Raising awareness in gender role domestic work has led to the expectations of the fathers to have better involvement in childcare. Most of the studies about fathers are conducted in western countries, especially for countries that have regulations to increase the father involvement to study the shifting attitudes in childcare. Therefore, this study wants to contribute to the knowledge by exploring working fathers’ experience in Indonesia, which has limited support in increasing father involvement, using the concept of masculinity. The study carried out twenty semi-structured online interviews with working fathers who have children aged 0-5 years old and living in dual-earner families. From the interview, it shows that the working father's involvement in childcare is usually different between newborns and children aged one year and above. Working fathers with flexible working arrangements are more involved in childcare. In doing childcare, the working father is motivated by their past experiences, wife’ support, and information related to childcare. Furthermore, their working arrangements and extended family influence their childcare arrangements. In addition, most of the fathers in this study have strong characters of being leader, breadwinner, and selfless. And only those who have high involvement in direct care practice have sharing and care actor characteristics. Their perception of their masculinity shows in their characteristics and influences their childcare practice. The working fathers that position themselves as equal caregiver show more caring masculinity characteristic and have better involvement than those who see their role as support caregiver in childcare. Therefore, it is important to promote father as equal caregiver to increase father involvement in childcare.

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Siegmann, Karin Astrid
Social Policy for Development (SPD)
International Institute of Social Studies

Wulaningsih, Kustia. (2023, December 20). “We made it together, so we must care for it together” - Practices and perceptions of Indonesian working fathers’ involvement in childcare. Social Policy for Development (SPD). Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/2105/70976