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February 3rd, 2010 by Dr. Phil

Read This at Your Leisure

WomenLeis“Women have at least 30 hours of leisure time every week.” HA! Did you get that? Now, don’t kill the messenger. I didn’t say it, and I bet you don’t believe it. Robin sure did not. But that’s what a researcher by the name of John Robinson, a sociologist at the University of Maryland, says was revealed in the research he did. His findings state (admittedly simplified, but you can read more below): Women today have an extra 30 hours to spare each week, even though more of them are working outside the home than in the 1960s.

Did you get that? You have 30 hours to spare. That’s four or five hours per day!!I can hear many of you groaning now, and please don’t punch the computer screen as they are expensive, and you don’t want to waste your free time getting a new one. Obviously, John Robinson didn’t include any of my staff, over 90 percent of whom are women. Many of them tell me they’d have more than a few bones to pick with him and his time-use studies. The study, which Washington Post staff writer Brigid Schulte shines a spotlight on, includes definitions and caveats. You can read more about it here.

I’ll bet your questions include: What constitutes leisure time? Sitting in the dentist’s office, checking business e-mails on your Blackberry, as you wait for your kid? Catching a few minutes of TV while you’re home sick with the flu? I’m sure a lot of working moms who do manage to find extra hours in the week are bombarded with texts or calls from the hubby and kids wondering when dinner is going to be ready or if the dog’s been fed.

I actually talked to a mom today that said she agreed with the study. She said she thinks women are wasting time on the computer messing with Facebook and the like. She didn’t want me to use her name! HA!

So what do you think? Did the researchers find a great hidden truth or did they miss the mark? Please let me hear from you.

P.S. — I sense a show coming on this one!

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143 Responses to “Read This at Your Leisure”

  1. Pamela says:

    Dr. Phil,

    KUDOS TO ALL MOMS!!!!! My husband and I just got a puppy (a month ago). I am a full time 4th-year business student and I don’t even have 30 hours a week of free time! When I’m studying, I’m petting him with my feet… If I do happen to leave him alone, I get to open a door to shredded paper (sometimes homework or textbooks) or a piddle/poop that I have clean up. Its always something… I can’t imagine how much work it would be to have a child! I couldn’t keep our house clean consistently BEFORE we got a dog!!!

    Pam

  2. cathleen says:

    How dare you even give this guy attention!!! Do you know how many husbands are going to see only the previews of this show, and expect MORE from their wives!!!

    AAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

  3. Kristy says:

    I am really wondering how they got the information for this study. I am a stay at home mother of two wonderful boys, a 3 year old and a 6 month old. I know what it is like to work a 40 hour week because I did it before I had kids. I love my job staying and teaching my children but this comment is crazy. My day starts at 7am and ends around 10pm and during that time I’m always doing something wheather it is changing diapers, playing pretend, putting one down for a nap and cooking lunch for the other. There isn’t anytime for ME to do what I want. I clean all day long in between the other million things I need to do with the kids. I even have to record my Dr. Phill show and watch it late at night before I go to bed. When my husband gets home I make sure dinner is ready and then it is time to wash kids, read stories and put to bed (which is difficult with a 3 year old that refuses bed time.) Not to mention all the interupted sleep I get! With all that, I still don’t get everything done that I need to, so where is this free time?

  4. Jeanne says:

    When I was a young mother of three, (the fourth came later, I think), my husband used to ask me why the dishes weren’t done or something else when he came home. This happened a lot, until one weekend. I left him home with the kids for the weekend, and went to Toronto with my mother and the children’s godmother. I had a great time and saw four plays and just relaxed and refreshed. When I walked in the door my husband told me, “I will never complain again about how the house looks.” AND HE HASN’T!!!!!!!!

