Kids ages 13 & 16

This article was originally published in Fathering Together. It has been republished on Medium with permission.

Illustration by Tetiana Garkusha

I asked every dad I interviewed what they thought about the term “caregiving” as it relates to being a father.

Chris has no problem with the term; he sees “caregiving” as the act of providing emotional and physical support to those that need it — which can include children. …

Kids ages 5 & 7

This article was originally published in Fathering Together. It has been republished on Medium with permission.

Illustration by Tetiana Garkusha

I asked every dad I interviewed what they thought about the term “caregiving” as it relates to being a father. Practically speaking, Brian sees the term caregiving as synonymous with mothering, fathering or parenting. He believes all of those terms, at the core, are about an emotional connection and the capacity to love your kids. Brian is less concerned with the vocabulary people choose, and more concerned with the sincerity of the actions behind those words.

Whatever you want…

10 Men Who Want to Normalize the Messiness of Fatherhood

Illustration by Tetiana Garkusha

All of us with kids know that parenthood is filled with a wide range of emotional moments. We never know what each day will bring; we just continue to wake up, and do the best we can. On any given day we may experience delight, disappointment, pride, frustration, love, tedium, laughter, sacrifice, learning and self-doubt. Parenting is messy. But I think that the joy of parenting actually comes when one embraces that crazy mix of moments.

Because caregiving has long been coded as a mother’s role, mothers are expected to do more parenting than fathers. And so it’s not surprising…

3 ways to reject the holiday goody bag.

I grew up in the 80’s, and still have clear February memories from my elementary school years. I remember picking out a box of brightly-colored pre-fab Valentine’s Day cards from the grocery store. I remember dutifully opening the box while in front of the TV on the evening of February 13th. The paper was flimsy, the edges were poorly perforated, and I had to work slowly to prevent the cards from tearing when I broke them apart. Sometimes there was a corny joke; the fancy ones came with a scratch-and-sniff sticker. …

How Doug Emhoff’s campaign slogan transitions to the every day home.


A recent Washington Post article posited that if Doug Emhoff, husband of Kamala Harris, had to give a slogan for the way he campaigns for his wife, it would be I Got You.

When your wife is running for Vice President of the United States, it seems that I Got You means defending the ticket on Twitter, rushing up on stage to handle a protestor, or offering a hug after a long day of campaigning. But this article got me thinking about what I Got You can mean to men married to women who are not running for Vice President.

Yes. But a few purposeful decisions could have long-term impact.

Photo from iStock

Many people are staying close to home this summer. Travel rules are looser in some places than others, but generally speaking, we will all have more time with our nuclear family than during a typical July or August. Summer camps are closed in our area, and except for the occasional play date, our kids will be home for at least two more months.

Partly because my husband and I are tired of 24/7 cleaning, and partly because my kids can’t use the, “I have a Google Meet call for school,”…

An opportunity to recalibrate the emotional burden

It is easy to see the glass as half empty in our current situation. Especially if you have lost a job or a loved one. And although I’d never go as far to say this overall experience is positive, I do see some glass half full potential for lasting change.

COVID-19 has given every couple an extraordinary opportunity to better understand their domestic space, and the balance of effort within it. And this could be a good thing.

Our Lives Have Changed

Our households have changed dramatically in the past few weeks. Those in the knowledge economy have moved their…

This article updates an earlier piece that I originally posted to Medium in June 2019. Incorporating helpful feedback, I have adjusted some of the vocabulary in that original article.*

I hope you enjoy the new version.

Words Define Expectations

New vocabulary can identify an innovation: smart phone, bingeable, jeggings. Or new vocabulary can articulate something that has always existed, but was not previously named: mansplaining, hangry, time suck. …

And why it matters in the battle for gender equality.

I recently made some travel arrangements for my immediate family — nothing out of the ordinary, just vacation planning. Over the course of three weeks I spoke to a travel agent several times on the phone, and we exchanged a number of emails and texts. When plans were finalized, I sent in my credit card details and she asked for the passport details for our travel party. At the end of the process I got a computer-generated email that read…

“Dear Mr. …

Are we ready for these uncomfortable conversations?

Imagine you invite me over for drinks. You clean your kitchen, pour two glasses of wine, and set out a tray of munchies. I walk in your front door. I skip your kitchen, ignore the munchies and find my way into the dustiest corner of your attic, where I sit down to chat.

This may sound odd, but it’s an appropriate metaphor to describe what happens when I tell people, “I am writing a book about traditional gender stereotypes and household chores.”

Kate Mangino

Writes about gender balance in the home, and its effects on women’s equality. Check out my newsletter at

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store