Comparing child-care values in Japan and China among parents with infants

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The purpose of this project was to identify parental child-care values in Japan and China. Participants were 667 parents (432 Japanese and 235 Chinese) of newborn babies. A questionnaire, the Child-care Value Scale, was used to collect the data. Japanese parents' mean scores were significantly higher (indicating more agreement) for parental responsibilities listed in the subscale ‘Views about parental role’ than those for Chinese parents. The mean scores for ‘Negative impressions of child-care’ and ‘Need for support from others in the parents' environment’ subscales for Japanese fathers were significantly lower than for Chinese fathers. Japanese parents believed that mothers were responsible for taking care of their children. This was an obstacle to getting support from people outside the family. Chinese couples believed that parents should share housekeeping and child-care, and obtained public and private support from their community. Findings suggest that parents of infants need community and health-care support.

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