BROOKLYN, New York. According to the Atlantic, when couples fail to set up a system for handling household chores, the relationship can end up being strained. According to the Atlantic, a Pew Research poll conducted in 2007 found that sharing household chores was just as important to a good marriage as good sex and fidelity.
Yet, despite this poll, women in America still find themselves doing the majority of the household tasks. When it comes to how couples divide household tasks, the question is larger than the idea of an equal partnership or an issue that causes couples to fight—like money. The question is one involving gender expectations and dynamics. Even when women worked more hours than men, women were found to spend more time doing household chores.
In studies where women and men were found to communicate poorly about delegating tasks and when performing tasks together, the pattern of communication was later seen in their other interactions. Fights about doing the chores or fights while doing the chores can become fights in other areas of life. Furthermore, resentment that stems from a woman doing all the chores can lead to problems in the bedroom.
It’s not just communication, though. Some couples who didn’t communicate about household tasks didn’t need to communicate because norms surrounding chores had already been established. In other cases, the communication was supportive rather than critical.
One woman writing to the New York Times expressed concerns that her husband didn’t do household tasks. Ultimately, the Times writers responding to her question wondered why some women would accept this kind of imbalance when it came to household tasks while they wouldn’t accept other issues involving respect like infidelity or lying. At the end of the day, sharing household tasks might have more to do with mutual respect than anything else.
So, does imbalance in the division of labor lead to divorce? Not necessarily. Sometimes the couple needs to go to counseling or they need to set clearer expectations about what duties each partner will perform. Some women only saw change when they specified what they wanted done and just stopped doing the things that they wanted done. However, sometimes the issue is deeper; sometimes it comes down to respect. If your partner refuses to acknowledge the labor you’re doing, even if it’s home labor, then your feelings aren’t being heard and this can lead to resentment and marital problems in the long run.
When couples have issues dividing chores at home, these concerns can spill over into the divorce. For example, these issues can lead to disagreements about how parents will negotiate a parenting plan where both parents share parental responsibility. Here is where a divorce lawyer can help. The Elliot Green Law Offices are family lawyers in Brooklyn, New York who can help you understand your rights and responsibilities. If you’re getting divorced and have children, you’ll need to have a parenting plan in place that addresses shared parenting responsibilities regarding child rearing and caretaking. Our firm can help. Visit us at https://www.elliotgreenlaw.com/ to learn more.
The Elliot Green Law Offices
32 Court Street, Suite 404
Brooklyn, NY 11201