  5. Juli Rhoads says:

    I am on fire, while watching today’s show, I am folding laundry, feeding one kid a snack and feeding another a bottle. I am a mother of three under the age of four, and haven’t had a shower in 3 DAYS!!!!!!!!!! And I am so thankful that I get to stay at home. Now as far as having leisure time, there is no such thing as leisure time in my world. You bring your camera’s to my house and you will find that out. I have a loving husband who has three jobs, and he never complains about; not having supper when he gets home, having to help bathe kids, no clean socks, a messy house, WHY because he got a dose of what my days are like when he stayed at home for 3 days and 2 nights and kept the kids while I flew to Las Vegas with my mom, and aunts and uncles for a buisness trip. So I think that every complaining husband should have to keep the kids and let their wives go on a trip, vacation, for at least 2/3 days, and I promise they will have much more respect for you and your so called leisure time………

  6. beck88 says:

    I went through the same exact thing with a husband who thought I was not doing enough. I was feeding and watering cows and raising three children. He would come home from trucking and there would be a flat tire on a 1 ton pickup I would ask for him to fix it. No he was busy watching tv. I did all the housework and ranch work along with taking care of all of the family business. He cheated because he said I was not a good wife. Yeah, He also beat me for 22 years and verbally as abused me and told me how the women on the road were better looking. He beat me while my mother was dying in front of my children. I am tired of researchers telling us we have leisure time. I made a dress for my daughter for a school function while having 103 fever and pnuemonia. I am stressed every single day because I am also dealing with a child with post traumatic stress disorder because of the abuse. Women when a man tells you he can do it better hand him the cleaning supplies take the kids and go have some time for you and the kids.

  7. Sherri says:

    When my maternity leave was done, my husband stayed home for 12 weeks, using his family leave time. Although it was a dent in the finances, it wound up being a smart thing to do for the health of our marriage and family. Between caring for our son, cleaning, cooking, dishes, shopping, doctor’s appointments, and all the rest, he was a frazzled mess at the end of each day when I got home from work. Eight months after his leave was done, we decided to have me stay home and stop working. My husband now has nothing but respect and support for me and I am very thankful for that. He offers to help and let me have evenings “off” to regroup and relax in preparation for the next day.

  8. Xfactor says:

    Let’s face it girls, this is our best kept secret. How many of you chose to have children just to get out of having to work full-time? Any way you slice it, having children was a choice you made and your husband shouldn’t have to come home from work to find dishes piled up in the sink and dirty laundry on the floor. Take care of the kids, take care of the house, take care of your husband lest you lose the luxury of being able to stay home.

  9. Vel says:

    Mom’s have 30 hours of leisure time when and if they can finally fall asleep at night.

  10. Janie H. says:

    I got to see the first 30 mins of the the show and had to leave to pick up my son from school. I completely disagree with this so-called study. I have a 5 yr old and 5 month old that keep me on my toes 24-7. I used to be a full-time nurse and mom, until I got diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. I was multi-tasked and I NEVER had any time for my self. So yeah this study is full of crap. : /

  11. Megan says:

    I do not think that moms have 40 hours of leisure time. I personally go to school doing 15 credits every semester, watch my kid as well as my friends 3 kids (5 year, 3 year and a 1 year old plus my 2 year old),doing laundry all the time, cleaning the house and then adding the stress of my husband being deployed. So yes I may have down time but when I do I’m thinking about my husband getting shot at and what I am going to do next. Some people do not realize how hard it is do all the things moms do. My husband would not last an hour doing what I do. He told me that and he tried and ended up calling me 10 mins after I left and told me to come back that he couldn’t do it.

  12. Janet Lick says:

    Ok I have to admit, I am one of laziest women on earth (NOW). I however totally disagree with Dr. Robinson’s “research”. I remember raising my 2 kids and believe me they were a hand full, I also had a full time job. It was the hardest time in my life. I had no time for my self. I went from daylight to dark all week. My weekends were harder. I do have to say it does get easier as they grow up and leave. Now I have one grandson and when he is with me, it’s non stop. I am never sitting down except to feed him, change his diaper and so on. He’s 14 months old he absolutly wears me out. I feel for parents these days. I also feel for my husband. He is a stay at home husband and I work and take care of all the bills. Thats all I do..He does everything else. I do nothing. So I am the laziest woman on earth.. Leisure time… Thats me. (After the kids grow up and Leave)

