Remote Work Is Changing the Fabric of American Families

While hundreds of Americans have not stepped foot in their employer's office since the pandemic struck in 2020, 66% of companies now require workers to come into their facilities, and that's expected to rise to 90% in early 2023. 

Estimates that predicted 25% of all employees would be remote working by the end of 2022 now seem like a distant memory. But those employees who do work from home – even in a hybrid model – are seeing changes in family dynamics and relationships .

Tradeoffs for Remote Workers and Families

The typical American 9-5 takes employees away from their families for more than just 8 hours per day. Additional factors like long commutes, overtime, and work events can diminish people’s time with their loved ones.

Closeness Begets Closeness: Remote Work and Family Bonds

Remote positions reduce this time away from family or even eliminate it.

Remote work offers potential for strengthening family ties, but it doesn’t guarantee it. In some cases, the new dynamic exacerbated existing tensions and even created new ones.

Old Burdens and New Ones in The Remote Work Era

For instance, women who already bore a disproportionate share of unpaid household responsibilities often found this imbalance got worse after shifting to remote work.  Instead of gaining more time to keep up with housework and childcare, many women experienced the opposite.

Partners in these cases often adopted higher expectations and a more hands-off approach to ostensibly shared responsibilities after the transition, despite being more present.

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