Those who oppose granting paternity leave would claim that the job of caring for a young child naturally falls upon the woman, and that most men can barely handle themselves let alone a baby. According to Carol Sarler, a member of the opposing party, women are better equipped and better able to nurture children than men are, and no amount of social engineering or political correctness on the part of this military or that government will change that. Also, because the father did not endure physical trauma, his body does not need time to recover.
By giving leave only to women we are maintaining the ancient belief that women should be the homemakers and men should be the breadwinners, thus promoting sexism. If we are going to create an environment of gender equality in the workplace, a father must be viewed as equal to a mother and given an equal parenting time. According to EOC chief executive Caroline Slocock, There has been a dramatic shift in attitudes by fathers towards caring for their new born babies.
Nine out of 10 men with babies now agree that they are as confident as their partners in caring for their new children. She said that this was a major shift from 20 years ago, when 52% of fathers believed it was their responsibility to be the main breadwinner while women stayed at home to care for the children. Policies need to be updated to keep up with changing society. After a woman has given birth she is weak and needs time to rest and recover so she is given maternity leave, but what good is maternity leave if she doesnt get any rest?
New babies are a lot of work and can easily drain the energy out of anyone. In order for a woman to get the most out of her maternity leave she will need help with all of the responsibilities of caring for the new baby, as well as to be taken care of herself. Even though the man did not endure any physical exhaustion in bringing the baby into the world, he will be exhausted with the responsibilities that accompany caring for the new child and his spouse and will therefore need paternity leave.
Both parents are affected when there is a new baby in the house. For arguments purpose, lets say that the mother did handle most of the responsibilities, the father is still affected. For example, If the baby wakes up screaming and crying in the middle of the night, the father will be woken up regardless if he is going to be the one to comfort the child or not. This will in turn lesson the performance ability of the father and make him exhausted and useless at work.
In addition to physical assistance, moral support from the womans spouse is a key supplement in her healthful recovery from pregnancy. New mothers have a risk of going into depression after childbirth if they do not receive adequate support. The largest study to date shows that as many as 1 in every 7 women suffers postpartum depression. And the study, published in the journal JAMA Psychiatry, finds that among women followed for a year after delivery, some 22 percent had been depressed, (Neighmond).
Postpartum depression makes mothers feel sad, anxious, hopeless, and unworthy to care for a child. It is caused by changes in hormone levels and the major addition of responsibilities that accompany a new baby. Postpartum depression can be easily prevented if the father is present to share the responsibilities of the mother and comfort her when she is feeling overwhelmed. In order for this to happen, men need paternity leave. Granting paternity leave is the way to a smooth and cheerful welcoming of new life into the world.