  13. Angela says:

    I just watched your show on leisure times of mothers. I consider leisure time being able to enjoy an activity without stress or interuption or guilt. I can’t say I get much of that unless my mother comes to visit. I am an older mom and not a type A at all. I was folding laundry as I watched your show and buying time with my 1 year old with snacks at the moment and my neighbor has my 5 year old otherwise she would be harassing me for a snack as well or picking on her brother. My house is a mess but I don’t care because my husband has night classes and won’t be home till late. If he was home he would come in and take his 20 min. crap, his 45 min. shower, and then unwind with some TV, a phone call, or his computer till bedtime. I take a shower usually in a rush, I poop when I absoultly have to in seconds, and I get on the computer when my baby wakes me in the middle of the night if I can.

  14. mary says:

    ok i am really wondering what kind of moms this guy had in the study. i am a single mom of one. for the past year i have been going to school full time. my schooling is only 2 days a week for 8 hrs a day, but on top of that i have study time & field experiences. now people may say that is not much but put that on top of cooking, cleaning, making sure my daughters home work is done, being the girl scout leader, and going to her sports. its not easy. on top of all that i’ve been trying to find a job. i would love to see some of the men who say we have it so easy do our job. we can do the same jobs as men, some women can do it better then men, and get paid less. we are the ones who get up in the middle of the night to feed them, change dippers, take care of nightmares, and take care of the kids when they are sick. congrats to the women who have found the men who will get up and help, but to those men who say we have it easy. walk a day in our shoe.

  15. Judy says:

    I would have challenged that guy (the young dad) you had on today to put his money where his mouth is. He said he could clean the house in two hours, no problem. I’m sure he could without one kid on his hip and the other pulling at his pant leg. My husband also thought I never got anything done (with 4 kids) and one day when they were all sick and he came home and the house was a TOTAL wreck he realized what it took to get anything done. I say leave this guy at home with the kids for a week and see how fast he can’t wait to get back to work, then maybe he’ll appreciate anything that’s done before he gets home.

  16. Betsy says:

    I missed the show today, it is one of the few times during the week that I usually take to myself is the hour that Dr.Phil is on…but in that time I am caring for my youngest who is nearly 3, greeting my 9 year old daughter as she comes home from school and looking at her school papers, I am folding laundry or loading the dishwasher in between commercials…SAHM’s are the Queens of multi-tasking. I fight for time to take an uninterupted bath, so I am seriously curious to learn where my mysterious 30 hours a week goes. Not to mention the fact that I can’t even get 8 hours of sleep each night! I will say that Dr.Phil should look into the FlyLady, because without her my life would be in serious CHAOS.

  17. Jessica says:

    I can sum up this whole study in one word: INSULTING!!

  18. I don’t have 30-40 hours per week. I have twin girls Megan and Mindy who are 20 months old and a 4 year old Madison. I work 4 days a week 7:30am-4:00pm, when I get home I play with my girls for a few minutes then it’s dinner, bath, book, bed. On my day off during the week its filled with Dr. Apts and errands that you don’t have time to do the rest of the days of the week. The weekends are busy with activities also. After the kids are in bed I clean, take a shower and pass out!!! Literally that is my day and my house isn’t even spottles its just enough that noone trips over anything and things are put away. I don’t have any time for myself because you also have a husband that you have to give your time to. I do agree we make a choice to get married and have children and I am not even complaining that I don’t have time I am just saying 30-40 hours a week is a joke I can’t even go to the restroom before 8pm without a kid coming in and needing something.

