WHEN announcing the federal government's new dad and partner pay, which opened for applications last week, Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs Jenny Macklin spoke of her partner's own experiences 30 years ago as a stay-at-home dad.
She said her partner faced challenges and was greeted with interesting looks as he got on with the business of health checks and the like.
Fast forward to 2012 and as the minister said, dads staying home with children is still not something you see every day.
"All these years later, I'm not so sure whether people's reactions today to a dad staying home would be all that different [to my partner's experiences]," she said.
The Lake Times tried to speak to some stay-at-home dads to comment on their experiences but the few at least who were approached for us, although passionate about their roles, were wary of putting themselves out there in the public eye.
As the minister says, it would appear we still have a long way to go before "daddy daycare" is the norm.
I'm not suggesting that we need a real-life House Husbands scenario, with life imitating the Channel 9 art of stay-at-home dad friends getting each other out of scrapes, but thankfully dads have never been more involved in the parenting gig.
Under the new means-tested scheme, eligible dads and same-sex partners will get two weeks minimum wage paid leave, currently $1212 before tax.
The government should be praised for helping create options for parents. Along with paid parental leave it's another positive step to make it easier for working families.
Now all we have to do is stop being hard on ourselves for choosing whichever scenario works for our family and judging those who do it differently.