Gender-specific patterns and determinants of spillover between work and family: The role of partner support in dual-earner couples

Keywords: partner support, work-family spillover, gender, parenthood

Abstract

Objective: The study investigates how partner support affects different types of work-to-family and family-to-work conflicts in dual-earner couples divided by gender and parenthood.

Background: In Germany, as in other Western Countries, interrole conflicts between work and family increase, especially within dual-earner couples. Only few studies focused on the effects of partner support on different types of these conflicts.

Method: We use longitudinal data deriving from waves 6 to 10 of the German Family Panel (pairfam) to uncover the extent to which the perception of having a supportive partner reduces time- and strain-based work-to-family and family-to-work conflicts. We conduct longitudinal structural equation models based on information of 1,252 persons, which are full-time employed and live in a dual-earner relationship.

Results: Whereas for men partner support helps reduce stress-based work-to-family conflicts, for women perceived partner support is not beneficial. Within a subsample of parents, the experience of work-to-family conflicts is likely irrespective of partner support. Overall, women’s family-to-work conflicts appear to be reduced by their partners’ support whereas for men this detrimental effect only applies in the case of stress-based family-to-work conflicts.

Conclusion: To sum up the findings, the differences for men and women in the effect of partner support on different types of interrole conflicts indicate a still existing impact of traditional gender norms that connect femininity to house work and masculinity to employed work.

Author Biographies

Ayhan Adams, Osnabrueck University

Institute of Social Sciences

Katrin Golsch

Osnabrueck University, Institute of Social Sciences

Prof. Dr.

Published
2020-06-05
How to Cite
Ayhan Adams, & Katrin Golsch. (2020). Gender-specific patterns and determinants of spillover between work and family: The role of partner support in dual-earner couples. Journal of Family Research. https://doi.org/10.20377/jfr-373
Section
Articles