    Marie

  19. B. A. Berube says:

    Wow, what I could say! BUT at my age, having raised my kids, the most outstanding comments were between you and your wife, Dr. Phil. Women do NOT LIKE TO BE TOLD WHAT TO DO. Even if the husband wants to help, his suggestions of how to get it done, what to do and when to do it, are so very unappreciated and infuriating, and make us feel inferior and unable. I have a very helpful husband but even to this date his mouth never stops giving directions/suggestions and reminders of what I need to do, should do and could do. I suggest that these behaviors are the ones to be followed if you really want your wife to hate you and resent you, regardless of how willing you are to help her. Men need to remember that they are not our bosses or our parents. If that is the relationship we wanted we sure don’t need them! BAB

  20. Marilynn Buehler says:

    This contention is so utterly absurd that I actually laughed out loud when I read it! This fool is obviously not a homeschooling parent. Or has not spent a day with a mother of any kind lately.

  21. I’m flipping through the channels trying to find something to watch on television, after all, it is the first time I’ve sat down all day and I need to decompress. One daughter’s in bed and the other one is all ready to hop in my lap and hold me hostage for a couple hours until she drifts off into lala land. I happen upon Dr. Phil. Imagine my intrigue when I hear the topic is a study done by a Dr. John Robinson of the University of Maryland .His study has found that Mommies have 30-40 hours of leisure time per week. Holy shit batman, did you all know this? What am I doing wrong? I mean obviously I am doing something wrong, because at 8 pm tonight was the first time I had sat down all day…and I’m sick. Then he went on to explain. Apparently, root canals, being stuck in traffic, probably the time you spend changing your spat up on and peed and pooped on clothes, the time you spend asking the same question 30 times of your 3 year old, the time you spend trying to talk on the phone, make breakfast, and do laundry all at the same time..that all counts as leisure time. According to him, we are working more at home than men but we don’t get paid so its considered “leisure” time. Talk about adding insult to injury!
    I don’t know about you but my idea of “leisure” is sitting on a beach somewhere, reading a book with nothing but the sounds of the sea gulls flying overhead, the smell of the beach in my nose,and a beverage with an umbrella in my other hand. That’s leisure. What I do every day is definitely not leisure.Working tirelessly from 6 am in the morning until around 2 am every night of the following day, leaves me with about 4 hours of very interrupted sleep. Is that suppose to be my leisure time? If it is, I am getting ripped off because I am only getting in 28 hours.
    By his definition, the two hours I just sat in the chair trying to argue my 2 year old to sleep is considered leisure time. I find that amazing because to me that felt more like jail time!

  22. Susan says:

    There are cases where many women – spend the day, chatting, shopping, watching soaps, etc. but “claim” to be so busy. Some women put very little time into their children’s lives, interests, interactions and just sortof let them “grown up”. It’s all a time management if you do it successfully and aren’t doing things to complain. I worked all 30 years outside of the home, raised two children(each involved in sports, dance, music, etc.) kept a clean house, handled all business matters, kept myself up, cooked wonderful meals, etc. but still had time to see friends, do some leisure shopping, take some craft classes, watch my programs (recorded them earlier) – so did have time to myself. I went to college for 6 1/2 years and still did all this (time management is a big part of college – setting priorities). My children were both adopted and I valued being a Mother and all that needed to be done as well as “fun” things. I grew up in the 50’s and my Mother always worked part-time and we learned to help, to appreciate and to enjoy. Through my adult years, I have realized that “attitude” makes a big difference. I enjoy all the facets of being a wife and Mother even still and can write a book on women that never worked outside of the home, bothered to cook well, discipline their kids, make a beautiful home or have any interests that had depth. I have been told that I am an “extrodinary woman” – “No, I just was raised to value myself and what I could accomplish”.

  23. Christina says:

    Dr. Phil!
    I might get online here and there. But Honestly I dont have time to sit down and watch tv or read a newspaper to find out whats going on. I deffently dont have time to go out with my friends. So facebook is the only way I can keep up with them, see how there kids are growing and such! I am lucky with a 22 month old & a 6 week old to even get out to the store, or take a shower!!! So, I guess my lesuire time is SLEEPING! LOL. l would love to see that docter do what I do everyday!

  24. Ellen says:

    Yes, I agree with the findings. Moms just like to complain how busy they are when they are not that busy.

