Sunday, 19 July 2009

Mums & Dads

After having spent quite a few years in the UK, I have had plenty of time to ponder about cultural and social differences between my native Sweden and this country. One phenomenon that strikes me as occuring more than others, is the way family life is being described in media. The recent reports on swineflu have reiterated this. 

Whenever the word 'children' is mentioned, you can guarantee the word 'mum' is not far away. Be it discussions concerning upbringing, social welfare, teenage pregnancies or, as now, about the swineflu risk, for MUMS and younger children.

One wonders, aren't there any DADS involved, at any stage? Surely, they cannot all be single mums, can they? And, talking of divorce and splitting up - you hardly ever hear anyone mentioning single dads. School-runs are nearly always referred to as carried out by mums. Who takes the children to the surgery for vaccination on news reports? Who makes sure they do their homework and put them to bed? Mums. Mums, mums and mums.

My MOTHER-land Sweden is not always the most perfect country when it comes to social welfare and equality. There is a lot more to be done. Still, I do think it wins the battle of using the remarkable word PARENTS.

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