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Museum's event demonstrates need for more mom-son activities

Cheers to the Terre Haute Children’s Museum for recognizing the importance of the bond between a mother and a son.

This bond is a difficult one to nurture, as women work outside of the home now more than ever, and projections show the trend will grow. “From 2014 to 2024, the civilian labor force of women is projected to grow 5.8 percent, or 4,207,000,” according to latest data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

When a mother is at home, after a full day of work, she’s rushing to prepare meals, give baths, help with homework or shuttling her children from one activity to another.

The amount of quality time available is little to nothing. And that’s not an exaggeration. Latest numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics highlight a worrisome imbalance.

Women spend more time than men “caring for and helping household members, much of which involved providing childcare. Of those ages 25 and older, women spent more time than men doing household activities such as cleaning house, preparing meals, and doing laundry, while men spent more time doing paid work,” according to the Bureau.

And, “at all ages, men spent more time than women in leisure and sports activities.”

Activities for fathers and daughters seem more abundant, or at the very least, more highly advertised. The museum itself has hosted daddy-daughter dances, and annual events like Daddy Daughter Date Night, sponsored by Terre Haute Chick-fil-A, has grown so popular it has moved to a larger venue.

The bond between any parent and child is important to nourish. The current unfortunate reality is that it's more difficult for mothers to find the time to do that type of nourishing.

So what should a mother do while our culture tries to catch up? Attend events like Mother Son Night at the museum, and encourage others to step up and offer such support and opportunities. (Chick-fil-A will sponsor a mother-son date night in the summer.)

“Moms are under so much pressure to be everything to everyone,” Children's Museum director Susan Turner said at Saturday’s mom-son mystery event.

A boy mom herself, Turner knows firsthand the importance of strengthening mother-son relationships. “You work, whether it’s a paid career or as a stay-at-home-mother, you’re always worried about your kid, how they’re developing, and about being a good wife and mother and community volunteer.

“It’s nice for these mothers to be able to press pause for a minute and let their hair down and just have fun with their kids,” Turner said.

Pressing pause. To celebrate a bond that is like no other. An event made just for a mom and her son. More such efforts are needed, big and small.

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