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Benjamin Muller: “A modern father is a father who does not help his wife but takes care of his children with her”


INTERVIEW – The columnist of “La Maison des mères”, who has just published Becoming a dad for dummies, analyzes the place and role of fathers in 2022.

The journalist and columnist for “La Maison des maternalles” on France 2, Benjamin Muller, also known for his podcast “Encore une histoire”, has just published a very comprehensive book for future fathers:

Becoming a dad for dummies

( 1. A book which, beyond the very practical questions related to pregnancy and the baby, tackles without taboos modern parenthood, benevolent education or even the couple facing the test of a


. looks back at the evolution of the figure of the father in recent years and the changes still necessary in society to achieve gender equality.

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Madame Figaro

- You have just published a book for fathers.

What does it mean to be a modern father in 2022?

Benjamin Muller.-

He is a father who does not help his wife but takes care of his children with her, 50%.

I still meet women who say “I'm very lucky, I have a husband who helps me”, I find that terrible… But fortunately, there is a general awareness of the fathers themselves on the subject .

I see more and more of them who are ready to take their part or who are at least sensitive to this debate.

And conversely, we no longer see them saying: “no, I don't take care of the children”.

Today, men can more easily assume their emotions, speech is freed.

We see for example comedians talking about their paternity, like Thomas Ngijol who does two hours of show on his children and it's very funny!

The subject is also infusing the business world.

Step by step,

On video, the adorable video of a father styling his daughter

What else needs to be changed in society so that men can fully play their part?

I think the change will come first from the companies.

As long as women earn less than men or are the ones who stop working when one of their children is sick, this will not change.

But it must also come from the fathers.

Let me explain: when my daughter was born, my boss offered me to do big assignments for the radio station where I was, for 6 months.

I had refused because I wanted to be present for the delivery and for the first weeks of my daughter's life.

I had been yelled at, for him it was not possible for me to refuse such an offer.

But I find that, when you have the possibility, it

Read alsoPaternity leave: these companies that offer one to three months, 100% paid, to all their employees

How can you prepare to become a father?

Indeed, becoming a dad, when you are not yet, is not innate and it can be complicated depending on your personal history.

You have to talk about it with your wife, make the various preparatory appointments with her, the ultrasounds, for it to be concrete.

I also find that it is necessary to discuss it with his friends.

There is a masculine modesty that means we don't broach the subject between men, but we have to break that!

We can express our emotions.

Full screen

“Becoming a dad for dummies”, by Benjamin Muller Éditions First

What do you think of the introduction of 28-day paternity leave just a year ago?

It's a cosmetic measure, although obviously it's always good to take.

In fact, it's 28 days that we spend with the mother, so the father does not have moments alone with his baby.

For me, it would take a real parental leave of six months to be shared between the two parents, well paid and financed by the State.

In Denmark, for example (

where the father and the mother can share 32 weeks of parental leave after the birth, editor's note

), there are fathers' clubs to discuss or do activities with their children and this is very well seen.

For things to change, we have to be on the maneuver together, as a couple.

There is a masculine modesty that means that we don't broach the subject of paternity between men, but we have to break that

Benjamin Müller

The mental burden related to the home and children is still predominantly borne by women.

How to rebalance it in the couple?

One of the ways to better distribute the mental load is to say to yourself, as a father, that having control over things is reassuring.

Some choose to leave the planning of everyday things to their wife, but in the end, if you also manage, you will be more serene.

To achieve this, I simply advise to write down on a sheet everything that the mother does and the same for the father.

It allows us to talk about it calmly and put things straight.

Moreover, the women themselves do not always realize what they are doing.

How do you find a balance between your professional life and your personal life?

I don't have too many difficulties because I work out of passion!

I love what I do.

But I force myself to be at home every day at 5 p.m. to be with our children until 9 p.m. and I manage to fit the rest elsewhere.

It allows me to accompany them to their activities, to sports, and to really spend time with everyone.

The risk in all this is to put your couple aside.

We try to protect ourselves from that with my wife.

Every Friday, we make time for ourselves: a restaurant, an evening with friends… We are also lucky enough to have lunch together during the week.

The couple talks and works on a daily basis.

It's an undeniable part of the equation.

There should be a real parental leave of six months to be shared between the two parents, well paid and financed by the State

Benjamin Müller

What is your advice for future and young dads who read us?

They must be aware that the birth of their child is going to be both a very hard moment and a total happiness, the greatest of their lives.

It is an upheaval which occurs in their daily life.

To become aware of this, you have to discuss with the mother before the birth and what it will change in their couple.

Finally, if it's too upsetting, don't hesitate to talk about it and see your doctor or a psychologist, for example.


Becoming a dad for dummies

, edited by Benjamin Muller, First editions.

Source: lefigaro

All business articles on 2022-07-04

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