Mumsnet Motherhood and Childhood Survey

 November 2007 - 1668 responses.

Q1: How many children do you have?

1 44.5%
2 40.4%
3 11.0%
4 3.1%
5 0.8%
5+ 0.2%

Q2: How old are your children? (please tick all that apply)

0-6 months 12.6%
6-12 months 14.5%
1 year 23.9%
2 years 23.6%
3 years 20.1%
4 years 16.9%
5 years 12.5%
6 years 10.1%
7 years 9.0%
8 years 7.0%
9 years 5.1%
10 years or older 13.2%

Q3: Whereabouts in the UK do you live?

London 17.2%
Midlands 12.1%
Northern England 16.6%
Northern Ireland 0.9%
Not in UK 4.7%
Scotland 7.5%
South East 28.3%
South West 10.7%
Wales 2.1%

Q4: Which of the following describes your position at present? Are you... (tick all that apply)

a stay at home mother 41.4%
doing part-time work (can be employed or self employed) 43.4%
doing full-time paid work (can be employed or self employed) 16.5%
doing part-time voluntary work 3.9%
doing full-time voluntary work 0.1%
a student 3.6%
none of the above 2.5%

Q5. Which of the following forms of childcare do you currently use, or have used in the recent past? (Note: this was a question where respondents could tick more than one)

a private nursery 37.2%
nanny 5.9%
au pair 1.6%
childminder 15.8%
relative on a regular basis 20.6%
other 10.6%
no childcare, you stay at home and look after your child/ren 35.0%

Q6. If money were no object, which one form of childcare would you use?

Au pair 2.4%
childminder 6.5%
nanny 18.9%
none 40.2%
nursery 19.0%
other 2.8%
relative 9.5%

Q7. When you think about your child's/children's future, how worried (if at all) are you about each of the following? Would you say you are: very worried; worried; not that worried; or not worried at all?

  Not worried at all Not that worried Worried Very worried NULL
terrorism / war 4.0% 40.0% 44.7% 10.9% 0.4%
Paedophiles / abduction 4.6% 41.7% 36.9% 16.4% 0.4%
road traffic 0.8% 19.7% 53.4% 25.5% 0.6%
violent crime 1.4% 35.2% 45.9% 17.0% 0.4%
Drugs 1.5% 28.8% 48.2% 20.9% 0.5%
climate change 3.5% 31.4% 47.7% 16.9% 0.5%

Q8. Which of the following make you feel most guilty as a parent - please choose up to three.

letting your child watch too much TV / videos / dvds 48.3%
not spending enough time with your child 43.0%
not providing enough activities for your child 33.6%
regularly shouting at or losing your temper with your child 36.9%
regularly arguing with your partner in front of your child 13.7%
swearing in front of your child 9.7%
not being able to afford material possessions your child wants 5.8%
your child not eating the right foods 25.8%

Percent that did not give any response to Q8 (ie the guiltfree parents...) : 4.7

Note: For the next bit of the survey, respondents were asked to choose one child If you have more than one child please choose just one of your children (preferably one who is school age) to refer to when answering the following questions

Q9. How old is the child you will be referring to when you answer the rest of this survey?  (in years)

Eight + 12.8%
Five to seven 29.0%
Two to four 33.8%
Under 2 24.3%
Not answered 0.1%
Grand Total 100.0%
For the next questions, please think about this child only.

Q10. On an average weekday, approximately how many hours do you spend with this child?

Age of child across / hours below Age eight + Age five to seven Age two to four Age under 2 Not answered Grand Total
Zero to one hours 6.1% 1.0% 0.4% 0.2% 0.0% 1.3%
one to two hours 10.8% 6.0% 3.7% 4.9% 0.0% 5.6%
two to four hours 26.3% 27.7% 17.4% 14.1% 0.0% 20.7%
four to six hours 31.9% 41.9% 18.6% 7.9% 50.0% 24.5%
six to eight hour 10.3% 16.5% 14.2% 8.1% 0.0% 12.9%
eight to ten hours 4.7% 1.4% 16.3% 8.6% 0.0% 8.6%
10+ hours 7.0% 2.1% 27.3% 55.3% 0.0% 24.2%
not answered 2.8% 3.3% 2.1% 0.7% 50.0% 2.3%

Q11. On an average weekday, approximately how many hours does your partner spend with this child?

