stressful activity in a woman's life: study

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Sydney, Jan 13 (UNI) Shuttling beween home and office, caring for children is the most stressful and frustrating activity in a woman's life, a study shows.

According to a report in the Age, researchers in Australia carried out a study and found child care is the only activity that mothers dislike significantly more than fathers, contradicting conventional stereotypes.

Women feel more positively about their jobs than men, although for both sexes, paid work ran second to child care as the most negative activity of the week, study said.

''The conventional stereotypes of men being breadwinners and women being the carers; in terms of positive effect, it's the reverse of what you would expect,'' Professor Brown from Griffith University's said.

Working parents were at their happiest when engaged in socialising, community activities, voluntary work or care, education and recreation, the study found.

''The fact that much leisure is played out in a social context, the importance of contact with others, that's the stuff that makes us happy and healthy,'' he said.

For the study, Professor Brown tracked 173 part-time or full-time working parents for a week.

It was found younger parents with dependent children spent more time on child care, while the older group spent more time in paid work and social activities.

The parents, particularly the women in the younger age group (25-30 years), felt more time-pressured than those in the older group (52-57 years).

Overall, the older parents scored more highly on the positive scale but the mood scores showed all participants felt reasonably happy about their time use.

UNI XC ARB MSJ RK1116

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