One Step to Address the Imbalance of Care Work for Mothers


Do you feel like you’re the default for every household task for your family? Does the behind the scenes work you do to keep your home running go unnoticed? Is there a never ending mental checklist circulating in your mind at all times? If the answer is yes to any or all of these questions, you aren’t alone. The 2021 Women in the Workplace Survey conducted by McKinsey & Company explores the imbalance of care work for mothers and found within opposite-gender dual-career couples,

Women are four times more likely than men to take on tasks at home, regardless of who earns more.

Despite the research and awareness we’re not seeing change. “There’s never been a more critical time for us to address the imbalance of care work at home,” says Jennifer Siebel Newson, the filmmaker behind FAIR PLAY, the highly anticipated documentary that releases July 8th. The documentary is inspired by the New York Times Bestselling book by author Eve Rodsky. For women, especially, this film seeks to answer the now-more-than-ever-urgent question:

How can I reclaim some of my own time while thriving in the other aspects of my busy life?

In the Fair Play Documentary, Eve Rodsky and three additional families take us on a journey to change the unfair work dynamics in their homes, and society at large. The film demonstrates how small fights around dirty dishes are linked to systemic issues affecting millions of families across the globe. 
Written, produced, and directed by Jennifer Siebel Newsom and in partnership with Hello Sunshine, Fair Play demonstrates how private lives are public issues. Making the invisible care work, historically held by women, visible, Fair Play inspires a more balanced future.

“For women to be able to step into their power in the world, men have to step into their power at home,” says Eve Rodsky.

How will you know if the documentary is something you and your family would benefit from watching? Ask yourself, have you ever internalized any of these statements that Rodsky refers to as “toxic time messages”: 
  1. I shouldn’t need help or feel so overwhelmed. 
  2. Women are better at care work. It’s natural for them, so it should be their job. Check out Rebecca Throop’s article, Caregiving, Mother and Mental Health, where she recounts her experience with this thought. 
  3. It’s easier if I do everything myself.
  4. Time is less valuable than money.
If your answer is yes, bust out the popcorn and dive in! The documentary will help you build a plan where your household runs on established boundaries, roles and responsibilities. Each of which is created based on your families unique needs and values. When this happens, you get time and space to tap into your creativity without interruption. This plan is not simply made by watching the documentary, but it can be a start. 

As a Fair Play Method facilitator, I will share follow-up articles dissecting Fair Play and the imbalance of care work for mothers in much greater detail, but for now step one is to Watch the trailer here!