  25. April says:

    I think that there are various points in a mom’s life when she is very busy. If you have 2 or more children that are not in school yet AND are mobile, your life is pretty crazy. If you have non-mobile infants, busy, but you can at least sit for a couple of minutes without worrying that your keys will be flushed down the toilet or the area you just picked up will become a disaster again. With school age kids your busy time comes primarily after school. Sure there are errands to run and grocery shopping to do, but lets face it, it may be a chore but easier to do without the constant whining and begging of your children. The truth of the matter is that our children grow up too fast. Parents have always said that, but with TV and internet bombarding them, they seem to lose their innocence even faster. Let’s redefine leisure time as time we spend with our children, quality time, teaching them right from wrong, helping to shape their personalities, loving them and teaching them to respect themselves and others. Let’s quit over-scheduling them and US. Let’s enjoy them while they are young, because before we know it, they will be grown and gone. Do you want to resent your little time with them, or enjoy it?

  26. karen says:

    thats for the show….my husband was away for 10 days. and i was not feeling well, so i laid around for a week and did nothing, but i did go to work. not clean the house. I loved the comment to put bleach in the toilet or sink and he would think you cleaned the house. My husband called me and is comming home early. I just went to get some bleach! Thanks.

  27. Jamie Y. says:

    People – let’s not kid ourselves. Don’t get me wrong, we’re all busy, but us women definitely have at least 30 hours of leisure time every week regardless if we’re a working professional or a stay at home mom. The women who were complaining about not having any leisure time, but yet managed to go to the typing of the Dr. Phil show, how’d do they classify the time spent there to be? People definitely have the time. I’m not just referring to the typing of the show, how about the time waiting in line, the prep time to get to and from the show…so pls don’t tell me that’s not leisure time. Plus some of the examples cited by new mom Teresa Strasser, OMG – they are so irrelavant. Worrying about what her child will end up doing at age 16 and consider that to be “busy” work…Pls! Stop Complaining People! It’s a lifestyle choice. You make it. You live with it!

  28. Luis G says:

    Only 30 HOURS A WEEK! That’s IT?!?! (READ FIRST)

    If you think about it, that is not very much time off during the week. Consider a person who works 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM five days a week. They get 1 hour for lunch, plus 5 hours after work, plus 2 hours before work, that makes 8 hours a day; 40 hours of free time from Monday to Friday. Now add the weekend! Plus 32 hours. That makes it 72 hours a week. . . . SO 30 hours a week is actually very little time off. Now, lets consider perspective. For those who think that 30 hours was a lot of time or that were offended by the amount of time, took very little time to consider what the Dr. was stating. If fact, Dr. Robinson divides the time like this: Contracted time, Committed time (House work), Personal time, and Free time. With 72 hours of potentual free time, only 30 hours a week is very little free time. Imagen 12 hours of free time on Saturday and Sunday; that’s 24 hours. That leaves only 6 hours of free time during the day! A little over one hour a day; from Monday to Friday. Please comment on this.

  29. Mary says:

    I smell a bit of bs there “dr” as a mom of two kids under 4, i don’t get as much as two minutes to go potty nevertheless 30-40 hours, im constantly running here or there cleaning this, or that, picking this or that up, changing about 20 diapers a day almost half are poopy ones, with little to no help from their dad, so where is this study and who was t conducted on? parents who have adult children?

  30. patti says:

    I’m the mother of 10 kids ages 27 to 8 years old, two are adopted from Kenya. I homeschool until the kids go to high school. School, activities, housework, etc. do keep me busy. Do I have 30-40 hours of leisure each week? It doesn’t always feel like it, but we all have choices how we spend our time. I often choose field trips and other activities with my kids or to socialize. I multi-task and only watch Dr. Phil if I’m folding laundry or cooking dinner. Just to prove that if you use your time wisely, you really can find the time (I’m not saying it’s easy) I have published 8 books in the last 8 1/2 years. People ask me how I do it. I don’t waste a minute of my time. I can go for 4 months or more not working on anything. During those times, I feel very busy and wonder how I manage to write books and articles. But then a new project begins and I find the time. I get less sleep during those times and do less other activities. IT’s a matter of choices.