Age of child across / hours below Age eight + Age five to seven Age two to four Age under 2 Not answered Grand Total
Zero to one 16.9% 18.6% 14.2% 16.8% 0.0% 16.4%
one to two 29.1% 29.3% 35.3% 31.1% 0.0% 31.7%
two to four 30.5% 33.7% 31.7% 31.6% 50.0% 32.1%
four to six 8.9% 9.9% 7.6% 10.1% 0.0% 9.1%
six to eight 1.4% 2.7% 2.3% 1.7% 50.0% 2.2%
eight to ten 1.4% 0.4% 1.4% 1.7% 0.0% 1.2%
10+ 2.3% 0.2% 2.0% 4.2% 0.0% 2.0%
Not applicable 8.9% 4.8% 4.1% 2.2% 0.0% 4.4%
Not answered 0.5% 0.4% 1.4% 0.5% 0.0% 0.8%

Q12. Across an average week, approximately how many hours do you get to yourself - by this we mean not with children, not working, but doing things like - for example - going to the gym, non-food shopping, going out with friends?

Zero to one 30.2%
one to two 24.2%
two to four 16.5%
four to six 10.7%
six to eight 6.3%
eight to ten 3.8%
ten to twelve 2.5%
twelve to fourteen 1.5%
Fourteen to sixteen 1.0%
Sixteen to eighteen 0.6%
Eighteen to twenty 0.6%
Twenty plus 1.2%
Not answered 0.9%

Q13. Across an average week, approximately how many hours do you spend together as a family - by this we mean - not just going to the supermarket, school runs etc but - for example going on outings, eating a meal together etc.

0-1 1.4%
one to two 3.2%
two to four 9.2%
four to six 8.0%
six to eight 10.4%
eight to ten 10.6%
ten to twelve 9.2%
twelve to fourteen 9.1%
14-16 8.3%
16-18 8.2%
18-20 6.4%
20+ 15.2%
Not answered 0.8%

Q14. Please think about the amount of time your child spends doing the following activities. For each one, please say whether you think they... (tick one for each)

  Should spend more time About the right amount of time Spend too much time Not answered Total
watching tv 0.4% 58.0% 40.7% 0.8% 100.0%
playing on the computer / computer games 5.5% 75.7% 16.6% 2.2% 100.0%
playing outdoors 40.5% 58.0% 0.4% 1.0% 100.0%
doing homework 18.0% 72.6% 6.9% 2.5% 100.0%
playing sport / exercising 31.0% 67.0% 0.6% 1.3% 100.0%
reading or looking at books 17.5% 79.9% 1.6% 1.0% 100.0%
Detail by activity broken down by age of the child  - – “not applicable” responses ignored
watching tv Eight + Five to seven Two to four Under 2 Grand Total
Should spend more time 0.0% 0.2% 0.4% 1.4% 0.4%
About the right amount of time 58.0% 58.8% 52.1% 71.5% 58.0%
Spend too much time 40.5% 41.0% 46.6% 25.1% 40.7%
Not answered 1.5% 0.0% 0.9% 1.9% 0.8%
Grand Total 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
playing on the computer / computer games Eight + Five to seven Two to four Under 2 Grand Total
Should spend more time 2.2% 7.2% 5.4% 0.0% 5.5%
About the right amount of time 66.7% 77.4% 82.6% 45.5% 75.7%
Spend too much time 29.4% 14.9% 8.2% 9.1% 16.6%
Not answered 1.7% 0.5% 3.8% 45.5% 2.2%
Grand Total 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
playing outdoors Eight + Five to seven Two to four Under 2 Grand Total
Should spend more time 47.1% 43.2% 37.6% 36.9% 40.5%
About the right amount of time 51.5% 56.4% 60.6% 60.6% 58.0%
Spend too much time 0.0% 0.2% 0.5% 0.7% 0.4%
Not answered 1.5% 0.2% 1.2% 1.8% 1.0%
Grand Total 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
doing homework Eight + Five to seven Two to four Under 2 Grand Total
Should spend more time 29.7% 15.6% 6.3% 0.0% 18.0%
About the right amount of time 61.5% 76.6% 79.7% 33.3% 72.6%
Spend too much time 7.1% 7.7% 1.3% 11.1% 6.9%
Not answered 1.6% 0.0% 12.7% 55.6% 2.5%
Grand Total 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
playing sport / exercising Eight + Five to seven Two to four Under 2 Grand Total
Should spend more time 42.7% 34.6% 26.6% 10.9% 31.0%
About the right amount of time 54.8% 64.3% 71.9% 82.2% 67.0%
Spend too much time 1.0% 0.6% 0.4% 1.0% 0.6%
Not answered 1.5% 0.4% 1.1% 5.9% 1.3%
Grand Total 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
reading or looking at books Eight + Five to seven Two to four Under 2 Grand Total
Should spend more time 31.8% 22.3% 11.4% 11.9% 17.5%
About the right amount of time 63.5% 75.0% 87.0% 85.2% 79.9%
Spend too much time 2.8% 2.3% 0.7% 1.5% 1.6%
Not answered 1.9% 0.4% 0.9% 1.5% 1.0%
Grand Total 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%

