I read an article this week that was shocking! At first, I laughed. Then I felt vindicated, like someone had FINALLY understood what I’ve been saying for years. And then I felt bad. Why? Because the target of the article was made to look bad, even though the article might have been true in some situations. The article was about housework…
The article described the differences between housework in the 70s, versus the housework that is done today, for both single and married women.
- In the 70s, single women did about nine hours of housework less than married women. The single men, they did about three hours more than married men.
- Yet 13 years ago, single women did about four hours of housework less than married women. As for the single men, they spent about five hours less than married men.
Women are still doing more housework than men, which most of us know, but the article went into more detail for women in 2005.
- Single women with no children did about 10 hours of housework per week.
- Married women with no children did about 17 hours of housework per week.
Here’s where I laughed. The ONLY difference between these two types of women…THE PRESENCE OF A HUSBAND! Here’s where I laughed and felt like the world was finally right and finally felt understood. As a woman that has no children, works outside of the home and is trying to build something beautiful, I have felt for years that I do more housework every day. We have a dog to clean up after, there is laundry to be done, the dishes have to be clean, meals to be made…yadda, yadda, yadda! It’s just natural. In today’s day and age, women do approximately seven hours more per week of housework.
This article got me thinking. First and foremost, I think the guys are getting a bad wrap. Not all married men do nothing around the house to help out. In my house, we take chores we like to do and just get them done. It isn’t about splitting the work or taking a “Divide and Conquer” approach, it is simply about getting things done. But I also wondered why women naturally do more of the housework than men? Yes, we do the chores we like to do, but I do find myself tiding up a bit more, almost automatically.
While everyone’s relationship is different, I can tell you, relationships are hard and naturally women tend to take on more of the housework than men. Women tend to want a clean house, one that maybe isn’t Pinterest-perfect but presentable for guests. And women like to have clean clothes to wear every day, rather than shuffling through the laundry pile. Even when schedules are cramped and there’s stressful situations, both inside and outside of the home, women continue to do the housework to have a sense of outer order. I may be generalizing here, but I think most women would agree with me that having an outer order does actually lead to inner calm.
I’m sure you have your own opinions on this study that was done and I’d love to hear them. Whether you’re a man or a woman, share your thoughts about how housework gets done in your household.