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Swedish Dads FTW!

Stefan Johansson



The photographer Johan Bävman is touring around the world with a photo exhibition about "Swedish Dads". The exhibition shows fathers on parental leave.

 Swedish newspapers recently wrote about the reactions in Sydney, Australia (see exhibition before 26/9).  A (female) columnist in Sydney Morning Herald referred to the exhibition like "porn for stressed moms". I wouldn't agree on that headline but the column itself is interesting, and the reasoning about how the society could/should become more equal.

The photos are nothing but fantastic! See some below and visit Bävmans web site to see them all here.

I touched upon this topic long ago, in a short blog post here in 2012, that "it's not all about motherhood in the maternity wards and NICUs". Our family-centered neonatal care includes all parents, i.e. expect the father to be as present and care-giving as the mother.

For myself, being a "Swedish Dad", I never considered NOT taking parental leave when we had our children. When our son was born in 1996, it was more easy as I was a pediatric fellow. But even in 2011 when our daughter was born, going off work during ~6 months was a natural thing to do for me despite being a consultant neonatologist. We work such a lot during our life-time, and we don't have too much ice-cream with our little ones (but it's great when we do :))  

I am well aware that many countries have less generous systems for parental leave (especially regarding the amount of time funded but welfare systems). But, I strongly recommend all father to take leave with children, and manage the household while the mother is going back to work. It is an investment for life.

Have a look at the video about the photo project below and enjoy some of the photos, embedded with permission from Johan Bävman.

If you visit Stockholm later this year, the "Swedish Dads" exhibition comes to Galleri Kontrast in Stockholm (30/9 - 29/10).



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