  31. Cindy says:

    Okay, let’s put this in a little perspective. It all depends on the age of your children. I have been a stay-at-home mom for 15 years, and believe me it was hard for me to quit working. I have four children, ages 15 to 25. I admit, I have a lot of free time, NOW! When they were young, no way. As they got older, I started filling in that “free time” with volunteering at school, sports and/or anything my husband didn’t want to do. Let me tell you, I keep threatening to go back to work and they all say, “No!” Especially my husband, he has gotten used to me doing everything, including when he volunteers for something and then doesn’t have time to do it. When he coached two boys, on two different team, at the same time, guess who got all the paperwork and not so fun stuff? I’m not complaining, I have enjoyed my time home with my children and thank my husband for working so hard so it could happen. He knows that I have sacrificed too. Just wait girls, it does get easier!

  32. Maxine Major says:

    I have considered commenting to you (or Oprah) every time the discussion regarding stay at home Mom’s having the hardest job in the world arises. I so disagree. I feel that the working Mom that does all the housework, cooking, washing, etc., and also runs the children to every activity in the world, and takes care of her husband (and you know y’all need caring for, like the guy with the ‘man cold”), works much harder than the stay at home Mom. I do realize that stay at home Moms may not have the adult comraderie that working mothers have, but that doesn’t mean it’s a harder job. I would have gladly given up my job to stay at home with my children, but I made more than my husband, so if one of us had stayed home, it would have been him for financial reasons. (And he wouldn’t have been a very good mom.) We had 2 children together and 3-5 children from previous marriage in our home most of our married life. My life would be an entire season of Dr. Phil shows, so I’ll stop now, but stay at home moms do not work harder than working moms if the working mom does a good job with caring for her children. I’d love to see a show with working moms commenting on what they do and how well they care for their children. If stay at home moms work 94 hours per week, then I worked 134 hours per week. BUT, I still love your show.

  33. Lexi R says:

    30-40 HOURS?? Maybe 30-40 minutes. I have a 13 year old stepson and my husband and I have 2 year old triplets. I work from home as a writer, and volunteer chair for a large committee within a sports organization. Yes, these are my choices, and I happen to be a very organized person. Thus, I can get many things done. But in that same line of thinking, multi tasking is an absolute NECESSITY when raising children. Although I LOVE staying at home with my children, and I enjoy my work, it varies from day to day as to whether what I do can be called leisure time. When my kids are all screaming, fighting over toys and generally ornery, it sure as heckfire does NOT feel like leisure. When we play with bubbles in the yard and draw with sidewalk chalk followed by a special cookie treat, it waaaay feels like leisure! Most days my ears feel like they are bleeding by the time we give the kids baths. After baths I have “time”, but by then I’m so freaking tired there isn’t anything I WANT to do, including my husband sometimes. It’s all about balance,and Teresa said it best – leisure time is worry free time. There isn’t a whole lot of that going around the mom circuit.

  34. Laura Irwin says:

    Who cares what this John Robinson says- he has no practical epxerience as a mom and he doesn’t even know the dictionary definition of “leisure”- time free from work or duties, ease, relaxation, rest, convenience. I saw this show and he seems like an old fart whose getting up there in age and wants his day in the spotlight/recognition for one of his studies. He’s like a little kid who wants any attention, even negative. And now we’re all giving him attention for doing something negative. Dr.Phil, REALLY??? Why did you even invite him on the show or base a show off him- you need attention too? I hope you checked to see if his study is even valid. Didn’t he say it was based on self-report from participants- how were the participants selected, etc. That’s so subjective. Yes. I’m a psych graduate, feminist, and stay-at-home mom so I’m his worst nightmare. His study is whack and he makes me want to be a French major so I can call him a few choice words and pardon my French. I’ll be sure to log this time in as leisure time because I actually enjoyed bitching another clueless man as if there isn’t enough women out there being tortured by men that they don’t do enough at home. Why doesn’t he conduct a study about how much free time man gets at work. I used to be a career woman and people waste so much time on personal and leisurely activities at work and they get paid. Moms don’t get paid so what’s the point of this study?

