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When it comes to how they raise their children, there’s one thing mothers agree on

Mothers relax on the grass with their babies at Central Park during a warm day in New York
Reuters/Lucas Jackson
Crushing it.
  • Jenny Anderson
By Jenny Anderson

Senior reporter, Editor of How to be Human

Published This article is more than 2 years old.

In the age of the mommy-wars, it appears we do not agree on much. Are we helicopters or free-rangers, coddlers or Tigers? Go to work or stay at home? What kind of approach will guarantee success in life, and which will guarantee a lifetime of therapy?

Fortunately, it turns out most of us agree on one thing. We are doing a fine job of raising our children.

According to a recently released Pew Research Center survey of American mothers and fathers, roughly the same share of parents (about 45%) in three different income brackets (less than $30,000, between $30,000 and $75,000, and $75,000 or higher) think they are doing a very good job as parent.

There is some variation. Mothers think more highly of their mothering skills than fathers do of their fathering, and millennial mothers are more likely to think they have nailed the parenting gig than their older, more experienced counterparts. A whopping 57% of mothers in the study’s youngest age bracket say they are doing a very good job. Call it wisdom, or the tendency for life to get more complicated as children get older, or the simple accumulation of irrefutable evidence, but the older generations are not so sunny. Here’s the breakdown:

Fathers, meanwhile, were less confident: only 39% overall (including 43% of millennial dads) report doing “very good” work as a parent, versus 51% of moms.

There’s something else we agree on. Most of us, 93%, want our spouses or partners to see us as good parents, and two-thirds of us want out parents to see us that way.

The survey was conducted Sept. 15-Oct. 13, 2015, among 1,807 US parents with children younger than 18.

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