Modern fathers are thought to have originated somewhere in the past two decades. However, new study says that modern fathers have existed since a very long time, just that they have never changed babies' diapers.

For the study, researchers looked at data available from newspapers, interviews with fathers and social research.

Research shows that in 1982, 42 percent of fathers never changed a diaper while in 2010, almost 65 percent of men helped a "great deal" with nappy changing.

"We must reject suggestions that close father-child relationships have only developed since the 1970s or even 1990s. The stereotype of the distant and tyrannical Victorian patriarch conceals substantial evidence of fathers who cared greatly for their children and played with them, educated them, and even nursed them," Dr. Laura King from the University of Warwick’s Centre for the History of Medicine who has done the study.

"We have to rethink this idea that 'modern' fathers are a recent phenomenon. Such stereotypes affect policy-making and the way legislation is used; fathers are still subject to harmful stereotyping," Dr. King said.

Recent studies have suggested that fathers are happier than mothers while taking care of kids as it brings them a sense of purpose in life.

"There is a great deal of historical evidence showing that fathers have played a caring and nurturing role with their children for centuries, including taking informal paternity leave to support their partners around the time of childbirth," Dr. King said.

Mothers are associated with more child-care responsibilities. A study said that mothers do a lot more multitasking than fathers; they also do more physical labor, have a more rigid time-table and spend more time with children.

Arrival of children and its impact on the parents has been studied widely. A study published in the Journal of Family Issue back in the 80's said that presence of children changes the marital structure and in turn causes lower marital happiness. The study outlined how division of labor after the arrival of "new one" creates trouble in the family due to traditionalism.

Research on families has shown that now fathers are increasingly taking part in taking care of the children including changing nappies.

"By 1982 there were still 43% of fathers who never changed a nappy. This figure has dropped to 3% by 2000. We can see from the 2010 figures that more men are changing nappies on a regular basis," Dr. King said.

"Whilst we can point to clear practical changes such as nappy-changing, men's participation in childbirth, policy changes introducing official paternity leave and changes in child custody laws, the change in active fatherhood has been less sudden that is often assumed," Dr. King added.