National

Japanese fathers spend more time playing with kids, but mothers want more: survey

JIJI

About half of all parents in Japan raising children think today’s young fathers spend more time playing with their kids than their own fathers did, according to a survey by an educational toy maker.

Although the survey revealed that fathers are taking a more active part in child-rearing in Japan, most young mothers still want their husbands to spend more time playing with their children.

The results of the survey by Bornelund Inc. are based on answers from 1,287 parents in their 30s whose children currently attend kindergarten or nursery school.

In the survey, 42.2 percent of respondents said that fathers play with their children two to three days a week, followed by 24.2 percent who play with their children every day and 14.8 percent who play with their kids four to five days a week.

In a question about changes in the amount of time young fathers spend playing with their children compared with their own childhoods, 50 percent of respondents said today’s young fathers spend more time with their children during the holidays, while 40.4 percent said the same about weekdays.

Meanwhile, 86.9 percent of young mothers who responded to the survey said they want their husbands to spend more time playing with their children.

While 58.6 percent of fathers said in the survey that they play with their children when their wives are busy, 73.5 percent of mothers said they want their husbands to play more with the children when they are busy.

According to the survey, many mothers want their husbands to exercise or go out and experience nature with their children, saying that the fathers are more suitable for such activities.

The survey showed that over 60 percent of mothers are not satisfied with the way their husbands play with their children, with some 80 percent citing the use of smartphones, among other things, while playing with their children as a reason for their dissatisfaction.

While an increasing number of fathers are taking part in child-rearing, more and more mothers apparently want their husbands to improve the way they play with their kids instead of simply offering to help, an official of the toy maker said.

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