  35. Candie says:

    My SIL is a mother of 6 children (ages 9 yrs, 7yrs, 6yrs, 4 yrs, and twins that are 2yrs). She homeschools them, travels with my brother (her husband) to raise support so they can be missionaries in Brazil, and tries to keep on top of their home when they are there. I have been there several times and she does not have 30 hours of leisure time any week of the year. I have watched these 6 kids for 2 weeks straight by myself and I did not have 30 hours of leisure time (unless I wanted to lose sleep to do something I enjoyed like watch TV or read). Nap time is the only down time and even then she is cleaning up or preparing the next meal.

    I’m a FT nanny and have worked a 90 hr week before. I know there was not 30 hrs of leisure time then either.

  36. chris says:

    i watch that leisure time episode and i do agree with the man that wrote book about it the truth is this women do have a a lot leisure time and they know it they make too many excuses and they hide a lot behind the kids are what ever they do and woman biggest problem is denial they live in denial.
    women biggest problem is denial and excuses.

  37. chris says:

    i watch that leisure time episode and i do agree with the man that wrote book about it the truth is this. women do have a a lot leisure time and they know it they make too many excuses and they hide a lot behind the kids ,work,friend, televison, cell phone, getting hair done and so fort. woman biggest problem is denial they live in denial and excuses. for instance it don’t take one hour put on a dress or it does one hour to wash dishes truth hurts ( excuses excuses excuses ).
    .

  38. Amanda says:

    I agree with this to a point. I know a lot of moms who do not utilize their time wizely. Whether or not it is guilt free time or not doesn’t matter; it is still time. Moms/women need to learn this. It is important for peopl in general to be able to recharge their batteries. Why shouldn’t moms be able to? There are a lot of dad out there that come home and sit. There work is done. My goodness, me and my grandmother go round and round about this. She believes that men have every right to come home and sit and relax, they worked all day. But so did the moms. And what about those stay at home moms. At least dad came home from work, mom still there until she goes to bed. Dad’s helped make a family they should be involved with them. Moms and Dads both need to recharge and need lone time.

    Also, stop building your household around your kids. We have kids and we need to shape them into our lives not have our lives revolve around them. We need to look at what is important, what needs to be done and work around that. If something doesn’t get done don’t freak about it. It will be there tomorrow, believe me no one is going to do it. I have seen a lot of parents clean around their kids. Are you kidding me??? Get your kid to help. The family makes the mess, the family should clean the mess. This would save a lot of time picking up after things, mom sholdn’t have to do this all the time.

  39. Lucia says:

    To all the moms who some or totally agreed with this research. And especially to the women who help this Doc. to do his research.
    Nobody will probably read this but I just need to get my 2 cents out. This is how busy I am that I couldn’t even watch Dr. Phil at the moment it was aired.

    Please divine for me what is WORK? (I am a mom with 4 kids)
    Why is it ok to call it work when my sitter is watching tv or playing with my kids. And when I do that, it calls leisure. When you are working outside the house whatever your profession might be, there will be time that there is nothing to do and you will do something else beside your work like reading magazine. In that case you can come home and said you work the whole day. And when I am putting a chicken in the oven and waiting for the chicken to be done. It calls leisure. Well I create some leisure time for myself while working at home. I can be doing this somewhere else and get paid per hour and it will call work. What is this Doc. expect from Mom? We are not allowed to sit and relax? And other people at work get breaks and get paid during breaks. And that is ok. Leisure at your work is ok but not if you are a mom at home?
    The Doc. just need some attention from. He knew that he can get a lot of attention with this subject. He succeed. Congratulation!