Q15. How many out of school activities does your child do on average in a week?

(Ages across / number of school activities down)

Number of hours Eight and over Five to seven Two to four Under 2 Not Answered Grand Total
0 23.0% 14.9% 69.5% 92.3% 0.0% 53.2%
1 13.1% 21.5% 13.5% 2.5% 0.0% 13.1%
2 29.6% 27.7% 12.1% 3.0% 50.0% 16.7%
3 18.3% 21.1% 3.4% 1.0% 50.0% 9.9%
4 7.5% 7.2% 1.2% 1.0% 0.0% 3.7%
5 4.2% 5.2% 0.2% 0.0% 0.0% 2.1%
5+ 4.2% 2.5% 0.2% 0.2% 0.0% 1.4%

Q16. What out of school activities do they do? (tick all that apply)

sport 34.2%
musical instrument 11.4%
drama 5.7%
dance 11.9%
language 3.8%
academic subject, eg maths club 1.6%
chess 1.0%
computers 1.0%
social group eg Brownies, Scouts, youth club 13.4%
choir 2.4%
something else 9.1%

By age groups

Activity Eight + Five to seven Two to four Under 2 FALSE Grand Total
sport 57.7% 65.1% 20.4% 4.2% 50.0% 34.2%
musical instrument 28.6% 21.7% 2.7% 2.0% 50.0% 11.4%
drama 14.6% 11.6% 1.4% 0.0% 0.0% 5.7%
dance 13.6% 23.6% 9.8% 0.2% 0.0% 11.9%
language 4.2% 8.3% 2.1% 0.5% 0.0% 3.8%
academic subject, eg maths club 3.8% 3.3% 0.2% 0.2% 50.0% 1.6%
chess 1.9% 2.7% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 1.0%
computers 2.8% 1.9% 0.2% 0.0% 0.0% 1.0%
social group eg Brownies, Scouts, youth club 33.8% 27.5% 2.8% 0.5% 50.0% 13.4%
choir 6.6% 5.0% 0.4% 0.0% 0.0% 2.4%
something else 15.0% 13.0% 7.6% 3.2% 0.0% 9.1%

Q17. When you were the same age as your child, how many out of school activities did you do in a week?

0 57.1%
1 17.8%
2 10.4%
3 6.7%
4 2.1%
5 0.6%
5+ 0.7%
Can’t remember 4.7%

Q18. What out of school activities did you do? (tick all that apply)

sport 21.22%
musical instrument 22.12%
drama 7.13%
dance 17.33%
language 1.38%
academic subject, eg maths club 1.44%
chess 1.14%
computers 0.78%
social club eg Brownies, Scouts, youth club 31.18%
choir 7.13%
something else 5.34%

The results of the Mumsnet survey were featured in the Sunday Telegraph here.

Last updated: 11 months ago