  40. barbaranne says:

    I would be very interested in a ‘reverse study’ to see how many hours of ‘leisure time’ men have per week, especially as we know many men come home from work, and sit down and watch TV, while the woman still cooks tea, washes dishes, bathes younger children, helps older children with homework, all before putting them to bed.

    Some men will also use the whole weekend, (or most of it), for ‘leisure time’, unlike many women, who are still home looking after children, doing laundry etc.

    This would give us a better level of comparison than just throwing women in general under the bus. Let’s see some studies that fairly reflect BOTH sides of the story.

    (As for leisure time, even when having my second child – and I now have four – I was still doing some hand drawn art work for my job while I was in labour. Would a man be as dedicated to his job as to keep doing his work while being prepared for an operation, for example – or is labour classified as ‘leisure time’ too?)

  41. Karen says:

    Hi – I am from Australia. Just watched the show today while having lunch. I am forty and have three kids – 4, 2 and half and 10 months old. My partner and I were together for 10 years before having kids – we worked very hard and we are glad we had all that time alone – we know what each other needs and wants are to a Tee!!! Having kids was a huge wake up call. I use to think Mothers were whingers – how hard can it be I would say!!! Yes well – I am so sorry for my past words. It is very hard raising kids and I feel I do not get enough ME time anymore – it is mentally exhausting, particularly dealing with young ones who know only their world and their needs. I am hoping I get more me time later on when they are older. My partner is away alot with work, but last wet season he was home for a few weeks and he went crazy in the mind having so much expose to the young kids. He asked me how I did it, but before I answered – he said You know what – you gave birth three times in just over three years, you have hardly had a decent night sleep in four years and you always get most things done (running the house, running two businesses, raising three kids – never used childcare or family to babysit) you have done it all and can do it all because there is nothing like a Mother Love for her Children!!! My partner never complains about anything in the house etc and he always gives me that look of understanding at the end of a bad day with the kids. He helps whenever he can or when I ask. We women can over dramatise things for sure, but having a good husband when raising kids sure does make it easier and the ME time – well I feel no one else will do the job as well as I can, so I guess my ME time is always savoured for when the kids are in bed and boy do I get them to bed early sometimes!!! Studies have their purposes, but I do not believe they are the best indicators of all things that we think we can measure!!! Just writing this e-mail I have been interrupted about 30 times, had two kids whinging for no reason at all etc, etc – where is this 30 to 40 hours of leisure time? Clearly our defintion of leisure time is very different Maryland Doctor!!!

  42. tish says:

    Dr Phil I just absolutely love your shows. You have been my mentor, watching, reading your books etc. I would however like to say that I absolutely agree with Dr J Robinson. we unfortunately in S Africa get your show late, by a few months, but I am a mother of 3 boys. There was a period when I stayed home to look after them when they were small, and I still had lots of time on my hands. I think if you are organised you can get things done. It took me an hour to clean the house mornings and Im fussy, and I let the kids ‘play’. I would then bath and dress them and they would ‘play’ again. yes they needed attention from time to time but when the kids are warm, dry, clean and fed, they were happy as pie. I loved to cook and bake and this I would do late afternoon before hubby returned from work. but for the better part I had lots of ‘free’ time in that I needed to be there, but not occupied all the time. I could read and also pursued hobbies. I took up floristry, interior decor, bookkeeping, cake baking and cake decorating while I was a young mother. at night i believed kids should be in bed by 8pm and that was a routine. and hubby and I were ‘free’. So I really think the women on the show overdo it or they are just not organised. Kids are also occupied with their toys ens, so I really think its an exageration on their part. In fact at one point I helped my husband in his office while pregnant with my 2nd child, and took my first born with me to the office. I found myself single when my youngest were 7yrs old, and started my own building company. I worked very hard, but were fortunate enough to be home when they got back from school. I thought it important for me to be there for them and I wanted to create a HOME not just a house for them to come back to. My business is successfull and I put them through university. they studied construction, law, & soc science. I look back and I have no regrets. It was worth it. Really Dr Phil, to women it should be 2nd nature. I love my boys. thankyou for a great show. regards, tish

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